Forklift mechanics troubleshoot, repair and maintain the various systems in a forklift. They also work on a schedule and keep track of part inventory to ensure mechanical problems don’t disrupt warehouse operations. To learn about the necessary tools for forklift mechanics, be sure to take a look at “Building Your Toolkit: The 11 Essential Tools for Forklift Mechanics.”
The right tools can make a forklift mechanic’s job easier and more efficient. Some of the essential tools include pliers and torque wrenches.
Wrenches loosen and tighten objects, typically a fastener like a bolt. They can be found in various shapes and sizes to fit many bolts. Some wrenches are also specialized for specific jobs, such as the lug wrench used to remove and replace car tires.
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Other specialized wrenches include a striking wrench, a long non-ratcheting bar used to impart force when screwing or unscrewing a bolt. It’s important to keep your tools clean and well-maintained. Store them in a tool chest or cabinet to protect them from dirt, dust, and moisture.
Screwdrivers are manually-powered implements that allow for the insertion and tightening of screws. They can be manual or powered and consist of a head, which engages with the screw, a shaft that allows the tool to be positioned and supported, and a mechanism for applying torque when the tip is rotated.
Many types of screwdrivers are available, including flathead, Phillips, and Robertson heads. Some also feature a star-shaped intrusion, a Torx head, designed to ensure higher torsion.
Having various types of screwdrivers in your toolkit can make performing repairs and maintenance tasks easier. Regularly servicing forklifts entails greasing load wheels and mast components, easily done with a pistol grip grease gun. For added convenience, choose a screwdriver powered by a battery or electric motor.
Pliers are necessary for any building, maintenance, engineering, or repair task involving gripping and twisting. Their handles are designed to be long so that the leverage generated amplifies the force of your hands.
There are many different types of pliers, each with its specialty. For example, nail puller pliers have standard jaws with serrated teeth to grip the nail shank and a curved pivot point to make applying leverage easier. Diagonal or cutting pliers have tapered jaws that cut materials like wires, steel braided cables, and nylon packing straps.
Slip joint pliers are more general, and their jaws can be adjusted to different widths. They can be used for various gripping applications, crimping and looping wire, cutting and soft nails, and loosening or tightening nuts.
A mechanic must know how much force is needed to turn a bolt to prevent over-tightening or breaking fasteners. This is where a torque wrench comes in handy. It lets you know when you’ve reached the desired tightness by clicking. It is available in a wide range of torque measurements, such as foot-pounds and pound-feet (the latter describes one pound of force applied to a lever that’s 1 foot long).
Digital torque wrenches are the most accurate and can retain multiple settings while indicating when you’ve reached your desired limit through a light, beep, or vibration. However, they’re more expensive than other types of torque wrenches. It’s important to calibrate your torque wrench regularly to ensure it works correctly.
An impact gun (an air wrench, rattle gun, windy gun, or torque gun) is a socket wrench power tool that can help reduce physical effort to loosen or tighten a bolt or nut. It works by storing and then suddenly delivering energy to the socket, allowing you to finish more work in less time.
The right tools can make or break your ability to repair and maintain forklifts effectively. A well-rounded toolkit will help you tackle any job easily and save you valuable time. Consider taking the time to research different types of tools before purchasing to ensure you have the right tool for each job.