Friday, December 13, 2019

You’ve noticed a couple of small issues with your forklift lately, but you haven’t done anything about them yet. 

Maybe the brakes seem a bit soft or the fluid levels are low — but nothing seems pressing today

After all, owning a new or used forklift can be an expensive venture, and you have other areas of the business needing additional funds.

What would happen if you neglected to repair your forklift right away?

Warning: Not maintaining your forklift as soon as an issue arises can cost you a lot in the long run. What were once small problems can snowball into major issues, resulting in expensive repairs down the line.

Here’s what you’re looking at if you don’t maintain your forklift. 

Expensive Repairs

The thing about small problems is they rarely stay that way. What seems like a little issue can turn into a major hurdle costing you thousands of dollars. 

For example, a small leak in a tire may not seem like a big deal. But if you don’t have it repaired immediately, it could lead to a flat that needs to be replaced — along with a broken axle. When you’re paying for the repair of a broken axle, you may wish you had addressed the small leak in the first place.

Major issues with your forklift come with major price tags. Be sure to address the small problems promptly. 

Increased Downtime

Efficient warehouse operations is the key to your business’ success. So what happens when your forklift breaks down? Your downtime increases. When your forklift is out of commission, your entire schedule is at risk — and you’re left frantically trying to figure out how to meet your deadlines.

If you don’t maintain your forklift when a small issue arises, then it’s likely the small issue will turn into a bigger one with costly repairs. And don’t forget — it’s unlikely the repairs can be completed with a snap of your fingers. Your forklift will be out of service for days or even weeks at a time.

When that happens, operations decrease.  Falling behind on commitments may lead to losing a contract or upsetting a customer, which have large costs of their own.

Compromised Worker Safety

Employees are the heartbeat of your business ensuring efficient production. Their safety is paramount, as workplace injuries are a serious matter that always needs to be front and center.

When forklifts do not have regular maintenance, employee safety is at higher risk.. Imagine if you noticed a bent fork on one of your vehicles, but neglected to have it fixed right away. If that forklift was not taken out of commission, the fork could suddenly break and injure employees.

Workplace injuries have costs that go far beyond financial expenses — and workers’ compensation and legal action can cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars. You cannot put a price on worker safety, so it’s imperative to ensure your forklifts are maintained properly to avoid injury.

Frequently Damaged Property

Improperly maintained forklifts can lead to damaged property — costing thousands in the long run. If you failed to replace the brakes when they were due, they could suddenly give out and stop working. Your vehicle could crash into a row of shelves, damaging your equipment, storage units and products.

Damaged property could result in delayed contract commitments, leading to missing out of future jobs.

Remember that forklifts don’t operate in a silo. They are connected to almost every aspect of your warehouse. If your forklifts aren’t operating properly, it’s unlikely the rest of your business will.

Higher OSHA Fines

Here’s the thing: the OSHA has strict regulations on forklift maintenance. These rules are designed to ensure your vehicle works properly and keeps everyone safe. If you fail to meet these regulations, and the OSHA finds out, you could be facing hundreds or thousands of dollars in fines. 

An easy way to avoid those fines is to make sure you follow the OSHA’s regulations. Always inspect your forklift on a daily basis before use. 

Include daily inspections in all processes so your forklift operators know that this is what they need to do at the start of every shift. Encourage your operators to notify you of any issues for immediate repairs.

Shorter Machine Life

This is one of the greatest costs of not maintaining your forklift properly. If you don’t take care of it, you’ll likely need to buy another one sooner than later. 

Without regular and proper maintenance, the life of your forklift will decrease. It’s critical to conduct daily inspections, follow the manufacturer’s guidelines, and take the forklift out of service as soon as you notice a problem.

When you take care of your vehicle, it will operate longer hours. . It’s as simple as that. 

You Can Avoid These Costs

We’ve outlined all the different costs you face when you don’t take care of your forklift. But how can you make sure you’re keeping up with all of the maintenance without breaking the bank?

A comprehensive maintenance plan can ensure you’re covered for problems big and small. At PMHSI, our highly qualified technicians ensure your vehicle is running in top shape at all times. We have factory training and the latest diagnostic tools to identify the root cause of any issue your forklift faces.

As a result, we’re able to stop big issues before they start, and patch up small issues right away.

Give us a call at 510-878-3065 to learn more about our comprehensive maintenance plan to avoid the costs of not taking care of your forklift.

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