Internal Combustion Forklifts

A: Internal Combustion engine forklift fuel types include gas, liquid propane, and diesel. LP is the most common, followed by diesel and then gasoline.

A: An owner of internal combustion material handling equipment can expect a lower initial cost for an internal combustion engine unit compared to an electric unit, yet higher overall cost to use over the equipment lifespan as compared to owning a similarly-capable lithium electric battery forklift. Fuel to power the equipment as well as higher maintenance requirements make internal combustion units more expensive to operate over time than comparable electric material handling equipment.

A: Typically, liquid propane is used indoors for internal combustion forklifts as it is a clean-burning fuel.

A: A typical Toyota internal combustion engine forklift can last as many as 20,000 hours under normal use, while many others will fail significantly before that.

A: Similar to your gasoline engine car, an internal combustion engine forklift requires oil and filter changes, brake replacements and tire replacements. Additionally, internal combustion forklifts require lift chain maintenance and greasing as well as hydraulic system maintenance. An electric forklift will only need periodic mast and chain lubrication and checking, tire replacement and brakes. Click here for equipment repair and service information.

A: Fuel type isn’t necessarily relevant to lifting capability, however, the largest and heaviest-duty material handling units tend to be diesel. ACT’s largest units can lift as much as 125,000 lbs.

A: Refueling time is probably the biggest advantage of internal combustion engine equipment as compared to electric equipment. A tank on an LP unit can be swapped in just a couple of minutes and a diesel unit can be refueled easily at an onsite fueling station. When opportunity charged, an electric unit can maintain performance over the length of an 8 hour shift easily, so charging time isn’t always a disadvantage with electric equipment.

A: Yes, there are advantages to internal combustion engine forklifts over electrics. If the workforce is resistant to opportunity charging their unit, they may find themselves disabled in a spot that not only disrupts their work but also others. Sometimes an upgrade to a facility's electrical system is not possible, in this case, internal combustion may be a better option. Constant outdoor work in muddy, slick terrain likely would be better suited to a diesel unit as opposed to an electric unit.

A: Internal combustion units produce noise, and the combined noise of 4-5 units at the same time is significant. This is an advantage to electric equipment and could be a major reason that electric equipment is considered in an enclosed environment.

A: In the worst weather or ground conditions, a large diesel or LP unit will outperform all other types of material handling equipment. The largest of these are even equipped with tires similar to those of a tractor, giving them superior traction and stability in the worst ground conditions.

A: To a degree, tires can be changed on forklifts to different types. You cannot make an outdoor forklift out of an indoor unit simply by changing the tires as the forklift is designed from the factory for its intended purpose on smooth concrete or in a situation less ideal. Toyota refers to this difference as cushion tire (indoor) or pneumatic tire (outdoor/indoor).

A: Our internal combustion engine forklifts meet or exceed environmental regulations for emissions.