Lead-acid batteries have been around since the mid 1800s and the technology is constantly being honed and refined. As the more environmentally friendly and cleaner alternative to IC engine forklift trucks, electric forklifts rely on cost-effective, efficient and practical batteries and their associated chargers.
That’s what makes lead-acid the battery of choice for forklift trucks the world over, but there is competition.
The benefits of its much younger cousin, lithium-ion, are often touted, and on paper they’re hard to deny. High energy density, quick recharging and low self-discharge rates (i.e. the rate at which batteries run down when left to their own devices) are certainly appealing traits so it’s understandable that some are viewing lithium-ion as the ideal forklift battery solution.
But in the real world, these benefits start to lose some of their impact. Alas, the cost-to-benefit ratio just doesn’t add up - the cost of replacing a lead-acid battery in an existing forklift with a lithium-ion equivalent (and also replacing the associated charger) could set the buyer back by up to four times the amount needed to just replace the present lead-acid battery like-for-like. That’s a cost that most businesses simply aren’t able to entertain and puts the focus on taking advantage of the more pragmatic lead-acid options, which are improving all the time.
There’s also the issue of recyclability – there’s no denying it’s cheaper and easier to recycle a lead-acid battery than a lithium-ion one and we all know the importance of recycling when it comes to industrial battery use.
So while we’re all for looking forward when it comes to battery technology, we can see the future of forklifts being electric, and that electricity coming from cost-effective and recyclable lead-acid batteries.
We’re going to be on stand 11N51 in Hall 11 at the upcoming IMHX 2016 exhibition, and we’d love to see you there.
We always enjoy attending this annual trade show because it brings together so many people from all over the materials handling world, giving us a chance to chat with our customers, suppliers and contacts outside of our daily working lives.
We hope you can make it to the show. If you’d like to book a particular slot to visit the stand, please just call us on 02920 705453; Alternatively you’re more than welcome to just show up and we’ll be happy to accommodate you!
IMHX is the largest meeting place for the UK’s materials handling industry. This September over 20,000 supply chain professionals will gather to evaluate cutting edge technologies, explore the latest industry solutions and discuss how to increase efficiencies within supply chain operations. It is also an opportunity to network with industry colleagues and debate the industry's hottest topics. See more on the IMHX website.
...and you’re looking at it! We’ve listened carefully to feedback from our customers and created a brand new website that makes it easier than ever to reach the useful information that they require.
Chief Executive Amit Ghosal comments: “The new site really reflects the strength of the Espex company and our traction battery brand, CEIL, showing us to be the knowledgeable, confident market leader that we are. We’re constantly listening to what our customer are telling us, which is why our new site has been optimised for mobile devices such as mobile phones.”
The site features datasheets, brochures and specifications for many of our battery products, chargers and services.
We’re now active on social media too – please see the links at the top of this page.