The Forklift Boss Blog

Blog posts from Marshall Cromer, "The Forklift Boss". Follow us for information on forklift safety, available parts, & upcoming technologies shaping the future of material handling!
Forklift Boss Blog
  • Are You Maximizing Your Trailer Space?

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Sep 26, 2017

    If Not, You're Throwing Money Away on Each Pallet

    “The pallet is the unit that controls the world.”

    That’s what I told a group of attendees at the Doosan Boot Camp last week.  The boot camp ran from September 19-21 in Atlanta.

    My Forklift Boss T-Shirt

    Doosan kindly gave me presentation time. (I had a Forklift Boss t-shirt. It’s awesome.) While speaking, I challenged the attendees to tell me their average pallet weight. I offered $20 to anyone who could give me the weight amount. 

    Nobody won it.

    Why is average pallet weight important? If you ship even a single truck of product out this holiday season (or ANY holiday season), you need to know the answer. Let's break it down. You'll see why.

    How Many Pallets can You Fit in a Shipping Trailer?

    There are three shipping trailer sizes in use today: 40-foot, 48-foot, and 53-foot. A standard GMA pallet is 48" long x 40" wide.

    Some simple math tells us that a 53-foot trailer (636” long) will fit 13 pallets lengthwise, with about 1 foot extra. These trailers are wide enough for two rows of pallets. So you’re looking at 26 pallets loaded into every 53-foot trailer.

    Pallet Specs

    What does this have to do with weight? Now that we know how many pallets we can add in, we can determine how much each needs to weigh. But there’s one more thing to take into account.

    Are Your Shipping Trailers Full? If Not, They Cost You Money

    Every time a shipping truck has to stop at a weigh station, they must meet certain state guidelines on gross weight. In California, shipping trucks cannot weigh over 80,000 pounds. (Some states go up to 84,500 pounds.)

    But that’s the total weight. It includes the weight of the trailer itself, AND the truck pulling it!

    That means we don’t have 80,000 pounds to work with for pallet weight. We have 80,000 pounds minus the weight of the truck & trailer.

    By law, the truck & trailer cannot weigh more than 38,000 pounds. So we have...

    80,000 pounds [gross weight] – 38,000 pounds [truck & trailer] =
    42,000 pounds [max weight of product]

    42,000 pounds to work with. Those 26 pallets need to weigh 42,000 pounds total. If they don’t, you’re not maximizing the trailer’s shipping value.

    If we divide the product weight by the number of pallets determined earlier:

    42,000 pounds [max product weight] / 26 [number of pallets in a 53-foot trailer] =
    1,615 pounds per pallet

    For a smaller container (40-foot):

    42,000 pounds [max product weight] / 20 [number of pallets in a 40-foot trailer] =
    2,100 pounds per pallet

    Each pallet must carry 1,615 pounds in weight to maximize trailer space for 53-foot containers. If you have a 40-foot container, it’s 2,100 pounds per pallet.

    This is what each pallet’s average weight should be.

    Why are these numbers important? Consider what happens if a shipping truck pulls up to a weigh station, and it’s either over the gross weight, or under it.


    If either a trailer’s front or back axles are overloaded (above 34,000 pounds per double axle at the weigh station), then they have to rearrange the trailer’s contents. Right at the weigh station. The truck cannot leave until it’s below the max gross weight, and its axles are balanced.

    If the truck must make its destination within a certain time frame, this can blow your delivery deadlines. You’re losing money for all the time the truck is stationary (and not traveling to its destination).


    An under-loaded truck at a weigh station won’t have to deal with delays. But you’ll have less total profit from that shipment than you could have.

    One or more pallets in the trailer are under-loaded. You could have shipped more product in the trailer. Which means you lost money by not filling each pallet to their average weight.

    Maximize Your Trailer Space for Maximum Profit per Shipment

    Now you know why I asked the Doosan boot camp attendees... "What is the average weight of YOUR pallets?"

    Do you know yours? If not, you may be losing money on each & every pallet leaving the warehouse. What if you're leaving $200 in product behind with every load? $500? $1000?

    Check your pallet weights using the math I've given here. Hopefully it helps you reach maximum profit!

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling

  Deal of the Month

    2017 DOOSAN LPG 5K FORKLIFT – $23,866

    Doosan G25N DealFor our September Deal of the Month, we’re offering our brand-new 2017 Doosan G25Ns. These forklifts are LPG, with a 5,000# capacity.  They’re the best 5K in the industry.

    Hauling loads in these is a breeze. Each has a Nissan 2.5L engine, oil-cooled disc brakes, and tires with 30% more rubber than competitor trucks. Best of all, since they’re brand new, they come with a 2-year warranty.

    We have a few of these Doosans in stock at the Oakland location. You get the best price with Cromer—only $23,866.

    Want to lease a G25N? With Cromer, your lease option is only $295/month.

    Interested? Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the new Doosan 5Ks.  

  • 6 Places a Dock Light Improves Warehouse Operations

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Aug 29, 2017

    The other day, one of our managers visited a customer’s warehouse. He saw a safety risk and an opportunity for improving efficiency, all by adding one thing. A dock light.

    While next to the warehouse’s loading docks, he saw a forklift operator using a flashlight to look into a backed up trailer. There was one dock light mounted on the interior of the dock’s frame, but it couldn’t shine into the trailer.

    Of course, he pointed this out to the supervisor and arranged to bring in a dock light that same day. Only a few days later, he got a call from the supervisor, saying everyone appreciated the additional light.

    Warehouse Stop and Go Lights

    Do You Need Dock Lights?

    We often underestimate just how important lighting is. Until there’s an accident.

    Take a stroll around the warehouse. Do you see any of these signs?

    • Workers squinting/leaning their head closer to something
    • Damage to docks from improperly-aligned trailers
    • Forklift operators carrying flashlights
    • Dock loaders/unloaders carrying flashlights
    • Forklifts bumping into pallets or shelves

    If so, your workers need more light.

    Dock lights serve to illuminate not only a dock. They’re good for inside trailers, around corners, and in safety-conscious areas too. Let’s go through 6 ways you can use dock lights in the warehouse, as well as what kind of efficiency improvements to expect.

    6 Places to Mount Dock Lights (and the Efficiency Improvements They Yield)

    1. Outside the Dock/on the Building Exterior (Stop & Go Lights)
    PURPOSE – Just like their city-road counterparts, these lights help the drivers guide their trailers back into the dock.

    EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT – Regulates traffic, and reduces risk of dock damage.

    2. Inside the Dock (On a Flexible Arm)
    PURPOSE – Illuminates the inside of a trailer, at any height workers need.

    Flexible Arm Dock LightsEFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT – When going through a dock, you’re passing through different light levels.

    Warehouse → Dock Frame → Trailer Interior

    If the trailer interior has poor lighting and you’re driving a forklift into it? You could easily have trouble seeing for 1-2 seconds. Two seconds is long enough to hit a co-worker or crash into pallets.

    3. Inside the Dock (On a Swing/Strut Arm)
    PURPOSE – Illuminates the inside of a trailer, and helps with paperwork.

    EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT – Yes, this can speed up paperwork! Sometimes people will set up a small workstation next to the docks, and use the dock lights to complete their paperwork.

    4. Outside Secure-Access Entryways (Stop & Go Lights)
    PURPOSE – Identifies when it’s safe to enter (green) or when the entryway is closed/in use (red).

    EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT – Protects against unauthorized access, and keeps safety regulations enforced (especially where hazardous materials are contained).

    5. Above Blind Corners/Turns (Heavy Duty LED Lamps)
    PURPOSE – Illuminates workers & forklifts turning around the corner.

    EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT – Worker Safety. Others can see the shadows and movement, warning them about rounding the corner (and risking an accident).

    6. Above Frequently-Trafficked Areas (Not Already Well-Lit)
    PURPOSE – Extra lighting to make navigating a busy area clearer for everyone.

    EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT – The simplest and most important reason of all…better lighting makes everyone safer while going about their work.

    Boost Your Warehouse Efficiency with Dock Lights—Keep Everyone Safe and Productive

    We’re seeing more activity from OSHA lately. More OSHA inspections, USDA inspections, and more oversight into corporate safety in general.

    Worker safety, product integrity, avoiding any OSHA issues…it pays to be safe and productive! Dock lights are just one part of the successful warehouse. But they’re important when it comes to safety AND productivity.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month

    2008 Mitsubisihi FG40K Forklift for Sale2008 MITSUBISHI LPG WITH ULTRA-LOW HOURS – $26,950

    For Summer’s last Deal of the Month, we have a 2008 Mitsubishi FG40K forklift. This is an LPG forklift, three-stage mast, with an 8,000# capacity.

    Here’s the kicker. It has only 141 hours on it.

    You read that right. A reliable, high-capacity LPG forklift with only 141 hours of use. The Cromer techs have inspected & serviced every part. It’s squeaky clean and fully tuned.

    Put it to work for you, for only $26,950.

    Interested? Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the Ultra-Low Hours Mitsubishi. It’s ready to roll.

  • How to Notify Workers When an Emergency Occurs

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Jul 28, 2017

    If racks began to collapse in your facility, how would you tell everyone to evacuate?

    Last August we published an article on preparing for workplace accidents. In the article, we recommended creating an “Accident Response Policy” – what everyone should do if there’s an accident or emergency.

    Such a policy needs to cover how you notify workers of emergencies. Several methods exist…and to help our readers, we’re documenting those methods today.

    Common Problems Affecting Industrial Workplaces

    Here’s a list of accidents that merit immediate response in an industrial setting. This isn’t everything that can happen, but it will illustrate the need for notifying workers as soon as possible.

    1. Aisle/Door blocked by product
    2. Chemical spill
    3. Collapsed shelving
    4. Fire
    5. Natural Disaster (Earthquake, Flood)
    6. Overturned forklift
    7. Worker injury

    Getting the Word Out: Notification Methods You Can Use

    The big question is, HOW do you tell workers when one of these emergencies occurs? They need notification, and fast.

    Here are several notification methods. You can use these in any industrial setting. Employ as many of them as you feel are necessary.

    USE EXISTING SAFETY EQUIPMENT TO ANNOUNCE THE EMERGENCY. Activate strobe lights. Use a loudspeaker or PA system to make announcements. Run a siren if you have one.

    (You can also use signal flares, or our LED road flares, to identify problem areas. We did a test run with the LED flares the other day, to mark off a spot where a “collapse” could occur. Even the forklift operators instinctively avoided the spot.)

    PRE-DEFINED PHRASES. Most emergency procedures use certain phrases to identify the problem. There’s no reason you can’t use similar phrases to notify workers of emergencies.

    Cromer facilities use a PA system with pre-defined phrases, and group texting, to notify workers of problems. Our phrases follow this format.

    • Give a code level (see the “Severity” section below),
    • Define the emergency,
    • Tell workers where to go,
    • Repeat the code,
    • Repeat the worker order.

    This takes less than 5 seconds, and everyone recognizes it right away.

    TEXTING. Sending a group text to all phones actually works quite well. Even if workers don’t check their phones often, a sudden text will grab their attention.

    HAND SIGNALS. Forklift operators use hand signals all the time. You've seen the "Stop" signal—both hands extended out to the sides at shoulder-level.

    Forklift Operation Hand Signals

    [Image courtesy of]

    Here's a similar hand signal you can use to call for evacuation.

    1. Do the "Stop" signal illustrated above.
    2. Raise both hands to the sides of the head.
    3. Make fists. Shake them side to side.
    4. With the appropriate hand, point in the direction of evacuation.

    Severity: Identifying How Bad the Problem Is

    You’ll have to include the problem’s severity in your notifications. Should workers abandon their forklifts, or is it OK to drive them away? Should people walk or run?

    If you’re using loudspeakers and/or texting, one way to identify severity is to use hospital color codes. Code Red, Code Blue, etc. Try these, for example:

    • CODE BLUE: Accident has occurred. Avoid the area. Other workers not at risk.
    • CODE YELLOW: Medium-level danger. Drive forklifts out of facility. Walk to evacuation points.
    • CODE RED: Drop whatever you're doing and get out!

    For example, let’s say you have a fire in the warehouse’s southeast corner. The fire alarm just sounded. Your notification methods are loudspeaker announcements, coupled with hand signals.

    You might use this statement over the loudspeaker:

    Code Red. Fire in Southeast corner. All workers evacuate to the north doors. Supervisors, give evac signals. Code Red. Evacuate to the north doors.

    Make Sure Your Accident Response Policy Tells Workers What to Look For

    Emergency notifications are just one part of an accident response policy. But it’s a critical part. It helps you keep as many workers as possible safe.

    Document your notification methods in the policy. Make sure every employee receives a copy. Post it with your other emergency notices.

    Lastly, don't forget to consult with the shift supervisors. They know their schedule and their people. If a problem does occur, they should be the ones helping coordinate the response.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    For our Deal of the Month, we have a combination sale/rental deal. Up for sale/rent are several Kalmar lift trucks. These are the big boys—36,000# and 55,000# capacities.

    The forklift pictured above is the Kalmar DCG250-12. It’s a 55,000# capacity, brand new, and ready for mega-scale work. Purchase new for: $349,000.

    We also have its little brother, the Kalmar DCG160-6. It’s a 36,000# capacity, also brand new. Both trucks have safety features installed. Purchase new for: $214,000.

    Both of these models are in our Oakland HQ. However, we do have similar equipment available used at other Cromer facilities.

    Interested in renting a Kalmar truck? Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the rental rates. We will extend discounts based on the duration of rental.


  • A Message to all Komatsu Customers

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Jul 17, 2017

    Komatsu’s Oakland and Stockton locations are closing July 30, 2017.

    Now, I’m a competitive business owner. But my staff and I were sorry to hear of the closure. We know most of the staff at Komatsu. They’re good, hard-working people. If Cromer can assist them after the facility closes, we will.

    What’s also important are the Komatsu Oakland and Stockton customers. They will need help going forward, both in material handling equipment and in service. Cromer is here, and ready to help you with both.

    • If you have forklifts on lease through Komatsu: You’ll need replacements fast when those leases expire. Cromer has electric forklifts ready for lease out of our Oakland and Manteca facilities.
    • If Komatsu technicians serviced your forklifts: Bring them over to Cromer. Our technicians are trained to service multiple forklifts. We also hope to have some Komatsu technicians join our team very soon.

    Because you’ll need to keep workers going, we’re offering a special deal for Komatsu customers.


    This deal will stand until January 1, 2018. Every business moves at its own pace, especially when you lose a supplier & have to adapt. I want Cromer there when you need us.

    Do you know a Komatsu customer, or staff member? Please forward this post to them.

    ~Marshall Cromer, Cromer Material Handling

  • Product Deep Dive: The Jungheinrich EJE 120 Electric Pallet Jack

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Jun 29, 2017

    Today we’re taking a more detailed look at one of our favorite products—Jungheinrich’s EJE 120 pallet jack.

    Sometimes a colleague or customer says to me, “All electric pallet jacks are the same.” Then I say, “You’ve never tried out the EJE 120, have you?”

    After a brief demo, they often end up ordering on the spot!


    This month’s News from the Forklift Boss will examine the EJE 120 through a pallet jack’s two most important roles: Production and Safety. If you haven’t used one of these, you’re in for a big surprise.

    Pallet Jack Safety

    A pallet jack, manual or electric, is one of the simplest material handling tools. Place product on it, convey product to its destination, and unload.

    And yet, jacks still pose a high safety risk if used improperly. Look at this list of OSHA accidents. Pallet jacks appear multiple times:

    • Employee's Leg Is Fractured By Pallet Jack
    • Employee Fractures Hip While Operating Pallet Jack
    • Employee's Toes Amputated After Pallet Jack Collision

    Most of the time, serious injuries like these occur when the jack is overloaded, or employees are not paying attention when pulling the jack. We’ve found you can eliminate such risks with good safety training and by switching to electric pallet jacks.

    But here’s the thing. Among pallet jacks—even electrics—you have low-quality and high-quality products. The EJE 120 pretty much defines “high-quality.”

    A low-quality jack is:

    • Easy to tip over/pull over
    • Hard to turn
    • Responsive to accidental button taps which can send the pallet jack surging forward
    • Short-lived—the batteries last 1 shift at best
    • Equipped with a short handle, which puts the jack close to the operator’s heels

    A high-quality jack is:

    • Prevented from shaking or tipping by stability casters
    • Balanced on the bottom with heavier forks
    • Easy to turn
    • Long-lasting—solid industrial batteries that go 2 shifts
    • Equipped with a long handle, putting the jack a safer distance away from the operator’s heels

    See the differences for yourself. I did a video comparing a Crown electric jack to the Jungheinrich EJE 120. The Crown kept rocking and fighting me. The Jungheinrich did exactly what I needed it to.

    Pallet Jack Production

    Nobody has time to fuss with a pallet jack. Every operator needs their pallet jack to ‘just work’ every time. Electric pallet jacks help make this happen. But in terms of production, not all electrics are created equal.

    Ease of Use

    As I demonstrated in the YouTube video, the EJE 120 glides exactly where I steer it. When I stop, it stops.

    Shift Length

    Have you heard of Jungheinrich’s “2Shifts1Charge” Guarantee? The manufacturer guarantees a large group of its products—including the EJE 120—will operate for 2 shifts on 1 battery charge. Some of our customers report getting 3 shifts on one battery. Plus, the battery comes with a 3-year warranty.

    Turn Radius

    Your pallet jack’s turn radius is an important factor in stacking, especially when shipping. A standard trailer is 96” wide. Pallets in North America vary from 36” to 48” in width. If you want to stack two rows in a trailer, you are fighting for inches.

    Each time you load a pallet, the jack must turn to position it. The closer you can get the jack, the better. Even 2 inches in turn radius makes a huge difference.

    Most electric pallet jacks have a 22-23" head length. But the EJE 120 has a 19.4" head length. That gives it the tightest turn radius in the industry.

    Why We Love the EJE 120: Safe, Reliable, Easy to Use

    Jungheinrich makes its material handling products in Germany, not China. The home of BMW and Mercedes. So when I say the EJE 120 is the BMW of pallet jacks, you can believe it!

    Do you use other electric pallet jacks? Throw those out. The EJE 120s do everything we need them to, and keep us safe at the same time.

    Never tried the Jungheinrich EJE 120? Cromer will provide a free demo for any of our customers. Just call us. No time limit.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    Pallet Rack 96For our Deal of the Month, we have rack on sale! This is a complete package: two new 12-foot uprights, with six 96” beams for shelves, and six wire decks for shelving support.

    You get a steel freestanding pallet rack, usable anywhere. They’ll hold up everything you want to stack.

    We normally sell this rack set, all included, for $390. For our deal of the month, pick it up for only $325.

    (They’ll even connect to starter rack with some good bolts. If you want that option, we’ll sell the addition for only $245.)

    Interested? Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the Deal on Pallet Rack.

  • Ergonomic Lift Tables: Save Your Workers' Backs

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | May 30, 2017

    Are You Using Ergonomic Lift Tables Yet? If Not, Here’s Why You Should

    The Cromer team has visited tens of thousands of our customers’ facilities over the years—warehouses, offices, docks, and manufacturers.

    In our opinion, 80% of those facilities could benefit from investing in one piece of equipment—an ergonomic lift table.

    If you’re not familiar with lift tables, this is the “News from the Forklift Boss” to read. We will cover what lift tables do, how best to use them in your facility, and some dos & don’ts to keep in mind.

    What is an Ergonomic Lift Table?

    Ergonomic Lift Table

    An ergonomic lift table is a small mechanical or hydraulic scissor lift with a flat surface on top (pictured above). It provides a raised platform where you can stack boxes & pallets. Some models even have wheels.

    Using a Lift TableIts purpose? To reduce workers’ fatigue, increase productivity, and foster a safer work environment. By lifting boxes or pallets up to a worker’s waist level, lift tables eliminate the need to bend over repeatedly while stacking product.

    Lift tables come in three main types:

    • Mechanical – uses a crank to lift
    • Air Bag – uses factory air to lift
    • Hydraulic – uses a hydraulic piston to lift

    Lift Table Uses

    The typical use of a lift table is in a warehouse. But we’ve also seen them used in mechanics’ garages, manufacturing plants, and even inside an industrial refrigerator. Lift tables are suitable for all types of environments (indoor and outdoor).

    Lift tables speed up and simplify product movement. Lifting a group of boxes up to waist-height may not seem like much, but it can save a worker’s back.

    Think of how many times a worker has to bend down, turn, lift, turn, set a box down, and repeat. One ergonomic lift table not only cuts down on all that motion, it can speed up pallet loading and unloading time by 40%.

    Dos & Don’ts of Lift Tables

    As with all material handling equipment, there’s a safe way to use lift tables and an unsafe way. Please follow these dos & don’ts to keep your workers safe.

    • DO select the correct lift table for the product you’re moving. Make sure the capacity and height match the worker’s waist height.
    • DO make use of a lift table wherever it improves worker health. Lift tables aren’t very expensive (starting at $2,000-$3,000), but they’re a huge money saver when you consider workers’ comp!
    • DO locate and station the places in your warehouse where a lift table should go. These are places where floor-level stacking and sorting occurs most often.

    • DON’T use a lift table in place of a pallet jack. It’s tempting to stack a mobile lift table, then push it where you want to go. Don’t do that—you risk spilling product off the table, onto you.
    • DON’T exceed a lift table’s capacity. Each table has a capacity rating—beyond that, they can tip over.
    • DON’T stand on a lift table. It’s not a ladder.

    Choose the Right Lift Table, and Save Your Workers’ Backs!

    The principle behind the ergonomic lift table is to reduce motion. The fewer times your workers have to bend down and pick up items, the fewer chances they have of injury.

    Lift tables come in many sizes, types, and capacities. Choose the lift table best suited to your workers’ routines, and the types of product they are moving. You’ll get a great ROI from time saved, fewer workers’ comp claims, and healthier workers.

    If you'd like to test out a lift table, call us! We have hydraulic lift tables for sale and rent (seasonal) in our Northern California locations.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling

  Deal of the Month

    DOOSAN G25N 5,000lb. FORKLIFTS AT $23,866 EACH!

    Doosan G25 2017For our May Deal of the Month, we have a selection of Doosan G25N LPGs on sale. These are brand-new pneumatic forklifts, with 5,000lb. capacity.

    These are the best 5Ks in the industry. Each forklift has a three-stage 186” mast, with side shift. Oil-cooled disc brakes mean it stops fast, without tossing product (or the driver) around. 42” and 48” forks available. We’ve added blue lights for extra safety.

    Since these are new forklifts, you have the option to buy or lease!

    • Buy a brand-new Doosan G25N for only $23,866 each.
    • Lease one for only $294.48/month.

    Interested? Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the New Doosan G25Ns.


  • Time to Reserve Your Summer Rentals!

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Apr 27, 2017

    Reserve your Forklifts and Bin Dumpers Now, or They’ll Be Gone by Summer

    Every year in April, I have a note on my calendar. It reminds me of one simple thing.

    “Summer’s coming up. Get the rental equipment ready!”

    Not just the forklifts. Our rental customers also need balers, extra pallet jacks…and bin dumpers.

    In the past we’ve talked about rental forklifts. This year, let’s talk rental bin dumpers. It’s important to know all your equipment before you start on something as high-traffic as Summer Harvest.

    Bin Dumper 101

    A bin dumper mounts to the front of a forklift, allowing it to pick up and manipulate bins. Forklift operators use bin dumpers to move product bins from collection site, into and around the warehouse.

    When properly installed and operated, bin dumpers make the forklift driver’s job much simpler. They only have to focus on loading and unloading bins.

    Dueling Forklifts with Bin Dumpers

    When it comes to our summer rentals, bin dumpers are a regular rental for these two industries:

    • Wineries – Harvesting grapes for crush
    • Produce – Harvesting produce for nationwide distribution

    I’ve been out to several Napa Valley customer sites. It’s amazing to watch them harvesting. The bins fill up in no time, the operators take them back for dumping, and are out again. Everyone’s working together like a well-oiled machine.

    Which is why I make sure all the forklifts they rent are well-oiled machines, too!

    Bin Dumper Inspection & Maintenance

    All rented bin dumpers arrive ready for work, but like forklifts, it’s always good to inspect them before use.

    We recommend doing a quick daily inspection. Check these elements on and around a bin dumper before you start for the day:

    1. Check the bolts. Make sure none are loose or missing.
    2. Check the forklift & bin dumper hoses for wear, damage, or hydraulic leaks.
    3. Check oil levels.
    4. Inspect the top and front bin retainers. You should see no damage and proper alignment with the forklift. If not, call Cromer to adjust the bin dumper.

    Bin dumper not responding? If any of our rental bin dumpers fails, Cromer service techs come out and fix it. If we can’t fix it on-site, we’ll swap it out right there. If the failure is due to faulty equipment, we pay for the swap.

    How to Reserve Bin Dumper (and Forklift) Rentals with Cromer

    1. Visit our Rentals page to select the equipment you’ll need this summer:
      Cromer Rentals List (Includes Rate Sheet)
    2. Call Cromer at 800-974-5438. Ask for the Rentals Department.
      If you prefer email, please use
    3. Tell us which items you want to rent, the number you need, the dates you need them, and the delivery location(s).
    4. We add you to the rental reservation list.
    5. On the scheduled delivery date, you receive your rentals on-site and start work.

    Our rental fleet stands at over 200 forklifts. The rental forklifts are all undergoing their preventative maintenance while you read this.

    As of this newsletter, we have 35 bin dumpers available for rent. You can rent them independently, or with a forklift. (Please note: We do not rent bins.)

    Summer rentals are always huge. If you need extra forklifts (and bin dumpers) for summer/fall, reserve them now or they'll be gone!

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    3 CAT Electrics Deal of the MonthFor our April Deal of the Month, we have three CAT 48-volt electrics on sale. These are 2013 CAT EC30Ns, at 6,000-lb. capacity.

    Each forklift has a three-stage 186” mast, with side shift. These have between 5,500-7,000 hours of use on them. We’ve performed all maintenance, conducted battery tests, and certified them ready for duty.

    Pick up one of these for only $13,800 each. Includes charger. (Single Double Attachment is also available, for $2,200.)

    Interested? Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the April Deal of the Month.


  • Bug Doors: Keep Warehouse Employees Cool and Bugs Out

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Apr 06, 2017

    Two Reasons to Install Bug Doors in Your Warehouse before Summer

    The recent warm weather has our customers looking ahead to summer. As a result, we’ve been getting lots of calls for bug doors. When you’re working in a hot warehouse during summer, you’d love to roll up the big warehouse doors for ventilation, right?

    But this can let insects and rodents into the warehouse. The USDA, of course, requires that all food source businesses secure their doors, so leaving a warehouse door open isn’t an option.

    What’s a Bug Door?

    Bug doors are basically giant screen doors. They cover open doorways, roll-up doors, and even man/exit doors. They’re made of a fine mesh to let air through, with bright yellow strips to identify them to workers (so nobody walks into one).

    Warehouse Bug DoorYou can get two types of warehouse bug doors. A manual operation type is like a window blind. Pull it down, or tug on it to make it go up. A high cycle type is motor operated. You can open & close these more than 100 times per day.

    On average, bug doors last 5-7 years, as long as nobody drives a forklift into one. (Which does happen!) The most common cause of wear on a bug door—holes or tears in the screen—comes from impacts. If you use them, make sure all your workers know to watch where they’re going!

    What Does a Bug Door Do for Me?

    You get two benefits from using bug doors:

    1. Better air circulation through the warehouse. Letting in outside air with bug doors improves air circulation, up to 35%. That helps employees stay comfortable and productive.
    2. Stopping bugs, birds, and other pests from getting into the warehouse. This is important for food storage warehouses in particular, but every warehouse is at risk for bugs flying in through a big warehouse door if there’s no screen preventing their access.

    What’s the Value in Adding Bug Doors?

    A bug door is a low-cost way to keep the warehouse, and its workers, cooler, especially during hot summer days. It also prevents any risk to product from insect contamination. If zero bugs get in, zero product has insect damage.

    There’s also the FDA. FDA requirements for food storage and warehousing are pretty strict. If an FDA inspector finds ONE live insect inside the warehouse, they can shut you down. Bug doors head off the problem before it happens.

    Bug Doors Spare Everybody as Much Heat (from Summer and the FDA) as Possible

    Warehouse doors have to open all the time. Good dock seals prevent pests while loading/unloading. But what if the warehouse gets too hot, and someone just leaves the door open after the truck leaves?

    It’s not worth the risk. Especially since bug doors are affordable and easy to install (typically takes us less than 1 day).

    If you do have bug doors in your warehouse, check them for any tears. If you don’t, we still have time to put them in before summer. Don’t wait too long!

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month

    1998 DAEWOO DIESEL FORKLIFT – $14,911

    1998 Daewoo Diesel ForkliftFor our March Deal of the Month, we’re offering this 1998 Daewoo D70 forklift. These are “oldies but goodies” – long-time workhorses. Diesel fuel, 15,500-lb. capacity and a two-stage mast with 96” forks.

    The forklift has 5,554 hours on it. It’s been serviced, tested, and ready to get back to work. If you’re a budget-conscious forklift buyer, this is a good deal to pick up.

    This Daewoo is on sale for only $14,911. It’s currently located in Bakersfield.

    Interested? To pick it up, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the March Deal of the Month.

  • Two-Minute Video Tour of the BYD Electric Forklift

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Mar 21, 2017

    Take a 2-minute tour of the BYD forklift with The Forklift Boss.

    We've put together a new video showcasing BYD. It's up on YouTube now.

    You'll also find it on the Cromer Videos page, in the top bar.

    Watch me ride around on a BYD electric, show you how it charges up, where the batteries are, and point out some of its safety features. Had a great time filming it.

    BYD forklifts challenge the status quo. They've created a whole new standard of what operators should expect from an electric forklift. Up to an 18-hour run time on one charge, recharging in 60-90 minutes, with no heat from the batteries and no gassing risk?

    It's too great to ignore.

    At Cromer, we're already committed to the BYDs. But if you need any more convincing, check out the warranties on every BYD purchase:

    • Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery: 10 year warranty. 100% Green, 100% Safe.
    • Charger/Motors: 5 year/10,000 hour warranty.
    • Lift Truck: 3 year/6000 hr warranty, complete.

    Don't forget, we're offering demos for you to try out a BYD forklift too. Contact your nearest Cromer facility and ask for one. As you see in the video, they're lots of fun to drive!

  • What the Electric Forklift Means for Long-Term Productivity

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Mar 06, 2017

    BYD Makes a Great Case to Switch to Electrics & “Power Up” Your Operations

    “I only buy CAT.”
    “We’ve used Doosan for years.”

    I don’t know how many times I’ve heard lines like these. I understand them—changing your forklift brand is a tough choice! You probably don’t have time to find out if a new brand will keep up with your workday. If one brand worked for you in the past, you’d naturally want to stick with it.

    But when it comes to electric forklifts, change is absolutely worth it.

    Why? That’s what we’re talking about today. The newest electric forklifts, particularly from BYD, give us all a reason to say, “Change is good!”

    At Cromer, we’re putting a lot of our efforts behind promoting and servicing BYD electrics. I see a great future for the BYD forklift, and for every business that uses them.

    Let me explain.

    The “Power Up” Behind BYD – What You Gain By Switching

    Zero Explosion Risk. We all heard the news about Samsung phones blowing up. While the BYD batteries are essentially giant cellphone batteries, they don’t carry an explosion risk. I saw BYD’s testing procedure—they basically throw the batteries in a furnace!

    No Need to Replace the Batteries Yourself. The BYD battery is rated to last 10 years. Plus the company gives you a 10-year warranty. You can sell or trade in the forklift after 10 years, and never once need to swap out the battery!

    Company with a Solid Foundation. BYD is the #1 electric bus maker in the world. Berkshire Hathaway (Warren Buffet’s company) owns a 10% stake. They currently have $15B in revenue. The company will be around for a long time, supporting and improving their equipment.

    Environmentally-Friendly. Electric forklift batteries are efficient and long-lasting…but you couldn’t call too many “green.” They’re full of hazardous chemicals and potentially-toxic metals.

    Not BYD batteries though.  As I mentioned in “What’s So Great about the BYD Forklift Batteries?” they’re made of iron phosphate. No chemicals at all. Which means they need no special disposal procedure. These batteries are so environmentally friendly you can just toss a dead battery in a dumpster.

    Many Products to Spur Growth. Take a look at this:


    That’s a giant solar farm in Brussels, Belgium (currently in development). One of several BYD is working on all over the world. Huge, isn’t it?

    BYD has also built huge energy storage facilities in Chicago and West Virginia. All the innovation that goes into stuff like this, also ends up in every BYD forklift.

    Huge Battery Production. BYD made 10 gigawatt-hours’ worth of batteries in 2015. By 2020, they’re forecasting 34 gigawatt-hours. That’s the power equivalent of 17 Hoover Dams.

    Not bad for a company that started out making cellphone batteries, huh?

    BYD Forklift in Use
    This man is NOT wearing a hard hat. Where’s his supervisor?!

    The Forklift Future is Electric

    I talk about BYD a lot because I like what I see in their forklifts. It’s worth the time to check them out. Afterward, you might say, “Change is good!” too.

    If you want to see what I see, schedule a demo with your local Cromer facility. Try out a BYD electric for yourself.

    (If you do want a demo, please let us know as soon as possible. Our BYD demo truck is pretty popular!

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    For our February Deal of the Month, we’re offering this 2008 Mitsubishi FG40K forklift. It’s an LPG truck, with an 8,000-lb capacity and three-stage mast.

    The tires are in great shape. Here’s the kicker: It only has 141 hours on it. (You read that right. 141.)

    With so few hours on it and such a high capacity, you might think it’s really expensive. Nope. We’re offering it for only $26,950.

    Interested? To pick up this Mitsubishi, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the February Deal of the Month.

  • How to Maintain Dock and Door Safety

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Feb 06, 2017

    Watch for the Warning Signs, and Schedule Preventative Maintenance to Avoid Accidents

    Are your warehouse’s docks and doors in good operational condition?

    Docks and doors are basically moving parts in your business’ engine. They protect product, facilitate loading, and help maintain your warehouse environment. It also means they wear out in time, just like hoses in a forklift.

    So this month, we’re talking docks and doors. What kinds of problems do they develop? What signs should you watch for? How do you keep them in good working order?

    4 Dock and Door Warning Signs to Watch Out For

    Since docks and doors are so big, it’s pretty easy to spot potential problems before they get bad.

    1. Dock Surface/Dock Lip Fatigue: Drooping spots in the dock lips, splits between the dock surface and the lips.
    2. Fractures: Cracks in the rubber, dents or tears in the doors’ slats.
    3. Broken Welds: Cracks on dock hinges, places where dock frames have come apart.
    4. Light Encroachment: Spots where the dock seals shrink or tear, leaking light into the warehouse.

    These are the four most common problems Cromer & Gray Lift safety inspectors see when on-site. Keep your eye out for them too. The earlier potential problems are spotted, the less likely they are to cause something more severe.

    What Can Happen if Docks and Doors are Not Maintained

    warehousedoorLike all equipment, docks and warehouse doors fail if not maintained properly. Some of the more common failures we’ve seen customers encounter were minor. Some were not. Below are four potential problems that come from poorly-maintained docks.

    Corrupted Warehouse Environment. If a dock’s not sealed, the air leak corrupts your warehouse’s climate control. Depending on your product (like food), it can spoil or rot in no time.

    Vermin. Nobody wants to see a mouse while on shift. Even one can get an entire warehouse shut down by OSHA!

    Stuck Doors. We’ve all had to deal with this at one point. The door’s either frozen up or slipped a roller. It’s stuck and it ain’t moving. Which effectively closes off one door to loading for hours. Or days.

    Operational Accidents. Too much light leaking in through a broken door can cause accidents. What if a forklift operator gets hit with a sudden light beam to the eye? They’ll flinch…and might collide with a rack.

    Collapse. Any part of a dock collapsing risks not just product, but workers! These are the accidents that make the evening news, and send employees to the hospital (or worse).

    Luckily, all of these problems are avoidable. All it takes is some preventative maintenance (PM).

    What Preventative Maintenance Does for Your Warehouse

    Preventative Maintenance accomplishes the same goal, whether it’s for a forklift or a dock. Inspections make sure no problems are developing. If so, maintenance professionals make the needed repairs.

    For instance, the issue of light encroachment. Say a Cromer safety inspector finds light leaking in through a dock. The Cromer maintenance team installs brushes and a fresh seal to keep the light out. No more risk of accidents.

    Cromer’s Preventative Maintenance team services hundreds of docks and doors all across California. For more details on what we do, we’ve posted our Dock and Door Service Agreements to the Cromer website. View them at the below links (in PDF):

    Dock Equipment Service Agreement (PDF) – Cromer-Gray Lift
    Industrial Door Service Agreement (PDF) – Cromer-Gray Lift

    Reminder: Put Dock and Door Preventative Maintenance on the Calendar

    Chances are you already have Dock and Door preventative maintenance on the 2017 calendar. If so, good! You’re in good shape.

    If not, take a moment to schedule it. How frequently you do PM depends on your warehouse’s activity level.

    • Does the company have one, two, or three shifts?
    • How often are doors and docks used in a time cycle?
    • How many loads do you ship per day?
    • How heavy are the forklift loads going over the docks?

    For moderate use, Cromer recommends preventative maintenance twice a year (semi-annually).
    For heavy use, Cromer recommends preventative maintenance four times a year (quarterly).

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    We’re clearing out the Clarks!   Cromer has some new inventory coming in soon, so it’s time to make room. For our January Deal of the Month, all used Clark forklifts are on sale.

    Here are 4 of the Clark forklifts now available. Call your local Cromer facility right away to pick them up.

    5444-16c Clark 2013 C18C Forklifts (2 available). 3560 hours. 188T masts, side shift, 42” forks. ID# 5447-16, 5448-16.
    Sale Price: $12,500 each
    F196-15b Clark 2016 C25 Forklift. 3183 hours. LPG, solid tires, side shift, 5000-lb capacity. ID# F196-15.
    Sale Price: $18,963
    F042-12c Clark 2012 C25C Forklift. 4310 hours. LPG, solid tires, 5000-lb capacity. ID# F042-12.
    Sale Price: $12,900
    F184-14b Clark 2012 C25 Forklift. 1102 hours. LPG, side shift, 5000-lb capacity. Retail ready! ID# F183-12.
    Sale Price: $15,200

    To get your deal, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the Used Clark sales.

  • Start 2017 off Right with These Material Handling Reminders

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Jan 05, 2017

    Another year’s gone by. It’s been a big year for Cromer...doubling in size and reach, with more customers than ever.

    Now we’re taking stock, and planning for next year. That includes taking care of our rental fleet and current new/used forklift inventory. Things everyone should do regularly for best material handling performance.

    We wanted to close out 2016 with some reminders. Simple things you, our customers, can do to help 2017 start off on the best foot possible.

    Four Reminders for Starting 2017 off Right

    1. Schedule an electric forklift demo. Customers love seeing the new BYDs in action. They save on fuel and help the environment at the same time. We’re already taking 2017 appointments to demo the BYD trucks on-site. If you’re curious about BYD electrics, now’s the time to schedule a demo.

    2. Book your safety training. If you have workers whose safety training is up for renewal, a quick call is all you need. OSHA requires your forklift drivers receive safety training every two years. See our March 2016 newsletter for when and how to work safety training into your schedule.

    3. Check your maintenance books. Every forklift in your warehouse should start 2017 clean, maintained, and running in top shape. If one or more forklifts haven’t received maintenance in the past 3 (or 6) months, it’s time!

    4. Take a moment to thank your workers and your managers. It’s been a busy work year. We’ve seen customers put in loads of extra hours to make deadlines. Everyone deserves a thank you for their hard work.

    Let’s All Have a Great 2017. Take Care of Your Equipment, and It Will Keep You Safe & Productive.

    Start your 2017 off right. Take a little time now to schedule the things you need to, clean what needs cleaning, and prep your workforce for solid productivity.

    From the Forklift Boss and everyone here at Cromer Material Handling—Happy Holidays!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    The Cromer End-of-Year Blowout continues! We still have a few forklifts that need clearing out.

    You only have a few days left to take advantage of Section 179 tax savings. Make good use of 179 with the sale prices at Cromer!

    The following equipment is still available. Call your local Cromer facility right away to pick them up.

    Clark 2013 C25L Forklifts (5 available).  Hours range from 2100 to 3900.  LPS rated, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 5452-16, 5449-16, 5454-16, 5458-16, 5459-16.  Available in Fresno, Oakland, and Bakersfield.

    Sale Price: $15,500 each


    Komatsu 2008 FG25ST-16 Forklift.  3200 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# F054-08.  Available in Fresno.

    Sale Price:  $9,800


    Mitsubishi 2009 FB18NT Forklift.  4000 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 4035-16.  Available in Fresno.

    Sale Price:  $14,000


    Komatsu 1996 FG25T-11 Forklift.  7386 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 5182-16.  Available in Bakersfied.

    Sale Price:  $5,500


    Clark 2012 C18C Forklift.  1730 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 5444-16.  Available in Bakersfield.

    Sale Price:  $14,200


    To get your end-of-year deal, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the End-of-Year Blowout.

  • How Electric Forklifts Save Money on Fuel and Maintenance

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Dec 06, 2016

    In our September newsletter, we talked about costs per hour in operating a forklift. But we didn’t talk about one cost in particular: fuel cost.

    Fuel, even more than maintenance, illustrates just how much of a cost savings the electric forklift gives you over LPG trucks. That’s what we’re talking about this month.

    For a visual example, let’s head back to an old friend – the EPRI Lift Truck Comparison Calculator.

    We’ve put in up-to-date energy rates for California. The calculator will use a 4,000-lb. forklift, operating for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week.

    These are the results we get:


    Look at the fuel difference. Over 5 years, an electric forklift needs about $10,000 in fuel/electricity. Propane needs over $30,000 in fuel. Diesel needs close to $40,000!

    Want to know how much you’d save with an electric forklift? Grab your PG&E bill and look up the cost per kilowatt. (At time of publication, it’s $0.136/hour in California.) Adjust the “Electricity Price $/kWh” slider to match. Move the “Propane Price” or “Diesel Price” sliders to match your current fuel price. You’ll see the difference right away.

    The other sliders factor in forklift usage, total operating time, and maintenance costs. Play with the sliders to see how the costs translate. You may find some justification to switch to electrics.

    Maintenance: No Need to Replace Parts that Aren’t There

    What happens if a forklift’s transmission begins to fail? The engine works harder to keep going. Burning excess fuel, causing more wear, and increasing the maintenance cost that’s coming up.

    What happens if an electric forklift’s electricity flow gets disrupted? The forklift will typically shut down and need a quick repair.

    This is just one example of the maintenance differences between forklift types. Differences which can add up to big cost savings.

    Consider one of the biggest parts of forklift maintenance: Parts replacement.

    An LPG forklift has an internal combustion engine. That means it has sparkplugs, plug wires, a distributor with a distributor cap, and oil. All of which need replacement over the life of the forklift.

    Electrics don’t have those parts. They have a battery and a drive motor. No radiator, no coolant hoses, and no fan belts either. Fewer parts to wear out.

    Fuel and Maintenance Add Up to High Cost over Time – or High Cost Savings, Depending on Your Forklifts

    An LPG pneumatic-tire forklift costs less up front than an electric lift truck. But the LPG pneumatic has a higher cost than an electric, over time. The differences in fuel costs and maintenance needed spell out a big savings for electrics.

    We hope this information helps you save on your next forklift purchase. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Until next month,
    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling

    Special Notice – Section 179 is Back! Huge Tax Savings on Material Handling Purchases

    Last December we told you about the tax savings of Section 179 – a tax deduction you can take on equipment purchased OR leased. If you make your purchase before the end of the year.

    blogtaximage3The Section 179 deduction is good again for this year, tax year 2016. Plus, the 50% bonus depreciation is valid through 2019.

    That means you have until December 31 to buy or lease equipment. All of the following qualifies for Section 179:

    • Computer hardware or software
    • Industrial Equipment (like our forklifts, rack & shelving)
    • Office furniture and office equipment
    • Vehicles used for business

    You can find more details out at

    If you want to take advantage of Section 179 tax savings, don’t want. Come out to any Cromer location for your end-of-year material handing purchases. We have everything ready to go. Deal of the Month


    2017 is coming up fast. It’s been an exciting year for Cromer—bringing the Gray Lift staff & facilities into the Cromer family, and working with BYD on their industry-changing forklifts.

    Now the year’s drawing to a close. It’s time for us to make room for new inventory.

    What’s the best way to do that? Have an end-of-year blowout!

    The following equipment is marked down for the 2016 Cromer End-of-Year Blowout. These sales will NOT last, so make sure to call us right away.

    Clark 2008 TMX17 Forklift.  9300 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 5118-16.  Available in Fresno.

    Sale Price:  $9,500


    Clark 2013 C25L Forklifts (5 available).  Hours range from 2100 to 3900.  LPS rated, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 5452-16, 5449-16, 5454-16, 5458-16, 5459-16.  Available in Fresno, Oakland, and Bakersfield.

    Sale Price: $15,500 each


    Komatsu 2008 FG25ST-16 Forklift.  3200 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# F054-08.  Available in Fresno.

    Sale Price:  $9,800


    Mitsubishi 2009 FB18NT Forklift.  4000 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 4035-16.  Available in Fresno.

    Sale Price:  $14,000


    Komatsu 1996 FG25T-11 Forklift.  7386 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 5182-16.  Available in Bakersfied.

    Sale Price:  $5,500


    Clark 2012 C18C Forklift.  1730 hours, 188 triple masts, side shift.  ID# 5444-16.  Available in Bakersfield.

    Sale Price:  $14,200


    Cat 1999 GP25 Forklift.  130 std masts, side shift.  ID# 5278-16.  Available in Oakland.

    Sale Price:  $6,550


    To get your end-of-year deal, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the End-of-Year Blowout.

  • How to Buy a Forklift

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Nov 07, 2016

    Buying forklifts is a process. Prepare properly, and the process works for you.

    I’ve worked in this industry for 37 years. In that time I’ve bought and sold a lot of forklifts. I learned all the things to consider when you buy a forklift. Things you should consider too.

    If you know these 7 elements, you’ll walk into a forklift dealer well prepared to buy a forklift. The buying process will go smooth and simple. Let’s get started.

    Element 1: How Big & How Heavy are Your Typical Loads?

    Most of the time, pallet loads fall within the same size & weight. 90% of the material handling industry uses GMA (Grocery Manufacturers Association) standard pallets (48” long x 40” wide). 95% of pallet loads don’t exceed 2000lbs.

    If you want to double-stack in trailers, then you’ll want a 5000lb capacity forklift. 65% of forklifts are 5000lb cushion type (LPG or Electric), pneumatic type or cushion/pneumatic electric. Forklifts are designed at a 24” load center, which means it can handle a 4 foot load at its rated capacity.

    Element 2: How High Do You Need to Lift the Loads?

    90% of all forklifts are 188” lift height. That also allows a down height of 83-85”. This common lift height hasn’t changed for 50 years.

    The 188” triple stage came about with 3-high stacking, with 60” between the load beams on racks and 90” trailer openings. Do you have tall ceilings in your warehouse? Use them! Price per pallet position will drop.

    Element 3: Will You Use the Forklift Indoors, Outdoors, or Both?

    If you plan to use your forklift on any type of non-smooth cement surface, then you should buy a pneumatic. However, a 5000lb pneumatic type forklift costs more, and alters your turning radius to 14-foot aisles. (Cushion type LPGs and Electrics have a 12-foot radius.)oct2016-main

    Element 4: How Much Room Do You Have to Maneuver?

    If you want to maximize the number of pallets your warehouse can hold, you may opt for narrow aisles (less than 12 foot). With narrow aisles, you’ll need to look at a 3-wheel electric type forklift (indoor/outdoor), or stand-up trucks. You can get even narrower (80 inch) if you look at Aislemaster electric lifts.

    Remember though: Set your warehouse up based on your input/output of goods. Determine your aisle requirements by the most efficient pallet positions. Then determine your forklift requirements based on the aisle requirements.

    Element 5: How Many Hours Per Day Will Your Team Use the Forklift?

    A good rule of thumb: If you plan to use the forklift more than 4 hours a day, buy or lease a new forklift. If your need isn’t that great, used forklifts should fit the bill. Once you establish the hours needed, you can set a budget.

    (We talked about Forklift Cost per Hour last issue. It can help you estimate how many hours you want to use the forklift daily, balanced against lifetime value.)

    Prefer used anyway? You’ve got a huge selection to choose from. But remember the old adage—you get what you pay for.

    Element 6: What’s Your Budget?

    Think of a forklift purchase as Silver, Gold, or Platinum.

    • A “silver” purchase is a 5-year-old forklift with less than 6000 hours on it, at 60% of new price. Remember pricing for a new 5000lb forklift is approaching $25,000. Your budget is thus $15,000.
    • A “gold” purchase is a 3-year-old forklift with around 3000 hours on it, at 75% of new price. Look into 5-year financing for a low monthly payment.
    • A “platinum” purchase is a new forklift. No hours on it, full price. You’ll have the longest lifetime usage, but also the highest budget needs.

    If you’re looking at electric forklifts, your #1 requirement is getting a new or 80% reconditioned battery. New batteries average $5,500. Also, get a good warranty in writing, and a high-frequency charger (25% better efficiency than the standard electric chargers).

    Element 7: The Forklift Dealer

    The final element to consider is the Forklift Seller/Dealer themselves. For the most part, you will have a good buying experience with most dealers. But, it always pays to do your homework. Look at 2-3 good forklift dealers and make your decisions from there.

    With a dealer, check to see if they do their own maintenance. They should. Forklifts do break, but with preventative maintenance, you cut down on breakdowns. Ask the dealers about maintenance programs for the life of the forklift.

    Look at the maintenance leases carefully. Make sure there are no hidden costs. If someone comes in with low labor rates, it’s usually for a reason. Avoid them.

    Always remember the safety features that go with a forklift. I would urge you to require back-up alarms, strobe lights, headlights, and seatbelts on your trucks.

    Knowing What Kind of Forklift to Buy Makes for Long-Term Satisfaction

    When buying a forklift, you’re also choosing a forklift dealer that has the assets to support you. The dealer will provide the service and support to keep your lifts running smoothly, so it is important that you find one who is reputable, stable, and can provide top-notch service.

    I hope this information helps you prepare for your next forklift purchase. We at Cromer want all our customers to have confidence in every forklift they buy, right from the start.

    A good forklift dealer will understand what you’re looking for, if you use these elements to prepare.

    (P.S. – Cromer Material Handling has 6 branches, 80 technicians, 12 parts personnel and over $15,000,000 in assets. We will do a great job on your next forklift purchase. and

    Everybody have a safe and happy Halloween!

    Until next month,

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month

    5,000lb DOOSAN DIESEL FORKLIFT – ONLY $15,900

    oct2016-dealOur October Deal of the Month is a spooky good deal! One 2009 Doosan diesel truck, with a 5,000lb capacity.

    These Doosans just keep going and going. They also have excellent brakes, so they’ll stop right where you need them to.

    This forklift has solid pneumatics, triple stage, and side shifter. It has 1,850 hours on it and was fully serviced by the Cromer maintenance team.

    Pick up this Doosan diesel for only $15,900. To buy it, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the Doosan Deal of the Month.

  • What Does Your Forklift Cost Per Hour?

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Oct 07, 2016

    If I asked you how much your forklifts cost you per hour, could you tell me?  Could you figure it out in 5 minutes?

    If not, you may be losing money.

    We’ve talked about forklifts needing maintenance in the newsletter before.  It’s a necessary procedure, and can actually save you money over the life of the forklift.

    Cost per Hour is a way to collect all of your fleet’s maintenance costs into one easy-to-read value.  It helps fleet managers determine how healthy their forklifts are, and which forklifts are approaching end-of-life.

    Factors Involved in Estimating Cost per Hour

    Typical operation time for a forklift is 1,500 hours per year.  Throughout the year, each forklift requires maintenance.  All of the relevant maintenance tasks are factors when calculating Cost per Hour.

    Maintenance Factors:Cromer Spring Service Special

    • Forklift Type
    • How long you want to keep it in service
    • Number of hours used per year (1,500 average)
    • Regular Planned Maintenance
    • Repairs/Replacement Parts
    • Labor involved in service & repair

    So what’s a reasonable Cost per Hour?  $1/hour?  $2?

    How to Calculate Cost per Hour

    When you get a brand-new forklift, Cost per Hour is almost $0 for those first few months (excluding fuel, of course).  Then you have planned maintenance, eventually a little labor, and so on.  The costs add up fast.

    To see how fast, let’s do some basic calculations.  These will use a new LPG forklift as example.

    YEAR 1

    Cromer recommends Minor Planned Maintenance every 150-200 hours of use.  The service costs $89.99 (not including part replacements).  If average use per year is 1,500 hours, the first year’s Cost per Hour would work out like this:

    $89.99 x 7.5 (Done every 200 hours) = $674.92

    Divided by 1,500 hours = $0.45/hour

    YEAR 2

    Year 2 will need a Major Interval Service, which come up every 2000 hours of use and cost $1399.  You might see wear-and-tear on your tires, but we’ll leave that off for now.

    $629.93 (7 Minor Planned Maintenance services) + $1399 = $2,028.93

    Divided by 1,500 hours = $1.35/hour

    YEAR 3

    Year 3 will see another Major Interval Service, another round of Minor Planned Maintenance services, and a new set of forklift tires.  Let’s also assume you have to replace the forks, since at this point they’re worn out.

    $2,028.93 + $800 (Tires) + $400 (Forks) = $3,228.93

    Divided by 1,500 hours = $2.15/hour

    See how fast it’s going up?  (We didn’t even account for fuel.  More on that in a future “News from the Forklift Boss.”)

    In 3 years, one forklift can rise in cost from under $1/hour to approaching $2.50/hour.  You might think that’s just a small expense…not really worth tracking.  But such a rise actually means your cost for that forklift went from $1,500/year to almost $3,500/year. 

    PER forklift!

    Cromer recommends that when maintenance Cost per Hour passes $4/hour, it’s time to retire the truck and replace it.

    The Solution:  Track Your Costs and Know When to Replace Forklifts

    If you’re monitoring Cost per Hour, you’ll see when it starts to rise too high, damaging cost efficiency.  If you’re not monitoring it, you may wind up sinking lots of money into maintaining an aged forklift fleet.  Only to lose hundreds of productive hours and thousands of dollars. 

    It actually takes very little time to monitor forklift Cost per Hour.  All you really need are these two steps.

    1. Designate someone to track your maintenance costs.  They should keep track of all the factors noted above.To a large degree, your Accounting Department already does this.You can start out by simply asking for reports from them on the forklift costs.
    2. Evaluate your trucks yearly.  Recalculate Cost per Hour each year, using the past year’s maintenance numbers.When the costs to maintain a forklift are greater than the value it provides, it’s time for a replacement. (We do take care of recycling end-of-life forklifts.)

    Forklifts Age Too.  Knowing Cost per Hour Helps You Retire Them Safely.

    Cost per Hour will naturally rise over the life of the forklift.  It’s an inescapable part of aging forklifts.  Good maintenance and proper use will keep Cost per Hour low for a long time.

    Just be careful not to push your fleet too far.  We’ve encountered customers with forklifts at a Cost of $5/hour!  These forklifts rattled and jerked all day long, hurting their drivers and endangering co-workers.  They were working way past retirement.

    Don’t make that mistake.  Track your forklifts’ Cost per Hour.

    Until next month!
    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling

  Deal of the Month

    Sept 2016 Deal of the Month on RackSTART YOUR 2017 BUILD-OUT WITH CROMER RACK ON SALE

    The 4th quarter is almost here.  It’s time to prepare for the holidays, and for 2017’s space demands.  Start the process with some warehouse rack from Cromer.

    Industrial Rack is on sale for $75 (normally $85) out of our Oakland and Fresno facilities.

    96” industrial beams are on sale for $17.50 each, or $35.00/pair (normally $22 each).

    Don’t forget, Cromer facilities also stock pallet rack beams, T-Bolt beams, cantilever arms and much more.

    To order, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the Rack Deal of the Month.  Here’s a link to if you’d prefer ordering online: 
    Storage & Material Handling –

    We have your price on rack and shelving.

  • What’s So Great about the BYD Forklift Batteries?

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Sep 06, 2016

    In June we talked about the BYD forklifts. Since then we’ve had several customers look at the BYD trucks. More of our staff have taken turns operating them.

    By far the most questions we get are about the forklift’s battery. So we’re answering them in this month’s newsletter. Let’s dive in.

    The Big Deal about the BYD Battery: Huge Power Potential and Fast Recharging

    Previously, we claimed that BYD forklifts will go for 2-3 shifts before needing a recharge.

    Want some evidence to back it up? Take a look at this photo:


    The photo shows a BYD forklift’s console. Its battery life is at 48%. Hours worked already: 9.

    Normal 36- or 48-volt batteries only last 6-8 hours. The BYD battery’s still got plenty of charge after 9 hours’ work!

    During a demo, a Cromer customer went over to a BYD forklift as the battery was charging. He felt it for heat, and smelled it for gas. He found no heat and no gassing.

    It’s the iron phosphate. Essentially, the BYD batteries are giant cellphone batteries. They don’t heat up or off-gas.

    The customer also found out just how fast the BYD batteries recharge. Normally a “wet cell” battery will take 6-9 hours to recharge, whether it’s 36-volt, 48-volt, or 80-volt. BYD batteries go from 0 to Full in 60-90 minutes!

    I don’t need to explain just how big of a help that is in the material handling world.

    How Much Time Does a BYD Battery Save Your Workers?

    Think about this. You’ve got 30 electric forklifts running in your warehouse. At the end of their shift, the batteries are almost dead. Another shift’s starting soon. You have two options.

    1. Swap out a new battery, or
    2. Do a “fast charge” on the existing batteries.

    If you swap out new batteries, you need to buy 30 more batteries at $8-12,000 a pop. Plus it’ll take a lot of time to perform the swap.

    How much? Let’s say it takes 15 minutes per forklift.

    15 minutes X 1-2 workers doing the swap X 30 trucks X 5 days =
    7.5 man-hours to 15 man-hours per week

    That’s how much.

    The “fast charge” will save you lots of man-hours. But those chargers end up cooking your forklift batteries. You’ll only get 3 years or so out of them before they burn out.

    Meanwhile, BYD gives you a 10-year warranty on every battery. And you don’t need to swap or “fast charge” them.

    How Much Productivity Could You Gain with BYD Trucks?

    We have several customers demoing BYD trucks right now. Each are looking at 30-40 trucks per order. BYD got their attention.

    What really makes these so revolutionary is the new battery. If BYDs had a regular lead-acid battery, it would be just another forklift. Handling is very similar to a typical electric. BYD trucks have the same type of full-suspension seat as a Jungheinrich. (They do have lumbar support included standard though. That’s normally an optional extra with other brands.)

    This is arguably the biggest advance in material handling in the past 20 years. We’ve had some nice trucks, and small improvements in battery life or handling made since the 90s. But BYD’s changing the whole game.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    eje120whiteFor September’s Deal of the Month, we’re going back to one of our old friends: the Jungheinrich EJE 120.

    This electric pallet jack is great for loading & unloading trailers. The 3-phase AC motor makes hauling pallets around fast & easy.

    I really like the regenerative braking feature. Our customers report that it increases the daily use time on this jack, which makes work go smoothly.

    We normally sell the EJE 120 for $4,650. But this month, we’re dropping the price to only $4,250. You won’t find an electric pallet jack for a better price.

    To order a Jungheinrich EJE 120, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the September Deal of the Month. We do have several in stock, but they’ll sell fast!

  • How to Prepare for Workplace Accidents

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Aug 08, 2016

    The sad truth is, accidents do happen. It’s always best to prevent accidents instead of respond to them. But sometimes life just gets in the way.

    When an accident happens, you’ll have to respond. How? What should you do? That’s what we’re talking about in this issue.

    Plan Ahead to Prepare for Accidents

    We’re not talking about preventing accidents this month. We’ve done that before – go here for past issues:

    1. 11 Ideas to Improve Warehouse Productivity, Minimize Downtime, and Keep Workers Safe
    2. Forklift Safety Accessories: What's Out There, and How it Helps
    3. Cromer's 2015 Forklift Safety Checkpoints

    Today we’re talking about preparations to make BEFORE an accident occurs.

    Making preparations like these can help you decrease an accident’s severity. Help everyone get back to work. Even avoid some accidents altogether.

    We’ve gathered preparations you can make below. They’re in 3 parts: policies to put in place, changes to the workplace environment, and day-to-day worker protections.

    Preparation: Policies

    july-mainSetting policies on what to do in case of accident means that everyone has a reference. No matter who’s on shift, if they have an accident, you can check the policy and follow its instructions.

    The first policy to create is an accident response policy. Document what you (the company) will do in the event of an accident, and what you’ve done to prevent them. Consult with your lawyer to cover liability issues.

    (Include Workers Comp regulations too. If an injury occurs, the injured person must see an approved Workers Comp doctor. Make sure everyone knows who to call!)

    Next, define evacuation strategies in case of fire, earthquake, or flood (yes, even flood).

    Make and keep an equipment inspection policy.  List the aspects each inspector must check on your equipment. Include what you’d classify as a “warning sign” to look out for.

    Finally, include training in first aid, CPR, and AED in your policies. Train enough people that at least one person is available per shift. Two is better.

    Preparation: Workplace Environment

    Most workplace safety precautions count as preparation for accidents. Just in case, let’s list them:

    • Check the first aid kits regularly.
    • Place emergency response kits in easy-to-reach locations (and keep all employees aware of them).
    • Clearly mark all exits.
    • Keep floors and docks clean of dust, debris, and spills.
    • Don’t allow aisle clutter. If boxes or trash are in the way, workers should clear them as soon as possible.
    • Mark forklift paths using floor tape and rack signs.
    • Mark loading dock spaces and borders clearly—you don’t want anyone to drive off one!
    • And of course, service your forklifts regularly.

    Preparation: Worker Protections

    When it comes to protecting workers, preparations are obvious. But you might miss some of them if someone’s not careful.

    First off, make sure workers are readily supplied with protective equipment such as gloves, helmets, and safety vests.

    Next, keep workers’ communications systems (phones, emergency buttons, schedules) in good working order.

    Here’s one you might not expect though. Avoid the notion of, “Production must go faster! Faster!” Too much speed causes people to rush. People rushing can topple trucks and cause collisions.

    Prepare for Accidents, and You Minimize the Chance of Them Happening

    You may have some of these in place already. If so, you’re in good shape to minimize the impact of a workplace accident.

    If not, and you’d like help preparing, call Cromer! Our team is happy to help you keep everyone safer.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss Cromer Material Handling



    BC27We're extending our June Deal of the Month for July! You get another chance to try out the industry-changing BYD electric forklift. Models ECB18 and ECB27 are up for lease.

    The ECB18 has a 4,000-lb. carrying capacity. The ECB27 will carry up to 6,000 lbs. Both trucks are pneumatic tire, and suited for indoor/outdoor use.

    Lease the ECB18 for $618/month with 2,500 hours a year. Lease the ECB27 for $792/month with 2,500 hours a year.

    To get your hands on one, Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the BYD Lease. Don't wait!

  • BYD is Changing the Industry with Their New Electric Forklifts

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Jul 05, 2016

    Change is coming to the way we charge and run our electric forklifts.

    The flat plate lead-acid battery has dominated the electric forklift power supply for over 60 years. Lead-acid battery technology hasn’t changed much in that time. Each battery still provides roughly 5 hours of run time, when paired with a conventional high-frequency charger.

    After over 37 years in the industry, and 27 years in business, I think we’ve come to an important intersection in the future of electric forklifts. It’s called BYD.

    The BYD team has built an electric forklift that can run 2-3 shifts at a time. It has a 10-year battery warranty and needs no battery maintenance. None! Zero!

    What is BYD?

    Build Your Dreams (BYD) started in 1995 as a manufacturer of cellphone batteries. Today it has grown to a 180,000-employee company. Its manufacturing has expanded into making electric buses, automobiles...and now forklifts.

    Modeled off European designs, BYD's line of forklifts cover the 3-wheel and 5,000-6,000 lb. 4-wheel electric markets. They use the same motors and controllers found in the industry’s top electric forklifts.

    But nobody else can match BYD on run time. Having cornered the market on iron phosphate, BYD is the first forklift manufacturer to use a built-in lithium iron phosphate battery.


    The BYD ROI – Zero-Maintenance Batteries

    By eliminating the need to water, provide ventilation, or change battery cells, the BYD forklift gives us an ROI unseen in the material handling industry. We’re talking zero maintenance.

    How? Electric forklift batteries are big heavy boxes full of harsh chemicals and harmful gases. They need special disposal procedures to drain off the acids and remove the heavy metals. Otherwise the batteries will contaminate the environment for centuries! Right?

    Not anymore.

    • BYD batteries are much smaller, and contain no corrosive acids.
    • No harmful gases are emitted at any time.
    • There are no heavy metals inside to poison plants & animals.
    • The batteries are so environmentally-friendly that you could just take one out and throw it in the dumpster!

    We at Cromer and Gray Lift would like to know: If we can provide an electric forklift that gives your business a better uptime/utility than any other forklift, AND is environmentally-friendly, is that enough to consider a look at BYD’s products?

    Curious? Schedule a Demo with Cromer

    Cromer is the ONLY dealer with BYD electrics in Northern and Central California. We spent years negotiating with BYD to finally bring these fantastic forklifts to all of you!

    Interested? We’ll provide you with information on BYD and arrange a demo. What we have is a forklift that will change how you look at electrics.

    To schedule a BYD demo or request information, please call Cromer Headquarters at (800) 974-5438.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    BC27Ready to try out an industry-changing BYD electric forklift? Here’s your chance.

    For our June Deal of the Month, we’re doing a lease option on two BYD forklifts: the ECB18 and the ECB27.

    The ECB18 is a three-wheeler, with a 3,500-lb. capacity. The ECB27 is a 6,000 lb. capacity, and carries the Food and Beverage spec. Both trucks are 80-volt with dual motors and a 5-year, 9,000-hour warranty.

    If you use a 6,000-lb. electric with single double, you’ll increase productivity 30-50%!

    Use them indoors or outdoors. Both models are rated IP54 – enclosed against dirt, dust, and splashing water.

    BYD will have 17 more models in the next two years. Try one out now and get ahead of the curve.

    Lease the ECB18 for $618/month with 2,500 hours a year. Lease the ECB27 for $792/month with 2,500 hours a year.

    To get your hands on one, call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the BYD Lease. We only have a couple of these, so don’t wait!

  • Cromer Doubles its Inventory and Service Area—We've Acquired Gray Lift in Central California!

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | Jun 06, 2016

    In case you haven’t heard the news – Cromer has acquired Gray Lift, Inc. in Central California. Cromer is now one of the largest material handling dealers in California.

    This adds 3 new Locations to the Cromer map: Fresno, Bakersfield, and Santa Maria.

    Huge deal, right? With this one move we’ve doubled our staff, our inventory, our locations, and our reach.3owners

    What does this mean for you, our customers?

    For Cromer Customers: More Services, More Mechanics, More Facilities

    You, our customers, made this move possible. We now have 6 sales & service facilities to serve you in Northern and Central California:

    • Oakland
    • Sacramento
    • Manteca
    • Fresno
    • Bakersfield
    • Santa Maria

    Our total staff has increased to over 140, including 80 mechanics and 12 parts pros. It’s amazing—we have 360 years' total experience in parts (any part, any model).

    Thanks to the Gray Lift pros, we can also offer new services like industrial doors service & repair across Northern California. Keep your doors & gates in working shape with Cromer service!

    What Prompted the Acquisition? Former Owners Wanted Someone to Build on Their Success

    Many of you know Jay and Richard Waugh, Gray Lift’s former owners. When they decided it was time to retire, they wanted to find a successor. Someone who’d keep up Gray Lift’s quality standard and build on their success.

    I brought them a plan to continue growing Gray Lift as part of the Cromer family. They thought it was a good idea, and we spent many weeks negotiating out a fair deal for everyone involved. Especially the Gray Lift employees. We wanted them to feel welcome and enjoy working with us.

    Thanks for joining us on this new journey. We look forward to serving you as the bigger, better Cromer Material Handling.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling


    Our May Deal of the Month is a special deal on the Jungheinrich EJE 120 electric walkie pallet truck.eje120white

    The EJE 120 has a 4,500 lb. capacity. Ideal for loading and unloading trailers as well as transporting loads over short distances. It maneuvers easily around racks. Its built-in charger makes charging fast & simple.

    We already sent out a special Memorial Day Sale email—buy an EJE 120 for only $3,995 until May 31. But for you, our newsletter readers, we’re extending the deadline.

    Call Cromer at 800-974-5438 and ask for the “EJE Extended” offer. This code will get you a Jungheinrich EJE 120 for $3,995 until June 10!

    We do have several EJE 120s in stock. But when they’re gone, so is this deal!

  • 11 Ideas to Improve Warehouse Productivity, Minimize Downtime, and Keep Workers Safe

    By Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss | May 03, 2016

    In our industry, time and money are precious commodities. We need all the time we can get, just like we need to save as much as we can (without sacrificing safety of course!).

    Every now and then it pays to stop, take a breath, and look at what you’re doing day to day. What’s the best use of my time this week? How about spending 10 minutes on a maintenance check, so you don’t have to do an expensive equipment repair next month?

    Here are 11 ways to save money (and time!) in your warehouse. Why 11? Because this comes to you from the Forklift Boss. We give you more than the usual 10!

    1. Get your forklifts serviced according to their recommended service intervals. It keeps the forklift running smoothly, and that saves fuel and major repairs.
    2. Do your daily checks. Oils, water, tires, seat belts, mirrors, rating plate. It only takes a few minutes. Don’t forget the emergency disconnect for electrics too!
    3. Raise those forks. If your operators drag forks on the ground, you’re wearing those forks down AND burning up fuel. Totally avoidable if you raise the forks up, even a little. We covered fork wear and what to watch for in our March 2015 newsletter.
    4. Call in problems right when you see them. Don’t leave it for the next shift, or you could have an expensive and maybe dangerous failure during that shift. Make sure everyone knows—if you see a problem, report it now. warehouse-cromerapr2016
    5. Keep an eye on hydraulic hoses for wear. Watch for splitting, cracks or weeping. If you see any of these, replace the hoses. It saves you the cost of equipment failure later.
    6. Forklifts are giant vacuum cleaners. Once a week, use compressed air to clear the truck out. Especially the radiator. You don’t want dust or debris to block your radiator—or you’ve got an overheated, out-of-commission forklift.
    7. Make sure all your forklift operators are properly trained. This can cost you more than you might think. What if they don’t know how to follow the Stability Triangle? Do they know each forklift’s capacity? If not, you can quickly have overloading issues, damaged racks or product, even injuries.
    8. Check your tire wear. If a forklift operates in the same direction all the time, turning the same corners over and over, it will cause premature tire wear on one side. Everything in a forklift (including the operator) rides on those tires. Get the maximum use out of them by rotating forklifts throughout the warehouse. Twice a month is good, once a week is better.
    9. Use the WOW Principle to keep electric forklift batteries running longer. WOW = “Water On Wednesdays.” Fill the battery after charging. And charge them on a schedule—don’t let operators “top up” the charge at random points throughout the day. That can reduce battery life & force costly replacements.
    10. How much natural light comes into the warehouse? Could you add a window or skylight to bring in more? Even a little more natural light saves on energy. If you do add a window, paint the walls around it white to improve light levels all around.
    11. Inspect your warehouse for water leaks quarterly. This might seem silly in a drought, but we’re industrial pros. We know the damage even a little water can do.

    You might have some of these already on the weekly schedule. If so, good! You’re in a good spot.

    If not, it doesn’t take much to add them. You can save quite a bit of money, and even some time, along the way.

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling Deal of the Month


    Our April Deal of the Month is not one, but two CAT LPG forklifts!

    The 2C5000 is a 5,000-pound capacity truck with non-marking cushion tires and aluminum tanks. They’re a breeze to ride, and take corners nice & tight.

    These trucks also have clamp holds to keep loads on. And a fire extinguisher, just in case!

    Both forklifts are brand new. They’re checked over and ready for the warehouse.

    Buy a Cat 2C5000 for only $22,965. OR lease one for $276/month (1,000 annual hours).

    To order, visit, or call Cromer at 800-974-5438. We do have two of these forklifts, but once they’re gone, they’re gone.