Forklift Hire: Choosing the right Forklift

Forklift Hire: Choosing the right Forklift

If you are considering forklift hire for your material handling requirements, it is important to hire the correct forklift for the job at hand. There are a number of considerations that will help you in ensuring the forklift you hire is the forklift you need.

Some key considerations are:


Forklift Load Weight

A key concern for both safety and productivity reasons is the load weight of the materials that require lifting.
The forklift you hire must be rated of sufficient strength to safely lift the required load weight to the required height. Failure to take this into account can lead to such consequences as:

  • Operator injury /fatality
  • Injury or even fatality of employees in the vicinity of the operating forklift
  • Damage or loss to product/materials being lifted
  • Forklift damage
  • Damage or loss of surrounding equipment such as pallet racking


Forklift Lift Height

As with the above, maximum height reach crucial consideration when considering forklift hire.
With forklifts, the higher the load needs to be lifted, the lower the weight capacity that can be lifted as the dynamics of the load distribution, and thus stability of the forklift, are changed.

Therefore it is important that you consider what is to be the heaviest load you require lifting and to what is the maximum height it needs to be lifted. This calculation will enable you to hire the perfect forklift for the job and avoid any of the potentially serious pitfalls highlighted in the previous section.
Height clearance is also an issue in warehouses, storage facilities etc and should also be taken into consideration when choosing a suitable forklift to hire for your premises.


Forklift Load Dimensions

The type of forklift you hire also depends upon the dimensions and type of materials to be lifted – if it is standard pallets or if specialist forklifts are required that are designed specifically to handle certain types of load.

For example:

  • Containers – specialist, large forklift handlers are required to lift 40ft shipping containers
  • Side-loading forklifts – these can be an ideal solution for moving long loads such as steel or wooden planks
  • All-terrain forklifts – often found on construction sites as they can operate over rough terrain
  • Narrow aisle forklifts – designed to manoeuvre around tight racking aisles in warehouse spaces


Forklift Fuel Type

The load weight and the area in which the forklift is to operate is another important conservation and it has a major influence on the power unit for the forklift.

For example, for the lifting of heavy loads, a more powerful forklift will be required – often diesel powered – whereas for a lighter loads, a lower powered forklift would be required such as battery electric forklifts.

Environmental factors also influence the type of forklift to be hired in terms of fuel. If a forklift is to be operated within an enclosed space, for example, harmful emissions from combustion engines should be avoided and electrically powered forklifts should be considered.

Forklift Operating Environment

Following on from the above, it is also, when considering forklift hire, to establish teh operating environment as this too will have an influence on the type of forklift that is appropriate for the job.

For example, the terrain on which the forklift is to operate: is it outdoors or indoors, even or uneven?

Forklifts for warehouse use are often fitted with solid rubber tyres which are unsuitable for uneven terrain and outdoor use where a cushioned, pneumatic tyre would be appropriate for traction and ground clearance.


Should you need to hire a forklift, please give us a call on 01789 762 618 – or drop us an email at – and we can talk you through the various options available and help you hire the forklift you need to get the job done!

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