Differences Between Lithium-Ion vs. Other Forklift Batteries

In times of high inflation and labor costs, warehouse managers and owners are looking for ways to cut costs and boost efficiency. A productive forklift system is vital to getting cargo on and off of loading bays, helping businesses survive and thrive.

When it comes time to replace or upgrade your forklift fleet’s battery system, get the right type of battery. Look at these differences between lithium-ion versus other forklift batteries.

Wet Cell Batteries

Forklift operators often choose wet cell batteries, also called flooded lead-acid batteries, for cost savings. But when it comes to these batteries, you get what you pay for.

A wet cell battery has an electrolyte suspended between charged plates. You must top off and regularly monitor the electrolyte level for the battery to function properly.

These batteries charge far slower than other battery types. Most warehouses have a dedicated charging station, and you must swap these batteries out multiple times a day, adding a time and space constraint while raising the cost.

Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM)

Absorbed glass mat (AGM) batteries are sealed batteries that use lead acid. They’re the newest type of lead-acid battery. Since they’re sealed, they don’t require the operator to add the electrolyte. And they charge several times faster than a wet cell battery.

However, their lifespan drops with each charge cycle, and they last half as long after 1,000 cycles. This means they require more frequent charging or premature replacement.

When considering the differences between lithium-ion and other forklift batteries, it’s important to think of the depth of discharge. The depth of discharge is the percentage a battery can be discharged without incurring damage. AGM has a lower depth of discharge than lithium-ion batteries. This means that lithium-ion batteries are less likely than AGM to get damaged from exceeding the depth of discharge.

Lithium-Ion Batteries

Lithium-ion batteries are quickly becoming the preferred choice for forklift batteries. They have a lifespan that’s over twice that of the wet cell or AGM at around 3,000-3,500 cycles. While lithium-ion batteries cost more upfront, they cost as much or less than lead-acid batteries over their lifespan.

Lithium-ion batteries also charge far more quickly, going from empty to full in around two or three hours. With forklifts plugged in for a top-off, a lithium-ion battery can power your forklift for an entire day without needing to be swapped out. This saves space in your facility and puts the operator’s time to better use.

If you’re looking for a replacement forklift battery, check out Green Power Forklift Batteries. We carry new and refurbished forklift batteries to fit your capacity and budget needs. Shop our inventory now or call us for more information.