A forklift, also known as a lift truck, is a type of material handling machine. This equipment uses “forks” to raise and lower loads via a mast.
Use a forklift to transport heavy loads around industrial spaces. There are many different forklift types, varying in tire type, engine type, lift height, load capacity, and more. Some forklifts are used inside, while others are used outside.
These industrial machines are used for a variety of applications, but most can be classified as either indoor or outdoor equipment. Indoor forklifts are ideal for warehouse applications, while outdoor models are typically used for construction and building projects. Learn more about each before browsing forklifts for sale.
Warehouse forklifts typically run on a rechargeable battery or propane tank. These models have cushion tires, which are solid and smooth, making them ideal for indoor surfaces.
Warehouse forklifts can be split into two categories: sit-down and stand-up. A sit-down forklift, or counterbalance forklift, is the most common model. These forklifts have an average load capacity of 22,000 pounds and an average lift height of 15 feet.
A stand-up forklift is another type of indoor forklift. These forklifts are ideal for crowded warehouses. With a tight turning radius and smaller operator space, stand-up forklifts are easy to navigate between narrow warehouse aisles.
The most common type of stand-up forklift is the narrow aisle reach truck. Order pickers are also considered to be stand-up forklifts but are operated from a platform, rather than from the ground. These lift trucks are better suited for case picking or fulfilling piece-part orders.
Consider investing in an indoor forklift for any indoor warehouse operations. If you plan to operate indoors, be sure you have the proper engine type and ventilation. Some internal combustion models, like gasoline and diesel, are not suitable for indoor use.
Outdoor forklifts, also known as all-terrain forklifts, have pneumatic tires. These tires are air-filled and have deep treads to help them grip uneven surfaces.
These off-road forklifts can traverse any terrain. Operate this equipment in mud, through rocks, and over hills with ease. However, certain industrial debris can puncture these air-filled tires, so they may not last as long as cushion tires.
The average outdoor forklift is more capable than its indoor counterpart. Many models can lift anywhere from 30,000 to 50,000 pounds. This makes them ideal for tough outdoor applications at construction sites or indoor-outdoor warehouses. Consider an outdoor forklift for all-weather operations.