What to consider when purchasing material handling equipment

There's a lot to consider when purchasing material handling equipment

If you're looking to purchase material handling equipment, like a forklift, pallet jack, container handler, etc., it's encouraging to know that there are more choices today than ever before. In fact, every material handling need can be matched with equipment specifically suited to that job. But while that is an overall industry benefit, it can also lead to confusion as to the right piece of equipment for your particular situation.

So how can you know that you're choosing the right material handling equipment?

A wide variety of vehicles and accessories that are used in the lifting, transportation, storage or control of products will be available from a comprehensive material handling equipment supplier. Most of them, like Atlantic Coast Toyotalift, will help you make the appropriate selection. To do so in the most timely manner, having all of your requirements listed and handy is vital for assessing the right equipment for the right project. For example, if your inventory requires frequent transportation, you may want to look at industrial trucks, which range from manual to powered and flat surfaced to forklift.

Examples of industrial trucks include:
Important things to consider when choosing the right material handling equipment

Here is a good overview of things to consider in determining the best material handling equipment for your particular need, in this case, forklift options. And remember, as a proven and trusted material handling equipment supplier, ACT is always ready with professional assistance as you make your purchasing decision.

Indoors or Outdoors

If it will be necessary to take your forklift outdoors off pavement, you will need a pneumatic or solid pneumatic tire lift which is built with more ground clearance and has tires that can better grip loose, uneven surfaces. Cushion tire lifts are designed to operate on smooth, level, concrete surfaces.

Fuel Type Considerations

Choose a clean burning propane lift or, even better, an electric lift to keep the noise level and emissions down in your facility, especially if you rarely need to go outdoors. If you will only occasionally use it indoors, a diesel lift may be the best option. Keep in mind that even if you use the lift outdoors primarily, propane or electric may still be a great option for your application. Electric forklifts are very capable and can lift heavy loads and even operate under extreme conditions, making them more and more attractive to those who once trusted only diesel lifts for these tough jobs.


Consider the heaviest possible loads you may need to lift and be certain that the equipment you are considering can safely lift it. It's better to buy a larger lift than you need and ensure the safety of your facility than risking lifting a load that could tip your equipment.

Is your material palletized?

While forklifts are called forklifts because they normally are equipped with forks, there are many other options available that can be attached to a forklift, making them very specialized and capable of moving all types of materials safely. If you have materials in barrels, boxes or non-palletized items, you will likely need a specialty attachment to do your work. All types of attachments are available.

How high will you need to lift your loads?

Critical to buying the right equipment, you need to know the highest height you will need to lift. Forklifts can be made to specification and this includes adding stages to the mast so that it can lift loads higher. Knowing your rack heights will make certain that you purchase a lift that can perform as needed and can help you utilize the full potential of your racking system.

How wide are your aisles, and what would be the lowest height doorway in your facility?

Narrow aisles (less than 12 feet wide) restrict the size of the lift that can safely maneuver in them. Your Atlantic Coast Toyotalift representative can work with you to determine which lifts you should use if you have particularly narrow aisles. Also consider the lowest doorway height in your facility that you must drive your equipment through to be certain that the lift you are considering can travel safely under the obstruction with the carriage down.

Don't make your material handling equipment purchase without all of the added value of calling on Atlantic Coast Toyotalift. All of your equipment purchases come with a warranty and service is always available after the sale.

For material handling equipment in Wilmington, NC, contact ACT at:

3001 Boundary St.
Wilmington, NC 28405
Phone: 800-849-5438

For material handling equipment in Martinsville, VA, contact ACT at:

11 Denver Dr.
Bassett, VA 24055
Phone: 800-849-5438

For material handling equipment in Winston-Salem, contact ACT at:

355 Business Park Dr.
Winston-Salem, NC 27107
Phone: 800-849-5438

For material handling equipment in Roanoke, VA, contact ACT at:

165 Simmons Dr.
Cloverdale, VA 24077
Phone: 800-849-5438