Good brakes are necessary for the proper function of any forklift, as they may have to stop and start at any moment. Brakes work by transferring the pressure on the brake pedal to the brake shoes through the brake fluid in the master cylinder. The brake shoes press against the brake drum which is attached to the wheel. This action slows down the the wheel's rotation and causes the lift truck to stop.
The essential parts that make up a forklift braking system, therefore, are the master cylinder, brake fluid, brake shoes and brake drums. These are connected to each other through master cylinder cables and brake lines. Although forklifts don't usually operate at very high speeds, the heavy loads they carry make it essential for the truck to be able to stop on command.
Because the forklift's braking system operates as one continuous process, any interruption to this process can cause the brakes to fail, resulting in a potentially serious accident. Therefore, it is essential that the brakes undergo regular maintenance, and any faulty parts are replaced when necessary. Below is a list of things to keep and eye out for when checking your truck's brakes:
- Brake fluid reservoir Leakage from the reservoir of the master cylinder, brake fluid line or seals can result in delayed braking action.
- Brake drums Worn out brake drums can speed up the wearing out of brake linings.
- Brake linings Worn out or damaged brake linings can cause improper braking and also cause damage to the brake drums.
- Brake lines Air in the brake lines can cause reduced hydraulic pressure, and therefore faulty braking. to avoid this, tt is necessary to bleed the brakes by following the sequence specified for the particular lift truck.
Other parts of the braking system that need maintenance on a regular basis in order to avoid braking problems are brake calipers and brake adjusters.
By keeping forklift brakes well-maintained, you can avoid any unnecessary accidents in your facility that may hinder your business or cost you.