How to Tell When a Forklift Needs Service Posted on June 20, 2018August 17, 2018 by Jordan McBride Signs Your Forklift Needs Service Forklifts are a common sight in many industries. Whether used in warehouses, manufacturing plants, retail applications, construction sites or elsewhere, forklifts are a crucial tool in the daily operations of most businesses. Which is why it’s important to know when your forklifts are getting close to needing service. Especially, when it comes to managing your costs effectively. Just because your forklifts are running doesn’t mean they are doing so safely. There are many developing maintenance issues that transpire on a daily basis. So, how do you tell when your forklift needs service? Here are some easy signs to look out for: Check your Forks If your forks are worn, cracked or bent then look into getting the truck serviced. Damaged forks can lead to damaged loads, accidents, injuries and financial costs. Take your lift out of service immediately and check the forks. Replacement forks can be found available at your local Toyota dealer. A Stuck Mast We have all seen it at some point. The mast jerks or catches when moving up or down. If you are experiencing this, this isn’t normal. The problem could range from your forklift not having enough hydraulic fluid to several damaged parts. The mast should function smoothly. If it is catching or getting stuck while moving, then you may need to lubricate the mast surface and fittings. Failure to address this in a early stage could cause expensive problems and potentially permanent damage to your mast. If the lubrication does not work, we recommend contacting a local service department. Damage to your Chain Is the chain worn, kinked or rusted? If so, there is a possibility that your chain is damaged. When a chain gets ruined it causes chain failure, which can damage the forklift or other components on the forklift. It’s important to check the chain for any weak spots, such as link plates, pinheads and any elongation of the chain. If you see any of these signs it means your chain is damaged, and the forklift needs service. Leaking Oil It’s possible your forklift can leave a visible trail of oil on the floor. If so, check both the internal and external parts of the truck for leaks. There may be an issue with the cylinder assembly or seals and they may need replaced to control the problem. An oil leak can cause hazards for both forklifts and pedestrians. Less oil means it is more difficult to lubricate the mast when extended, and the increased friction and temperature is likely to destroy parts of the forklift. It’s best to address any issue before it leads to major repairs and employee injuries. Here are 8 more warning signs that your forklift needs service Rough idling during acceleration – May require a tune up Slow hydraulic or mechanical response when using the lift, tilt or attachment functions High emissions such as white, blue or black smoke originating from the exhaust. Also, a strong odor may indicate high emissions Inconsistent braking, such as brake squealing or brake locking A rough ride – the tires may require replacement due to uneven wear and tear Cracked or brittle hoses Engine turns slowly – May require a new battery, starter or alternator Engine temperature exceeding normal operating heat range Protect yourself and your employees. Use a service inspection sheet everyday to prevent big headaches, and if your forklift is in need for service. Please contact your nearest Toyota Dealer! We Lift Stuff Interested in more content about Forklifts, Industrial Cleaning Equipment, Utility Vehicles? Check out the rest of our resources, click here.