Expert Guidelines for Preserving Your Heavy Equipment Battery

by Admin
Heavy machinery, including forklifts, bulldozers, and excavators, relies on robust batteries to minimize downtime and maximize operational availability. These batteries must endure even more challenging conditions than typical automotive batteries.

Moreover, with the increasing complexity of modern construction and agricultural equipment such as Mini Excavators, Tele Handlers, and Wheel Loaders, there is a growing demand for high output batteries. These batteries are now expected to not only provide starting power but also support cyclic performance for advanced features like telematics, electronic engine management, and process management tools.

At Parts for Machines, we specialize in a wide selection of heavy equipment and leisure batteries specifically chosen for various applications, ranging from Agriculture to Manufacturing, Construction to Leisure vehicles. Working closely with Yuasa's product management team, we have identified the right batteries to suit your equipment, giving you peace of mind to focus on your tasks. We also offer express delivery and a Fit Guarantee to support your growth.

Many heavy equipment batteries have a long lifespan, and with routine battery servicing, this lifespan can be further extended.

Failure to maintain a battery regularly not only reduces its optimal lifespan but also often results in breakdowns and lost productive hours on the job site. Based on our extensive experience in the construction and manufacturing sector, we have developed several valuable tips to help you preserve your battery's longevity.

Tip 1: Regular Battery Maintenance

Regular battery maintenance is a straightforward and effective method to ensure your battery's long and trouble-free life. In harsh conditions with dust, dirt, and extreme temperatures, the battery's efficiency can diminish over time.

Through regular usage and periodic electrolyte top-ups, your industrial battery will perform optimally. This electrolyte typically consists of a sulfuric acid chemical solution mixed with pure water and a few additives. Improper handling of this corrosive material can significantly harm your battery. It's crucial to use distilled water, free of minerals, as tap or bottled water can contain impurities that may damage or shorten your battery's life.

According to data from Yuasa's Battery Finder, batteries should ideally be installed within 15 months of manufacturing, with a voltage higher than 12.4V during installation and no lower than 12.25V in the worst case. Batteries falling below 11.0V should be discarded to prevent irreversible sulfation development, which can impact equipment performance.

With significant advancements in battery technology, AGM (Absorbent Glass Mat) batteries may be more suitable for demanding farm or construction site conditions. AGM batteries are maintenance-free, storing all required electrolytes inside the battery itself.

Even in heavy-duty construction, industrial batteries function similarly to batteries in your PC and phone and require recharging.

Each battery is programmed to discharge energy to a certain level before needing recharging. Continuously using batteries beyond this point can reduce their lifespan.

We recommend using a hydrometer to check the charge and topping up the battery regularly.

Charging an industrial battery, such as a truck battery, carries some risk as it can release hydrogen gas while charging. Charge it in a well-ventilated area without open flames to avoid the risk of explosion.

We recommend the 5000 series of construction equipment batteries for their high vibration resistance and reliability.
Use Promocode YUASA25 to get 2.5% off on Yuasa Batteries exclusively on Parts for Machines.

Tip 2: Equalizer Charge When Necessary

Some batteries require an equalizer charge for correct and efficient operation. Battery chargers with this feature typically have a button to manually activate the equalizer charge. If you're unsure whether an equalizer charge is needed, how much to deliver, or how to do it, consult your battery or charger manual for guidance or contact us for assistance.

When receiving an equalizer charge, batteries should be charged for a longer duration. This extended charging period can lead to overheating, so batteries should be closely monitored during this process.

Tip 3: Monitoring and Topping Up

Industrial batteries must maintain the right amount of electrolyte for peak performance. After every five or so charging cycles, check the fluid levels in the cells. Testing two to three cells helps ensure adequate levels.

Avoid topping up a battery just before charging, as levels rise during charging. However, ensure that the separators are covered by topping up with deionized water.

Adjust levels to the maximum only after the battery has stood for at least an hour after charging.

Never overfill a battery, as corrosive liquid may leak from the vent plugs during charging.

Only use sulfuric acid for the initial battery filling; top up with distilled or deionized water. Do not use tap water, as it contains minerals and impurities that can accumulate on the electrodes and shorten battery life.

If the battery has a maximum level line on the container's side, fill it to that level. If there's no maximum line, look for filling tubes projecting to the bottom of the lid and fill to the bottom. In the absence of any line or tube, fill to around 7mm (0.25 inches) below the bottom edge of the lid cover.

Tip 4: Prioritize Safety

Safety is paramount when working with batteries.

Wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) such as safety glasses, masks, and aprons during repairs.

Keep the top of the battery clean and dry.

When attaching or disconnecting a battery, ensure the chargers are turned off. Keep open flames and metal objects away from the battery's top.

During charging, open the compartment and battery cover of the material handling equipment to help reduce temperature rise.

In extreme conditions, use fans to regulate temperatures. Never stack batteries directly on top of each other without proper packaging.

Allow the battery to return to its normal temperature before reconnecting it to the vehicle.

Avoid adding any additives to your battery.

Tip 5: Replace the Battery When Necessary

There comes a time when replacing the battery is essential, not only for improved efficiency but also for enhanced safety. Look out for critical signs indicating that an automotive or industrial battery needs replacement:

      ➤ Physical damage
      ➤ Terminal corrosion
      ➤ Increased battery temperature
      ➤ Reduced run time
      ➤ A sulphur-like smell

In conclusion, if your equipment or vehicle's battery is operating well below peak efficiency, it can impact your machine's performance significantly. Batteries play a crucial role in today's machines, especially with the increasing integration of electronics. Neglecting battery maintenance or operating with a low charge can lead to disruptions, breakdowns, and unscheduled maintenance.

Battery maintenance requirements vary depending on the battery type, usage, and size. The battery's operating life also depends on the product and its application. At, in partnership with Yuasa, we have gained extensive knowledge of heavy equipment batteries, especially those used in Construction, Agriculture, Plant hire, Quarry, and the leisure sector. Feel free to reach out to us with any questions Our experts can guide you in selecting the right battery to maximize your equipment's performance!

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