The Industrial Truck Association or ITA has determined 7 different classes of lift trucks. These classifications are broken down by the type of work environment; rough or smooth surfaces, outdoors, indoors and narrow aisle; whether the operator is standing or sitting down; by the type of engine; and lastly the characteristics of the machine, regarding the maximum grade and kind of tire. Some of the classes are further sub-divided by operating characteristics. Here are the following classes of forklifts:
Class 1 Forklifts: these machinery include electric motor trucks that use either pneumatic or air filled tires or cushion tires. The Class 1 forklifts also comprise 4 lift codes, or subcategories that are:
Lift Code 1: Counterbalanced, stand up rider models.
Lift Code 4: Sit down, 3-Wheel electric.
Lift Code 5: Counterbalanced rider, cushion tire sit down tires.
Lift Code 6: Includes pneumatic tire units, sit-down rider, and counterbalanced rider.
Class 2 Forklifts: Class 2 forklifts consist of narrow aisle electric trucks with solid tires.
Category 3 Forklifts: Class 3 forklifts consist of hand/rider trucks with solid tires and electric hand trucks.
Category 4 Forklifts: Class 4 forklifts are the Internal Combustion or IC models. These are sit down rider forklifts with cushion tires. Usually, they are suitable for indoor application and on hard surfaces.
Category 5 Forklifts: Class 5 is Internal Combustion Engine sit down rider forklifts outfitted with pneumatic tires. Typically, these units are great for working areas with significant inclines or on rough surfaces outdoors.
Class 6 Forklifts: The Class 6 forklifts are either IC powered or electric models. These ride-on units have the capability to tow at least 1000 pounds. This specific class is engineered and designed to tow cargo as opposed to lift it.
Class 7 Forklifts: Class 7 only included rough terrain models with pneumatic tires. The Class 7 forklifts are almost exclusively utilized outside and powered by diesel engines.
The different categories of lift trucks help to keep them organized and separated. Various kinds of working environments rely on various classifications in order to get their work completed. Forklifts are rather specific in their loading and lifting capacities. Their various engine types and tire types are made for specific operation. In order to choose the right forklift to meet all your requirements and to fulfill your jobs, do some research to determine precisely what you will need from your specific unit. By speaking to some reputable dealers and taking time to explore your options, you would be able to select the right machine.