How to Monitor Forklift Maintenance and Operating Costs

Proper forklift maintenance is one of the best ways for you to keep your forklift operating costs down. Book your maintenance appointment now.

 
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How Forklift Maintenance Affects Your Operating Costs

Following a regular maintenance schedule and having your vehicles serviced properly will mean that your forklifts are much more fuel efficient. Planning out your lift truck maintenance schedule will ensure that repairs and tune ups are done on time.

If your forklift if regularly maintained and properly tuned, it will actually run more efficiently and save you money on fuel costs.

According to a report from the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries, a forklift that emits 5% CO will waste about 375 more gallons (1,420) of propane per year running a single daily 8-hour shift as opposed to a forklift that emits 0.5% CO.

If you consider that the average propane costs equal to about $0.89 per litre, then if your forklift is emitting 5% CO, you could be wasting about $1,264 of propane every year. If that same lift truck is running double shifts, it could be wasting as much as $2,528 per year!

 
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Regular forklift maintenance and tuning will save you
money on fuel costs

 

Test Your Forklifts Regularly for CO Emissions to Know When They Need a Tune-up

Regular carbon monoxide emission testing during your forklift maintenance will let you know when your trucks need a tune-up and in turn will help you increase your fuel efficiency and lower harmful emissions. The CO concentration level of your forkifts should be 1% or less. If the level is greater than 1% your forklift should get a tune-up.

 

Routine CO Checks Will Save You Money

You can perform routine CO checks on your forklifts by purchasing a convenient and easy-to-use, hand-held CO exhaust gas analyzer. These devices are relatively inexpensive, about $2,000+ to purchase and use in-house. Considering the fuel costs, they can save you a lot over a short amount of time.

 
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The way your facility it laid out will also affect your forklift operating costs

 

Other Factors that Affect Your Operating Costs

In addition to regular forklift maintenance, the following factors will also affect your operating costs:

Facility Layout: The way that your facility is laid out can also add to your operating costs. Both racking heights and forklift routes can increase fuel consumption. The higher your racks are, the harder your lift trucks will need to work to move product, and the more fuel they will consume in lifting to the higher heights. If your drop off points are highly congested, then your operators may have longer waiting times. This in turn means more fuel consumption.

The Condition of Your Tires: Worn out or damaged tires mean that your forklift has to work harder. This extra effort on your engine will increase your fuel consumption. Make sure you replace or repair damaged tires.

The Size of Your Forklift: The larger your lift truck, generally the more fuel it will use. Also, the size of the loads that you are carrying will affect how much fuel you use. Larger loads require more effort from your engine and therefore more fuel.

 
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The size of your forklift and type of work it does will also affect costs

 

How to Calculate the Average Fuel Cost of Your Forklifts

You can perform a drive test on each of your forklifts to help you figure out the average fuel cost of your vehicles. The following steps will guide you through the process:

  • Step 1: Tell your operators to log the hour meter readings on their forklifts any time a fuel tank is replaced.

  • Step 2: Record the start and finish readings to the tenth digit in a log onboard the forklift so it can be easily located.

  • Step 3: Multiply the price per gallon of fuel by the number of gallons in the fuel tank.

  • Step 4: Divide the number that you get from Step 3 by the number of hours that your fuel tank was operated (You will get this number from the log book hours you have recorded in Step 2)

Here's an example to help you out.

  • Start Hour in Log Book: 730

  • End Hour in Log Book: 752

  • Total Hours Fuel Tank Lasted: 22

  • Cost per Fuel Tank = $25

  • Fuel Cost per Hour = Cost per LP Tank / Hours of use = $25 / 22 = $1.14

Therefore, in the above example, your forklift costs you $1.14 in fuel every hour it is in operation.

 
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It’s helpful to calculate the average fuel cost of each of your lift trucks

 

Operating Cost Cutting Solutions

The following are some ways that you can help cut down on your forklift operating costs.

Change Your Layout: Take a look around your warehouse to see if there are ways in which you can cut down on higher traffic areas. You may need to change the layout of your facility to make this possible.

Ask Your Operators: It a good idea to ask your operators to get their input for any suggestions to help increase efficiency. They can be a good source of information about their daily challenges, and together, you can come up with possible solutions.

Test Alternate Routes: Make time to get your operators to test alternate routes around your facility to find out which ones are the most time efficient.

Train Your Operators: Train your operators in best practices for balancing fuel efficiency and productivity. It is a good idea to have drivers use gradual acceleration instead of "flooring it" to save on fuel.

In addition, get your operators to turn off their engines when they are not in use to save on fuel costs. An idling forklift will waste fuel and produce a large amount of harmful CO. If you are waiting for more than 10 seconds, it is better to turn off your engine and re-start it again than to let it idle.

 
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Wayco: Forklift Maintenance and Service You Can Rely On

Wayco will help you make sure that your forklifts are well maintained. We can track and pre-schedule all maintenance work for you so that your equipment is properly serviced in a timely manner. This will help you avoid expensive downtime, and you won't have to remember to schedule or book your service work. We'll do it for you.

Wayco also has an incredibly fast response time so you won't have to wait to get your lift trucks back in operation. We can usually have our service tech at your location within 2 to 3 hours and we also guarantee same day.

 

Wayco Offers Top Quality Service on All Forklift Makes and Models

 

If you are looking for top quality forklift maintenance and service, contact Wayco. Our fully equipped service and parts department is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Our qualified technicians are capable of properly performing maintenance services and inspections of all types. Our knowledgeable staff can keep your equipment in top working condition, which means lower repair costs and higher machine efficiency. Contact Wayco today for all of your forklift maintenance and repair needs.

 
 


"Our company shopped around for the most competitively priced lift equipment repairs and rental services in the KW region and found Waco Multi Lift Inc. Their repair rates were lower than the other companies out there and the service is prompt and professional for our in house lift trucks. With one phone call a tech arrives within a couple hours […Read More]

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