Below we cover the most common types of forklift trucks used across industry today.

Counterbalance forklifts

Widely considered the most common and well-recognised type of forklift truck, the counterbalance, warehouse or yard truck, are suited to both indoor and outdoor usage. As the name suggests these forklifts are weighted at the back to provide a strong and stable footprint to lift and move materials around. The three-wheel models have strong mobility, allowing for circular transport, along with being narrow enough for access down smaller aisles or areas. The counterbalance model is often a strong choice for your general forklift needs.

Reach & Pivot Steer forklifts

Reach forklifts are again most suited to indoor projects, they are designed to operate in areas where the counterbalance forklifts cannot reach to lift so are ideal for high reach, narrow areas with lots of storage that regularly needs loading and unloading. Warehouses with high racking often benefit from such a vehicle.

Side loader and Multi Directional forklifts

With a similar slim structure to the reach forklifts, side loaders are great for loading and unloading in narrow aisle spaces. They allow for access to areas where your regular counterbalance could not fit, this is due to the fork location on the side of the vehicle rather than on the front. This also gives operators excellent visibility when loading and unloading from pallet racking. They are available in both outdoor and indoor models and are used for moving longer materials such as timber or tubing because of the limited overhang, therefore increasing safety.

Telescopic/telehandler forklifts

The key features of the telehandler forklift are the extendable outreaching boom. Acting not dissimilarly to a small-scale crane, the arm allows for a high reach making it suitable for elevating objects much higher than other forklifts. It’s often used in agriculture, logistics and recycling and excels at lifting into tight fitting or unusual areas.

Rough terrain forklifts

Designed for outdoor projects and work over rough and uneven surfaces. This forklift is more stable than others due to its larger and well-gripped tires, this added stability is important for ensuring the transport of materials over rough terrain is done safely and efficiently, making it perfect for all types of weather conditions.

Pallet trucks

Pallet trucks are significantly smaller machines than the former lift trucks, because of this they are much more moveable, fitting into smaller or more niche unusual spaces. They also have the advantage of often being less costly. However, the downside to these trucks is that because of their smaller nature they are less suited to moving heavier loads of objects. Alongside traditional pedestrian pallet trucks, powered pallet trucks offer a level of assistance with moving loads and require less manual effort to operate They instead can be great if you are looking to move lighter loads.