Maximising Warehouse Space with Narrow Aisle Forklifts

Narrow aisle forklifts solutions

Maximising space in warehouses is more important than ever. With the increase in product volumes, efficient space utilisation has become crucial for warehouse operations. One effective solution is the use of narrow aisle forklifts. These specialised forklifts are designed to navigate through tight spaces, allowing businesses to store more products without needing additional warehouse space.

Narrow aisle forklifts not only help in optimising storage but also enhance productivity and safety. By using these forklifts, companies can make better use of their available space and improve their overall efficiency. In this blog post, we will explore the benefits and features of narrow aisle forklifts and how they can transform your warehouse operations.

What are narrow aisle forklifts?

Narrow aisle forklifts are specialised machines designed to operate in tight spaces within a warehouse. Unlike traditional forklifts, these are engineered to navigate through aisles that are much narrower, often ranging from 1.8 to 3 metres wide. This makes them perfect for warehouses that need to maximise their storage capacity without expanding their physical space.

Benefits of using narrow aisle forklifts in warehouse management

Using narrow aisle forklifts offers several benefits. Firstly, they allow for more efficient use of available space, enabling you to store more products within the same footprint. This increased storage capacity can lead to higher inventory levels and better stock management. 

Secondly, narrow aisle forklifts improve productivity by allowing operators to move items quickly and safely through tight spaces. This reduces the time spent on manoeuvring and increases overall operational efficiency.

Types of narrow aisle forklifts

There are different types of narrow aisle forklifts to suit various needs. Electric counterbalance forklifts are ideal for general use in narrow spaces. Reach trucks are designed for lifting loads to high shelves, making them perfect for warehouses with vertical storage. Walk behind forklifts are compact and highly manoeuvrable, suitable for very tight aisles. Each type has its own set of features and benefits, ensuring there is a suitable option for every warehouse requirement.

General aisle widths and challenges

Typical aisle widths in warehouses

In most warehouses, typical aisle widths range from 3 to 3.2 metres. These widths are designed to accommodate standard forklifts and allow for easy movement of goods. However, as warehouses try to store more products in the same space, they often need to reduce aisle widths.

Challenges of working in narrow and very narrow aisles

Narrow aisles, which are typically 2.4 to 3 metres wide, and very narrow aisles (VNAs), which can be as narrow as 1.5 to 1.8 metres, present unique challenges. The primary challenge is manoeuvrability. Standard forklifts cannot easily navigate these tight spaces, leading to increased risk of accidents and damage to products or shelving. Additionally, operating in such confined spaces can be time-consuming, reducing overall efficiency.

Narrow aisle (NA) vs. very narrow aisle (VNA) forklifts

Narrow aisle forklifts are designed to address these challenges. They are more compact and have a tighter turning radius, making them ideal for narrow spaces. Very narrow aisle forklifts take this a step further. They are specifically designed for the tightest spaces, often featuring advanced steering and lifting technologies to maximise efficiency and safety.

By using narrow aisle forklifts, businesses can optimise their warehouse layout, increase storage capacity, and improve operational efficiency. These forklifts are essential for modern warehouses aiming to do more with less space.

Hyworth’s range of narrow aisle forklifts

Hyworth Forklifts offers a comprehensive range of narrow aisle forklifts designed to enhance warehouse efficiency. These forklifts are specifically built to navigate tight spaces, making them perfect for warehouses looking to optimise their storage capacity.

Electric counterbalance forklifts

Hyworth’s electric counterbalance forklifts are ideal for general use in narrow aisles. They are environmentally friendly, emitting no harmful gases, and are available in both three-wheel and four-wheel models. The three-wheel models, such as the Hyworth 2T 3 Wheel Electric, offer a tight turning radius, making them perfect for sharp turns in confined spaces. On the other hand, the four-wheel models, like the Hyworth 2.5T 4 Wheel Electric, provide stability on uneven surfaces. These forklifts are powerful, and capable of lifting heavy loads while being efficient and easy to operate.

Benefits of electric counterbalance forklifts

  • Environmentally friendly with zero emissions.
  • Cost-effective with lower maintenance costs.
  • Quiet operation, reducing noise pollution.

Use cases in narrow aisles

  • Ideal for tight spaces due to superior manoeuvrability.
  • Efficient for handling heavy loads and improving productivity.
  • Suitable for both indoor and outdoor use, ensuring versatility.

Reach trucks

Reach trucks from Hyworth are designed to lift heavy loads to high shelves, making them perfect for warehouses with vertical storage needs. These trucks have a high reach capability, allowing for taller and narrower aisles, which maximises storage space. Models like the BT 1.6T Ride On Reach Truck and the Toyota 1.6T Ride On Reach Truck are excellent for handling pallets at significant heights with ease and precision.

Functionality and advantages

  • High reach capability maximises vertical storage.
  • Enhanced stability and smooth controls improve operator efficiency.
  • Ideal for storing and retrieving items from high shelves quickly and safely.

Walk behind forklifts

Hyworth’s walk behind forklifts are compact and highly manoeuvrable, making them suitable for the narrowest aisles. These forklifts, also known as walkie stackers, are designed for confined spaces and offer excellent lift height and control. The unique ‘Moonwalk’ feature allows operation from the side, enhancing visibility and reducing space needed for manoeuvring.


  • Compact design and precise controls for tight spaces.
  • ‘Moonwalk’ feature for better visibility and control.
  • Excellent lift height and load capacity.

Benefits in narrow spaces

  • Perfect for navigating tight corners and narrow aisles.
  • Enhances warehouse efficiency by optimising space usage.

Pallet movers & pallet jacks

Hyworth’s range of pallet movers and pallet jacks are essential for moving heavy goods around the warehouse. These electric pallet jacks have extensive battery life and are easy to manoeuvre. Features like regenerative braking and emergency stop enhance safety, while the compact design allows for easy navigation in tight corners.

Importance in warehouse operations

  • Crucial for efficient transportation of heavy goods.
  • Reduces manual labour and increases productivity.

How they enhance productivity and safety

  • Regenerative braking and emergency stop features improve safety.
  • Compact design ensures easy navigation in tight spaces.
  • Boosts productivity by facilitating quick and safe movement of goods.


Narrow aisle forklifts are essential for optimising warehouse space and improving efficiency. They help businesses store more products, enhance productivity, and maintain a safer working environment. Hyworth Forklifts offers a wide range of specialised forklifts designed for narrow aisles, including electric counterbalance forklifts, reach trucks, walk behind forklifts, and pallet movers. Each model provides unique benefits tailored to various warehouse needs.

For a tailored solution that fits your specific requirements, contact Hyworth Forklifts today. Our team of experts is ready to assist you in selecting the perfect narrow aisle forklifts to boost your warehouse efficiency. Call us now or visit our website for more information.

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