Forklift Maintenance: A Guide for Maintenance Managers

Forklift Maintenance: A Guide for Maintenance Managers


In any industrial workplace, forklifts and their operators keep your workflow moving. Transporting materials and products where they need to be is vital. However, just one forklift down can cause serious lag in productivity. That’s why managing a forklift fleet is critical to company operations. If the fleet isn’t maintained, drivers can’t contribute to the workflow. As maintenance managers, we must strategize the most efficient ways to keep our fleets working and working well.
Here, we’ll go through a couple of tips on forklift maintenance. At ELOKON, we understand the many challenges that face forklift fleet management. From managing many vehicles at once to figuring out the best time for maintenance, we’ll explore effective solutions to these challenges, including implementing powerful fleet management and safety systems. Maintenance can encapsulate forklift servicing and incorporate safety systems to avoid workplace accidents. But first, let’s focus on managing forklift parts and forklift batteries.

Managing Forklift Parts, Forklift Batteries, and More

Managing forklift parts and forklift batteries are just two of the many responsibilities that forklift maintenance managers have. Besides managing forklift servicing schedules (which we’ll dive into later), there are a number of responsibilities and tasks that maintenance managers have to juggle in order to keep the company fleet operating as it should. Preventative maintenance, spare parts management, and safety compliance are just a few of these tasks and responsibilities that are necessary to keep a forklift fleet operational.

Complete Preventative Maintenance
The main responsibility of forklift maintenance managers is to handle preventative maintenance and forklift servicing of the fleet. Maintenance managers and forklift operators must note the wear and tear of each forklift as it's used so they can better anticipate any preventative work a forklift may need, such as a new battery or brakes. Preventative and regular maintenance also saves your company money, because it can catch small issues before the forklift requires major servicing. Preventative maintenance is also easier when your forklift maintenance team keeps spare parts on hand for quick adjustments.

Have Spare Parts Ready
Having forklift parts like forklift batteries, filters, brake components, drive belts, and hydraulic components on hand for quick replacement decreases the time that forklifts aren’t available for use. Rather than waiting for these parts to arrive, your team can replace these parts as soon as possible during preventative maintenance for increased productivity. Knowing which parts your fleet goes through the most can help your maintenance team stock up on these parts in order to limit forklift downtime.

Remain Safety Compliant
Preventative maintenance benefits the operator, forklift, and company workflow. Not keeping up with preventative maintenance or maintenance schedules can compromise the safety of your team. Forklift failures might cause accidents, especially if forklifts stop abruptly as the driver operates them. Preventative and regular maintenance is critical in making sure the fleet is up to safety standards. OSHA requires US operators to complete pre-ops checklists before the drivers start operating the vehicle. This presents a great way to identify potential issues and decide how to proceed. Forklift maintenance managers must be fluent in the safety standards required by the government and company in order to keep your fleet safe for operation and use throughout the working environment. Implementing external safety and assurance systems can also safeguard your workforce and fleet, especially those found at ELOKON.

ELOKON Solutions for Maintenance Challenges
Completing preventative maintenance and pre-ops checklists is a great start to a comprehensive maintenance strategy. At ELOKON, we provide centralized forklift maintenance management solutions, which team leaders can access for streamlined communication. We’ve designed our ELOfleet Fleet Management System to simplify forklift fleet management. From pre-ops checklists and impact tracking, ELOfleet is a single solution for keeping up with the many demands of fleet management. ELOfleet is also designed for managing planned forklift servicing and team operations.

Managing Forklift Servicing and Operations

Beyond preventative maintenance, maintenance managers have to strategize planned maintenance schedules, manage authorized drivers, and oversee fleet KPIs. Together, these tasks keep a forklift fleet optimized and ready for the demands of your working environment.

Maintenance Schedules
In addition to preventative maintenance, outlining maintenance schedules for comprehensive forklift servicing is usually required of maintenance managers. Comprehensive servicing allots time for forklifts to receive time-intensive repairs and tune-ups to function the best they can. Maintenance managers should also be familiar with which types of forklifts need servicing and when. For example, typically, internal combustion (IC) forklifts need service every 250-300 hours of use while electric forklifts need servicing every 500 hours. ELOKON’s ELOfleet has a maintenance management feature that includes sending pre-emptive messages for recommended maintenance based on the number of operation hours that your team logs per vehicle. Your team can simplify and centralize maintenance management with ELOfleet.

Access with Company ID
Another important facet of fleet maintenance management is ensuring that only authorized drivers are operating forklifts. This prevents unlicensed persons from operating forklifts, which could result in accidents. The ELOfleet Fleet Management System provides access control with a company ID, depending on the forklift's compatibility. ELOfleet can also record the occupancy of the forklift seat sensor for efficient operations tracking.

KPI Dashboard
Monitoring fleet KPIs can help any maintenance manager see where the fleet is working at its best and where there’s room for improvement. ELOfleet centralizes not only fleet management but also fleet KPIs. The KPIs that ELOfleet records include operational times, sensor times (idling, lifting, and seat activities), log-in times, and impact recording. Impact recording is especially important for maintenance managers, so they can be alerted and plan for necessary maintenance.

While these are just some of the many features ELOfleet offers forklift maintenance managers, collectively, they’re powerful and centralize operations oversight. Lastly, let's explore the responsibility of safety and how to safeguard a fleet - in addition to following governmental and company requirements.

Avoiding Forklift Accidents: Safety Systems

ELOfleet impact tracking KPIs are certainly helpful for allowing maintenance managers to plan repairs. However, wouldn’t it be best to avoid accidents and collisions overall? At ELOKON, we’ve developed a portfolio of safety and assistance systems to help teams avoid forklift accidents primarily through proximity detection.

As maintenance managers, we can recommend solutions for preventing forklift accidents. Our safety solutions at ELOKON include ELOshield (Forklift-Pedestrian Proximity Detection), ELOprotect (VNA Personnel Safety System), ELOprotect ACS (VNA Anti-Collision System), ELOassist (VNA Driver Warning System), ELOcate (Warehouse Real-Time-Localisation System), and ELOspeed (Indoor/Outdoor speed control). These systems safeguard industrial working environments to prevent forklift-related accidents. As a result, your company can keep up its productivity safely.

Manage and Secure Your Fleet With ELOKON

At ELOKON, we offer a number of safety and assistance systems within our solutions portfolio. From ELOfleet to ELOshield and ELOspeed, our solutions create a comprehensive safety ecosystem to protect your team and forklift fleet. Your company can customize our systems to fit the safety requirements specific to your workflow with our range of configurable settings. Contact us today to safeguard your team and forklift fleet with the latest technology in forklift safety and fleet management.

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