If you aren’t staying on top of your forklift’s engine and battery, you should get in the practice of doing so. All it takes is a little inspection, but you will need to make a habit of checking it daily or whenever you plan to crank your engine so that you can always drive safely while on the road.
You need to know what to look for and how to know when to replace your battery on a forklift before every shift. This helps you keep a consistent workflow while on the clock.
Corrosion on terminals
When manufacturers make large batteries, they seal them off because they contain harmful chemicals, such as sulfuric acid. Should you encounter corrosion around the terminals, immediately have it inspected and replaced if they suspect that your battery has gone bad. This is usually a sign that you haven’t taken care of your forklift battery well or bought a bad battery.
Spills and leakage
If you ever see leakage and fluids coming from your battery, have it removed immediately. If you decide to do it yourself, make sure you wear the proper protective gear when removing it, as the acids within the battery could eat through your flesh. Don’t think that you can do it yourself without this protection.
You should always take precautions when dealing with highly toxic batteries like these. Once removed, clean your engine and the case and terminal where the battery sat as thoroughly as possible to remove any chemicals you find.
This is a bad sign. If you ever encounter this smell around your battery or your forklift, immediately get to safety and stop breathing in the fumes. This is a highly toxic compound that comes from water mixing with sulfuric acid, creating hydrochloric acid. This can be extremely harmful if you come into contact with it. Have a professional remove the battery for you and replace it immediately.
Smoke or fire
No one should have to tell you about this one, as it should be straightforward. Stop the engine as soon as humanly possible and remove yourself from the forklift to give it time to cool down.
Hopefully, this has helped your repertoire with how to properly manage your forklift daily. By checking for these signs that it’s time to replace your battery on a forklift, you’ll know what to do if you find yourself in a bind.