Also known by terms like pallet pump, pallet truck, or pump truck, pallet jacks are hardworking machines that help hardworking folk move heavy loads. Because of their durable design, they make even the toughest jobs easy to manage. Often, people use them to move heavy loads around warehouses. But just what makes a good pallet jack, well, good?
Electric VS Manual Pallet Jacks
Every machine will be different, and each will come with a suggested weight capacity. Broadly, however, pallet jacks fall under one of two categories:
Powered Pallet Jacks
Also known as electric pallet trucks or walkies, these bad boys are motorized so that moving stacked and heavier pallets is easy. Some of these powered pallet jacks are customized with a platform that allows the user to stand while moving heavy objects. This kind of pallet jack can lift heavy loads, making it ideal for handling palletized loads in warehouses that weigh more than 5,000 lbs.
- Depending on the application, electric pallet jacks come in a wide range of categories from light to medium to heavy duty to meet any company’s needs.
- Compared to manual pallet jacks, they are less likely to cause strain-related injuries. This is due to the fact that they are automated with power-assisted lifting.
- With complete power-system lifting, moving and lowering loads will be much easier.
- In a busy workplace setting, these pallet jacks can save a lot of operation time by allowing workers to move loads longer distances in less time.
- Additional training is absolutely necessary in order to operate one of these machines safely, due to its heavy weight and complex design.
- Electric pallet jacks are suited to carry heavier and taller pallet-sized loads. So, it becomes challenging to bring the machine to a complete halt on a moment’s notice.
- Compared to the manual version, electric jacks are more expensive.
- Due to the complex nature of their electrical components, maintaining these devices can be more expensive and time-consuming.
Manual Pallet Jacks
These are a common type of pallet jack, and they are powered by hand. People working in personal and retail warehousing operations are the folk most likely to use these machines. These kinds of pallet jacks are the low-lift sort, and are therefore great for moving loads over short distances and weighing under 5,500 lbs.
- These manual pallets jacks are considerably easier to maintain. Parts are often easily accessible, which means repairs are often quicker compared to their electrical counterparts.
- Due to the fact that their parts are typically readily available, these pallet trucks come at a considerably lower price compared to their electrical counterparts.
- Their sturdy and robust designs make maintaining them over long periods of time quite easy.
- Their simple and basic design makes them suitable for many scales of operation. This versatility enables them to fit many kinds of pallets. The fork dimensions also vary to suit the requirements needed in its application.
- Their design allows manual pallet jacks to move heavy pallet-sized loads smoothly without any damage along the way in most cases.
- These manual pallet jacks can strain the user, potentially causing injuries.
- Manual pallet jacks cannot be loaded to capacity. For safety reasons, it advised that manual pallet jacks should not be loaded close to its stated capacity.
- Based on their nature, they are likely more cumbersome while operating.
Top 5 Pallet Jacks
1. Toyota Electric Walkie Pallet Jack (8HBW23)
The Toyota Walkie tops this list for the power and convenience it brings to the warehouse. Capable of loading up to 4,500 lbs., it can calculate the weight of the load it is carrying. Depending on sales, this item goes for $2,999 to $4,500, which is a decent price both considering quality and the high prices of similar competitors.
- It is fitted with key safety features that include an anti-rollback system, emergency power disconnect, and an electric horn.
- It is easily maneuverable in limited spaces.
- It cheaper compared to other brands, easy to operate and maintain, and is durable.
- The pallet jack is not desirable for long runs.
2. Vergo S5500l Industrial Heavy-Duty Pallet Jack
With a load capacity of 5,500 lbs., this heavy-hitting machine can handle some tough jobs. Even better is the sturdy design, which makes the price of $499 more than reasonable.
- This manual pallet jack is built with robust, heavy-duty reinforced forks. This design makes it more reliable and durable.
- It saves lots of work time as the handle can be easily attached.
- People can move different sizes of pallets using this pallet jack.
- It has soft load wheels.
3. Crown PTH Hand Pallet Jack
This sturdy yet easy-to-use machine comes in at #3, with a load capacity of 5,000 lbs. and an incredible price of only $499.
- It has a great price.
- It is durable and is known for its long life.
- It is easy to work with.
- It’s expensive to repair; the price of the repair kit is nearly equal to that of a new pallet jack.
4. JET PTW Pallet Truck
Coming in at #4 is this JET truck with an impressive load capacity of 6,000 lbs. and a price tag of $499.
- It rolls smoothly.
- It is long lasting.
- It is sturdy and can withstand cold temperatures.
- The handle is a bit difficult to install.
- It is sometimes difficult when lifting a load.
5. Strongway Pallet Jack
Coming in at #5 is the Strongway jack with a load capacity; 4,400 lbs. and an incredible price of $248.99.
- It is relatively easy to operate.
- It has tapered fork ends for easy entry.
- It has a low maximum lift height.
Disclaimer: Always receive proper training before using one of these machines. Weight capacity will vary by individual model.