5 Tips to Evaluate the Condition of Any Used Forklift for Sale

Buying a used forklift for sale / used lift truck, can be overwhelming to an average business owner or manager.  

Although there are several things to investigate and watch out for, here is a list of the top five that everyone should be aware of:

Evaluate Used Forklift for Sale

Evaluate Used Forklift for Sale

  1. Inaccurate Lift Truck Hour Meter Readings

Almost all forklifts have a 60-minute meter to help the end user and servicing dealer keep track of daily usage. Some have 5 digits while the others seem to have 4. A four-digit 60-minute meter will read 9999 hours and then after operating the forklift for 2,000 more hours, it will read 1,999 hours. This is because, at the 10,000-hour mark, the meter will actually read 0000. At this point in time, if the forklift is sold to the dealer and he then tries to retail the forklift to one of their clients, the customer could be misled into believing that the lift truck has only 1,999 hours in total when in fact it actually has 11,999 hours.

Dealers may not do this intentionally. However, there is always the chance that it could happen given the nature of how hour meters function. Also, the fact that not everyone involved in the remarketing of a used forklift for sale will have access to past records to be able to confirm how many hours are actually on the forklift.

In addition, some forklifts have hour meters that record different elements of lift truck usage, i.e. drive hours, hydraulic pump hours etc. and so it is important that you understand what the reading means.  

    2.    Incorrect Year-of-Manufacture

The year of manufacture must be verified before committing to buy a used forklift for sale. Armed with the model number and serial numbers, have the manufacturer confirm the year of manufacture. Don’t accept the year of production as shown on a dealer invoice or just by looking at other miscellaneous records.

    3.    Incomplete Forklift Capacity Data Plate

A forklift might face an addition or removal of attachments and accessories with or without the manufacturer’s approval. If this happens, the capacity data plate will no longer not be accurate anymore. Therefore, the operator will be at a risk for an accident because they will under the wrong impression of what the forklift can safely handle. It is vital that this data plate is accurate for apparent safety and liability reasons. Meanwhile, there are several inaccurate data plates on forklifts today; therefore, you will need to watch out for this. This information can also be obtained from the forklift repair Houston Company that is servicing the forklift you want to purchase.

    4.    Unauthorized Forklift Chassis Modifications

Avoid trucks that have undergone welding, heating or drilling of the chassis not authorized by the original manufacturer. This is because manufacturers will not likely stand behind them in the event of an accident that causes injury. Such activities are likely to weaken the structural components of the forklift and cause them to fail prematurely. Also, additional counterweight without manufacturer approval can lead to an unstable forklift and unnecessary wear and tear on the chassis.

    5.   Harsh Lift Truck Applications

Forklifts that have endured a tough life and the hour meter reading will not reflect the wear tear on the chassis. The same way an older forklift that has not undergone lift weight jobs, its chassis will not reflect the kind of weight it has endured. You must try to determine the history of the used forklift before you commit to purchase it. Get in touch with a forklift servicing dealer of repute for a thorough mechanical assessment and safety inspection.

We at Large Lift Trucks are experienced and independent forklift dealers, with extensive forklift knowledge. We can help you investigate these important elements when buying a used forklift. LLT can also help you negotiate the purchase in such a way that your risk will be minimal.