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Forklifts & Powered Equipment

Sit-Down vs. Stand-Up Forklifts

Posted October 21, 2021

When you think of a forklift, most will typically imagine a forklift with a seat. Forklifts can also come in stand-up models, which feature some of the same capabilities as your standard, sit-down forklift. Both sit-down and stand-up forklifts offer their own unique benefits. If you’re in the market for a new forklift, find out if your material handling needs are better suited for a sit-down or stand-up option.


Sit-Down Forklifts

Besides having a seat for the operator, sit-down forklifts typically have the advantage of moving at faster speeds. This can increase productivity and efficiency in the workplace, especially if you work in an industry that requires high-volume operations. Additionally, sit-down forklifts provide more comfort for the driver, especially in scenarios where a forklift is being used for extended periods of time.

Sit-down forklifts can also have some cons. As the driver is seated while operating the forklift, this can cause the driver to be less alert and not have as much visibility when it comes to driving in reverse. Narrow aisles can also be harder to maneuver in a sit-down forklift.

We recommend sit-down forklifts for any jobs that will be performed for extended periods of time.


Stand-Up Forklifts

Stand-up forklifts, or reach trucks, offer the advantage of navigating through narrow aisles without any problems. Tight corners, spaces, and heights are easier to manage with a compact stand-up reach truck.

Stand-up forklifts are built ergonomically for operator comfort and may require additional training as they are steered using a joystick as opposed to a normal steering wheel. Since the operator is already standing, they don’t need to turn their neck to see when they’re reversing. In general, stand-up lifts provide better visibility. Standing up can also help operators stay alert to avoid any potential obstacles and avoid injuries.

Learn More About Forklift Training


We recommend a stand-up forklift if your material handling needs require you to drive in reverse for a majority of the operating time, if your warehouse has narrow aisles, or if your operator will get on and off of the forklift often.
No matter what your material handling needs are, Naumann/Hobbs offers a wide selection of both sit-down and stand-up forklifts. Not sure which lift is right for you? Give us a call, expert sales staff can point you in the right direction.

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