Why Use Pneumatic Forklift Tires

pneumatic tires forkliftThe right tire can make all the difference when it comes to forklift performance. Pneumatic forklift tires are incredibly popular for rough terrain forklifts – their versatility and high performance makes them a must-have for outdoor job sites. While they look similar to the tires you’d find on a car or truck, there are some differences you should be aware of before committing to this variety. 

While this article is an excellent overview of the benefits of pneumatic forklift tires, it’s really just the tip of thei iceberg. If your business employs forklift operators and wants to make informed decisions about equipment moving forward, proper training can go a long way. A fully trained and certified forklift operators can help ensure your lifts are equipped with the proper tires and can verify that they’re working properly.

What are Pneumatic Forklift Tires?

So just what are pneumatic forklift tires, anyway? Pneumatic forklift tires offer outstanding performance and versatility in comparison to other types of tires. They ensure forklift operators can maintain a firm grip, even when they are driving on rough terrain

Operators frequently install pneumatic tires on forklifts used at construction sites, lumber yards, and warehouses. They may use solid or air pneumatics. Solid pneumatic forklift tires consist of rubber. Comparatively, air pneumatics are filled with air. 

Why are Pneumatic Forklift Tires Used on Forklifts?

Pneumatic forklift tires can be used indoors and outdoors. The tires are intended for use on a wide range of surfaces. And they minimize the risk of bumping, shaking, and similar problems that otherwise can increase an operator’s risk of tip-overs and other accidents. 

In addition, pneumatic tires come equipped with thick tread. As such, pneumatics can provide superior traction relative to cushion tires. 

The Benefits of Pneumatic Forklift Tires

When weighing the pros and cons of using pneumatic forklift tires, it helps to understand the various benefits associated with them. A thorough understanding of the benefits and drawbacks can inform your decision and help you use them to their full capacity. Here are just a few of the most important benefits of this kind of forklift tire:

High Performance

Shock absorption counts for a lot when working on rough terrain. Pneumatic forklift tires are filled with compressed air, which provides a cushioning effect for the entire vehicle. This makes for a much smoother ride than with other kinds of tires. You might think of this as an unnecessary luxury, but the fact is that our bodies are only able to sustain so much movement over the course of a day. Operators will feel less fatigue and be ready to work the very next day after using high-performing pneumatic tires on rough terrain. 


Thick tread gives pneumatic forklift tires maximum versatility. No matter where your next job might take you, a forklift equipped with pneumatic tires will be ready for virtually anything. Since these tires are filled with compressed air, you’ll also see them hold up to the accelerated wear and tear associated with rough terrain jobsites. 

These are far from the only benefits of using pneumatic forklift tires, but they are among the most important. If you’re eager to protect the health of your workers while minimizing downtime, these tires are typically the way to go. Of course, there are other options that should be considered before you commit to one style of tire over another.

Pneumatic vs. Cushion Tires

The pneumatic vs. cushion tires debate is ongoing. With a clear understanding of both types of tires and their respective advantages and disadvantages, you can determine which ones work best for your company’s forklifts. 

Pneumatic forklift tires are terrific for forklift operators who must travel over bumps, potholes, and other road hazards. They are proven to perform well in myriad work environments and help operators seamlessly maneuver a forklift on both smooth and rough surfaces.

Meanwhile, pneumatics tend to produce little to no noise. They can also be used indoors and won’t scratch or damage floors. 

On the other hand, pneumatics can be more expensive than other forklift tires. The air pressure of pneumatics must be monitored regularly. Otherwise, if a pneumatic tire gets punctured or damaged, it can go flat. At this point, it becomes impossible for an operator to safely drive their forklift. 

Cushion forklift tires have more rubber than their pneumatic counterparts. The tires fit into a small frame, which can help an operator easily maneuver their forklift in narrow aisles or other tight workspaces. 

Conversely, cushion tires offer less traction than pneumatics. Therefore, they can be less reliable than pneumatics when used outdoors.

Are Pneumatic and Cushion Tires Interchangeable?

Can you put pneumatic tires on a cushion tire forklift? Ultimately, pneumatic and cushion forklift tires are not interchangeable. This is due to the fact that pneumatic and cushion tires require different frames. Thus, pneumatic forklift tires won’t fit on cushion tire frames, and vice versa. 

Maintenance Tips for Pneumatic and Cushion Tires

Follow manufacturer’s guidelines for cushion and pneumatic forklift tire maintenance. Regardless of what type of tires are used, address any signs of wear and tear immediately. 

Moreover, if a forklift tire appears to be deflating or looks flat, replace it. In this instance, ensure that the tire is replaced by a qualified mechanic. Keep an eye out for cracks or other damage that may require tire repair or replacement going forward, too.

Get Help with Forklift Tire Maintenance

Your business wants its workers to understand forklift tire maintenance. By offering forklift certification training, you can help your workers identify pneumatic forklift tire problems and other issues. You can ensure that your workers can alleviate these issues without delay. 

ForkliftCertification.com offers a best-in-class forklift certification training program. We can teach your workers about tire maintenance and other forklift safety topics. Our program can even be completed in as little as one hour. Get started today!

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