Tips for Maintaining Your Forklift Batteries

As you know, there are a wide range of different types of forklifts on the market today. From electric to pneumatic tire and cushion tire, your options are truly endless. Last month we discussed some of the numerous benefits of electric forklifts, namely that they can save money long-term. This is a major bonus for most companies and warehouse operators, as it is no secret that forklifts can be expensive to service and maintain. One of the things we discussed in the blog mentioned above is that routine maintenance costs for electric forklifts cost much less because they do not require engine/transmission oil and filter changes, for one. This is because these types of forklifts are operated by battery. There are many benefits to purchasing a battery-operated forklift, from the low maintenance needs to the fact they last much longer and are better for the environment. However, all this depends on how well you take care of the forklift’s battery.

As with any type of forklift, proper maintenance and handling of the machine’s battery is a must if it is going to perform well and last you for many years to come. There is definitely a right way and a wrong way to maintain, operate, and service forklift batteries, which is why we are going to go over some tips for you today. It is our desire to educate you and provide you with the right tools and resources to keep your forklift running and working smoothly for the future. Please keep in mind that handling forklift batteries can be both heavy and dangerous, which is why it is so important for all of your employees to undergoing adequate training not just for the forklift in general, but in regards to the battery. With this in mind, let’s go over some tips for how to properly handle forklift batteries:

● Make sure you are charging the battery correctly. One of the biggest mistakes forklift owners make is not charging their machine’s battery the right way. While it can be tempting to charge a battery whenever it is convenient for you, that can be quite dangerous – and decrease its lifespan. You should only charge a forklift’s battery when it tips below 30% charge and always charge it until it is 100% full. Whatever you do, never interrupt a charging forklift battery.

● Use special equipment to transfer and maneuver the battery. Due to the sheer size and weight of most forklift batteries, it is imperative that you use special equipment to handle it. Never try to move the forklift battery by yourself. Make sure you are wearing steel toe shoes and use a pallet jack with a transfer carriage to move the battery.
● Check all fluid and water levels. In order for forklift batteries to work properly and at optimal capacity, they must have the right amount of water. We recommend checking the forklift battery water levels every 10 charge cycles and the fluid levels every five charge cycles. This is done by opening up the battery and taking a peek inside. As a side note, only top off the battery’s fluid and water levels when it is fully charged.
● Keep batteries at the right temperature. Last but certainly not least, it is important that you keep all forklift batteries at a safe temperature in order to prolong its life. While forklifts can be used in extreme environments (on both end of the spectrum) make sure the temperature does not exceed 113 degrees Fahrenheit.

To learn more about our Irving forklift services or to have your unit serviced today, please give us a call. We are happy to go over your machine with you and discuss what it needs in order to work properly and for many years to come.