September 23

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6 Ways Polyurethane Pads Maximize Forklift Longevity

A forklift: its simple equipment is taken for granted. Used by many industries on a daily basis, forklifts aid in the rapid and easy transport of unwieldy or heavy freight.

Called the "workhorse of the warehouse,” both warehouses and industrial sites benefit from its use.

According to, the average price of a forklift runs between $20,000 and $40,000. When a warehouse machine runs the cost of a sports car, it’s worth the while of any company to protect its investment.

The helpful chart below was compiled by a leading producer and designer of forklifts, Hyster, and offers guidance on how frequently forklifts require replacement based on forklift type and hours operated.

Averaging between 4-7 years in longevity, Hyster explains that, "beyond the average forklift lifespan, some forklifts may remain useful for 10 years or more,” but cautions that "these forklifts may no longer operate economically. For every forklift, there is a limit to its economic effectiveness. At some point, the cost to maintain it exceeds the cost to replace it.”

Before reaching the point of replacement, preventative maintenance can aid in extending the lift beyond the paltry 4 years.

Imagine dumping a classic sports car after just 4 years because it was too much effort to get the oil changed frequently. For forklifts, aid is available at a fraction of the machine’s cost in the form of polyurethane pads to protect forklift tines.

Benefits of Polyurethane Pads

This simple addition can help to extend the life of the equipment. Polyurethane pads, made from a rubber derivative, offers the following benefits.

1. Economic – Polyurethane pads are more cost effective than repairs and replacement.

2. Durability – Even with heavy use, polyurethane pads offer cushioning without wear. The rubber itself from which the forklift pad is made is long-lasting and bounces back load after load.

3. Flexibility – Forklift bumpers made of polyurethane are flexible, which helps to evenly distribute a load, which increases the stability of transport.

4. Customizable – Polyurethane forklift bumpers can be custom fitted to the tines of a forklift as a permanent attachment. They can also be temporarily attached and secured with chains.

"Made to fit the customer's forklift blades,” Mark Tool’s forklift pads "are coated with a 3/4" thick durable castable urethane.” In other words, these protective products are available in a variety of sizes and styles and can be made to customer specification.

5. Preventative – Fitting polyurethane pads to a forklift helps protect the tines from scratches and dents that might eventually lead to rust and decay. In addition to protecting the machine itself, Mark Tool’s forklift pads prevent damage to coated pipe or any painted material being lifted by forklifts. This can save you time and money on costly repairs.

6. Replaceable – When installed, permanent polyurethane forklift pads are fitted to steel shoes. Should the engine of a forklift still be running well with the only wear and tear existing in old bumpers or pads, worn out polyurethane can be stripped off of the steel and new pads fitted in their place.

Contact us to learn more about how Mark Tool’s polyurethane forklift pads can protect your warehouse and industrial site "workhorse.”

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