The Dos & Don’ts of Forklift Battery Maintenance
In material handling industry, few equipment gets abused as much as the forklift. During pick hours and rough working conditions, sometimes we skip the steps when it comes to maintaining the forklift batteries. But with each episode of abuse, the life of the battery gets shorter. To get designed life of your forklift battery, to ensure safety and optimal performance and to reduce unnecessary expenses, it is very important to follow the basic DOS and DONTS for maintaining your forklift battery:
- Only use Orizen International approved battery chargers.
- Do top-up before charge to 5 – 10 mm (max) above plates at least once a week using only distilled or de-ionised water. The frequency will depend on operating and charging conditions.
- Do keep contact surfaces clean and check the condition of charging plug and socket regularly.
- Do ensure the top of the battery is clean and dry.
- Do check specific gravity readings using a hydrometer. Maintain records of readings.
- Do assist air-cooling and ventilation by charging with the battery compartment lid open.
- Do switch off charger before disconnecting battery.
- Do ensure all connections and bolted terminals are tight and covered with petroleum jelly. Use insulated tools when removing or replacing terminals.
- Do avoid corrosion around terminals or metal container by cleaning off and neutralizing with a weak solution of ammonia, sodium carbonate or sodium bicarbonate. 1 Kg to 10 litre water.
- Do wear protective clothing. Battery acid is poisonous and corrosive.
- Do not undercharge or overcharge the battery. Use only the correct type and size of charger approved by Orizen International.
- Do not under fill or overfill when adjusting levels of electrolyte. This could cause premature failure of your batteries.
- Do not dispense topping-up water from metal containers.
- Do not put any metal objects on top of the battery.
- Do not charge the battery with the vent caps open or removed.
- Do not leave a discharged battery in that state for over 24 hours.
- Do not add acid to cells. Consult our Service Department in the event of electrolyte loss.
- Do not smoke nor allow naked flames near the battery, especially when charging.
- Do not re-charge the battery for longer periods than necessary to restore capacity used.
- Do not repair or re-set the charger. Any setting or necessary repair should be undertaken by qualified personnel, using approved components. Contact our Service Department for further information.