Avoiding These 3 Common Forklift Service Mistakes Can Save You Big
by Lance Landeche, on Oct 18, 2021 7:00:00 AM
While forklifts can be expensive purchases upfront, some of the largest expenses come with upkeep. Operating costs can be expensive, but these common mistakes make them even more costly. These mistakes cause expenses to avalanche out of control. Especially when you consider that simple changes can prevent them.
These are three of the most common service mistakes that cost you the most over your forklift's life.
Common Service Mistake #1: Waiting until failure for repair
Waiting until a forklift fails to make repairs means that simple repairs become expensive ones. Routine repairs can get pushed off in the hopes that they can be avoided altogether. This simply isn’t true. By pushing off repairs until it's unavoidable, the issue becomes more extreme and far more expensive. Once something fails, it is much harder to fix.
In fact, some routine maintenance performed on a consistent schedule can prevent failures that can really break the bank. By following a consistent cadence for these routine repairs, the forklift can last longer before failing and needing very expensive repairs.
Common Service Mistake #2: Not performing manufacturer recommended service
Manufacturers provide recommendations for routine service maintenance. There are layers to this maintenance. Daily checklists and taking safety precautions can keep forklifts running frictionlessly and safely.
On top of this, there’s maintenance required on a daily, monthly, quarterly, and annual basis. Some examples of daily maintenance are things like checking and replacing fluids, inspecting for leaks and so on. These are the obvious damages that may hinder the forklift. Some examples of monthly and quarterly recommendations include changing the oil and checking air filters.
By skipping out on manufacturer recommended services, you’re putting your equipment at risk. Following the recommendations can keep your forklift running at its best as long as possible. Yes, these services have expenses, but they prevent much more expensive maintenance later on.
Common Service Mistake #3: Opting for the “cheap” service and cheap providers.
Even if you’re performing the manufacturer recommended service and doing it in advance, you can still make mistakes. If you go for the “cheap” service providers, you’re putting your equipment, your operators, and your business at risk.
By paying the extra dollar upfront for top notch service, you’re actually saving money in the long run. There’s a big difference between the cheap service providers and the factory certified ones. Factory approved providers have better trained technicians to ensure knowledge of the equipment and accuracy of service work. They have inventory on hand, to help make sure your equipment is back to running as quickly as possible. Additionally, you can ensure that your OEM warranty is intact for both the labor and the parts. In short, you’re getting what you pay for. With cheap service providers, you’re having corners cut and shortcuts taken so you can get in and out for the lowest price today. This seldom solves the problem and can lead to much bigger issues further down the road. Much like not getting the manufacturer recommended service, you’re saving money in the short term to spend far more overall.
Spending the money upfront can feel like the wrong decision when budgets are tight. But in an industry where margins are razor-thin, every competitive advantage matters. Avoiding these common service mistakes is a huge competitive advantage in the long run. It keeps forklifts running more efficiently for longer. It costs less over the lifetime of your equipment, and there’s peace of mind knowing that you’re staying ahead of big expenses, rather than waiting for catastrophe to strike.
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