Forklift Training


When renting a forklift truck, you need to evaluate a variety of factors in order to select the most productive, cost-effective machine. What are your jobsite needs and your intended application?  What space constraints, if any, will you be facing?  What are your  lift height requirements?  What types of product or materials are you lifting?   And finally, will you be working indoors or outdoors? And will you be working on smooth floors or rough terrain?

Knowing how to choose the most productive and cost-effective forklift for the job impacts your bottom line. Read on to learn more before making your next forklift rental decision!

  • Location: Will you be working inside or outside? If your needs are strictly for indoor use, an electric forklift is ideal. If you are working outside, an LP gas or diesel  powered forklift might be best, especially if you’re working in rugged conditions.
  • Load Capacity: What types of product or materials will you be lifting? What is the maximum amount of weight you need to lift?
  • Lifting Height: You must also consider the height of the space you need the forklift to clear, to make sure the mast, at its lowest height, will fit. This will determine what type of mast you need (straight or extending?) And how many stages?  (Usually a two or three stage mast is needed). 
  • Fork Length and/or Attachment Requirements: Consider the size and shape of what you are lifting. How long do your forks need to be to carry your load? Will you need a special attachment,  like a crane hook or bail clamp?
  • Space Requirements: Are you working in an area with narrow aisles? If so, you may need a forklift with a tight turning radius.
  • Tire Requirements: Perhaps the most important factor when considering a forklift rental is choosing a forklift with the right type of tires. Why? Because the forklift you need for indoor use on smooth surfaces should have different tires than the forklift you need for working outside on rough or uneven surfaces. The right tires will impact your forklift’s handling, safety and overall job productivity.   Will you need a pneumatic tire forklift or a cushion tire forklift? It is important that you understand the differences when it comes to forklift tires. 


  • Cushion Tire Forklifts: The tires on these forklifts are made of solid rubber molded to a steel band. The rubber can be either smooth or traction. (In general, smooth tires give better traction on dry surfaces, and traction tires work better on wet or moist surfaces.)  Cushion tires, also known as press-on tires, are pressed directly onto the wheel and feature a smaller chassis.   Cushion tire forklifts sit lower to the ground than pneumatic tire forklifts. This  gives them a big advantage in terms of maneuverability by enabling a smaller turn radius. Unfortunately, this lower ground clearance also means cushion tire forklifts can get hung up on curbs, uneven pavement,  and other obstacles. This can  create a challenge in some outdoor applications.  Cushion tire forklifts are best suited for indoor applications; however, they can be used for  certain light outdoor applications:  on smooth terrain, like asphalt loading docks, where curbs and obstacles are not a concern.  Atlantic Lift Systems offers both electric and LP gas powered cushion tire forklifts for all your indoor and smooth surface jobs from warehousing and manufacturing applications to working on loading docks or other smooth asphalt environments.

There are Two Kinds of Pneumatic Tires: Air or Solid Rubber:

  • Pneumatic Tire Forklifts (Air Pneumatic): Air Pneumatic tires are similar to tires used on passenger cars and trucks.  LP Gas or diesel forklifts with (air) pneumatic tires have the same functionality as a standard car or truck and offer high performance and versatility. They are designed for heavy-duty lifting and outdoor operation on rugged surfaces. Pneumatic (air) tire forklifts have greater ground clearance than cushion tire forklifts, so you can move around a lot better over gravel and other rough surfaces. Pneumatic tires are longer and wider than cushion tires, made of durable rubber, and filled with compressed air. Pneumatic tire forklifts are typically intended for outdoor work.  They work well outdoors on asphalt, gravel and even unpaved terrain.  Atlantic Lift Systems offers both LP Gas and diesel powered pneumatic tire forklifts from 4K to 36K. 
  • Pneumatic Tire Forklifts (Solid Rubber):  Solid pneumatic tires are the same size as air pneumatic tires, but are made of solid rubber.  The solid design makes these tires extremely durable. They won’t pop, puncture, or go flat. They are the best choice in extremely rugged work areas with a lot of debris.  Solid pneumatic tire forklifts can handle a variety of heavy-duty applications, including construction zones, lumber yards, recycling centers, and similar locations that can have metal shards, nails, and other potentially damaging items strewn around. Over the years, solid pneumatic tire forklifts have become the industry standard for working outdoors on the most rugged construction sites and rough terrain applications.

Non-Marking Tire Options: 

  • Non-Marking Tires are widely used to eliminate black marks on warehouse floors. The colors of these tires may vary, but most are either gray or white. Hospitals, grocery/retail store fronts, food processing plants, and other sensitive applications are usually required to use non-marking tires for hygiene reasons. Atlantic Lift Systems offers both pneumatic and cushion tire forklifts with Non-marking tire options for all your environmentally sensitive jobsite applications.

Will you Need to Rent a Cushion Tire Forklift or a Pneumatic Tire Forklift?

Now that you understand the main differences between a cushion tire forklift and a pneumatic tire forklift, you can make an educated decision and rent the forklift that’s right for your budget, needs and industry.  If you need help deciding, our team of forklift experts are available to give you the best advice based on your specific application. Contact Atlantic Lift Systems today to reserve the right forklift needed for ultimate safety and productivity on your job!

Sources: 2021 July 2021 2021