Eureka Forklifts


Counter Balance Forklifts and how they Work

The load when picked up by the fork tines on the forklift is Counter Balanced by all the weight as pictured on the left hand side of the see-saw, pictured as the body of the forklift, including the driver and the last heavy cast iron weight you see on the back of a forklift, termed the counter weight.

Counter Balance Forklift work as the name suggests.

Forklift counterbalance 300x169

With the front wheels being the pivot point.

Counter Balance Diagram 300x169

Like a See-Saw from your childhood.

With mast show over the pivot point being the front wheels for ease of this explanation.

Now the forklift is safe and stable, as long as the force of the countering weight ( The left hand side ), is greater than the force exerted by the load carried on the tine of the forklift – The large crate on the right hand side. Pictured as the see-saw sloping and touching on the ground on the left hand side.

The back wheels are on the ground.

If the force exerted by the Large crate carried on the tine of the forklift( the right hand side ), is greater than the countering weight on the left hand side, including the counterweight. The forklift will tip forward as shown for simplicity with the see-saw, with the right hand side touching the ground.

But as shown in the attached picture when the right hand side ( the load ) , is greater than the left hand side – The Countering Balance Weight, the forklift tips forward into a very dangerous situation.

This first sign of this beginning to occur is the driver will loose steering control as the rear steer wheels come off the ground. At this stage the load should be lowered slowly and safely to the ground as this situation and any further vertical lifting of this load by this forklift is very dangerous as it is overloaded.

Never over load a forklift.

The distance out from the load face, face of the tine, is termed the “ Load Centre “ and is another factor which will be explained in the next article:

“Load Centres – how it effects the operation of Counter Balanced Forklifts”

Ring us for further information on (07) 3865 1205.


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.

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