How to check the fluids

Your forklift is a big investment and important tools in your business. Checking the fluids regularly helps safeguard against breakdown, mechanical damage. Learn to check your car's fluids yourself and do it often. Once you get the hang of it, it won't take long.

Your owner's manual tells you when fluids must be checked, but this is just the minimum to keep your warranty in effect. Mark your calendar, or just check the fluids frequently.


1.Park the forklift on a flat, level surface and pull hand-brake.


2. Open the hood.


3.Check the motor oil. The oil should be checked after the engine cools down for 30 minutes or so, so that oil in the return galleries, cylinder head valleys, etc. is drained down so you don't get a false reading. Locate the oil dipstick (use the owner's manual). Hook a finger through the loop and pull the dipstick all the way out, releasing any clips that might be holding it in place. Use a paper towel or rag to wipe the dipstick clean so that you will have a clear reading. Insert the dipstick into its opening and push it firmly all the way back, as far in as it will go. Pull it out all the way, this time reading the oil level. When you are done, replace the dipstick in its opening.


The dipstick has markings on it indicating a range for acceptable oil level (usually notched, dimpled, or scribed). Double check the markings you see against the owner's manual. If the oil level is too low, appropriate motor oil must be added before the forklift can be driven. Contact us if service needed.


4.Check the brake fluid. Consult your manual for the location, or look around for a plastic reservoir such as this one labeled brake fluid. If your reservoir looks like this one, you can read the level of fluid right through the plastic. Wipe dirt off the outside, if you need to. If you still can't see it, take the cap off and look in.

Forklift should not consume brake fluid. Low brake fluid can indicate either a leak in the brake line or worn brake surfaces. If your brake fluid is low, have the car checked to find out why. A forklift with low brake fluid or leaking brake fluid could fail to stop.


5. Check the power steering fluid. This will generally also be a plastic reservoir. Read it through the walls, as you did with the brake fluid, by opening the lid and pouring in more of an appropriate power steering fluid. There may be two pairs of lines, one for a hot engine and one for a cold engine. Read the one that is appropriate to the current condition of your forklift.


6.Check the coolant. Be sure the engine has cooled down, otherwise scalding water could spray out as you open the reservoir! The coolant will most likely be in a reservoir up front, near the radiator.