Indications That Your Forklift Battery Needs Repair or Replacement

Regarding your forklift battery, the key is to know when to repair versus replace it. It can save you time, money, and hassle if your forklift is still young.

The lifespan of most forklift batteries is about five years. If your battery is more than five years old, consider a replacement.

Slow Response Time

forklift battery charging
Flux Power

When it comes to forklift battery repair, it’s essential to get it done correctly. A poorly repaired battery could shorten its lifespan and cause further damage to the circuitry in the unit.

Fortunately, forklift batteries are relatively easy to repair. A trained professional offering forklift battery service should be able to get the job done quickly and efficiently.

The battery cables and connectors should be one of the first items examined.

These can come loose during use, or the connection could have worn out from age.

Another thing to look out for is the level of electrolyte solution in each cell. The correct electrolyte levels can help a battery hold a charge for extended periods and perform better.

It’s also a good idea to test each cell’s voltage to ensure it’s working correctly. A new battery may be needed if the voltage is not at the recommended level.

Your forklift’s battery may begin to smell like rotten eggs if the acid within is starting to transform into hydrogen sulfide gas.

It can be a severe problem, as it can be hazardous to anyone handling or operating the battery.

Decreased Run Time

driving forklift
Photo by Pickawood on Unsplash

Forklift batteries damaged through blunt force, deep gouges, corrosion, or other factors can negatively impact the run time. It means you will get less lift out of your battery, which could cause more time spent charging between shifts or during worker downtime.

It can also cause hard sulfation of the plates and reduce the life of your forklift battery. This type of damage can be challenging to reverse, and it’s best to replace the battery before it causes additional problems or damages your equipment.

One way to help increase your battery’s lifespan is by maintaining the correct temperature while in use. Excessive heat will shorten the battery’s lifespan by half, so keep the forklift in a temperature range of 25C or less.

Another factor that can impact the battery’s longevity is how often you charge it. Generally, it takes eight hours to charge an electric forklift battery fully. Setting it when the battery is at least 40% complete is recommended to get the most out of your battery.

Choosing the correct battery for your fleet can enormously impact productivity and overall efficiency. Two of the most popular choices are lead-acid and lithium-ion, each with unique advantages that can positively impact your operation.


forklift battery corrosion
Southern States Enterprises

Corrosion is a common problem caused by chemical and electrochemical reactions between different materials and substances. It can cause everything from oil pipelines to medical implants to public buildings to collapse.

It’s essential to understand how corrosion happens so you can prevent it from causing more damage to your forklift battery or other equipment. It’s a natural, unavoidable process when compounds are exposed to oxygen and moisture.

When your battery is damaged by corrosion, it can lead to problems that will affect the life of the battery and the lift truck. It’s essential to clean the battery regularly and keep it dry.

If your battery gets corroded, it’s best to remove it from the lift truck and take it to a repair shop. It is the only way you can ensure that your battery will be safe to use again.

While there, consider installing a dedicated charging station with signs, a fire extinguisher, and ventilation. It will help protect your workers from the hazardous acid released when you try to charge a battery damaged by corrosion.

The acid in a forklift battery is hazardous to come in contact with, and it can be challenging to clean up, especially if it’s hot to the touch. Be sure to use a neutralizer that will work to neutralize the acid, like baking soda.

Sulfur Smell

repair or replace forklift battery
Foxtron Power Solutions

When you notice a sulfur smell in your battery, it is time to consider whether to repair or replace the forklift battery. A forklift battery is a critical part of a warehouse or manufacturing facility and must be maintained correctly to perform at its best.

It is why keeping up with your maintenance schedule is so important. There are specific tasks that your in-house maintenance crew can do, but some repairs need to be left to a professional.

For example, a forklift battery should be charged regularly to keep it working at its total capacity. Keeping your battery set prevents the occurrence of a variety of problems, including decreased run time and slow response times.

Likewise, you should check the battery for signs of corrosion and debris on its surface before attempting any repair. If you notice white corrosion accumulating around the battery box and inter-cell connectors, this can cause problems for sensitive electrical components on your equipment.

When a forklift battery is overcharged, liquid sulfuric acid (H2SO4) breaks down and releases hydrogen sulfide gas (H2S), which has a rotten egg-like odor. This odor is hazardous and can cause throat and sinus irritation and breathing difficulty in high enough concentrations.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. We hope that it has provided you with helpful information on whether you should repair or replace your forklift battery.

Also read: 18 Things You Need to Know About Automotive Service Providers: Expert Tips

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