Daily Forklift Checks Guide

Welcome to Locators guide on how to complete daily forklift checks. We get asked a lot by our customers what is the best way to make sure that their forklifts stay in top condition and safe for everyday use, so we decided to put together the below video guide on how to do this.

If you do have any questions regarding forklift checks please do not hesitate to call one of our friendly team members on 01202 854 200.

00:00 - Introduction
We often get asked by our customers about doing daily checks. This is our attempt at giving you a guide that you can refer to if you need to. We also have a daily checklist here which is available through our website. If you contact us on that we can send it to you.
00:18 - Telematic Systems
Most manufacturers and several aftermarket companies provide telematics systems which can be added to the trucks. Those will provide you with a screen on the truck which will ask you random daily check questions. But for everyone who doesn’t have that system, this is our attempt at a guide.
00:33 - Fork Checks
So understandably, the first place to start on a forklift truck is the bit that does all of the lifting. So, first of all, if you lift the forks up or put them together and check across the forks for any deflection, and make sure that there isn’t any damage on the forks themselves. Moving on from that, the low backrest – if the truck is fitted with one – do the same. Stand to the side, check it’s not bent and check that none of the bolts are loose on the outside of the carriage. Finally, if your trucks got an attachment or a side shift fitted to it as well, check that the ram isn’t damaged or leaking. You can do that from either side – and if there’s an attachment fitted to the truck, check that none of the rams or hoses are damaged before you power the truck up because then you’re likely to get quite a bad hydraulic leak.
01:16 - Chains/Anchors
So once you’ve checked the front of the truck – the forks and the carriage – the next thing to check is the chains themselves. So again, you’re looking for any damage on the chains and importantly, you’re looked at the mast anchor points here. Make sure the pins are in place – above and below – and you can’t see it again, but any physical signs of damage. The mast itself. Check it. Look for any oil leaks below – always a tell-tale sign – or any metal shavings or anything like that which might indicate any damage to the truck.
01:43 - Wheels/Tyres
Okay, so the next thing on the list and very importantly, are the wheels and the tyres. So if you carry out a visual check of the tyres all the way around, on each side of the truck and on the back. This is a three-wheeled machine – so only one wheel on the back – but obviously if it’s four, check all of them. Check for any damage to the tyre – on the inside and the outside – you may need to do this once, move the truck forward a little bit, then check it again. And also, check the wheel nuts and make sure that none of them are loose and make sure there isn’t any damage.
02:08 - Overhead Guard
So, the next thing on the truck is the Overhead Guard. This is obviously designed to protect you, should the truck tip over or should something get dropped from a height and fall on top of the overhead guard. So, it’s very important that there’s isn’t any structural damage to an overhead guard. If you find anything – if you see a visible deflection – you shouldn’t use the truck. Next; the lights. So, make sure – turn all the lights on – make sure all the lights are functioning, because if you’re relying on those as a safety thing when you come through a warehouse door and the lights aren’t working and no one can see you then that’s very important too.
02:39 - Flashing Beacon

After you’ve checked the front lights, obviously check that the flashing beacon is working when the truck ignition is switched on, and also that the rear light works when the truck is in reverse – or permanently, if it’s wired in that way. While you’re at the back of the truck as well, check again the rear tyre and look around the sides of the truck for any physical damage that might cause an issue later on.

*Also check that the reversing bleepers are working.

02:58 - Hydraulic Functions
Okay, so the next thing to check is the hydraulic functions of the truck. So lift the mast right up to its full lift height – which I won’t show you here because we’ll go out of shot. And also, tilt the mast backwards and forwards, and check that the top of it functions as well. This Toyota truck also has self-levelling forks, so there’s a separate switch on the tilt. Again, I’m going to check that that’s working and the masts are stopping and vertical – which they are.
03:28 - Truck Functions
Okay, so the final thing to check on the truck itself are the actual functions. So we want to check the steering is working. This truck actually has a steering wheel indicator, so I can see where the wheel is moving to as I’m turning it – because on a three-wheel you can’t see the wheel itself. The next thing we want to check is the handbrake. So we put the truck in drive and move forwards with the handbrake on – check that the truck is holding itself with the handbrake on. I’ll just lower the forks back down. The brakes themselves, in a safe place where you’ve plenty of room. Check that the breaks are working – so move the truck backwards and forwards gently and then check that the breaks are functioning properly. And then finally – and very importantly – check that the horn is working on the truck (BEEP).
04:11 - Reporting Defects
If you find any defects, please report them to us and do not use the truck until we have confirmed the truck is safe.
04:14 - Battery Check
So this is a 24-volt truck, so as you can see you’ve got 12 battery cells in here. And again, if you’re operating an electric truck every shift. Get the battery lid up and check the battery itself. Normally if you’re doing any battery topping you’ll be wearing gloves and protective gear which I’m not at the moment because I’m not actually going to do it. Now, this has got a battery filling system, so you can see the clear tubing linking all of the cells. Each cell has a float which is white and you can visibly see the white through the window when the battery is correctly topped. That’s an easy way of topping your battery up with a single point filling system. If you don’t have a single point filling system then you need to individually lift each cap on every cell. You should always check the battery after the battery has been charged. Not at the end of the day before you put it on charge. So never top the battery up at the end of the day before you put it on charge. That’s when the water levels will be high. The water will spill out and you will get leakage into the tank itself. Once you’ve checked for damage and checked that the levels are okay, umm also check the plug and the able leading to the plug. That there isn’t any damage or any bear wiring or anything like that. Otherwise, your supplier needs to come out and attend to it for you. This all looks fine. If you don’t want to top the battery up yourself, Locators also offer a battery topping service as part of all our contract hire and rental agreements.
05:38 - IC Truck Engine
So we’ve had a look at batteries. If you’re using an IC truck – what we call an internal combustion truck – so that’ll be a diesel or an LPG machine, in this country, then you need to get the engine hood up and you need to do some checks of the engine itself. Okay, so the first thing – the most important thing – like you would do with a car, is to check the oil level. So dipstick is here on a Toyota. Check it’s between the two marks . . . and back in it goes. If the engine oil does require topping it’s there or if you’re under a full-service contract. You can contact your service provider. Here as well, the trucks starter battery. Check that all of this is secure and that the cable you can see is fastened nicely. I always think it’s a good idea to carry out a check of the fan as well, make sure there isn’t any shrink wrap or anything caught around it. Again, this truck, the Toyota’s got a belly plate fitted so you can’t suck anything through but occasionally shrink wrap or something can get pulled up through the bottom of the engine. So just check that because if that comes off and breaks and goes into the radiator it can be very expensive. Onto the other side of the truck – on this truck’s got front and rear screens with wipers on – so that’s just the screen wash. On the other side – I’ll come around – this is for the hydraulic oil. I wouldn’t normally suggest that you need to check that on a daily basis. If you’ve lifted the forks up to their full lift height and everything’s working fine, that’s a good indication that there is enough hydraulic oil within the truck. And the final thing here is the coolant levels. So just give that little bottle a shake and you can see that the level should be between those two points. Then you know that the truck’s correctly topped and you’re safe to start up and you’re safe to go.
04:19 - Thanks for Watching
Thank you for watching. If you have any questions, please refer to the operator’s manual for the machine or contact us at Locators.
00:00 - Introduction

We often get asked by our customers about doing daily checks. This is our attempt at giving you a guide that you can refer to if you need to. We also have a daily checklist here which is available through our website. If you contact us on that we can send it to you.
00:18 - Telematic Systems

Most manufacturers and several aftermarket companies provide telematics systems which can be added to the trucks. Those will provide you with a screen on the truck which will ask you random daily check questions. But for everyone who doesn’t have that system, this is our attempt at a guide.
00:33 - Fork Checks
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So understandably, the first place to start on a forklift truck is the bit that does all of the lifting. So, first of all, if you lift the forks up or put them together and check across the forks for any deflection, and make sure that there isn’t any damage on the forks themselves. Moving on from that, the low backrest – if the truck is fitted with one – do the same. Stand to the side, check it’s not bent and check that none of the bolts are loose on the outside of the carriage. Finally, if your trucks got an attachment or a side shift fitted to it as well, check that the ram isn’t damaged or leaking. You can do that from either side – and if there’s an attachment fitted to the truck, check that none of the rams or hoses are damaged before you power the truck up because then you’re likely to get quite a bad hydraulic leak.
01:16 - Chains/Anchors

So once you’ve checked the front of the truck – the forks and the carriage – the next thing to check is the chains themselves. So again, you’re looking for any damage on the chains and importantly, you’re looked at the mast anchor points here. Make sure the pins are in place – above and below – and you can’t see it again, but any physical signs of damage. The mast itself. Check it. Look for any oil leaks below – always a tell-tale sign – or any metal shavings or anything like that which might indicate any damage to the truck.
01:43 - Wheels/Tyres

Okay, so the next thing on the list and very importantly, are the wheels and the tyres. So if you carry out a visual check of the tyres all the way around, on each side of the truck and on the back. This is a three-wheeled machine – so only one wheel on the back – but obviously if it’s four, check all of them. Check for any damage to the tyre – on the inside and the outside – you may need to do this once, move the truck forward a little bit, then check it again. And also, check the wheel nuts and make sure that none of them are loose and make sure there isn’t any damage.
02:08 - Overhead Guard

So, the next thing on the truck is the Overhead Guard. This is obviously designed to protect you, should the truck tip over or should something get dropped from a height and fall on top of the overhead guard. So, it’s very important that there’s isn’t any structural damage to an overhead guard. If you find anything – if you see a visible deflection – you shouldn’t use the truck. Next; the lights. So, make sure – turn all the lights on – make sure all the lights are functioning, because if you’re relying on those as a safety thing when you come through a warehouse door and the lights aren’t working and no one can see you then that’s very important too.
02:39 - Flashing Beacon

After you’ve checked the front lights, obviously check that the flashing beacon is working when the truck ignition is switched on, and also that the rear light works when the truck is in reverse – or permanently, if it’s wired in that way. While you’re at the back of the truck as well, check again the rear tyre and look around the sides of the truck for any physical damage that might cause an issue later on.

*Also check that the reversing bleepers are working.

02:58 - Hydraulic Functions

Okay, so the next thing to check is the hydraulic functions of the truck. So lift the mast right up to its full lift height – which I won’t show you here because we’ll go out of shot. And also, tilt the mast backwards and forwards, and check that the top of it functions as well. This Toyota truck also has self-levelling forks, so there’s a separate switch on the tilt. Again, I’m going to check that that’s working and the masts are stopping and vertical – which they are.
03:28 - Truck Functions

Okay, so the final thing to check on the truck itself are the actual functions. So we want to check the steering is working. This truck actually has a steering wheel indicator, so I can see where the wheel is moving to as I’m turning it – because on a three-wheel you can’t see the wheel itself. The next thing we want to check is the handbrake. So we put the truck in drive and move forwards with the handbrake on – check that the truck is holding itself with the handbrake on. I’ll just lower the forks back down. The brakes themselves, in a safe place where you’ve plenty of room. Check that the breaks are working – so move the truck backwards and forwards gently and then check that the breaks are functioning properly. And then finally – and very importantly – check that the horn is working on the truck (BEEP).
04:11 - Reporting Defects

If you find any defects, please report them to us and do not use the truck until we have confirmed the truck is safe.
04:14 - Battery Check
So this is a 24-volt truck, so as you can see you’ve got 12 battery cells in here. And again, if you’re operating an electric truck every shift. Get the battery lid up and check the battery itself. Normally if you’re doing any battery topping you’ll be wearing gloves and protective gear which I’m not at the moment because I’m not actually going to do it. Now, this has got a battery filling system, so you can see the clear tubing linking all of the cells. Each cell has a float which is white and you can visibly see the white through the window when the battery is correctly topped. That’s an easy way of topping your battery up with a single point filling system. If you don’t have a single point filling system then you need to individually lift each cap on every cell. You should always check the battery after the battery has been charged. Not at the end of the day before you put it on charge. So never top the battery up at the end of the day before you put it on charge. That’s when the water levels will be high. The water will spill out and you will get leakage into the tank itself. Once you’ve checked for damage and checked that the levels are okay, umm also check the plug and the able leading to the plug. That there isn’t any damage or any bear wiring or anything like that. Otherwise, your supplier needs to come out and attend to it for you. This all looks fine. If you don’t want to top the battery up yourself, Locators also offer a battery topping service as part of all our contract hire and rental agreements.
05:38 - IC Truck Engine
So we’ve had a look at batteries. If you’re using an IC truck – what we call an internal combustion truck – so that’ll be a diesel or an LPG machine, in this country, then you need to get the engine hood up and you need to do some checks of the engine itself. Okay, so the first thing – the most important thing – like you would do with a car, is to check the oil level. So dipstick is here on a Toyota. Check it’s between the two marks . . . and back in it goes. If the engine oil does require topping it’s there or if you’re under a full-service contract. You can contact your service provider. Here as well, the trucks starter battery. Check that all of this is secure and that the cable you can see is fastened nicely. I always think it’s a good idea to carry out a check of the fan as well, make sure there isn’t any shrink wrap or anything caught around it. Again, this truck, the Toyota’s got a belly plate fitted so you can’t suck anything through but occasionally shrink wrap or something can get pulled up through the bottom of the engine. So just check that because if that comes off and breaks and goes into the radiator it can be very expensive. Onto the other side of the truck – on this truck’s got front and rear screens with wipers on – so that’s just the screen wash. On the other side – I’ll come around – this is for the hydraulic oil. I wouldn’t normally suggest that you need to check that on a daily basis. If you’ve lifted the forks up to their full lift height and everything’s working fine, that’s a good indication that there is enough hydraulic oil within the truck. And the final thing here is the coolant levels. So just give that little bottle a shake and you can see that the level should be between those two points. Then you know that the truck’s correctly topped and you’re safe to start up and you’re safe to go.
04:19 - Thanks for Watching

Thank you for watching. If you have any questions, please refer to the operator’s manual for the machine or contact us at Locators.

What our clients say

We are very pleased with the change from an engine to an electric fleet. The trucks have been well received by our operators as they are comfortable and quiet to drive and give excellent protection from the elements. We even have the option and flexibility to use spare batteries and a simple battery change system if we ever want to work back to back shifts in the future. Locators also design, supply and install all types of racking and storage systems. They reconfigured the CooperVision warehouse for narrow aisle operation which increases the storage density and pallet locations. Locators supplied Aisle-Master articulated forklifts to work in this area.

Coopervision, Hamble

We have worked with Locators for nearly 20 years. We are confident they can always make the best use of the space we have available and provide us with forklifts that are well suited for the long loads and other stock we have to move.

Colin Macgregor
Director, Y Goldberg

Every time we look at an application, Locators approach it like a blank canvas and always recommend the best equipment for our business. Locators have proved themselves as a very reliable and proactive service provider by keeping our trucks working and our fleet costs as low as possible.

Adam Conrad
Group Transport Manager for Covers

Being able to work with one supplier for storage and materials handling has been a benefit to us. Locators managed the complete installation and ensured the correct materials handling equipment was specified for their design. They also service and maintain all of the equipment they have supplied and offer a rack inspection service to make sure our warehouse remains a safe working environment. We are very happy with our new facility and we believe we have made the best use of the available space.

Marc Congdon
Engineering Manager, Costa

We purchased our first Toyota forklift from Locators 14 years ago for our farm. This truck has been very reliable and is still in service so we had no hesitation in deciding to purchase another Toyota machine. Locators recommended an electric forklift for our machinery depot as it is very quiet, has low running costs and does not create any pollution, making it ideal for working both inside and outside. Our operators are very pleased with our new Toyota truck and our business is very happy to be operating a forklift that has such a low impact on the environment.

Ed Smales
Director, NFFM

Locators installed the new racking system within a tight timeframe while our business was fully operational. They have provided us with a facility that has a similar storage capacity and reduced the size of our forklift fleet allowing us to lease one building instead of two. We are very happy with the outcome.

Paul Bickell
Nippon Express

Locators gave us the benefit of working with just one supplier for all of the storage and materials handling requirements of this project. By mixing 3 and 4 wheel trucks from the same model range, we have gained extra pallet locations and have the option to battery change between them and work multi-shift in the future. I was initially sceptical that electric trucks could replace LPG, but I am very pleased with the successful outcome of this project.

Mark Davis
Logistics Supervisor for Hall & Woodhouse brewery

It is a great benefit to us that we have a single source supplier who understands the needs of our business. This saves us time, improves efficiency and ultimately reduces cost.

Richard Horrocks
Smurfitt Kappa