The Benefits of Reach Trucks in Warehousing

Toyota Narrow Aisle Forklift

The Covid-19 pandemic has had an impact in many ways on the world and the way it does business, but even before people were encouraged to do their shopping from home, consumers had already made a mark on e-commerce. Now, after more than a year of pandemic purchasing, e-commerce is up 42% compared to 2019 and American online shoppers are expected to spend $1 trillion online in 2022. For those in the material handling and distribution center space, this translates to a much higher load coming in and going out of warehouses.  

Because of this, managers and decision makers are learning how to make better use of current space. It's not always possible to purchase new space, so taking advantage of the footprint already in place makes sense. One way to accomplish that is to use advanced storage technologies to revamp warehouse space and go up rather than out. Moving around to pick and place product in a warehouse that is focused on a higher use of the facility - literally - takes equipment that is built for the job. At Madland Toyota-Lift, our professional staff can help choose the best material handling reach trucks available.

Along with being able to make use of existing space by going up, warehouse managers are also consolidating aisle width to fit more product in less space. With a wide variety of reach trucks available, there is one that can help - whether the need is for height, narrow aisle, fitting more pallet racking or all three. Reach trucks are electrically-powered equipment, available in many configurations, that work specifically well in narrow aisle and very narrow aisle applications. At Madland Toyota-Lift, we have a reach truck that will help you maximize your operation for increased productivity and efficiency. 

Toyota Reach Trucks 

With its usual emphasis on operator ergonomics and equipment reliability, Toyota produces the 9-Series Reach Truck and walkie reach truck.

With the ability to lift 2,500 to 4,500 pounds, depending on model, the Toyota 9-series reach trucks are available in single and double reach models. For applications that need to move pallets in and out at heights up to 300 inches, these reach trucks offer options that make it easy to improve working time.

With one charge, the Toyota reach truck now has an increased run time with the choice of 24- or 36-volt power. Also customizable is the battery compartment - it can be as short as 14-5 inches to as long as 21.5 inches. With Toyota's known durability and quality, these electric-powered reach trucks require less maintenance and provide better efficiency and performance.

As always, operator safety and comfort are at the top of the list for Toyota material handling and DC equipment. Comfortable drivers are more likely to be productive and efficient.

The Toyota Walkie Reach Truck has a 3,000-lb. lifting capacity and boosts productivity and efficiency by helping workers move product through the warehouse easily, efficiently and quickly. With a 24-volt electrical system, this walkie reach truck has a fully programmable drive system, navigates in aisles as narrow as 8 feet and can lift up to 15 feet.

The walkie reach truck travels 2.8 mph with a full load, keeping safety at the forefront. With proper maintenance, the Toyota walkie reach truck has an excellent ROI.


Known for its efficient and powerful batteries, BYD also produces electric material handling and DC forklifts, including reach trucks. With fewer parts, BYD forklifts and reach trucks cost less to maintain and come with innovative technologies to make forklift charging easier and less cumbersome.

The BYD RTR reach truck has a load capacity of 1,600 lbs. and has a max lift height of almost 9 feet. Traveling up to 8 mph, the BYD reach truck is designed to work efficiently and quickly in narrow aisle and very narrow aisle situations. With its environmentally friendly battery power, this reach truck provides a lower operating cost than the traditional forklift. Built with safety in mind, the BYD reach truck provides a camera system, 180-degree steering and overload protection.

Drexel Swingmast VNA 

The Landoll Drexel VNA SL60SE and SL80SE forklifts wear plenty of hats in today's do-more-with-less material handling and DC warehouse challenges. These forklifts are made to not only replace traditional reach trucks, they can also step in for the conventional counterbalanced forklift in pallet pick and store narrow aisle to very narrow aisle warehouse demands.

These two 4-wheel Swingmast® forklifts can perform in 66 inch - or 5.5 feet - aisle widths, almost the smallest in the industry. The capacity doesn't suffer, however, as they can handle up to 6,000-8,000 lbs., respectively, at lift heights of up to 24 feet. Whatever warehouse pallet rack style is in use, the Drexel VNA reach truck can perform in front- or side-loading capacities, including bulk, cantilever, push-back, double-deep and climbing steep racks.

As always, Drexel keeps safety in mind. These models have wire guidance as a standard option, so moving rapidly through narrow aisles can be achieved. With 4-wheel design, operator comfort and ergonomics include dual joysticks for all hydraulics, power steering, adjustable seating and a high-visibility mast. As with most electrically-powered material handling equipment, less parts mean less maintenance and better ROI. Drexel forklift reach trucks come with separately-excited (sepex) traction and hydraulic motors that provide high efficiency and trouble-free operation. An interactive LCD status monitor gives important information to the operator including hour meter, service monitor, diagnostic codes and more. 

Reach Truck Applications 

As the face of material handling and DC warehouses has changed, new advances and technology has changed, as well, providing innovative ways to answer operational challenges. Introducing - or upgrading - to specialized equipment like a reach truck can provide a more efficient and quicker way to make the best use of integrated and automated warehouse operations, such as:

  • Cold storage, freezer and food - Those active online shoppers aren't just purchasing products for use in the home and for recreation. They are also buying more food online - into the billions of dollars by 2020. These food products are coming from large distribution centers, as well as smaller operations. Growing the space needed to store and ship food and beverage products means utilizing the equipment necessary, including reach trucks to pick and place pallets efficiently.
  • General manufacturing - With a long line of products continuously being manufactured in a variety of industries, including industrial, robotics, medical, military and automation, warehouse managers must be working at peak performance to organize, ship and store these products as quickly as they are demanded. Using the proper equipment, such as fast reach trucks that can move in confined spaces quickly, is paramount to staying ahead of the competition.

Moving forward in material handling and DC warehouse operations, taking advantage of new technology and innovative ideas will be paramount as everyone navigates a changing world. At Madland Toyota-Lift, our professional staff is ready to assist in choosing the right equipment to accomplish goals and solve challenges. Contact us at one of our three convenient locations to find out what your best choice is for your unique application.

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Thursday, 18 July 2024