Forklifts are no different than any other vehicles or machine: they require regular maintenance and care. Winter weather can provide a slew of troubles for both novice and expert forklift operators. The conditions of winter are tough to combat even on the best of days. Assuring your forklift’s tires are prepared and ready for all Mother Nature has to offer is essential to getting through any project or initiative that takes place in environments affected by wintry weather. Maintaining or repairing forklift tires are not as difficult as it seems. Here are a couple of tips to help you get the most out of your forklift tires in the trying conditions of weather:
Regularly Check Air Pressure – This can be one of the most important routines that any forklift owner practices. According to Purchasing.com, checking the tires is something that must be done each and every time prior to operation or at least once per day in the event the appliance remains idle. Checking tire pressure assures that the forklift gets the most efficient gas economy and also allows it to be handled in the safest manner. Underinflated tires can result in poor traction, which can result in many preventative accidents. On the other hand, overinflated tires can blow out and put any forklift out of service in the most inconvenient time. Given the fact that there is snow and ice to combat with, it would be extraordinarily difficult to amend these troubles if they were to emerge in the field. To complement this, poor traction in slick and slippery conditions that almost always accompany snowy and icy terrain gain an advantage if the tires are not properly inflated. One key consideration worth always taking into account is how air pressure can actually fluctuate with temperature. In warmer months air weighs less and rises, thus increasing your tire pressure. Conversely in the colder months the air weighs more and lowers the pressure in your tires. It is prudent to take that into consideration when checking the levels of all four tires before operation.
Integrate Necessary Accessories – Inclement wintry weather can hamper the performance of forklift tires even if all the appropriate maintenance measures are taken. With respect to this, utilizing the necessary accessories can help your forklift tires maximize operation in the winter preventing any hindrances or hampering of these tools and devices. One of the best additions any forklift operator can add to their tires to assure safe handling and reduce the likelihood of accidents is tire chains. Tire chains are used by many snow plows upon snow removal duty and almost guarantee mitigation of any slips and slides. Tire chains can be difficult to install but are certainly worth it if any forklift operator is going to engage in any form of an outdoor operation where the terrain is blanketed in slush, sleet and ice. Conversely, tire chains should not be used on dry ground if it is cold outside, as that can cause damage to the asphalt or even the tires themselves. These accessories should be used on a discretionary basis but when deployed in the right circumstances will yield a host of benefits to any forklift operator.