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The Mighty Forklift: Adaptable, Durable, and Valuable

The Mighty Forklift: Adaptable, Durable, and Valuable

The Mighty Forklift: Adaptable, Durable, and Valuable

The mighty forklift has come a long way since its conception. Early lift trucks were simple in design being made to lift a load only a few inches. Even so, they made the unloading and loading of freight much easier and more efficient. With the introduction of the standardized pallet in the late 1930s came the ability to uniformly stack palletized loads. This advancement was the catapult that led directly to the growth and further development of the forklift.

Since then, forklifts have become an all-important piece of equipment in manufacturing and warehousing. Additionally, the most recent reporting shows that the industry continues to grow, with orders reaching an all-time high in 2016. Data shows the top 20 manufacturers worldwide posted sales of $32 billion (7.5% over 2015) with 1,182,098 machines sold (up 7% from 2015). [1]

Several posted double-digit growth, with the top US manufacturer, Crown Equipment, growing more than 10% to finish 2016 just shy of $3 billion in revenues. The combination of Mitsubishi and UniCarriers moves that grouping to the 3rd spot on the list. Read more here: Top 20 Lift Truck Suppliers 2017.

The Growth Factor

In the dynamic industry of material handling, forklifts remain revolutionary. Advancements in connectivity, ergonomic design, and green technology have been developed to keep pace with the demands of the modern workplace. Let’s take a look at some of the ways these essential machines are Adaptable, Durable, and Valuable to material handling.

connected forklift

Adaptable: able to adjust to new conditions.

Developments in forklift technology have led to a much smarter forklift. Connectivity uses real-time data from the lift truck to help improve the performance, safety, and profitability of an operation. Connected advancements use human-centered design and technology to provide solutions and maximize investment. To read about Crown’s Forklift Connectivity download the White Paper here.

As more companies become environmentally friendly, there’s been a noticeable switch to electric forklifts. Electric forklifts don’t produce emissions which is a major benefit as they improve the quality of air around employees. Electric forklifts also reduce dependency on fossil fuel which is only getting more costly.  And they are much less noisy than the internal combustion engine forklift which improves the work environment.

And so, the robust growth of the electric forklift continues to surge.  Globally, electric products now account for 62% of all sales, up from 60% in 2015. Lastly, since consumer demand is driving the need for automation, the forklift industry is adapting to keep up. Automated forklifts have been developed as a means to streamline operations. As technology brings change, it’s recognized and translated to the forklift industry.

Durable: able to withstand wear, pressure, or damage; hard-wearing.

The forklift is a mainstay of the material handling industry.  It’s built to perform. Depending on the type of forklift, type of application, and if it’s on a regular maintenance schedule; most forklifts will be operational for at least 10,000 hours.

AC-powered (alternating-current) forklifts have steadily become more popular, and for good reasons. The AC motor increases vehicle performance, decreases maintenance costs, and improves energy consumption. A significant advantage of the AC motor is that it ensures a longer time between recharging; resulting in more extended periods to be functional.  And with minimal maintenance comes less downtime which improves productivity.

In addition to being hardworking and durable, a well-designed forklift is made with the operator in mind. Protecting drivers from strain, repetitive movements, and unnatural driving positions through forklift ergonomics can keep safety standards high, reduce workplace accidents, and thereby reduce downtime and increase productivity.

Valuable: a thing of great worth.

Forklifts play a vital role in pushing the global economy forward—in part due to their multiple uses in the workplace. Purchasing a forklift is an important decision. It’s an investment, not only as a physical asset for your business but as a source of performance and information to improve production and efficiency.

The design and technological advancements of the modern lift truck are of great value to a company. Enhanced fleet management tools provide valuable data for decision making, and its connectivity certainly puts the forklift on the pulse of IoT.

Without a doubt, the time-saving and money-saving benefits of the modern forklift will add up to help maximize your return-on-investment. In NE Pennsylvania, Action Lift can help your company save time and money with our top-notch forklift lines. Give us a call; we are ready to be your material-handling solutions partner.


References:

[1] https://www.mmh.com/article/top_20_lift_truck_suppliers_2017

[2] https://web.archive.org/web/20130901014848/http://www.themhedajournal.org/content/3q04/lifttrucks.php

 



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