When you’ve got a new load to lift, the biggest question you probably have is, “can my truck lift it?” To answer this question, we need to keep in mind the forklift’s center of gravity, the load center, and any attachment you will need. If you’re in the market for a new lift, here’s everything you need to know about forklift truck capacity.

Center of Gravity

Unlike most traditional vehicles, forklift trucks do not have a fixed center of gravity. Their center of gravity depends on whether the truck is loaded or not and what attachments it has. When forklifts are unloaded, the center of gravity is between the front and back wheels. When the truck is loaded, the center shifts to the front axle. If the forklift is overloaded, the center of gravity moves to in front of the wheels, causing the forklift to tip over.

Load Center

The way weight is distributed on your forklift and its attachments can change the amount of weight your forklift can safely carry. Each forklift has a specific load center. The load center of a forklift is the maximum weight a forklift can carry. This center is the distance from the face of the forks to the center of gravity of the load. The farther out the load sits on the forks, the more the load capacity decreases.


Since each forklift is rated with a safe lifting capacity and height, it’s important to keep this in mind when considering an attachment for your lift. Adding attachments to your forklift will cause the safe lifting capacity to change, so it’s important to know how much your forklift will need to handle to ensure the accessory is correct for your needs.

When it comes to forklift truck capacities, our expert staff can help you figure out which forklift or attachment will work best for your material handling needs. Give us a call at (866) 266-2244 and we can guide you to your best options.