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Avoiding These 3 Common Battery Injuries

Deep cycle batteries deliver a great deal of power for a long period of time, and they come in relatively small containers. When you have that much power in one small area, there are going to be safety concerns to worry about. If you handle deep cycle injuries for your company or even at home, then you need to be aware of these types of common injuries that can occur at any moment.

Ingestion of Toxic Materials

These batteries generate their power by using a series of toxic materials that can be extremely harmful if ingested or inhaled. When you are working with deep cycle batteries, it is extremely important to avoid direct contact with the chemicals inside, and even more important to take immediate action if the chemicals are ingested or inhaled.

Sparks Flying

The charging process for these batteries creates a series of gases that are extremely flammable. A common and devastating type of injury that happens when handling deep cycle batteries occurs when a spark or electrical current makes contact with these gases and causes the battery to explode. This is a very real concern that everyone who handles these batteries should be aware of at all times.

Low-Hanging Jewelry

Another very common injury with deep cycle batteries are burns that come from wearing low-hanging jewelry. The jewelry could make contact with a terminal on the battery, and then complete the arc with another piece of metal. If that happens, then a shock will go through the jewelry and cause serious injury.

Avoiding These Injuries

The best way to avoid these types of deep cycle injuries is to develop good habits when it comes to handling and working with the batteries. These habits include:

  • Recharging batteries in a well-ventilated area
  • Not wearing any loose clothing or accessories while charging batteries
  • Always wearing protective gloves and goggles whenever you handle the batteries
  • Cleaning up spills the moment they happen
  • Having neutralizing solution nearby to allow for easy clean-up of any acid
  • Using an industrial watering device and not a garden hose to refill the batteries
  • Keeping an eye wash station close to the charging area

The ideal way to avoid injuries is to set aside an area that is designated only for working on batteries. This area would be well-ventilated, have a fully-stocked first aid kit on hand, have neutralizing solution nearby, not have any low wires or anything that could cause a spark, and have a work table that is the right height to work safely on batteries.

At Industrial Powersource (IPS), we offer complete safety training on handling and charging deep cycle batteries. Our experts will walk you through the entire process and give you all of the professional advice you will need to keep your work area safe, and avoid the common injuries that can occur when using these powerful batteries.

Posted in: Battery Knowledge, Battery Safety, Industrial Batteries

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Replacing and Recharging Your Forklift Battery

According to OSHA, industrial forklift batteries should last approximately 2000 discharge/charge cycles or 2000 work shifts (under normal conditions). However, frequently transporting heavier loads will drain forklift batteries more quickly than moving light objects.

Warning signs a forklift battery is dying and should be replaced include:

  • Delayed turning over of the forklift
  • Dimming or flickering headlights
  • Ammeter showing a high RPM discharge
  • Battery case has corrosion buildup
  • Battery emits a rotten egg smell

4 Things to Know About Replacing Forklift Batteries

  1. All batteries need sulfuric acid to work properly. Sulfuric acid is extremely corrosive and can cause all degrees of burns if splashed on skin. When you are replacing forklift batteries, always wear protective gear made to resist sulfuric acid (OSHA approved face shields, chemical aprons and rubber gloves).
  2. Remove jewelry and all nearby metal objects from the area before replacing forklift batteries. Metallic objects can short circuit battery terminals and cause an explosion or arc.
  3. Double check that the forklift is aligned with the hoist before lifting out the battery. You don’t want a hoisted battery swinging even slightly as you remove it. Also, make sure hooks are firmly secured in the battery’s lifting holes.
  4. Inspect vent captions to make sure they are working. Compartment/battery covers need to be open to allow heat to dissipate.

4 Things to Know About Forklift Battery Repair/Recharging

  1. Make sure ampere hour ratings are no more than 10 percent of the forklift battery being charged. The battery’s model number tells you the number of cells, amps per cell and plates. To find the ampere hour rating, subtract one from the plate number and divide that number by two. Then multiply that number by the middle number. That should give you the ampere hour rating.
  2. Never water forklift batteries prior to charging them. Overfilled batteries will spill over while charging, allowing dangerous sulfuric acid to erode floors and possibly cause accidental burns. Also, water forklift batteries only with de-ionized or distilled water. Make sure the plates are covered inside the battery cells.
  3. Keep looking for gas bubbles while recharging forklift batteries. The sight of gas bubbles means the battery is almost fully charged. Resulting from the positive plate producing oxygen and the negative place producing hydrogen, bubbling is necessary for creating consistent acid levels across all plate areas.
  4. Forklift batteries that are too hot or too cold won’t charge correctly. NEVER charge a frozen battery and NEVER charge batteries hotter than 115°F.

Replacing and recharging forklift batteries should only be done by people with the experience and knowledge necessary to perform this action correctly. Staffed by skilled personnel who can replace and recharge all your forklift batteries, Industrial Powersource ensures optimal functioning of your forklift batteries so don’t need to worry about unexpected operational delays or serious accidents. Contact IPS Battery today for more information about our extensive line of services and products.

Posted in: Battery Knowledge, Battery Safety, Commercial Batteries, Forklift Batteries, Heavy Duty Batteries, Industrial Batteries, Industrial Chargers, Reconditioned Batteries

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