Comparing forklift fuels
12 December 2012
Consistent performance indoors and out, as well as efficiency and environmental performance are key strengths of LPG, argues Calor In an economic climate where nothing can be taken for granted, businesses are looking f
In an economic climate where nothing can be taken for granted, businesses are looking for more from their investments, including their machinery and the fuel which powers it. It is precisely because of the efficiency question that fuel has risen to play a huge part in the decision of a forklift truck, whether it is owned or hired.
When considering the three forklift fuels - LPG, diesel and electric - there is often confusion about which is the most efficient. Each of the fuels has its own merits, but there is a strong case for LPG providing the best value for money.
One of the most simple, but significant benefits of an LPG forklift truck is its consistent performance both indoors and out.
This versatility can significantly reduce operating costs by eliminating the need to "double up" on separate trucks for each environment.
LPG powered forklift trucks give businesses the best of both worlds. They offer the power and stability to take on uneven ground and difficult work conditions outside of the warehouse, yet they are also clean enough to be used inside, even to handle delicate goods, such as foodstuffs and clothes. This is a result of LPG's significantly lower particulate matter emissions - 97% lower than diesel, according to tests carried out at Millbrook Proving Ground, August 2010, Report No.MBK 10/1403.
One other cause of inefficiency in the materials handling industry is the downtime created by refuelling. This is, of course, unavoidable regardless of which fuel is used, but the use of a Calor LPG fixed fuel tank (FFT) can provide a truck with consistent power for considerably longer, meaning fewer fuelling breaks are required.
Fixed fuel tanks Fixed fuel tanks can increase efficiencies for larger fleets of forklift trucks. Calor's FFTs have capacities of 55 and 70 litres, making them ideal when trucks are operated for lengthy periods of time. However, FFTs are not the only option. For businesses with only a small need for forklift truck fuel, there is the option of Calor cylinders. Calor's forklift specialists will always recommend the best supply option to suit customers' requirements, and this is very much driven by the anticipated truck usage.
Once a business has chosen LPG as the most efficient forklift fuel, another consideration is the inspection and maintenance regimes of the fuel suppliers themselves. Calor is the UK's only LPG supplier who is UKAS approved to inspect and refurbish LPG cylinders. Our cylinders are regularly inspected to ensure maximum performance and safety, and are re-valved whenever necessary. Each Calor cylinder also carries a silver disc detailing its weight and refurbishment due date, so we know the life expectancy of every cylinder.
Our bulk customers can expect the same diligence, as we retain ownership of all Calor tanks, in turn taking on all maintenance responsibilities. This includes regular checks by CalorForce, the UK's largest team of dedicated LPG engineers.
Finally, Calor provides training to help our customers with the safe storage, handling and refuelling of LPG for forklift trucks. In addition, Calor's training DVD will shortly be available to all new and existing customers, providing guidance for forklifts using cylinders, fixed fuel tanks, and refillable cylinders. As the UK's leading LPG supplier for over 75 years, Calor is always looking for new ways to help customers become more efficient in their operations. With a clean fuel, first class service and the right supply option, Calor hopes to make a difference to your business.