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Your Forklift Has Reached the End of the Line. Now What?

Forklifts are mechanical vehicles. As such, they don't last forever.

At some point or another -- hopefully later rather than sooner -- your forklift will reach the end of its useful life. Typically, something major on the vehicle will break down and the cost of repairing or replacing it will be more than the forklift is worth.

Another possibility is that there will be several things wrong with your forklift at the same time. In either case, it's probably time to start looking for a new one.

But after your forklift's days are over, what should you do with it?

Salvaging Your Forklift's Parts

Assuming you own rather than lease your forklift, one possibility is to buy another, new forklift that is the same model and simply hold on to your old one for parts. That way if you need to make a repair in the future, you can simply harvest them from your old vehicle, as long as they are still operable.

Another option is to simply remove the parts you might need from your old forklift before junking it. These might include the seat, the horn, the forks, pieces of the mast assembly, the battery, and even the motor itself.

In both instances, you will need to have room to store either the old forklift itself or the parts you salvage. Somewhere protected from the weather is best. Plus, the forklift or your forklift parts preferably be stored out of sight so that your business doesn't end up looking like a junkyard.

Trade-In Value

If you want to get a completely fresh start with a brand new forklift and not have to worry about your old one, you can ask about its trade-in value at your preferred forklift dealership.

In some cases, dealers may give you something for your old forklift even if it isn't currently running. Forklift dealers may have the repair technicians and parts and other resources on hand that you don't and may be able to get your vehicle back up and running before selling it used to somebody else.

Sell It Yourself

A third option is to try to sell your non-working forklift or its parts to somebody else who may be looking for a bargain fix-it-upper, such as a high school or community college shop program. While you probably won't be able to get anything close to what you originally paid for it, anything is better than nothing.

Forklifts don't last forever. But when your forklift's working days are done, there still could be some value in your vehicle.