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The Secret To Buying Cheap Forklift Batteries

Posted on August 18, 2011 20:05 by Admin

Multi-Shifter battery changing systems allow our customers to get more life from their batteries through proper recharging policies. However our equipment can help you save money on the purchase of new batteries as well. Instead of buying new batteries, squeeze more life out of the used batteries you can buy from other electric vehicle fleets.

The Market For Used Forklift Batteries

Every fleet manager knows that rechargeable batteries "wear out". With each recharge cycle the battery holds a little bit less charge. Our battery changing systems stretch out the life of a battery but eventually every power cell is doomed. However just because a battery is not longer effective in a particular role doesn't mean it can't be saved. Batteries used in large vehicles can be repurposed for use in smaller vehicles, such as forklifts carrying light loads. A battery that is no longer usable in a forklift transporting steel beams might be fine in a forklift operating in a clothing warehouse, since the latter is transporting much smaller loads.

Used Battery Benefits

The most common reason companies turn to used batteries is the cost savings. Used batteries are much cheaper, costing as little as half or even less of the price of a new battery, and can be used for many months. If your company uses both heavy and light lifters, you can even supply your own used batteries. Buy new batteries for the heavy machinery and then, as the power capacity dwindles, move the batteries to the light fleet. You get twice the use for the same price.

A less obvious benefit of reusing batteries is the environmental impact. Batteries are recycled to keep the dangerous heavy metals out of the environment, but even the recycling process uses energy and resources. If you can repurpose a battery and double its life, that means fewer resources used in the recycling process.

How Multi-Shifter Helps You With Used Batteries

To be fair, used batteries do require a bit of special handling. They need to be recharged more frequently than new batteries, but that doesn't have to have much of an impact on fleet productivity. Multi-Shifter battery changing systems are designed to make it easy to swap out discharged batteries for new ones, getting the forklift back on the floor in minutes. The discharged battery is transported to your recharging center where it can be ready to go in a few hours. Battery changing systems are safer and faster than manual battery removal. We think you'll find there is very little loss of productivity even with the more frequent replacement.

With more frequent battery replacement and the help of a Multi-Shifter battery changing system, your fleet will run as efficiently as before but at a much lower cost. Battery purchase expenses are lower, and you will be doing your part for the environment.

When winter arrives many fleet managers are surprised at how quickly forklifts and other electric vehicles required battery recharge. Low temperatures affect how industrial battery systems operate and can have a negative impact on fleet performance. Here are a few tips to keeping your batteries and vehicles at top productivity during the cold winter months.

How To Keep A Charge On Batteries

Industrial battery systems provide power by a chemical reaction between the electrolytes and the metal in the battery. The speed of chemical reactions is affected by temperature, proceeding more quickly when it's hot and more slowly when it's cold. This in turn affects the battery's power output--a slower reaction means less power. A cold battery puts out less power so has a shorter operating life before needing recharge. Managers can increase the frequency of battery replacement, or can use battery heaters to keep the units warm.

One benefit of this relationship between power and temperature is that unused batteries hold their charge longer when it's cold out. All rechargeable batteries slowly leak power when unused, but the rate of loss slows as the temperature drops. Refrigerated batteries hold their charge much longer than ones stored at room temperature.

Freezing Dangers

The liquid in industrial battery systems can freeze, preventing the battery from operating and potentially damaging the casing. Battery solution has a lower freezing point than water, and the actual temperature it freezes is based on the battery's charge. Fully charged batteries can be stored safely even at temperatures well below zero, but partially discharged batteries freeze at temperatures only slightly below the freezing point of water.

If possible, keep vehicles inside on very cold nights. The area doesn't have to be warm, but should be kept above freezing. Charge the batteries at night since charging batteries, like running water, can't freeze. If the vehicles can't be stored indoors, consider removing the batteries and taking them inside at night. This doesn't have to happen every night, only on nights where the temperature is going to drop below freezing.


Most fleet managers know to keep battery recharging areas well ventilated due to the hydrogen gas given off by industrial battery systems during the charging cycle. Explosive hydrogen gas plus the ignition source inherent in the battery recharging process is a disaster waiting to happen. Good airflow ensures the gas is never able to build up to explosive levels.

During cold months, workers may close doors and windows to keep out the cold. Managers need to consider whether or not recharging areas are getting enough airflow in this case. If not, workers need to be educated about what needs to be kept open during charging operations. Worker comfort is important, but so is worker safety.

Follow these simple hints and your fleet and the industrial battery systems they depend on will run just as well in the winter as they do in the summer. Contact us for more information!