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Welcome to Dillon Toyota Lift's blog. Here you will find everything from product features, industry education, operator insights, material handling solutions, safety, trends, best practices and more!
Taking possession of a brand new or new-to-you forklift is fun. One of the reasons the people at Toyota are so dedicated to manufacturing and selling forklifts is that they are really cool machines. So I know operators are excited to jump on their new lift and get to work. Not to worry. We want you to enjoy and use your Toyota forklift to get your work done safely and efficiently.
Relatively quickly, you’ll need to know some quick information about your forklift’s capabilities. Luckily, a forklift data plate is installed on every truck on the market to help you understand what your forklift can do and provide vital information. Let me provide a guide that can help you read your data plate and start lifting better using all of the readily available information.
Have you ever wondered what goes into determining how much a forklift can really lift? It is a common misconception is that a forklift with a maximum rated lifting capacity of 5,000 lbs. can lift any 5,000 lb. load. This may not be the case depending on a number of factors.
First, you have to consider the vertical and horizontal load center of the load that is being lifted, which essentially boils down to the load’s size and weight distribution. The longer, taller, and wider a load gets, the more it is going to affect a forklift’s center of gravity. Since the load center also depends on the load’s weight distribution, an unevenly distributed load can also reduce the overall lifting capacity of the forklift.
Second, you have to consider the truck’s capabilities for lift, tilt, and load manipulation. Forklifts are plated as standard for the worst case scenario, which includes all of these factors. The ability to move the load further away from the forklift’s center of gravity by lifting, tilting, or performing a function like side shift can all affect a forklift’s maximum capacity.
Speaking of attachments, there are more factors than just load manipulation that can affect capacity. An attachment’s effective thickness tells you how much further the load is pushed out from the truck’s fork face due to the attachment’s size. Its weight also plays a significant role as that increased weight out on the carriage reduces the load weight that the truck is capable of supporting.
Different tire types and tread widths also play a significant role. A cushion tire versus a solid or air-filled pneumatic tire, for example, can have an effect on capacity. Wide tread and dual tire configurations can also increase a truck’s overall capacity due to the wider stance increasing the size of the forklift’s stability triangle. Battery weight on an electric truck can also have an impact, which is one reason why using a battery that meets the truck’s minimum battery weight requirements is crucial to safe operation.
One thing to also keep in mind is that the forks, each attachment, mast, and carriage all have their own individual rated capacities. The capacity listed on your data plate cannot exceed the maximum capacity of any load bearing component. For example, if you have a 10,000 lb. capacity forklift with an attachment that is only capable of handling 5,000 lbs., your maximum rated capacity for the combination of these two is 5,000 lbs., which is what will be listed on your data plate. It is important to remember that both ANSI and OSHA require data plates for each attachment and written approval from the forklift manufacturer for any modifications or alterations that may affect the capacity, stability, or safe operation of the forklift.
There are two different ways for a manufacturer to calculate capacity per ANSI B56.1 Section 7.6.3. The first is a tilt table test, which requires a forklift to be chained down to a tilt table and tested per the requirements outlined in ANSI B56.1 Section 7.6.4. The second is for manufacturers to calculate the forklift’s capacity based on factors like the ones mentioned above. Tested capacities are typically higher than calculated ones due to the conservative nature of the calculation, but this is not always the case.
The factors listed above are but a few of the primary factors that will be used to calculate a forklift’s rated capacity. Ultimately, it’s best for you to work with your local, authorized Toyota dealer when it comes to properly configuring your forklift for your application and load handling needs. This is especially important during the purchasing process, but also in regards to any modifications you may make to your forklift after receiving it, including any attachments that you plan use on the forklift or those acquired later on. For more information regarding forklift modifications and best practices, be sure to read this piece on forklift field modifications.
The excitement surrounding the acquisition of a new forklift for your operation is something to be celebrated. We at Dillon Toyota Lift are equally excited to help you achieve your goals, and that’s why we work hard to manufacture industry-leading forklifts with legendary reliability. But we also recognize that your forklift success is about more than just the occasional acquisition of a new forklift. Instead, you have unique needs, success measurements, and pain points that need to be addressed throughout the entirety of your forklift’s lifetime.
The Toyota 360 Support promise isn’t just an aftermarket tool for purchase. It’s our promise to integrate with your problems and to help you find material handling solutions wherever possible. When you invest in a comprehensive aftermarket services program with Toyota 360 Support, make sure you’re taking full advantage of that promise and challenge us to fulfill it. You can bet we’re up the task.
Asking Your Toyota Technician
Not only does Toyota promise a four-hour guaranteed turnaround time on maintenance requests, not just anyone will be looking at your forklift. Rather, Toyota Certified Technicians who have been trained on Toyota forklifts, using Toyota Genuine Parts, and comprehensive Toyota dealer training techniques will handle the job. Don’t hesitate to ask your technician about the mechanical operation of your forklift or any efficiency questions you have about its internal function. They are there to help.
Utilizing the Toyota Dealer Network
The extensive Toyota forklifts dealer network is one of the major benefits to all of our customers and an integral part of the Toyota 360 promise. Don’t think of your Toyota forklift dealer as a company there to sell you forklifts. Instead, think of it as a group of people using their collective experience to help you tackle material handling challenges and increase operational efficiencies. We’re most successful when you’re successful, and a partnership built on mutual success is the foundation of the Toyota 360 support promise. From parts needs or warranty claims to consultations regarding proper forklift selection, forklifts’ functionality, capability, or current state of operation, your dealer is there to help with Toyota 360 Support.
Toyota Genuine Parts are the Core of All Repairs
Genuine. It’s that feeling of certainty when you expect fulfilled promises. If the Toyota dealer partnership is the foundation of the Toyota 360 Support promise, then Toyota Genuine Parts are how we deliver on it. Toyota forklifts lead the industry in overall value. Part of that overall value is the sum of the forklift’s Toyota Genuine Parts. And that’s exactly what Certified Toyota Technicians use as part of the Toyota 360 Support promise.
At Toyota, we know that you need more than just a forklift solution. You need solutions to complex operational challenges. Your success is within reach. Our promise is to provide the comprehensive support you need to achieve it.
Written By: Jake Stewart, Digital Copywriter,Toyota Material Handling, USA
It’s a given – Dillon Toyota Lift has you covered when it comes to material handling equipment. But did you know we also offer warehouse design and system integration? Today's warehouse can range from simple shelving to complex systems. Whether your business is growing or just starting, an efficient warehouse is more important than ever.
Dillon Toyota Lift Warehouse Solutions specialize in material handling equipment, warehouse design and system integration. DTL knows that your business has specific needs and material handling is not always a one size fits all package. We believe the key to a successful system begins with communication, planning and focusing on your needs. Dillon Toyota Lift Warehouse Solutions offers a full range of services, including:
Preliminary Consultation & Data Collection
• Project Design & Layout
• Equipment Purchasing
• Seismic Engineering
• Permit Application & Approval
• Project Management
• Professional in-house Installation
• Employee Training
Ready to get started? Contact us today!
Standing desks are all the rage now in today’s workplace. While many people I know with standing desks hardly use them, they’re at least there in case you want to stretch your legs every once in a while and get a good view around the office. And I suppose there are the health benefits of not sitting down throughout an entire work shift.
But choosing between a stand-up rider and sit-down forklift is about more than the potential health benefits. Using the correct piece of equipment can actually have a major impact on the safety of your workplace. This guide will help show you the pros and cons of both types of forklifts and point you in the right direction for your next purchase, lease, or rental decision.
On/Off Frequency – One of the main reasons you would consider using a stand-up rider is the fact that getting on and off the forklift can be considerably faster. With lower step heights and no seatbelt to take on and off, time spent entering and exiting can be cut down significantly. This is ideal for applications where operators are frequently getting off of the forklift throughout the course of their shift for activities such as picking product. The time and labor cost savings can really add up over time, depending on the frequency of operators’ getting on and off of the forklift.
Performance – Sit-down forklifts can have higher travel speeds and lift/lower speeds than stand-up riders, which can increase productivity and throughput in high volume applications.
Lifting Capacity – Stand-up rider and sit-down forklifts are both counterbalanced type forklifts. When comparing a stand-up rider to a 3-wheel electric with the same base capacity, you typically get more lifting capacity from the stand-up rider at higher lift heights due to the compact design and centralized center of gravity. Four-wheel electric models, however, typically attain the highest lifting capacities overall.
Purchase Price – The initial cost is typically higher for stand-up rider forklifts when compared to 3-wheel electric models.
Right Angle Stack – In general, right angle stacking capabilities are fairly similar between 3-wheel electric and stand-up rider models with similar capacities. Stand-up rider forklifts, however, usually have a small advantage due to their shorter length and can operate in slightly smaller aisles. Both stand-up rider and 3-wheel electric forklifts have a significant advantage over 4-wheel electrics in regard to minimum aisle width requirements.
Operator Preference – Operator preference tends to play a large role in most purchasing decisions for new equipment. Operators who are used to operating sit-down forklifts are generally resistant to swapping their sit-down for a stand-up rider and vice versa. The main reasons for this are the differences in operating position and operability. Stand-up riders are typically controlled by a single multi-function control handle while sit-down forklifts use conventional cowl-mounted levers or mini-levers. Sit-down forklifts also have traditional brake pedals, while stand-up riders use “plugging” (requesting travel in the opposite direction) for braking and have a dead man pedal for emergency braking. Being familiar with a particular operating style promotes safety and can help to increase productivity and operator confidence. But over time, operators tend to adjust and get used to the new controls and nuances.
As always, if you’re unsure of which product is right for you, reach out to Dillon Toyota Lift for advice and consultation based on your material handling needs.
Ecommerce is forever changing the way customers shop and the way businesses operate. More and more customers are shopping online and having orders shipped to a nearby store or more likely shipped directly to their homes. More importantly customers are expecting it to arrive quicker than ever before. This expectation of 2-day delivery is putting stress on businesses today and will continue to pressure businesses into changing the way they operate. Queue dark warehousing. Dark warehousing is a concept that is becoming more and more popular, although it comes at a price.
A dark warehouse is a fully-automated warehouse that operates without the use of human labor. You can simply turn the lights out and the operation will continue to run. The pressure on businesses for swift deliveries of online orders has influenced the deployment of automated guided vehicles, self-driving forklifts, conveyor belts, and automated palletizers throughout all warehouses in order to speed up operations. Add all of these up among other automated equipment and you have yourself a dark warehouse.
There are several advantages of a dark warehouse that entice business to automate their facilities. One advantage is eliminating putting employees in adverse working conditions. Robots and other automated tools will perform tasks in those conditions, such as freezing temperatures.
Dark warehouses are also extremely quick and efficient, providing less chance for error with automated machines. There are no shift changes, breaks or human error that need to be corrected. Dark warehouses operate 24/7 without stopping.
There are a few downfalls to implementing dark warehouses into your business. For one, they are not cheap. These warehouses are multi-million dollar facilities with high capital expenditures. Large, established companies are best suited for implementing these types of warehouses.
Dark warehouses are also not as flexible in operation for picking, packing, and shipping. These warehouses are very good in industries that have products similar in size and weight. The more variation there is in a dark warehouse the expense you incur with automation equipment for handling different sized products.
Moving to dark warehousing means some operations are having to alter the expertise of both managers and employees. Where warehouses with a manual focus require expertise in communication in a facility with many moving parts and a wide range of knowledge about different types of operator required equipment, dark warehouses require different skill sets. Technical software skills and program management becomes key.
Even warehouse businesses not moving fully to dark warehouses will see an increase in technology in their operations in order to meet demand and keep pace with competitors. In this case, learning how to integrate human-controlled machines into automated conveyor system and order retrieval technologies is key.
Dark warehousing is just one of several new movements in meeting the demand of customers in a digital world. As this demand isn’t likely to decrease soon, adjusting to trends and keeping a cutting-edge warehouse can go a long way in taking your business to new heights.
Equipment downtime is your operation’s worst enemy. Just like a car or house, a forklift requires maintenance and repairs after you purchase it. Taking a reactive approach to maintaining your forklifts can be accompanied by uncertainty and unexpected periods where forklifts are out of service. This can interrupt work flows that need to run smoothly for your business to succeed.
This is why many companies that use forklifts opt for a routine maintenance plan. The two most commonly used maintenance plans in the material handling business are planned maintenance agreements and full maintenance agreements (also referred to as guaranteed maintenance). Both plans are designed to maintain equipment uptime, be proactive on potential repairs before breakdown, and ultimately save you money in the long-run. But is the difference between a planned maintenance agreement and full maintenance agreement? We break that down right here for you.
Detailed inspections. Recommended repairs. Flexible billing. Tailor-made schedule. In my experience at a Toyota forklift dealership, these were expectations that come with a planned maintenance agreement. Many service providers have a detailed point inspection checklist the technician uses to inspect repair needs, potential safety risks, wearable items, and routine replacement parts. As technicians work through the checklist, he or she documents recommended repairs and provides service quotes to you for those repairs. After going through the inspection process and performing any necessary repairs, many dealers will then bill you and schedule in the next appointment based on both hour usage and date cadence. While this process might be slightly different with dealers throughout the Toyota dealer network, maintaining uptime for your forklift is the value of any Planned Maintenance agreement. At Toyota, we believe in the value of planned maintenance so much that we include four PMs in the first year when you invest in Toyota 360 Support Plus. New forklift investment and proactive maintenance should go hand-in-hand.
Signing up your forklift on a full maintenance agreement is like receiving the royal treatment. At the dealership I came from, you not only received everything included in the planned maintenance agreement, but you also had a plethora of other benefits, including:
With full maintenance, dealerships often take on the burden of overseeing the entire preventive health of your forklift. The true benefit is that the people who work with the equipment daily at the dealership now manage your forklift maintenance. When the dealership is able to work side-by-side with the customer, the dealership personnel is often in the best position to understand when to make repairs and replace parts before it affects your operation. This adds additional peace of mind when owning a forklift fleet. The monthly rate also helps you budget easier as the cost will not fluctuate from month-to-month. Ideally, you wouldn’t have to pay for every scheduled maintenance interval or the unexpected repairs that come with owning the forklift. Full maintenance monthly rates take into consideration a number of factors, such as equipment type, forklift utilization, age, service history, and the environment in which the forklift is operated.
Every service provider may differ in the way that they offer maintenance agreements. Planned maintenance and full maintenance agreements, in general, follow what I outlined above. Define your expectations and take a long, hard look at a proactive maintenance for your forklift fleet. It’s up to you to work with a dealer and tailor the maintenance agreement to meet your needs.
Written by: Kenny Trusnik, Marketing Systems & eCommerce Specialist, Toyota Material Handling, USA
Electric forklifts can be beneficial in many different work indoor applications (and now even outdoors with Toyota’s 80-Volt Electric Pneumatic Forklift). Using electric forklifts in your warehouse is one of the most common uses of these machines and for good reason. Electric warehouse forklifts can reduce fuel costs and be charged at intervals that can maximize efficiency across shifts. Take a look at some of the following benefits electric forklifts could have in your warehouse space.
Electric Warehouse Forklift Benefits: Less Noise
You may not think about it, but having a quieter forklift may impact you or your operator’s ability to operate safely and effectively in certain applications. In smaller, confined spaces, with multiple forklifts running, it could get pretty loud. With electric forklifts, it lowers the noise level, allowing for easier communication, and less fatigue from your operators. Really, the only noise that electric forklifts have is the horn. In certain warehouses, this can make it easier for operators and pedestrians to hear forklift horns, co-workers, or other important workplace sounds.
Electric Warehouse Forklift Benefits: Lower Emissions
When you are using a gas or LPG burning forklift, you are producing emissions that could be harmful to your associates and products if not properly addressed. Electric forklifts do not generate any CO emissions. This helps keep your employees healthy and lower the impact of emissions in your warehouse.
Certain products can also be harmed by emissions including food items, other perishables, and various consumer products. Toyota electric forklifts come in a wide variety of lifting capacities to fit many different applications. Also, less emissions is great for the environment!
If you are using a gas or LPG forklift in your warehouse instead of electrics, we understand there are many reasons that might have influenced that decision, and Toyota is the U.S. leader in internal combustion forklifts. However, make sure you are using proper ventilation techniques if you’re using one in your warehouse.
Electric Warehouse Forklift Benefits: A Wide Range of Options
Because your warehouse needs to maximize space, it could be hard to fit a full-sized forklift down your narrow aisles. An electric warehouse forklift can help solve that issue. At Toyota, we have many different electric forklifts to fit your needs. Maybe you need to squeeze in those narrow aisles? The 3-wheel electric would be perfect. It has a tighter turn radius than most forklifts, but still has the capacity to lift up to 4,000 lbs. Maybe your warehouse stacks pallets behind each other. This is where reach trucks work great. Being able to place pallets in front of each other makes sure you are maximizing your warehouse space and racking. No matter what type of warehouse blueprint you have, Toyota Material Handling has an electric forklift to fit your needs!
Electric Warehouse Forklift Benefits: Operating Cost
When it comes to the operating cost of forklifts, electric forklifts can usually be lower than that of internal combustion models. While IC models run on gas, electric forklifts run on, well, electricity! You may need to set up a charging station in your warehouse, but the cost of electricity can be significantly lower than that of fuel.
While IC models are still the most popular in the market, electric forklifts are increasing in popularity. So remember, if you are looking to increase productivity and ROI in your warehouse, take a look at all of the different electric forklift options from Toyota.
Written By: Lucas Collom, Digital Projects Administrator, Toyota Material Handling, USA
Great news! Your company is growing. You’re bringing in more orders, expanding your warehouse and increasing business every day. But this means you will need to invest in some more material handling equipment. There are many different types of equipment to choose from, and a clear understanding of multiple aspects of your expanding business can help you understand your forklift fleet and its needs. So before you procure a new forklift, make sure you check out these helpful hints to make sure you are getting the right one!
You need to make sure you match up your equipment with the blueprints of the changing warehouse. Can you stack higher? Expanding up is often an option, but you need the industrial equipment to match the task. Or is all of your product being moved along the ground? Maybe you need to increase your moving speed. These are vital questions when looking into the right forklift. Make sure you also take a look at your racking, and consider what equipment can enter where needed, helping you in hard to reach places. Lastly, make sure you take a look at your aisle widths. Forklifts come in all different sizes, and making sure it has enough room to operate is extremely important. Make sure you have a good understanding of calculating forklift aisle width minimums.
After unloading so many shipments of your product, you should hopefully have a good grasp on how heavy it is. But if you’re expanding to new product lines or needing to lift them higher than you used to, your grasp on your requirements might be slipping. Making sure you have a forklift with enough capacity to handle your products is crucial. You will need a forklift that can lift what you need it to. Pushing a smaller forklift to its capacity limits can be dangerous, and could cause lost product, as well as injured workers. The same is true if your load center has changed and your forklift isn’t ready to handle the extension of new pallet lengths. Toyota has forklifts of every size, from hand pallet jacks to loaded container handlers. Our Find a Forklift tool can help you determine the right forklift for your lifting capacity and load center.
Acquiring a forklift is a big commitment. As a manager, your team will be using this machine almost every day. As an operator, this is the tool that will hopefully allow you to do your job safely and with maximum efficiency. Which is why you will need to make sure you look at all the options and accessories that come with the forklift. If your warehouse has blind intersections, you may want to look into different types of pedestrian lights to help reduce the risk of accidents. There are also options like a fire extinguisher and many others that might be excellent for your specific applications. Toyota offers different types of accessories that help with ergonomics, keeping operators healthy and less fatigued after a long day. This includes an optional rear assist grip with horn button on many models that can make driving in reverse less taxing.
While there are other things you may need to look over, deciding on a forklift during times of expansion should not be an impulse buy. You need to make sure you scale up your forklift fleet in a way that makes sense for the scale of your specific business. There are many different variables that go into the decision making process. Take your time, and double check that you are getting the forklift that will help your business grow. Operators should be clear about their needs and managers should have open lines of communication with their operators. This communication will be paramount in a successful fleet expansion.
As the material handling industry evolves, one area that continues to grow is the use of slipsheets to transport and handle products rather than the use of traditional pallets. Slipsheets are thin sheets made of plastic, paper, or corrugated material that come in a variety of shapes and sizes to fit a range of needs. Similar to a pallet, they are placed underneath a load and are used to push or pull the load on and off of the forklift’s forks or platens.
Two different types of attachments are typically used to handle slipsheets. The first is a push/pull attachment that clamps onto the sheet and pulls the sheet and product load onto the platens (platens are essentially wider, thinner forks that come in different shapes and sizes). A gripper jaw at the bottom of the faceplate automatically closes at the end of the stroke and opens at the beginning so that only one hydraulic function is needed to grab and release the load using the sheet.
Above: Push/pull attachment engaging with a slipsheet and pulling the load onto the platens (Credit: Cascade Corporation)
Roller forks are a second type of attachment. Just as the name implies, these forks have multiple sets of rollers spanning across them, which help to roll the load up onto the forks. This type of attachment can also be used without slipsheets depending on the type of load.
Regardless of the attachment you’re using, slipsheets are becoming more and more popular as companies start to realize their potential for return on investment. They offer a significant number of advantages over pallets, including:
Slipsheets are a great alternative to pallets in many applications, particularly for loading and unloading trailers and for general warehousing. They, however, aren’t a practical alternative for all types of applications. Non-homogenous and disproportionate loads aren’t typically ideal for being handled on a slipsheet. Low throughput applications may not be able to justify the return on investment that slipsheets can provide due to high initial cost for the attachment.
Written by Trinton Castetter, Product Marketing Specialist, Toyota Material Handling, USA
Dillon Toyota Lift is the authorized Toyota Forklift dealer in Idaho and Utah, providing solutions to all material handling needs since 1981. We are your full service provider for new and used forklifts, warehousing, racking, rentals, parts, service, and lift truck operator training.
Nampa : (208) 466-8994
Twin Falls : (208) 466-8994
Idaho Falls : (208) 466-8994
Salt Lake : (801) 972-1930
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