Frequently Asked Questions About Forklift Batteries

October 27, 2020 11:18 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Want a rundown of some of the basics of forklift batteries? Here are just a few of the forklift battery FAQs we get from customers as an industrial battery supplier in Jefferson, WI.

Q: What are lead acid batteries made out of?

Lead acid batteries are comprised of a selection of lead plates, lead oxide and a mixture of 65 percent purified water and 35 percent sulfuric acid. All of these components together create a unique chemical reaction that creates electrons and powers the battery.

Q: Are there any hazards of which users of industrial batteries should be aware?

It’s always important to have a focus on safety when using equipment powered by heavy-duty industrial batteries. Some of the most common hazards associated with these types of batteries include:

  • Flammability: Charging the battery can create hydrogen gas, a substance that is extremely flammable. Because the gas vapors can neither be seen nor tasted, it is crucial to ensure charging occurs away from any areas where there could be an open flame.
  • Electrical shock: Batteries can discharge with a very high current rate, potentially shocking anyone who accidentally gets too close during the process.
  • Heavy: Because batteries prominently feature lead as a main ingredient, they can be extremely heavy, which makes them dangerous during lifting. Electric lift trucks are often used to counterbalance the battery and avoid potential accidents.
  • Sulfuric acid: This acid, found in batteries, can burn the skin and eyes if people are exposed to it.

Q: What safety steps do I need to take to protect myself from potential battery-related accidents?

First and foremost, anyone working with or handling these batteries should wear the proper protective equipment. This includes goggles, face shields, rubber aprons and rubber gloves. It is also important to keep safety equipment near batteries or sites where they will be worked on, including all of the above protective equipment, non-metallic containers for liquids, an eyewash station, acid-neutralizing solutions/baking soda and water or milk to drink if battery acid is accidentally ingested.

Q: How do I know if the battery has gone bad?

To be completely certain that the battery has discharged or gone bad, you will need to measure the specific gravity of each cell with a hydrometer. This will determine the state of the charge in the battery.

Q: How do I replace the battery?

If you know the battery has passed its useful lifespan, you’ll need to make a replacement. You should only do this if you’ve been thoroughly trained in battery changing equipment. If so, make sure the battery gate or other equipment securing the battery is properly removed and that you disconnect the battery cable from the lift truck. Never attempt to make the replacement without the proper tools—only use non-sparking, insulated tools, and never lift by the post or cables. Keep all metallic objects away from batteries while uncovered to avoid accidents.

For more answers to forklift battery FAQs in Jefferson, WI, contact Remis Power Systems Inc. We specialize in industrial batteries and would be glad to help ensure yours are doing their job!

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