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5 Common Forklifts Used In Warehouses

Forklifts are used in a variety of industries, however, they are most commonly found in warehouses and industrial yards. If you are still new to the world of forklifts or if you happen to work in a warehouse but are not familiar with the various types of forklifts available, don’t despair.  In this article we summarize the five most common forklifts that are used in warehouses across the country.                                                        

Counterbalance Forklift

Of all warehouse forklifts, the counterbalanced lift is the type that you will encounter most often regardless of what type of warehouse you happen to be in. When you think about renting or hiring a forklift operator, the counterbalance forklift is likely going to be used. With these forklifts, the forks poke out from the front of a truck and the machine doesn’t have outrigger legs.  Since there are no outrigger legs, the forklift can be navigated directly to exactly where the load or rack is located. There is a weight that is located on the back of the truck that allows the load and weight of the front forks to be balanced. It a very easy to use and configure, and comes 4 various power options.

Counterbalance lifts are available in units that are powered by electricity, diesel, gasoline or LP gas. There is quite a wide range of capacities on the market, the model used will generally fit the products most commonly lifted.  Higher end counterbalance lifts may come equipped with other attachments, though forks and side shift attachments are standard for all models. In the majority of models, there is a separate element that provides the counterweight, but in electric lifts, the battery serves as the counterweight.

Dock Stocker & Counter Balance Forklift

Dock stocker lifts are trucks that are counterbalanced. The forklift operators of these lifts are able to stand or sit down during their operations. There is a weight at the rear of the lift to counterbalance the weight of the forks in the front of the truck.  Three-wheeled counterbalanced lifts are similar, with the expectation of having a while in the middle of the machine located towards the back. This wheel increase maneuverability of the entire truck and is most often used in warehouses that have limited amounts of spaces, or those that most often have tightly packed aisles.

Reach Fork Lift

Warehouses hold a lot of products stacked in tall columns, so it makes sense that reach forklifts can be commonly found in warehouses. Reach forklifts have arms that extend much higher than the machine itself which allows it to reach areas that other forklifts can’t. There are legs on each reach lift that provide stability which removes the need for a counterbalance. In addition to reaching high stacks, reach lifts are extremely maneuverable.

The ability to reach further than the outrigger legs and directly into the racking makes it a must-have lift for any commercial operation. Double reach lifts are exactly what they sound like, machines that have a reach that extends twice the distance of a regular reach lift, in addition, they can pick up two palettes from a single racking at once. These lift trucks are compact enough to work in tight spaces and sturdy enough to work with heavy loads.

Cherry Picker Forklift

In general, a warehouse will fulfill orders placed by stores or other commercial locations. To move all that product, you need a good forklift that allows you to get into tight or high spaces. The cherry picker or order picker forklift is made just for this purpose and is commonly found in warehouses all over the country. The operator is able to move the machine up and down while it’s in motion which allows the operator to select the proper items from the shelves and pallets in the warehouse. Cherry pickers are made for picking products by hand as opposed to lifting whole pallets, so they are not generally equipped with forks or counterweights. There are fixed unit cherry pickers that stay at one level as well as order picker forklifts that can be moved up and down to fight the high needed to retrieve products from the warehouse.

Electric Pallet Forklift Or “Walkie” Truck

Electric pallet forklifts are most often called “walkies” since lift operators walk behind the lift as is moves as opposed to riding on the machine directly. This motorized forklift allows operators to pick up heavy pallets and move in small spaces with ease and efficiency. There is a hand throttle that allows the operators to stop, start, and move the forklift back and forth inside of the warehouse. Walkies come in various models, some of which even include a platform for the operator to stand on while the unit is in motion. Electric pallet forklifts are similar to hand palette jacks, but they have the luxury of being powered by an electric motor. Since the unit does run on batteries, it needs to be recharged when not in use. This can be accomplished by plugging it into an outlet, or by using a standalone charger that is compatible with the unit.

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