Most forklift accessories are designed to enhance the functionality of the lift. Attachments that can enhance or replace the fork tines can be purchased and affixed to the lift quickly and easily; these attachments include sideshifters and rotators, man baskets, scales, roll and barrel clamps, telescopic forks, and even carpet poles. These forklift accessories are not the only items to enhance the usefulness of the lift, as many accessories are designed to make the machine safer, more efficient, and easier to use. Overhead guards, for example, protect the forklift driver from falling items.
The specific types of forklift accessories that can be used on a lift will vary by the model. A telehandler forklift, for example, is far larger than other types of forklifts, and one of the most common accessories for such a machine is a set of outriggers that make the lift more stable during lifting. These outriggers may come standard on the telehandler at purchase, but they can also be added to a telehandler that did not come with outriggers as standard equipment. Telehandlers tend to become unstable when the weight being lifted is telescoped past a certain degree or length, so outriggers can keep the machine stable past that limit.
Replacement parts can be considered forklift accessories as well, especially if those components improve the safety or function of the vehicle. For example, stronger batteries for an electric forklift can be purchased and installed to improve the function of the lift. Engine components in a gasoline powered or diesel powered lift may be replaced as part of routine maintenance, but such maintenance may also improve the performance of the lift.
Man baskets can be added to the lift components, and such baskets are often some of the most valuable forklift accessories. Such baskets allow a person to be raised safely to a height by the fork lift. The basket is attached onto the fork tines or in place of them, and a person can enter the cage and secure himself using a harness and other hardware. The cage will prevent the person from getting crushed should it make contact with a solid object, and that person will still be able to move around the cage freely, even extending outside the cage to perform work.
Attachments that improve the mobility of the fork are common. Telescopic forks, sideshifters, and rotators are the most common forklift accessories in this category. Telescopic forks can extend outward, sideshifters allow the driver to shift a load without having to readjust the position of the truck, and rotators help the operator pick up pallets placed on uneven surfaces.