Batteries have – for over a hundred years – been regularly used for both domestic and industrial applications. Indeed, the basic idea of the battery – a source of temporarily stored energy for use independent of any external power source – has remained totally unchanged. But that is not to say that batteries have not advanced.

Following the lithium-ion revolution of the early 1990s, a whole host of new battery applications were made possible. There has been no major shift in the composition of batteries since then, but there has been a refinement of this technology which has made possible products like super long lasting household USB-C AA rechargeable batteries, such as those produced by Pale Blue Earth. These changes have seen battery technology become more and more prevalent in the household, and over in the industrial sphere, tools and machinery that used to be powered by gas now run on innovative lithium-ion batteries.

Forklift Batteries and Challenges

The takeover of the battery has now advanced to such a point that warehouse machinery – most notably the omnipresent forklift truck – now run on advanced lithium ion batteries. However, this transition has brought with it a few challenges for warehouse operators.

It’s all a matter of efficiency and the bottom line of the enterprise. For example, using the wrong type of battery for your forklift truck can lead to inefficiency and a subsequent waste of power. This will lead to high maintenance costs as you will need to purchase and store more of them, and the wrong type of battery can even lead to safety issues.

Choosing the right battery for your forklift is therefore an important task which should be thoroughly considered at the outset of any commercial warehouse enterprise.

What to Know Before Buying a Forklift Battery

Dispelling any ignorance that you may have of forklift batteries is your best defense against the potential pitfalls involved in acquiring them. Here are some of the most important things to consider:

What Voltage Does Your Forklift Use?

Forklifts come in all shapes and sizes and can vary quite a lot within these parameters. Accordingly, different forklifts use different voltage batteries and choosing the right one is essential for the efficient and safe operation of this machinery. Typically, forklifts use either 36V or 48V batteries. You should consult the specs of your forklift fleet and select the right voltage. Failing to do so can even damage your equipment.

What Are Your Battery Compartment Dimensions?

The batteries used for forklifts are not actually one single battery. Instead, they are typically battery packs that contain many individual cells, and these battery packs come in a range of dimensions. The problem and solution here is simple – make sure you get one that actually fits in your forklift.

What is the Amp Hour Capacity of Your Forklift Battery?

Before getting a new battery for your forklift, you should certainly know its ampere-hour (AH) capacity. This will show the maximum power and run time of the battery. For optimal performance, you should select the very highest AH capacity that is still approved for use in your particular forklift model.

What is the Minimum Counterweight Requirement? 

Every forklift truck will have a recommended battery weight and range within which the battery can be safely used. You need to know what this is; getting a battery which is too heavy or light will cause stability – and therefore safety – issues with your forklifts.

Ultimately, any industrial or warehouse enterprise brings with it an imperative for the proper due diligence to be carried out. And when it comes to forklift batteries, this is nothing short of an important safety requirement.