Pallets are necessary when shipping goods, as they form a solid base for properly arranging the items. Wooden pallets are the most common, but plastic and metal are also available. If you’re in the shipping and distribution industry, you most likely need to move pallets around your warehouse. Therefore, you need to know how many you can safely fit and transport on your pallet trucks. This article answers your question and offers advice on picking the right pallet truck.

What is a pallet truck?

A pallet truck is a simple forklift used inside a warehouse to move empty pallets, or goods loaded on a pallet. It is also called a pallet jack or pallet pump. Using pallet trucks saves you the hard labour of physically moving the pallets yourselves and the associated labour costs.

Types of pallet trucks

There are different pallet trucks, depending on the design and function. Here are four broad categories:

Manual pallet trucks

These pallet trucks require a forklift for loading, which you then pull or push to whatever section of the warehouse or yard you need to drop those items. Some have a 2500kg loading capacity.

Electric pallet trucks

These pallet trucks replace the need for manual manipulation with motors and battery packs. There is a wide range of electric pallet trucks, from ones that need steering as you walk alongside them, ones that have a seat and steering controls like a vehicle, to fully automated ones that you can control remotely.

High lift pallet trucks

These double as stackers, lifting the goods on pallets high and stacking them up. Their design incorporates a lifting mechanism, such as a lifting table. Therefore, you can use it to hoist people and goods to top levels or on top of a high stack of goods in the warehouse.

Weight-scale pallet trucks

These incorporate a weighing scale to efficiently record the weight of whatever you’re transporting. Therefore, you’ll save plenty of time in a single trip instead of first weighing the goods before loading or stacking them.

Why you need the right pallet truck

Pallet trucks ease your stacking and moving duties, like forklifts, without occupying as much space. Pallet trucks can fit into narrow passageways and don’t require as much maintenance work as forklifts. In small business operations, investing in forklifts is not wise as the capital investment is larger than the business requires.

Additionally, pallet trucks are cost-effective since they reduce your labour requirements. A pallet truck can carry more goods in one trip than several employees can manage. While it’ll cost you more to invest in one, you won’t have to pay salaries and other employee welfare concerns. You’ll only need regular maintenance work on the pallet truck, which is a fraction of the cost of maintaining an employee on your payroll.

How many empty pallets fit on a truck?

Stacking pallets on a truck for transporting requires you to understand how many you can safely place on the truck. A standard pallet is 1200 x 1000 x 100mm and weighs between 12 and 18kgs. Therefore, you need to consider your pallet truck’s loading capacity. Additionally, you need to factor in the dimensions. Your pallet truck may take a huge load, but stacking empty pallet trucks high up is unsafe and potentially makes moving the truck impossible.

You also need to consider the pallet truck’s design. For example, a manual pallet truck allows you to stack the pallets high since you can pull them, thus allowing for maximum visibility as you move along. Additionally, using a forklift to unload the truck is safe.

What to look for in a pallet truck

Your operations, operating environment, load capacity, and safety are critical factors guiding you when shopping for pallet trucks.

Electric or manual?

Electric pallet trucks don’t require much manual operation, making them more efficient. Additionally, they have more features, further adding to their versatility. However, they require more maintenance work and need charging. Therefore, invest in these if you have a busy warehouse constantly moving goods. Manual ones may suit you if you run a relatively laid-back operation that handles little traffic.


Standard manual pallet trucks are ideal for outdoor operations, while electric ones are better for indoor operations. The electrical components may not withstand harsh outdoor environments, where robust manual pallet trucks excel.

Operational safety

Safety should be of the utmost importance to prevent any accidents. For example, its loading base must be wide enough to carry the load safely. Additionally, its carrying capacity should accommodate a loaded pallet for the distance you need to cover.


Pallet trucks increase operational efficiency in warehouses and similar shipping or distribution business sections. They are also cost-efficient solutions, increasing productivity while ensuring the reliable movement of goods. You only need to operate them safely to access those benefits.

Contact our friendly team to find out how we can help you with your pallet truck fleet.