Love your Wheelchair Batteries


A power wheelchair is nothing without its batteries, as we know all too well. All power wheelchair users want three things from the chair: Plenty of power, Fast as Hell, and everlasting battery power, yeah me too. Most power chairs have two large batteries (darn heavy) that require nightly charging while we’re sleeping, which by the way is the most practical way to go about getting our charge in for all of you new wheelers out there. Wheelchair batteries serve as rechargeable power sources for electric wheelchairs. These batteries are commonly sealed lead-acid/Gel/Littium-Ion ones and are designed to provide the necessary energy, typically 24 volts, to operate most wheelchairs and scooters. A typical configuration involves connecting two 12-volt batteries in series. The size of the battery pack varies depending on the wheelchair type and manufacturer. Regardless of the specific wheelchair, all wheelchair batteries require equal attention and care.


It is crucial to recognize that wheelchair batteries are consumable items and will eventually require replacement. The frequency of replacement relies on factors such as maintenance quality and frequency of usage. By properly maintaining these batteries, you can ensure their longevity and maximize their lifespan.

New batteries must always be fully charged


When acquiring new batteries for your wheelchair, it is crucial to prioritize their full charge. This can be accomplished by utilizing the charger provided with your wheelchair and allowing the batteries to charge overnight. It is essential to remember that newly acquired batteries should only be discharged by a maximum of 30% within the initial 10 days. This precautionary measure is necessary because it takes time for a new battery to reach its full charging potential, and exceeding the 30% discharge limit during this period can lead to permanent damage. Once the initial 10 days have passed, you may discharge the battery beyond 30%. Nonetheless, it is still important to ensure nightly charging to maintain optimal battery performance.

Charge nightly, even if they’ve been barely used


To ensure optimum performance, it is vital to charge your wheelchair batteries every night, allowing them to undergo a complete charging cycle. However, if you anticipate a less active day ahead and your batteries still retain a sufficient charge, it may not be necessary to charge them. It is generally recommended to err on the side of caution and charge the batteries, even if they have been minimally used during the day, rather than undercharging them. This is because batteries gradually lose their charge over time, even when not used. It is worth noting that as time passes, the battery’s capacity to hold a charge will gradually diminish, requiring more frequent recharging.

Avoid overcharging


To ensure the longevity of your wheelchair batteries, it is crucial to prevent overcharging, which can lead to premature failure. The recommended approach is to adhere to the charging duration specified by the manufacturer. If you utilize a universal charger, it is essential to verify that the voltage and amperage settings are correctly adjusted for your specific battery. By following these guidelines, you can effectively avoid overcharging and maintain the optimal condition of your wheelchair batteries.

Never leave a charging battery unattended


Ensuring the safety of your charging battery is paramount, and it is crucial to never leave it unattended. Prolonged charging can result in overheating, posing a potential fire hazard. Additionally, it is vital to keep the battery away from heat sources like radiators, as this can also induce overheating. By staying vigilant and taking necessary precautions, you can mitigate the risk of battery overheating and promote a safe charging environment.

Store your wheelchair batteries correctly


Proper storage of wheelchair batteries is essential to maintain their longevity. To achieve this, storing them in a cool and dry location is crucial. Extreme temperatures can lead to premature battery failure, making temperature control a vital consideration. Additionally, keeping the battery in an upright position ensures even distribution of the electrolyte fluid inside. By adhering to these storage guidelines, you can safeguard the battery’s performance and extend its lifespan.

Tips for extending the life of your wheelchair batteries


Here are some tips for extending the life of your wheelchair batteries:

 

  • Make sure you charge your batteries overnight on a regular basis.
  • Avoid overcharging your batteries.
  • Avoid draining your batteries below 50%.
  • Store your batteries in a cool, dry place.
  • Make sure your charger is in good working condition.
  • Keep your wheelchair clean and free of dirt and debris.

 

 


Following these tips will help ensure that your wheelchair batteries last as long as possible.

Conclusion


Maintaining proper care for your wheelchair batteries is crucial to maximizing their lifespan. Remember to charge them nightly, regardless of minimal usage. Additionally, it is important to avoid overcharging, never leave a charging battery unattended, and store your wheelchair batteries correctly. By adhering to these practices and giving your batteries the attention they require, you can ensure they last as long as possible and continue to serve you reliably.

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