Forklift on the Fritz? Should You Repair or Replace?

Any time an appliance or mechanical gadget breaks down in our homes, usually we ask, “Is it under warranty?”  Often, the answer is a resounding, “NO.”  An evaluation begins.  What are the options for getting the appliance back up and running?

It’s the same situation with on-the-job mechanics, only the dollar amount is more substantial.  In the warehouse, it’s a forklift.  When your forklift seems to be on the fritz, there are a few things to consider before repairing.  First, look at the age of the forklift, as well as the number of hours of use it has logged.  If it’s only three years old but has 10,000 hours on it, you may want to consider replacing it.  If it’s older with fewer hours, a repair might be the solution.

The lifespan of a forklift engine is 14,000-16,000 hours.  The cost to replace that engine can be upwards of $10,000.  Consider the additional repairs that may arise in the next few years.  Think of it like an automobile.  If it starts to feel like you’re being sucked into a money pit, you probably are.  Maybe it’s time to replace that forklift. 

Don’t be shocked by the sticker price of $25,000 for a new forklift. You can do better financially if you look at used or refurbished vehicles that are certified and come from a reliable source.  Everything Warehouse sells used forklifts at 30-40 percent less than new prices, and they are inspected, refurbished and cleaned.  So if a replacement forklift comes in at $15,000 and a new engine for your existing vehicle will cost you $10,000, start evaluating the advantages of spending that extra $5,000 to get a longer lifespan.  Consider whether electric or gas/LP is better for your needs.  Next post will give you some advantages of both.  Meanwhile, keep your options open and consider all the possibilities and the long-term impact of repairing or replacing.

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