Eureka Forklifts


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

Forklift vs Reach Truck: Unpacking the warehouse workhorses

For many businesses around Australia, the warehouse is the beating heart of their operations. To keep goods flowing smoothly and customers happy, warehouses require the right machine for the job. Let us introduce you to the forklift and the reach truck – two essential bits of machinery that might seem similar at first glance. But don't be fooled! These workhorses have distinct strengths that make them useful for different tasks.

What's the function of both machines?
Think of a forklift as a reliable haulier. It excels at lifting and moving palletised goods over short distances. It’s the perfect machine for loading and unloading trucks or maneuvering pallets around a warehouse floor. 

Reach trucks, on the other hand, are the high-reach heroes of any warehouse. They are designed to conquer those towering shelves and storage racks, put pallets away at impressive heights and easily navigate tight aisles.

Lifting power - who packs more punch?
Generally speaking, forklifts boast a higher lifting capacity than reach trucks. They're beasts of burden, built to handle hefty loads and large, heavy items.

Reach trucks, while no slouches, often have a lower capacity due to their reach mechanism. It really comes down to a trade-off. You get some extra reach for superior height access but sacrifice some raw lifting power.

Maneuvering magic - who wins in tight spaces?
Imagine for a minute a crowded dance floor. Forklifts, with their wider turning radius, are kind of like the clumsy, drunk uncle at a wedding. They need more space to boogie.

Reach trucks, however, are the nimble salsa stars. Their smaller size (compared to a forklift) and tighter turning circle make them perfect for manoeuvring through narrow aisles.


Mast design - reaching new heights (literally)
Forklifts tend to keep things simple with a fixed mast that goes straight up and down. 

Reach trucks, however, take things to a new level with their telescopic mast. This handy feature extends forward, allowing the forks to reach into racking at higher elevations.

Which one is more expensive?
Here's a simple truth for you: forklifts are cheaper than reach trucks. The reach mechanism tends to add complexity to the machine, bumping up the price tag.

Putting both to work
Forklifts are the go-to for companies that do a lot of general material-handling tasks. They are great at loading and unloading trucks, stocking warehouse shelves and moving pallets around in open spaces.

Reach trucks, on the other hand, conquer high bay racking systems. They're the perfect partner for warehouses with limited floor space and towering shelves.

Other considerations

  • Operator visibility: Forklifts usually offer better forward visibility, while reach truck masts might create some blind spots for the operator.
  • Speed: Forklifts tend to have a slight edge in travel speed.
  • Attachments: Both forklifts and reach trucks can be outfitted with various attachments, such as clamps, rotators or platform extensions, to tackle specific tasks.

So, there you have it! Forklifts and reach trucks: two essential warehouse warriors, each with their own strengths and benefits. Understanding their key differences allows you to choose the right machine to keep your operation running smoothly and efficiently. 

Remember, at Eureka Forklifts, we're here to help you find the perfect fit for your warehouse needs. Call us today, and let's chat about how we can get the right machine into your business.


86 Delta St, Geebung QLD 4034
PO Box 90 Geebung, Queensland, 4034



Eureka Forklifts has almost 30 years experience dealing with forklifts in the SE Qld region.

© Copyright 2022 Eureka Forklifts. All Rights Reserved. Website design by Marketeam


Please fill the required field.
Please fill the required field.