For businesses, the cost is important when making buying decisions. It is especially true for choosing vehicles and high-value material equipment. As most businesses rely on having highly efficient forklifts for their warehouses and construction sites, the choice of which forklift batteries you should opt for has a big impact on the bottom line. So, what is the right battery for your forklifts – lithium-ion or lead-acid?
Lithium-Ion or Lead Acid
The time-honoured batteries that have been used for forklifts for nearly a century are lead-acid batteries. Lithium-ion, like Crown forklift battery, is recent. But which one is better than the other? There are certain points to consider when choosing the perfect one for your fleet of forklifts.
MAIN DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE TWO
The lead-acid battery was invented in 1859 but underwent many refinements over the decades. It provides power through chemical reactions with sulphuric acid and lead plates and needs to have its water level maintained through topping up periodically. Lead-acid batteries are considered an economical option.
Lithium batteries entered the market around 1991. They are versatile and can be found in almost all electronic devices and even vehicles. Lithium-ion batteries are more expensive, but it has numerous long-term advantages making them the more affordable option in the long term.
Both batteries need to be recharged. If your fleet uses 24-volt batteries, you require 24-volt battery chargers. The charging times of these two battery types are vastly different. Lead-acid batteries can take anywhere from 8 hours to 48 hours (for large batteries) to get fully charged. Lithium-ion batteries can get fully charged in around 2 hours or so.
The process of purchasing forklift batteries for sale is a recurring expense. The length of the batteries’ service life plays an important role.
Lead-acid batteries – approximately about 1,500 cycles
Lithium-ion batteries – From 2,000 up to 3,000 cycles
Lead-acid batteries contain toxic chemicals such as sulphuric acid and lead. As the batteries need to be topped with water, there is a danger that some of those chemicals may spill or splatter if the topping up is not done properly. The batteries also release fumes when they are being charged and can also heat up, so they require a temperature-controlled environment.
Lithium-ion batteries like the Crown forklift battery, on the other hand, uses Lithium-iron-phosphate or LFP. The electrodes remain stationary which makes the batteries completely sealed. It decreases the risks of spills, contamination, or corrosion. Although the electrolyte is somewhat flammable, a chemical component may create corrosive gases when it comes in contact with water.
In conclusion, lithium-ion batteries have the advantage over lead-acid batteries.