How to Choose the Right Forklift Tires and Why it is Important
Selecting the correct forklift tires is extremely important for both the performance of the machinery and the safety of its operators. Choosing the wrong forklift tire can cause an increase in fuel consumption, a reduction in performance, and can add stress to the major components of the equipment. Even more importantly, improper tire selection can result in loss of stability and lifting capacity. Maintaining your forklift tires and ensuring you are using tires that are in good condition will reduce the stress and wear on the transmission as well as the forklift driver.
Which Type of Forklift Tire is Right for You?
When deciding what type of forklift tire is best for you, the main factor that needs to be taken into consideration is the type of surface the forklift is operating on. Operating forklifts indoors versus outdoors – especially on different types of terrain- will require different types of tires to maximize efficiency and the safety of the machinery. For instance some forklifts may just operate on smooth surfaces indoors- the traction needs are minimal compared to a forklift operating outside on a construction site. Some of the top brands are offering PWT (Premium Wide Trac) which offers machine operators a premium level design with an extra heavy duty sidewall for material handling applications or other heavy duty applications.
Different Types of Tires for Forklift Trucks
There are three different types of forklift tires available: Cushion Tires, Solid Pneumatic Tires, and Air-Filled Pneumatic Tires.
Cushion Forklift Tires
Cushion tires are best suited for smooth, flat, indoor surfaces or pavement as they are not designed for uneven or rough surfaces. Cushion tires are pressed directly onto the forklift wheel and are made up of solid rubber. An advantage of these tires is that they have a low clearance and a smaller turning radius which provides increased stability and maneuverability when lifting heavy cargo.
*Please note special machinery is required to install these tires.
Solid Pneumatic Tires
Solid pneumatic tires are one of the most common forklift tires sold and are commonly used both indoors and outdoors. Like cushion tires they are designed of solid rubber. These tires offer a long lifespan due to the fact that they are almost indestructible, however they do not offer the same type of ride-comfort that a cushion tire offers. It is also important to note that although these tires are suitable for outdoor use, they should only be used for lighter jobs.
Air-Filled Pneumatic Tires
Air-Filled pneumatic tires are also designed with solid rubber, however these tires are filled with air rather than composed of all rubber. These tires resemble heavy-duty tires that are used on work trucks. Like solid pneumatic tires, they are designed with long-lasting rubber material, but they are also designed a deep tread which makes them better suited for heavy-duty outdoor jobs with rough terrain.
Air Filled Pneumatic Tires can be foam filled to make them flat proof but offer a more comfortable ride than the solid pneumatic tires.
Pneumatic Forklift Tires Available From Ken Jones Tires:
BKT PL 801
BKT Power Trax HD
Carlisle Industrial Deep Traction
Carlisle PWT (Premium Wide Trac)
Carlisle Road Roller
Galaxy YardMaster Ultra
CAMSO Solideal Hauler LT
Titan Road Roller II
OEM (Original Manufacturers Equipment) Tires Should be Considered
When choosing a forklift tire, it is important to keep in mind that most forklifts are designed by manufacturers with a specific tire in mind. Operators should be cautious when replacing a forklift tire and consult the operating manual to ensure that they are choosing an appropriate tire.
Technological and Global Trends in the Forklift Tire Market
One of the major factors causing an increase in the sales of forklifts, and therefore forklift tires, is the boost of industrialization resulting from recent recovery in the global economy. The recovery of the economy has caused an increase in the demand for forklift tires. In addition, the electric forklift market segment is expected to expand at a high growth rate.
Another trend in the market is the increasing demand for non-marking tires and as consumers and other industries are seeking products with a reduced carbon footprint. Regulations are being placed on tire manufacturers to control the emissions of carbon black. These regulations are causing a significant increase in demand for non-marking forklift tires.