Different Types of Electric Forklifts And What They’re Used For

by Rob Webb, on Sep 3, 2021 4:00:00 PM

Different Types of Electric Forklifts And What They’re Used For

Electric-powered forklifts are a popular option for many industries. Their lower energy costs, reduced emissions, and quiet operation make them an excellent choice for indoor operations. Another advantage of electric forklifts is their diverse design capabilities to meet unique needs. Here’s an overview of different types of electric forklifts and their applications.

Electric Counterbalance Forklifts

Electric counterbalance forklifts are similar to standard LP forklifts. Capacities may shift depending on the forklift size and the size of the battery, which serves as the counterbalance. These are versatile, traditional pieces of equipment for indoor operations. In warehouses, 3-wheel electric can be a strong selection thanks to their smaller footprint and tighter turning radius. Electric pneumatic forklifts are growing in popularity thanks to their power and eco-friendly operation. Toyota’s 80V Electric Pneumatic can meet outdoor challenges from lumber yards to ports. Altogether, electric counterbalance forklifts are solid options for businesses interested in fuel-efficient solutions that fit multiple functions.

Toyota 80V-Pneumatic Forklift Application: Lumber Industry

Stand Up Rider Forklifts

Stand Up Rider forklifts are unique because operators stand during their use. Operators have their right side pointing toward the forks to easily check the front and the rear of their forklift. These electric forklifts are ideal for big box stores and dock-to-stock operations thanks to their easy entry/exit process for operators. They’re also ideal for narrower aisles since they can be used in spaces as narrow as 10-foot widths. Businesses with very heavy products aren’t a fit for stand up riders, but they’re ideal for consumer packaged goods with capacities up to 4,000 pounds.  

Toyota Stand-Up-Rider Forklift Application

Order Pickers

Order pickers are specifically designed for use in warehouses and order fulfillment centers. Operators control order pickers from a platform that moves with the forks, lifting operators up to 32.5 feet in the air. These machines have many safety features to reduce risks for their operators. They can also be outfitted to work with wire guidance systems in the warehouse floors to make operating even easier. These are essential pieces of equipment for less than full pallet put away and picking. Order pickers are not used for full pallet put away or full pallet retrieval. Facilities will need additional equipment for stocking the warehouse shelves.

Toyota 8-Series Forklift Order Picker Application

Reach Trucks

Reach trucks are ideal fits for warehouses and distribution centers for putting away and retrieving full pallets. This specialized piece of equipment uses a folding pantograph on the mast to reach the fork into racking. Reach trucks can be single reach or double reach. This is key for optimizing warehouse space for more storage because reach trucks can move double-deep pallets. These are another stand-up model for operators that help with visibility for their high-reaching masts of up to 42 feet. Single reach models can move up to 4,500 pounds of product, but double reach trucks have lower capacities due to the longer pantograph. Nevertheless, for warehouses looking to store the maximum amount of product, reach trucks are essential.  

Electric Turret Trucks

Turret trucks are another electric forklift option for very narrow aisles. These forklifts can operate in aisles as narrow as 7-foot widths thanks to their unique mast and forklift carriage. The fork face can swing up to 90 degrees left and right on a chain turret. This lets operators pick up loads without ever having to move their forklift left or right. Turret trucks are a great way to fit more aisles and racks into a warehouse without adding on to the building. They’re also relatively comfortable and easy to use once operators are certified on the swinging forkface. If your warehouse needs to be optimized, consider using turret trucks to get the most out of your square footage.

If you’re considering what electric forklift is right for your operation, Southern States Toyotalift is here to help. Contact us online, by phone at (866) 529-6953, or in person at one of our nine locations.

Winter Haven


Further Reading
3 Common Misconceptions About Electric Forklifts
3 Reasons Moving to Electric Will Re-Energize Your Business
Electric vs. LP Forklifts: Which Should You Buy?

Electric Forklifts: Make Your Warehouse Quiet, Clean & Green


The SST Blog

Want to increase your productivity, increase your safety, and increase your profits? Our blog can help. Fill out our form below to subscribe.

Subscribe to Updates


Forklift Fleet Consultation


New call-to-action


The 6 Secret Material Handling Money Suckers