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How To Transport A Forklift In A Trailer?

How To Transport A Forklift In A Trailer?


Transporting a forklift in a trailer can be a difficult process, particularly if you are not aware of the complexities of trucks and trailers. Imagine it as a towering piece of industrial equipment that needs to be safely transferred from one location to another.  The process of transporting a lift truck or forklift begins with choosing the right solution for transferring a forklift. There are many options, like an automated tailgate, flatbed, tilt tray, and tow trailer. Here we are discussing trailers, and before shifting your lift truck on it, ensure to put things like wooden blocks under its tires, ratchets, and chains with the appropriate weight restriction and C or C1+E license. 

After that, you should follow steps like inspecting your forklift machine, getting the dimensions of its model, loading it, using ratchets and chains, checking the fuel supply, and finding out the clearance heights. In this way, you can successfully translocate a lift truck. So buckle up—this guide by Bobby Park will resolve all your concerns about moving a forklift in a trailer!

Understanding Trucks And Trailers

There are only four safe solutions available to you when translocating a forklift truck in a trailer. The following are the options for transferring a forklift.

1. The Safest, Most Expensive Option (Automated Tailgate)

When it comes to forklift trucks, the automated tailgate truck is the most significant and most secure mode of transportation. Its maximum weight limit gives you the room to maneuver many forklifts at once. It is unlikely to cross any low-clearance bridges, etc., though. 

2. Equally Safe And Rather Expensive Option Number 1 (Flatbed)

You can load more forklift trucks with the same efficiency if you use a flatbed truck. That is not entirely enclosed, unlike the automatic tailgate truck. It remains a safe alternative if safety measures such as ratchets and chains are followed. 

3. Equally Safe And Rather Expensive Option Number 2 (Tilt Tray)

With the addition of a hydraulic mechanism that speeds up forklift loading and unloading compared to a standard flatbed truck, the tilt tray truck functions similarly to a flatbed truck. It is simple to maneuver a forklift up or down the tilt tray as it can be lifted and lowered to change the angle.

4. The Most Inexpensive Transport Option (Tow Trailer)

Selecting a tow trailer has benefits and drawbacks. It is the least expensive choice to purchase or rent, yet it is still somewhat secure, provided you have the right ratchet and chains. According to professionals at Bobby Park, most flatbed tow trailers aren't designed to hold more than two forklifts. This is due to the possibility of experiencing trailer shaking. At this point, the angle at which the trailer and the vehicle hauling it move starts to separate. The vehicle's trailer can collapse and fall down in this situation. Therefore, when transporting a forklift truck in a trailer, be careful while loading a forklift on it.


If you have chosen to relocate your forklift, it's important to check the following checklist:

  • Place beneath the wheels wooden blocks or plastic shims (which lessen the likelihood of the forklift going forward or backward)

  • Use ratchets with the appropriate weight restriction that prevents sideways shaking of the forklift

  • Use chains with the appropriate weight restriction to prevent sideways shifting of the forklift

  • Get the C or C1+E license

6 Steps To Transport A Forklift In A Trailer

This is a detailed explanation of everything you need to do to guarantee that your forklift arrives at its destination on schedule.

1. Inspect Your Forklift Machine

It makes no sense to spend money on possibly damaged machinery; thus, this should be done first. Additionally, capture images of the forklift's condition. You can protect your forklift and file claims if it is damaged during travel if you hire a service to move it. Make sure the wheels are secured before preparing them for transportation to prevent rolling.

2. Get The Dimensions Of Your Model

The weight of your model should be available online, in the specifications handbook, or perhaps even on the forklift's side. After determining the weight, you can start obtaining quotations for transportation, or, in the case of a forklift trailer, you can verify the trailer's maximum weight capacity. You should also know about its height and width. 

3. Load Your Lift Truck

It's straightforward to move your forklift onto a trailer. There are a few things to be aware of. 

  • Ensure you drive it to the center of your trailer and in reverse. If your weight is concentrated at the back, you risk experiencing trailer sway. 

  • Ensure that the trailer is being loaded on level terrain. As a result, the coupler, ball, and tow hitch will experience less strain.

4. Using The Ratchets And Chains

Ensure that the forklift is centered during this step to spread the weight evenly. Next, you can drill wooden blocks into place behind the wheels if your flatbed has wooden floor paneling.  Now mark four corners from which to begin the tie-downs using the chains and ratchets. Next, encircle the forklift with the tie-downs. It should be possible for you to push the forklift from either side without it moving.

5. Check The Fuel Supply

Ensure the electrical forklift is charged before transporting it if it is an electrical model. If not, you run the danger of not being able to operate the forklift when you get to your location and get it off the transport truck. Ensure the fuel compartment on forklifts powered by gasoline or diesel is locked. Fuel waste and spillage during travel is the last thing you want to happen. You have to take off your propane tank from the forklift as well.

6. Find Out The Clearance Height

Knowing about the clearance height will help you decide which step to take next. There is a reasonable probability that if you drag it, the top of your forklift will be higher than the towing vehicle. 


Transporting a forklift in a trailer can seem daunting, but it becomes a manageable process with the proper knowledge. Following the checklist and adhering to detailed instructions ensures a smooth journey for your forklift. From inspecting the machine to checking fuel supplies and understanding clearance heights, you can nail the process. So, whether you're a seasoned professional or a first-time forklift transporter, this guide by Bobby Park, the reliable dealer of used forklift trucks, is your go-to resource, ensuring your forklift reaches its destination safely and ready for work. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the proper way of carrying a loaded forklift?

Before moving, lift the load and tilt it back a bit farther. Keep the forks 6 to 10 inches above the surface to prevent any possible risks on the ground. Remember that forklifts are heavy on the top. Keep the load tipped back and low.

What is another name for a forklift?

Other terms that are frequently used to refer to "forklifts" are lifts, fork trucks, and forklift trucks.

What is the difference between a forklift and a forklift truck?

Lift trucks and forklifts are the same terminology. Since not all of these cars are outfitted with a highly technological lift truck, it is more realistic to say that there is no difference yet.




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