When a forklift is a necessary asset for a company, it becomes one that’ll also cost a lot of financial resources. There’s no denying the very fact that forklifts are expensive assets.

While many companies will have enough to buy a new one, some may have to stick to using used forklifts. Generally, the common considerations will always have to do with cost and the effectiveness of whatever option you choose for the company. Then, it also has to do with the personal preference of the company itself.

That said, here are some of the common differences between using new and used forklifts:

  1. The Price 

The price is the most apparent difference between using a new and a used forklift. Primarily, it boils down to having to purchase one at this very moment. There’s no denying the fact that the price of a used forklift will be cheaper than that of a brand new one.

Used forklifts can be anywhere around 50% cheaper than the price of a brand new one. Hence, for a used forklift, you’re looking at the cost of approximately 15,000 to 20,000 USD.

As you consider the price of a new or used forklift, keep in mind also the battery quality. Like that of an ordinary car, the battery can be quite expensive.

The price of the used forklift, therefore, shouldn’t only pertain to the purchase price per se. But, it should also include that of the costs of running it. If you’ve got to buy a new battery regularly, then it isn’t a practical option.

To protect yourself when choosing and using a used or old forklift, the best way to go is always to buy from a reputable dealer. Then, also factor in the warranties that are included. A good deal, whether used or new, should come with at least 12 to 36 months warranty. 

  1. The Hours Of Work 

Obviously, new forklifts are meant to be able to handle long hours of work. That’s because its system is generally more advanced. Apart from the ability to handle long hours of work, the pacing is also more effective.

If you know that you’re going to need to use the forklift beyond five hours daily, then the used forklift is more of a liability in this case. It can’t do anything much to contribute to productivity. With newer models, too, you may even come across electric models that may be more efficient.

Used forklifts come along with it the wear and tear because of all the work that it has previously done. So, when deciding, consider also the maintenance issues that may be necessary.

You wouldn’t want to have a long day of work to do at your warehouse for your operations. Then, later on, be forced to stop simply because the forklift can no longer handle the job. Then, the entire operations for the day are affected. 

  1. The Functionality Of Key Areas 

You can’t expect a used forklift to always be in the exact, same, pristine condition as that of a used one. Because of the usage that the old one has already gone through, there’s going to be apparent differences in the way that it’s going to function.

However, this is only the general rule. Like any case, there can be exceptions as to when old forklifts can also still be as good as a new one. To ensure functionality, you’ve only got to learn to inspect the key areas such as the following: 

  • Lift chains. These chains perform the task of lifting the carriage/forks and then load it. For these chains to still be considered in good condition, they mustn’t be corroded, dry, or have breakage. Whether you’re using a new or a used one, part of maintaining your lift chains also has to do with ensuring they’re perfectly lubed regularly. The connected components, such as the tubes and cylinders, should also have no leaks.
  • Front-end equipment or the mast/carriage. These parts comprise the welds and the rollers. These components should still be tightly fitted, and only have a minimal movement in them.
  • Engine and transmission. Every time you use a forklift, whether new or used, always give it a good test drive first. That way, you can change directions and test the brakes to ensure that all the powertrain functions are operating correctly.


Just like any other mechanical equipment that your company is going to own and use, there’s naturally going to be a noticeable difference with a used and a brand new forklift. Buying a new one is almost always desired by many.

Unfortunately, this choice may not always be possible also, given the financial constraints of some businesses. Whenever you stick to a used forklift, the primary point to remember is always to ensure that the lower price doesn’t come at a cost. For as long as the used or old forklift can still function as good as a new one, then it’s serving your business well.


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