What Are Forklift Extensions?

Also called forklift extenders or long lifts on a forklift, forklift extensions are special kinds of attachments, and they fit right over the forks of a lift.

Long lifts on a forklift attach to the regular forks to increase lifting capacity and stability. Forklift extenders make it easier for trucks to handle large and odd-shaped loads. They also provide stability and reduce the risk of damage to the load.

Different sizes and load capacities of forklift extenders are available for various applications. For example, rough terrain forklift fork extensions differ from indoor warehouse lift extensions. Each type of job has its own safety requirements for forklift extenders, but OSHA has minimum safety requirements for fork extensions.

When used properly, forklift extensions are a great way to increase productivity. However, when used improperly, they're capable of compromising safety.

What Is Considered a Forklift Extension?

A forklift extension is a forklift accessory designed to improve the reach and load-bearing potential of a lift. The extensions used vary based on the type of lift. Furthermore, forklift extensions are labelled according to the manufacturer, loading capacity, and other identifying features.

Forklift certification training offers insights into fork extensions and other lift accessories. The training teaches forklift operators how to safely use and maintain different lift accessories. It also verifies that forklift operators can comply with OSHA requirements.

How Are Fork Extensions Used?

Forklift extensions offer cost-effective solutions to increase the reach of a lift. They are best suited for occasional large loads that need a long fork. Fork extensions are made for light loads. If the load exceeds the maximum load centre, longer forklifts are safer than fork extensions.

Using forklift extensions can save time and storage space. It can also lower labour costs and improve productivity. Fork extensions save space by allowing for double-deep pallet racks at each side of an aisle. This can increase warehouse capacity by up to 30% compared to single-deep racking.

Forklift extensions can save time by:

No matter the size, a load should never exceed the maximum load weight limits. Long forks on a forklift are not intended for everyday use. They will wear out quickly if used too much.

Forklift extensions and forklift extenders are easy to attach to a lift. They slide over the normal forks on a truck, and lock into place under a fork hanger. Many fork extensions are made with a welded loop on the end. This keeps it in place and makes it simple to install or remove the extensions.

When used correctly, long forks on a forklift don't extend the load centre past the forklift's ratings. As a result, they don't increase a forklift's chances of tipping over.

Forklift extenders should be clearly stamped and labelled with the following:

If forklift fork extensions aren't installed at the factory, the truck should be marked to identify:

Any changes that affect the capacity or safety of the forklift must have written approval from the company that makes the forklift. This helps ensure that workers will not exceed forklift load limits for any type of forklift extenders. Using fork extensions without written approval violates OSHA standards.

What Is the Maximum Length of Forklift Extensions?

The length of a forklift extension should not exceed 1.5 times the length of the fork. Additionally, it is important to remember that forklift extensions are designed for light loads. If a load exceeds the maximum allowed load centre, longer forks should be used instead of forklift extensions.

How to Install Forklift Extensions

Fork extensions fit over the front of a forklift, and they must be installed properly. Otherwise, the extensions could fall off or get damaged while in use.

Typically, fork extensions can be placed over the tops of a fork and locked at the base of the blades. Various mechanisms are used to secure the extensions in place, including loops and pins.

It is critical to follow the installation instructions provided with forklift extensions as well. Also, forklift operators must ensure that the extensions are securely in place before they use their lift or its extensions.

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