The Best Guides of Choosing Forklift Batteries

Business managers or owners who use forklifts to operate their businesses need to carefully select the type of industrial battery that will ensure your company operates efficiently – and that is true regardless of whether you have just one lift truck or a fleet of forklifts. Over time, a business could save a lot of time and money by choosing the right electric forklift battery.

You’ll learn all about the different types of forklift battery their key differences, forklift battery price ranges, and how these battery options will affect your business’s efficiency.

Forklift Battery Types

Following the size of your forklift battery, the next important consideration is whether you should use lead acid or lithium-ion batteries.

There are two main types of batteries used in electric forklifts:

  • Lithium-ion
  • Lead acid

Despite the fact that there are other power options for forklifts, such as propane or diesel, 2/3 of them are electric.

Forklift efficiency varies greatly depending on the technology behind each of these industrial batteries.

Lithium-ion battery

Sony camcorders were the first commercial products to use lithium-ion batteries, which are a relatively new technology. There are many different types of lithium-ion batteries. Lithium iron phosphate (LFP) is one of the most popular chemistries used in the material handling sector. Compared to lead acid, it is more compact and energy dense. It is not necessary to maintain the cells with water since they are sealed shut.

Lead acid battery

Forklifts are powered by lead acid batteries, an old-school technology. Lead plates and sulfuric acid react chemically to generate electricity in these bulky, liquid-filled units. The technology dates back to 1859 and involves regularly refilling the units with water (which is also required for the chemical processes that generate electricity).

The Length of a Forklift Battery’s Service Life

Forklift batteries are a business expense that needs to be addressed on a regular basis.

The type of battery used in forklifts determines how often workers will need to replace them. Lithium-ion batteries last longer than lead acid batteries:

  • Lithium-ion: 3500 cycles
  • Lead acid: 1000 – 1500 cycles

It is important to note that these are averages and may vary depending on how well the batteries are maintained.

Lithium-ion forklift batteries require less frequent replacement, which is a major reason business owners prefer them over conventional lead acid batteries – which need to be replaced more frequently.

Maintaining the Capacity of Forklift Battery

In order for lithium-ion batteries as well as their lead acid counterparts to perform at their best, they must be properly cared for. A lack of proper forklift battery maintenance will reduce their service life.

For users of both types of batteries, certain measures should be taken in order to maximize battery life and capacity. In contrast to lithium-ion batteries, lead acid batteries require more care and attention.

The following are the requirements for lead acid forklift batteries:

Temperature Control

A lead acid battery’s working life will be reduced if it is not kept within a certain temperature range. Furthermore, they get very hot while charging, so they must be stored in a temperature-controlled environment.

Equalizing (Cell Balancing)

When applied to traditional technology, the acid and water inside become stratified (separated horizontally with the acid concentrated at the bottom). As a result, sulfate crystals form at the bottom of the cells, weakening their ability to hold a charge. It is true that equalizing will break up the sulfate crystals, but if the battery has been neglected for too long, the crystals will not break.

Fluid Level Management

Every 10 or so charging cycles, these types of units need to be checked to ensure there is sufficient water.

When it comes to forklift battery maintenance, lithium-ion batteries are much less needy, as they equalize automatically, function well in much higher temperatures, and do not need fluid level management.