Stand Up vs Sit Down Forklifts: What is the Difference?

Stand-up Forklift

For a stand-up forklift the operator is on their feet. When it comes to this type of forklift, because the operator stands, there is clear visibility in all directions. The stand-up forklift is operated by a series of levers that controls the forward motions, reverse motions, and the brakes. The stand-up forklift has a shorter head-length build which provides the smaller turning ratios and easy maneuverability, making a stand-up forklift is a great option for small, cramped spaces.

Sit-Down Forklift

For the sit-down forklift, the operator is seated. This type of forklift only has forward faced visibility and the operator must turn their torso to see if the back is cleared. The sit-down forklift is typically operated by a wheel, like a car. This causes the ability to travel faster and navigate better. Normally, it has a wider wheelbase with three or four wheels. This is the cause of its larger turning radius, which hinders its ability to be efficient in small spaces.

Forklift Differences

Often times, a sit-down forklift will have a low-profile build, making them a better choice than most when working in spaces with overhead obstructions. They would also be a better option when it comes to working on steep sloped floors or worksites due to their wider build. Sit down forklifts are better suited for operators who work for long periods of time. A sit-down forklift is best to help decrease chances of fatigue and discomfort.

Both Forklifts

Despite the variation between sizes, speed, control, and the maneuverability of these to forklifts. Both need to have an operator who is certified to operate the vehicles. Completing trainings, like OSHA Forklift Certification Training, will keep your facility OSHA approved and safe. Companies like FLC even provides individual trainings for specifically stand-up or sit-down forklifts.

For more Information or if you have further questions, you can visit our Hard Hat Training Series and take our Stand-Up Forklift Training Certification course or take a look at our Forklift Types course! Good luck out there and stay safe!