Industry News

Your forklift batteries is Broken: Replacement or Repair?

0 Published by admin Jul 30,2021

Wisdom Power is a manufacturer of forklift batteries, chargers and handling equipment based in Huizhou, China  

Is your industrial forklift battery in need of replacement or repair? When a forklift battery fails completely or is running less than eight hours on a charge, figuring out what’s wrong is the first step in deciding if it should be repaired or replaced. If the battery is relatively new (less than five years old) and the problem is a minor one, opting to repair an industrial battery instead of buying a new one could save you money.

forklift battery replacement

Here’s a quick checklist of battery maintenance items to help make this determination:


If your forklift doesn’t start up right away, the first thing you should check is always the battery cables and connectors. A cable may have come loose during operation, the battery may not have been reconnected properly after a charge, or a cable may have worn out from age. Whether you are inspecting lead acid or lithium ion batteries, a proper connection is critical and is typically an easy fix.

If you find a loose connection, attempt to tighten and try to restart the forklift. Look out for signs of corrosion at any contact points and use battery cleaner and a wire brush to clean contact points before attempting to reconnect.

However, if the wires appear stiff or swollen at the battery connection points, this is a sign that replacement or repair may be necessary.  Fusing or lead burning the cable terminations can be a potentially hazardous project requiring professional assistance.


Check each cell’s voltage output with a voltmeter. The most accurate reading will come when the electric forklift battery is under load. To achieve this, simply tilt the mast back against the stop.

Ordinary DC voltmeters can provide voltage readings, but only the crudest of cell indications.  When measuring an entire row of cells, a difference of a volt or more may identify an issue with a cell within that row.  To take things a step further, get a voltage reading under the load on a fully charged battery.  For lift trucks, the mast must be tilted back against a stop to provide a short, but high-amperage load onto the battery.  After doing so, observe the voltage results of each cell or group of cells.  If any cells drop under 1.70 volts, they are suspect for problems.


A hydrometer can be used to check the specific gravity of an industrial battery. Before testing, do a visual inspection to ensure the battery has enough visible electrolyte in each cell and check that it has been fully charged since it was last watered.

Another measurement of importance when determining the state of charge and the electrochemical health of the battery is the specific gravity level.  A hydrometer provides these readings and helps identify cells that are falling out of line with the rest of the battery.  Normal ranges are between 1.150 discharged and 1.290 when fully charged.  If the meter shows a lower specific gravity than the others (usually around 25 points of difference) that showcases a failing unit that may need replaced.


If you smell a strong hydrogen sulfide odor (resembles a rotten egg), that means the battery experienced damage beyond economical repair.  This smell occurs if the unit has suffered some impact to the cell containers inside the unit, requiring professional assistance to fix it.

If you are not successful in determining the issue with your battery, the next step is conducting a complete capacity discharge test with a professional battery technician.

5. Should I replace or recondition my battery?

The cost of a forklift battery is not insignificant. In fact, the battery represents about 30% of the vehicle’s cost. Reconditioning can save money, but it’s not right for everyone.

If you’re still unsure what the problem is, we can help. Our forklift service department specializes in battery inspection, maintenance, and repair. Give us a call today to discuss any questions you have about battery troubleshooting, schedule a battery inspection, or to purchase a forklift battery replacement.