Troubleshooting Some Common Forklift Problems
A good forklift should last for years without any major problems, but of course it can suffer some needed repairs as parts break down or the piece is simply misused. Knowing what to look for when you have problems with your forklift can tell you if you can handle the repair on your own or if you need to call a repair professional. Troubleshooting these common problems will also tell you what you might expect by way of repair bills. Note a few tips when it comes to addressing common forklift problems.
One common cause of overheating with a forklift is a broken fan belt. The fan needs to run to keep the engine cool as the forklift is in use, and when the belt breaks, the fan shuts down. You can often see the fan belt at the front of the engine compartment and may have noticed squealing or other sounds before it broke, as this often means the belt is getting brittle or torn. You may be able to replace this belt on your own; replacements parts are often available from the forklift manufacturer, and this will get the fan running again.
2. Pulling, bumping, or difficulty steering
If the forklift is difficult to control because it pulls to one side or if it seems to bump up and down as you drive, this is usually a problem with the wheels. Note if there is damage to rubber wheels for lighter forklifts, as any chips or indentations can cause difficulty controlling the forklift. For rubber tires, note if the tread is unevenly worn or even torn in certain areas. Changing the tires and giving the forklift an alignment once new tires are installed can usually address this problem.
3. Lift problems
If your forklift is struggling to lift any load, and if you’ve ruled out the chance that the load is simply too heavy, note if it needs hydraulic fluid. The hydraulics used by many forklifts have fluid inside that creates the pressure needed to lift the forks. When this fluid is low, there isn’t enough pressure built up for lifting. They hydraulics could also be clogged with debris or dirt, or there may be excessive debris along the masts that lift the forks. Clean this area thoroughly and do this often, especially if your facility is especially dusty or you work with oils and other contaminants that may cling to the masts.