4 Multico Electric Forklift Maintenance Tips
What are the maintenance tips for electric forklifts?
- Perform daily inspection prior to use
- Charge the batteries according to the manual
- Inspect and maintain the battery condition
- Have your electric forklift serviced regularly
Electric forklifts are preferred by many companies because they produce fewer to zero emissions, are quiet to operate, and are easy to maneuver. Other than that, they also provide lower operating expenses and longer maintenance intervals for business owners! If you’re interested in using this material handling equipment on your site, here are some of the electric forklifts maintenance tips you might find useful.
Perform Daily Inspection Prior to Use
Whether you’re using diesel or electric forklifts, you need to train your operators to perform a pre-shift inspection daily. This way, they know what to look for when checking the equipment. Daily checking can help your employees spot problems early before it causes an injury.
One benefit of using an electric forklift is it has fewer moving parts than its internal combustion counterparts. This means a daily inspection is easy to perform. Here are some of the things that should be part of your routine checks:
Inspection Checklist When the Forklift Is Turned Off:
- Deflated tires
- Damaged forks and mast
- Malfunctioning lights
- Level of hydraulic fluid and brake fluid
- Unreadable warning decals and load rating plate
- Damaged seat belts
Inspection Checklist When the Forklift Is Turned On:
- Strange vibrations and noises
- Horn and light malfunction
- Battery indicator lamps
- Lift and lowering functions are working
- Responsive steering wheel
To ensure that you don’t miss a forklift component during the inspection, it’s best to refer to your manufacturer’s manual for the official checklist.
Charge The Batteries According to The Manual
Unlike internal combustion forklifts that are powered by LPG or diesel, electric forklifts need to be charged fully to ensure productivity on the site. Batteries are built with a finite number of cycles, so not having a charging schedule can shorten their lifespan.
Most manufacturers recommend charging your batteries before it is 80% discharged. But charging too soon is also not good, so make sure that the battery is at least 30% discharged. Some companies stick to a schedule by having the batteries charged after an 8-hour shift.
When a battery is discharged, it is not recommended to leave it for long periods. Once you charge the battery, ensure that it reaches its 100% capacity as cutting the charging time is also harmful to its lifespan. Check for signs of overheating to avoid permanent damage.
Inspect and Maintain the Battery Condition
As one of the most important parts of an electric forklift, battery maintenance is also necessary. This way, you can get the maximum number of cycles the battery is designed for. Most forklift batteries usually last around five years if it’s used often and is well taken care of.
If your battery doesn’t last as long as it used to or needs to be recharged more often, then these might be signs that your battery is reaching the end of its life soon. A forklift battery is heavy and has a high amperage, so it’s best to consult a technician to have it replaced.
Other than that, make sure that the battery fluid is filled to the right level. Otherwise, you might encounter a breakdown. For most electric forklifts, the battery fluid needs to be topped off every 10 charges. But to make sure, consult with your manufacturer’s manual first.
Dirt, dust, and other contaminants can build up around the battery over time. If neglected, this could lead to corrosion and faster self-discharge. Corrosion can lead to safety risks and problems with the operation if you let it develop. Train your employees to keep the battery tidy or have it cleaned by a professional.
Have Your Electric Forklift Serviced Regularly
Other than daily inspections that you can perform on your site, it is also recommended to have your electric forklifts checked regularly by a professional. Compared to in-house checks, this might involve diagnostic equipment. The good news is that electric forklifts have longer maintenance intervals compared to other fuel types.
During your planned maintenance, a trained technician will inspect the forklift’s safety features, battery, accessories, and attachments. Think of it as a thorough safety check for your material handling equipment. It can help you and your operators have peace of mind. It also reduces the occurrence of downtime! Other than that, you can use it as an opportunity to ask questions.
There are some factors you need to consider when scheduling routine maintenance for your electric forklift. Other than your manufacturer’s recommendation, the age of the forklift, the environment it is used in, and how often it is used will also be considered.
An electric forklift is low-maintenance, but that doesn’t mean that you can neglect it. You need to perform daily inspection, monitor your charging time, check on the battery often, and have it serviced professionally by technicians.
If you have questions regarding the electric forklifts maintenance tips, you can send a message here at Multico! We carry one of the most reliable brands of forklifts globally—Clark Forklift. If you’re interested in purchasing or renting them, we can help you choose the best type for your needs. Other than that, we also provide technical training and preventative maintenance support.