Whether you’re powering a forklift or other industrial machinery used in your plant or warehouse which use the same motive power batteries and chargers, it’s important to buy superior products that match your specific needs, budget and equipment. To determine the right battery or power source for your needs, we’ve put together a quick guide to types, making the choice, and getting what you need from a supplier.
Types of industrial battery or other power sources
There are several types of forklift battery and newer power technologies you might encounter, which can be quite confusing if you’re not already familiar with the terminology. Make sure you’re matching the right battery to your task and equipment:
- Flooded. Lead acid batteries containing cells with liquid electrolyte, designed in a variety of sizes, configurations, and capacities. Require somewhat regular maintenance and care.
- AGM. Absorbed Glass Mat batteries which lock the electrolyte into a cell contained by fiberglass mats between plates. Notable for its low maintenance requirements.
- Gel. Another low-maintenance battery type, in which the electrolyte is held in a gel suspension.
- Thin Plate Pure Lead. Use this battery when you want and charge it when you can. The thin plate technology offers rapid recharging capabilities that gel and flooded batteries can’t match. Highly shock resistant and maintenance free.
- Lithium Ion. Now available as a battery pack in electric pallet jacks, Lithium Ion technology offers clean, maintenance free uptime making it the perfect option for direct store delivery trucks
- Hydrogen Fuel Cells. The latest technology to achieve higher operational productivity thru fast fueled electricity. There is no need for charging, only minutes to refuel the cells. Provides constant voltage drastically improving utilization.
Choosing the right battery power for your forklift fleet
For many years the choice has been between AGM, Gel and Flooded batteries for your fleet, depending on the level of maintenance and care you want to put into keeping your forklifts powered. AGM batteries cost more and have their own hurdles, but are non-spillable, don’t require watering, are easy to safely transport, safe without ventilation, and are easily recharged. AGM batteries require care in your use of power, as excessive draining shortens the lifespan.
Gel cell batteries excel in their slow discharge rates and their potential to operate effectively and safely under high ambient temperatures, but they require custom charging equipment and fairly precise management of your power.
In the last few years there have been many new power technologies entering into the materials handling – lift truck arena including the introduction of both Lithium Ion and Hydrogen Fuel Cells. It is wise to explore and evaluate these technologies that may be a larger investment on the front end but can offer long term savings and return on investment in terms of productivity, efficiencies, space savings, emissions and sustainability initiatives.
Need forklift batteries in South Plainfield?
If you’re shopping forklift batteries, chargers, or other equipment and accessories in or near South Plainfield, NJ, contact Barclay today. We can help you match the right battery to your material handling needs, and figure out any other warehousing or fleet servicing problems you’re dealing with.