Forklift Capacity: What parts are affected during an Overloading

Reading time: 4 min 42 sec.


Unfortunately, it is very common to see Forklifts overloaded with materials they can't handle, almost every day. This puts a lot of unnecessary stress on the Forklift parts, leading to failure. In this blog post, we're going to look at some of the elements that are most affected by overloading and what you can do to prevent damage. Stay safe out there!

Table of contents

  1. What parts are affected when Forklift Capacity is exceeded?
  2. Risk of Overloading a Forklift
  3. How to prevent a Forklift Overloading
  4. Find the best parts for your Forklift
  5. Takeaways

What parts are affected when Forklift Capacity is exceeded?

Forklift trucks are designed for safe operation based on their maximum lift capacity at both rated load and un-rated load conditions. If they are overloaded, even briefly, it can cause permanent damage that is expensive to repair or replace if it is beyond economical repair. When you overload your Forklift, it can cause permanent damage, which will require costly repairs. If the overloaded equipment falls off the forks, it may cause fatalities, resulting in expensive damages, public relations issues, and loss of profits. The following are some parts affected when you overload your Forklift:

Wheels: The wheels and tires on a Forklift are commonly damaged parts during an overload. When a Forklift is overloaded, it puts excessive strain on the wheels and tires, which can cause them to fail. If a wheel or tire fails while the Forklift is in use, it can cause the vehicle to overturn or crash. In addition, the excessive wear caused by overloading can lead to premature failure of the wheels and tires, which can be costly to replace.

Frame: When a Forklift is overloaded, it puts stress on the lift truck's structure. This can cause the frame to crack or even break completely. A broken frame can render the Forklift unusable and may even cause injury to the operator or other employees.

Engine: The Forklift engine is designed to handle a certain amount of weight. When it is overloaded, the machine can fail. This can not only damage the engine but also render the Forklift inoperable. Learn more about 5 Common Causes Why Your Forklift Engine Doesn't Start.

Hydraulic pump motor: The hydraulic pump motor is responsible for moving the forks up and down. The hydraulic pump motor can overheat or even fail when it is overloaded. If the hydraulic pump motor fails while the Forklift is in use, it can cause the vehicle to overturn or crash. Check our article about forklift electric pump motors.

Forks: The fork is one of the most important parts of a Forklift and can be severely damaged when overloaded. Overloading can cause the forks to bend, making them difficult to operate and leading to an accident. Learn how forklift extensions increase the reach of a forklift.

Forklift overloaded
The sudden failure of any Forklift component may cause an accident because of an uncontrollable movement of the equipment.

Risk of Overloading a Forklift

Today, many companies are using Forklifts to move goods around their warehouse. These Forklifts are essential tools that help increase productivity given they allow to carry a large amount of material at once. However, all Forklifts have a limit lift weight. If an operator violates lifting weights guidelines and overloads the machine, they risk causing damage to both themselves and other employees in the warehouse.

forklift overloading accident
A Forklift accident caused by an overloading.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimates that about 60 workers die each year due to forklift accidents. Of those deaths, nearly one-third were caused by factors related to operators violating safety procedures or ignoring warnings about unsafe loads. Forklifts can't accommodate excessive weight; if too much is placed on a platform, it won't be able to lift it. Furthermore, if the weight is off-center in an unstable way, the Forklift can flip or roll over. The risk of injury or fatality when operating a Forklift is high. According to the US Center for Disease Control, an important percentage of industrial accidents happen at work involving lifting equipment such as these. The following video is a quick example of what happens when a Forklift is overloaded:

How to prevent a Forklift Overloading

A Forklift is considered to be overloaded when it exceeds the Forklift capacity. It's important not to overload a Forklift because carrying too much can damage both the machine and the object being moved. Additionally, an overloading accident could injure someone in your facility. For companies that use Forklifts to move materials around their facilities, preventing these machines from becoming overloaded needs to become a priority. Here are some ways you can prevent this costly mistake:

  • Limit staff access to Forklifts: Do not allow employees without specific training on properly operating Forklifts to use them; make sure only trained drivers are using the equipment.
  • Inspect your equipment before use: Before using equipment in any capacity, inspect it thoroughly for damage, including but not limited to: electrical hazards, oil leaks, hydraulic fluids in unusual places, or missing safety guards.
  • Respect the Forklift Capacity: It is a very important factor that you should always keep in mind. The lifting weight must not exceed what's written on its label, and if it does, then there could be dangerous consequences for both yourself as well as others who may come into contact with the overloaded machine!
Operator is informed about forklift capacity
It is important for any business to let their operators know about the capacity of forklifts that are driven.

Find the best parts for your Forklift

Lift Parts Warehouse is the type of Forklift parts supplier that will have every part you might need to maintain your equipment. From batteries and tires to chains and filters, in Lift Parts Warehouse, we have it all. Every so often, components on a Forklift go bad or become damaged. If this happens, you want to make sure that the component supplier is reliable and can provide quality parts for an affordable price:

At Lift Parts Warehouse are experts in the parts they sell and can help you find what is most affordable for your business. Usually, there is no need to go to multiple places to try and find different models of the same product because they will be able to carry everything you might need.


  • A Forklift Overloading can result in permanent damage, causing costly repairs and loss of profits.
  • Forklifts are not designed to carry more than their weight capacity, and so must be unloaded before reaching that capacity.
  • You should inspect your Forklift before every use.
  • Lift Parts Warehouse has many types of Forklift parts for any situation. Find there all related with Forklift parts.