What is Material Handling Equipment?
Material handling consists of the movement, protection, storage and control of materials and goods throughout your manufacturing, warehousing or distribution facility. Material handling incorporates a wide range of manual, semi-automated and automated equipment that makes the supply chain work.
These material handling processes and systems are put in place to
- Improve customer service
- Reduce inventory
- Shorten delivery time
- Lower overall handling costs
It is important to adhere to best practices when implementing your material handling system. Not sure what material handling options are best for your warehouse? That’s why ACT Forklift is breaking down the benefits of electric material handling equipment over internal combustion. Find out if electric forklifts are the best solution for your facility!
Electric vs Internal Combustion Forklifts -- Which is Best?
Years ago, propane forklifts were the go-to option for applications in need of a cleaner, quieter alternative to diesel. But since then, electric forklifts have been improving and on the rise in material handling applications. Manufacturers now make electric forklifts designed to operate in all outdoor conditions and in rugged terrain environments.
With electric forklifts’ current capabilities, you might be wondering which material handling equipment would be the most efficient and effective in your warehouse environment. Here are some factors to consider when deciding between an electric or propane forklift.
Pros of Electric Forklifts
- Fuel Price and Total Cost of Ownership
Electric forklifts cost less to own because they require minimal maintenance compared to internal combustion equipment.
- Less Maintenance
Electric forklifts require much less maintenance as they have fewer moving parts that can break. If your facility isn’t set up for the demands of regular forklift maintenance, you’re better positioned to use electric forklifts.
- Improved operator efficiency
Your forklift operator may see the advantage in using electric forklifts because they create fewer vibrations and produce very little noise. For these reasons, electric equipment can often provide a more comfortable ride than forklifts with internal combustion engines.
Electric forklifts are cleaner and quieter than any other forklift.
- Special Applications
If you have narrow aisles or a need to lift personnel safely to pick orders on high racks, there are specialty electric lifts for those jobs. Also available are stackers that fill the gap between the pallet jack and typical counterbalanced units and can lift moderate weight as well as lift materials to heights much like a typical forklift.
Things to Consider Before Purchasing Electric Forklifts
- Purchase Price
Electric forklifts cost more than LP forklifts upfront. Keep in mind, though, they typically pay for themselves within about two years, and battery technology is getting refined to the point that batteries can often be used for longer than the lifetime of a lift.
- Charging Opportunities
If set up correctly, forklifts can be “opportunity charged” during breaks, eliminating battery changing.
- Electric forklifts designed for outdoor use are available, and can be a solid option, consult with your Atlantic Coast Toyotalift representative for analysis of your intended application.
Looking for Material Handling Equipment Near Me?
If you’re not sure whether electric material handling equipment is right for your business, you can always rent before you decide! At ACT Forklift, we have several types of new and used forklifts available, whether you’re ready to rent or buy.
ACT Forklift Material Handling Applications and Solutions
Contact the ACT team that is closest to you today. Our team of experts is more than happy to help you understand your options, compare costs and decide which material handling equipment is the right fit for your business.
Call 800-849-5438 to reach any of our five locations across North Carolina and Virginia for your material handling equipment needs.