Are my forks OK?

Forks – one of the most critical lifting components on your forklift, and often the most overlooked. The forks that perform the heavy lifting on the front of the forklift require attention before every shift.

Lifting fork inspections:

Before each shift – inspect the condition of your forks as part of the pre-shift inspection process. Look for distortion, cracks, gouges and burrs, and ensure that the lock pins are in good condition and locked in place.

Maintenance – the forks should be routinely inspected as per the manufacturer’s instructions and guidelines (found in the maintenance manual). This inspection should be performed by a qualified forklift technician.

Forks will wear out eventually. They are constantly subjected to abrasion by concrete floors, steel racking, an so forth. As the steel of the forks wears, the capacity of the fork is diminished. Pallet forks are considered worn out and by law must be replaced as soon as the horizontal thickness at the heel is less than 90% of the thickness of the vertical shank.


  • OVERLOAD YOUR FORKS. Operators must be aware of the capaity of the forklift and the capacity of the forks. The forks must meet or beat the capacity of the forklift.
  • MODIFY FORKS without consulting with the manufacturer.
  • REPAIR YOUR OWN FORKS. This should only be done by the fork manufacturer.

Work smart, stay safe!