Generally speaking, buying a used forklift costs less than buying a new forklift outright. However, buyers must be extra cautious when buying a second-hand forklift because they will be investing in equipment that someone else has already owned and operated, and therefore may no longer operate at peak efficiency due to previous years of service.
If you are looking to purchase a used forklift and don't know how to get started, keep reading below to get an inside scoop on what to check to ensure you get a good deal.
Research your needs.
Even if you find a used forklift that is still in perfect working condition, it would be of no use to you if it does not match your needs. For this reason, the first and most important aspect to consider is your situation. What is the maximum load you will need to lift? Which type of terrain will you be operating the machine on? Will you need something large and powerful, or are you willing to compromise machine power for something more compact? These are just but a few of the many essential factors you will need to consider to ensure you choose the right machine for your jobs.
Have a functional check performed.
Once you have found a forklift that matches your exacting requirements, the next thing is to ensure it is in mechanically sound condition. At this point, you will to enlist the services of a professional mechanic that specialises in inspecting heavy machinery. They will carry out a comprehensive check of the forklift's vital components, including the engine, lift mast, arm, brakes, lighting, steering controls, tyres, battery, etc., in order to determine the general condition of the machine.
Upon completing the inspection, your mechanic will compile a report indicating important findings on which parts require repair or replacement, and whether you will be making a good buy if you agree to pay the asking price. If the asking price is too high, you can use the findings of your report to haggle for a better price with the seller.
Your seller will probably allow you to operate the forklift around a predetermined area, but this may not give you an accurate idea of how the machine is going to handle the workload at the intended place of operation. As long as your demands are within reasonable limits, the seller shouldn't have a problem letting you have the kind of test drive you want. This way, you will be able to determine the machine's operating potential and if it is the right match for your needs.
With these vital tips, you should be able to find a forklift for sale that suits you. But before putting your signature on the dotted lines, make sure all the necessary paperwork is in order.