Material Handling Specialist Since 1929

Find the Best Pallet Jack for the Job

Browse our extensive online catalog to see rental and buying options for pallet trucks both new and used.

When it comes to handling materials for your operation, not just any piece of equipment will do. If you need to move pallets around, you’ll want to use a pallet jack, also known as a pallet truck  or pallet jack truck. We here at Connell Material Handling are pallet jacks experts; keep reading to learn more about what jacks are best suited for your operation and then peruse our extensive catalog so you can get started on your project right away.

Types of Pallet Jacks

There are different kinds of pallet jacks available. Which one is actually “best” for you depends on several factors, including your budget, the size of your worksite, and how heavy the pallets you need to move are.

Powered Pallet Jacks

Also called:

  • Electric pallet jacks
  • electric powered trucks
  • electric pallet trucks 
  • walkies
  • power jacks

A powered pallet truck, as the name suggests, is a type of motorized forklift. They are typically much larger and stronger than manual jacks, making them perfect for moving heavier pallets or stacked pallets. However, their size also lessens their maneuverability in smaller aisles.

Manual Pallet Jacks

Also called:

  • manual pallet trucks
  • hand pallet jacks
  • hand pallet trucks

A manual pallet truck is an incredibly common type of hand-powered forklift. You can often find them in warehouses with narrow aisles or even in retail shops.

Low-profile Pallet Trucks

Also called:

  • low-profile pallet jacks

A low-profile pallet truck is designed to lift pallets from lower heights, usually about 2” off the ground.

Heavy-duty Pallet Trucks

Also called:

  • heavy-duty pallet jacks
  • high-capacity pallet trucks
  • high-capacity jacks

Heavy-duty jobs require heavy-duty gear. A heavy-duty pallet truck is ideal for handling heavy materials. The typical load capacity of a standard U.S. pallet jack is around 3,000 lbs to 5,000 lbs. Most heavy-duty jacks have load capacities between 6,000 lbs to 12,000 lbs.

Rough Terrain Pallet Jacks

Also called:

  • rough terrain pallet trucks

Most jacks find use in warehouses or retail outlets. That means most pallet trucks are designed for use on level terrain. Some jobs, however, will require you to move materials around uneven terrain. In these cases, a rough terrain pallet truck is ideal. These jacks are often designed with pneumatic tires and heavy-duty frames to provide durability and heightened maneuverability in rougher terrains.

Considerations When Choosing

Pallet Trucks

Determining which type of pallet truck is best for your operation is only part of the puzzle. You also need to keep in mind a few other factors, such as the following:

Fork Length

The majority of standard-sized jacks will fit most standard pallets. That said, it’s always a good idea to double check if the length of your jack’s forks and the width between them will actually accommodate the size of your pallets.

Lift Height

Your jack is no good if it can’t lift high enough to retrieve pallets from loading docks or complete shelving tasks. Make sure the maximum lift height of your jack is sufficient to reach your highest shelves and highest point of your loading dock.


You will need to consider both the overall width of your jack and the fork width. After all, it will be difficult or even downright impossible to move pallet trucks around your warehouse or store if your truck is too bulky to move down aisles. Additionally, you want to make sure your jack’s forks are not so wide that they are not compatible with the pallets they need to move.

Load Capacity

If your operation requires moving heavy loads, you need to make sure that your jack can handle the job. Most standard jacks in the United States have load capacities of 3,000 lbs to 5,000 lbs. If you need to handle heavier materials than that, you’ll want a heavy-duty pallet truck. Most models can lift anywhere from 6,000 lbs to 12,000 lbs.


Comfort is key for time-consuming tasks. If you opt for a hand-powered jack, select one that has ergonomic handles for greater comfort and a more secure grip. For powered trucks, opt for comfortable steering wheels


Last but not least, make sure that the truck you choose can actually move around your worksite comfortably. For starters, that means ensuring that the jack itself is narrow enough to fit through smaller aisles. Additionally, you’ll want to make sure that your jack’s wheels are well-suited for your worksite. For instance, pneumatic tires are great for handling rougher terrains while polyurethane wheels will often work just fine on level ground.


All your questions about pallet jacks, answered.

What is a pallet jack used for?

A pallet jack is a common type of forklift. It is specially designed to move pallets around warehouses and retail outlets.

What is a hydraulic pallet jack?

Most modern pallet jacks use some sort of hydraulic (liquid-operated) system, usually a hydraulic pump, to move the forks.

Is galvanized steel or stainless steel better for pallet jacks?

Which material is better for making jacks: galvanized or stainless steel? The answer to that question largely depends on what you’re wanting from your pallet jack.

Galvanized steel is steel that’s been treated with zinc. Stainless steel is steel whose composition allows it to be rust and heat resistant. Stainless steel is usually tougher than galvanized steel, and it’s much more resistant to corrosion as well. That said, stainless steel jacks tend to be pricier than their galvanized counterparts.

So, if you have a job on rough terrain or need to handle extra-heavy materials, a stainless steel pallet jack is likely the better choice for your operation. If you are handling lighter loads or have a smaller budget, galvanized steel jacks may work better.

How much does a pallet jack cost?

Pallet jacks are available at a wide range of price points. Smaller hand-powered jacks are some of the most affordable on the market. For example, a new manual pallet jack with 48” L x 27” W forks and a 5,500-lb load capacity typically runs around $500 to $800 (to purchase). By contrast, heavy-duty electric jacks often start at $3,000.

Does Connell Material Handling have pallet jacks?

We offer a wide selection of top-notch material handling equipment, including high-quality pallet jacks. Browse our extensive online catalog to see rental and buying options for pallet trucks both new and used.

We offer trusted brands, including:

  • Bluff Manufacturing
  • Lyftex
  • Noblelift North America Corp.
  • Vestil Mfg. Co.
  • Wesco Industrial Products, Inc.

Browse our extensive online catalog to see rental and buying options for pallet trucks both new and used.