The Differences Between the 7 Classes of Forklifts


Like most heavy machinery, forklifts are segmented into several different classes -- seven to be exact. Knowing the differences between the seven classifications of forklifts in Indiana will help you make an informed decision when choosing a new forklift. It is also important to make sure your forklift operators are certified based on all the different classes of forklift they will use. Forklifts classes are based on usage, fuel type, location, terrain, and other features.

The 7 Forklift Classes In Indiana:

Class 1: Electric Rider Forklifts

Electric rider forklifts are used in various places in Indiana such as loading docks and storage spaces. Since they are electric, these trucks do not have an impact on the environment. These forklifts can use either cushion or pneumatic tires and are powered by industrial batteries and control travel and hoist functions with transistor motor controllers.

Class 2: Electric Narrow Aisle Forklifts

These trucks are designed to navigate around narrow aisles and tight corners. As the name suggests, narrow aisle forklifts are used in warehouses or other places that have racks with narrow aisles between them.

Class 3: Electric Hand and Hand-Rider Forklifts

These battery-powered lifts are also known as pallet jacks or stackers. They are characterized by the ability to operate while walking behind them. Certain models also have a platform the operator can stand on as they drive. The truck operator uses the controls located on the steering tiller to operate the forklift. Motorized rider pallet jacks or walk-behind pallet stackers are examples of a hand-rider forklift.

Class 4: - Cushion Tire Internal Combustion Engine Forklifts

Diesel and propane forklifts are also classified by the types of tires they use. These trucks are primarily used indoors on smooth floors where they have an easier time navigating around racks or equipment. They ride lower to the ground than their pneumatic-tire counterparts, making them more stable in fast-paced warehouse environments.

Class 5: Pneumatic Tires Internal Combustion Engine Forklifts

Pneumatic-tire trucks are larger and can be used indoors or outdoors in most conditions. Many forklifts with pneumatic tires work in rough outdoor environments or in buildings with uneven or broken up floors.

Class 6: Electric and Internal Combustion Engine Tractors or Tuggers

Tow tractors allow efficient transport through your worksite. They pull carts or trailers behind them through tight corners or up steep inclines. Gas, propane, or diesel engines are generally used outdoors while the electric-powered tuggers are usually designed for indoor use.

Class 7: Rough Terrain Forklift Trucks

Rough terrain forklifts are fitted with large pneumatic tires for outdoor use in uneven conditions like construction sites or gravel roads. They are most commonly used to lift and transport building materials around the job site.

Find the Forklift Model You Need at Tynan

From nimble narrow aisle forklifts to sturdy rough terrain trucks, our experts at Tynan can help you find the forklift class and model you need. Our service technicians can also quickly repair any class forklift to get your Indiana business up and running quickly. Call us today at 317-597-4003!

Understanding the different Forklift classes can help you make an informed investment.

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