Watering batteries is a deceptively simple task. There are really only two steps: 1. See if a battery needs to be watered and 2. Water it if it needs water. Unfortunately, the processes that most warehouses use to water their batteries can fall short of the ideal. Most warehouses water batteries on a set schedule, often a weekly basis. This is an inefficient process, as it wastes time checking and watering batteries that may not need it yet as well as fails to take into account that some batteries may need to be watered before the scheduled date.
Improper watering of batteries can hurt their longevity and charge capacity. Every boil over resulting from overwatering reduces the battery’s charge capacity by about 3% to 5%, translating to about 15-25 minutes of run time. Under watered batteries suffer damage to their negative and positive plates, reducing the battery’s life and potentially completely destroying it. There are a number of steps warehouse owners can take to improve their battery watering game plan.
One way is to attach battery watering monitors to the top of each battery. These monitors have a sensor that detects when the water level is too low and some kind of indication that the battery needs to be watered when this is the case — often some sort of small blinking light. This system saves your workers from having to peer into every dimly-lit battery as well as helps ensure that batteries are getting water when they need it, increasing their capacity and longevity.
Single-point watering systems can also help you save money on batteries by increasing their lifespan. Permanently attached to the top of the battery, these systems allow works to fill batteries much more efficiently than filling it manually as well as lessening their exposure to dangerous acids. One study found that in a 100-battery fleet, a warehouse can expect to save about $26,000 per year by switching over to a single-point watering system.
Because of how simple it may seem, the task of watering batteries is often overlooked when it comes to evaluating your expenses. In reality, most batteries are inefficiently maintained and suffer from a decreased lifespan and charge capacity because of it. Warehouse owners will likely enjoy reduced expenses from lighter labor demands and longer-lasting batteries if they reevaluate the way they water batteries.