Diesel Forklift Vs. Electric Forklift: Which One To Pick

Diesel Forklift Vs. Electric Forklift: Which One To Pick
  • Opening Intro -

    Different types of forklifts come with many modes and features. However, the two most common that often get argued over are diesel and electric forklifts.


Both are well-suited for lifting and transporting heavy materials. They’re a great asset to have in construction and warehouses.

Here’s a guide for which forklift to pick.

Diesel Forklifts

A diesel forklift has a weighing capacity of anywhere between a ton and a half to eight tons. The diesel can outperform electric because of its better lifting and power capabilities.

A good thing about diesel is that they’re refuelable whereas electric ones will spend more time charging their batteries.

  • The Good

    This type of forklift is suitable outdoors. The great benefit of diesel forklifts is that the engine creates more power compared to electric forklifts.

    These forklifts can withstand rough terrain and do well in bad weather. A fantastic advantage to diesel forklifts is that they work longer without losing fuel right away.

    Once depleted, they can be filled back up in only a few minutes. They also won’t require extra space for charging purposes.

  • The Bad

    The downside to diesel forklifts is that their applications while indoors are limited. This complication has to do with the noise pollution and toxic fumes emitted from the engine.

    They require more training for safe usage than electric forklifts. Proper training calls for the appropriate handling of dangerous fumes, and so companies will need to take the necessary training to help extinguish fumes that create carbon monoxide.

    Other parts will also need maintenance.


Electric Forklifts

Electric forklifts run on battery life; their engine contains a longer battery life than other engine types, like Internal Combustion Engines (ICE). They have fewer moving parts than other forklifts and won’t require as much maintenance.

  • The Good

    Electric forklifts aren’t new; they recently became popular because of the increase in fuel costs. They’re good for the environment because they don’t expel harmful fumes into the air. Their engines are quieter than diesel, and they’re also smaller and more compact.

  • The Bad

    If the forklift is exposed to elements it could become damaged. If it’s on an extensive and busy property, there’s a chance there aren’t enough battery chargers.

    The scarcity can cause many to worry about having orders pushed back or they may feel deterred from completing their work. Additionally, buying a battery charger is very expensive.

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Which forklift to pick is based on your company’s need and what you think your workers need the most training. There are pros and cons to diesel forklifts like there are for electric forklifts.

All your decision will depend on what features you want for your forklift.

Image Credit: diesel forklift vs electric forklift by twenty20.com

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