What to Do When You Think Your Forklift Is “Possessed”
Forklifts are expected to operate in particular fashions. They are not expected to do strange or unpredictable things. If a forklift at your warehouse is acting as though it is possessed, here is how to figure out what's wrong so you can "exorcise" its mechanical demons.
Jerky, Jerky Go the Prongs
When you activate the prongs on the front of the lift, you can intentionally make them fluctuate up and down just a bit to get the right height. However, when the prongs are supposed to be lifting straight up or dropping straight down, and they suddenly act on their own with jerking movements, there is a pretty good chance that the problem is in the hydraulics. Not enough pressure is applied in the hydraulic cylinders, and when enough pressure does get through, you get this jerking motion that you did not intentionally do. The forklift service repair technician will first check and replace the cylinders, and then check and repair or replace the connecting pressure hoses.
Driving in the Wrong Direction
If you are driving the forklift and it heads in any direction you did not intend to go, it certainly can feel like a supernatural force is in control. Before you break out the ghost trackers though, you need to realize that the forklift probably has a wheel stuck in a position that makes the rest of the vehicle head that way instead of the direction you intended. If and when all the wheels are fine, the problem is in the shift or the driving wheel itself, which can short out or signal the drive train incorrectly. Fixing any of these three issues should put the forklift back into the correct driving gear and direction.
Whining and Whistling, but Not Moving
Making noise without moving is creepy for any mechanical device. Chalk that up to the horror movies while you take a second look at the battery. Usually whining and whistling without moving has everything to do with the battery. If you have rechargeable forklifts, it usually means that someone forgot to plug in this particular forklift and that it will be out of commission for most of the day. If you do not have rechargeable forklifts, the battery may be dead or dying, or the connections between the battery's posts and the clamps may be loose or disconnected. Check all of the above, and then replace the battery before you look for any other possible explanations.
If your forklift needs further repairs, consider letting services like RDS Equipment, Inc handle it for you.