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Maintenance

There’s no such thing as a maintenance-free machine, and material handling equipment is no exception. Browse through the BHS blog archive to learn about maintenance for everything from forklift batteries to lift trucks themselves.

Topics

  • Forklift Battery Management for Manufacturers

    The manufacturing industry can’t operate without adequate material handling systems, and, inevitably, those systems include forklifts. From replenishment to handling pallets of raw goods and finished products, forklifts provide the muscle that keeps manufacturing lines running. It comes as something of a surprise, then, that manufacturing facilities don’t always apply the same engineering interventions that they use to keep lines... Continue Reading
  • Forklift Battery Operators: Why Every Warehouse Needs One

    Companies that run one or two electric lift trucks generally rely on forklift operators to change batteries. As the fleet begins to grow, however, it starts to make more sense to create a new position at the warehouse: the forklift battery operator, sometimes also called a battery room manager or even a battery changer (note that we reserve that last... Continue Reading
  • Preparing the Forklift Battery Room for DC Peak Season

    Every retailer has a peak season, and distribution centers are no different. Certainly, the peak can differ between one outlet and another — an office-supply store may experience peak season during the final days of the summer, when parents stock up for back-to-school season, while most general ecommerce DCs brace for the winter holidays. Whenever peak-to-average order ratios soar, it’s... Continue Reading
  • Making the Most of Automotive Plant Shutdown

    Automakers and other manufacturers use summer shutdowns to perform vital tasks to keep operations running smoothly. While these lulls in output can be expensive — after all, factories are not only stopping production but spending big money on improvements — they can also increase productivity. And when management takes time to carefully plan a plant turnaround, they can reap even... Continue Reading
  • USDA FSIS Regulations and Forklifts in Food-Handling Applications

    Within the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is tasked with keeping unsafe food products — particularly meat, poultry, and eggs — out of the U.S. food supply chain. The FSIS carries the weight of law and conducts inspections of food-handling and processing operations to make sure they’re not at risk of spreading foodborne illness.... Continue Reading
  • Forklift Battery Maintenance During Peak Season

    The holiday season is in full swing, and that means warehouses are working overtime to fulfill orders. While permanent staff and temporary workers put in extra hours, don’t forget that your equipment is working hard, too. To get the most out of it, a little preventive maintenance can go a long way. Washing Batteries Improves Forklift Performance It’s a bit... Continue Reading
  • Preventative Maintenance for AGV Batteries

    Automatic guided vehicles (or automated guided vehicles, depending on who you ask) are touted as the future of material handling. They’re driverless forklifts or carts that follow paths through floor implants, pre-programmed routes, or by using cameras or laser guidance. As advanced as AGV technology has become in recent years, one thing about these devices will be familiar to anyone... Continue Reading
  • Efficient Forklift Battery Watering Without Single Point Systems

    Integrated Watering Systems are the gold standard for watering forklift batteries. For industrial operations that have the means to install them, these automated watering systems are a great investment. But what about the many, many facilities that aren’t ready to move to a single point system? In 2015, industry publication Modern Materials Handling reported that 70 percent of North American... Continue Reading
  • Developing a Forklift Battery Watering Strategy that Works

    Ask any battery room operator how often to water forklift batteries and you’ll probably get one of two responses: “Check them once a week and water as necessary,” they’ll say. Or they might say, “That depends.” The second response is about as accurate as it is frustrating, which is to say, totally. The fact is, battery watering can be tricky... Continue Reading
  • Prevent Boil-Over with Forklift Battery Watering Tools

    Forklift battery boil-over is sometimes accepted as a standard risk of battery room management, but overflow incidents are far from unavoidable. In fact, if your operation has encountered multiple boil-overs this year, you should evaluate your equipment and make sure that you’re adequately outfitted. Boil-overs are dangerous for workers — and expensive for facilities. When battery acid contacts a sealed... Continue Reading
  • Forklift Battery Watering: Striking the Right Balance

    Watering forklift batteries can sometimes feel like a high-wire act. Add too much water and your risk of boil-over skyrockets; too little, and dry cell takes hold. Stray just a little in either direction, and you’ll find yourself plummeting into a financial pit. That’s because either of those outcomes will wreak havoc on battery life spans. To keep electrolyte levels... Continue Reading
  • Designing a Better Forklift Battery Room

    So you’ve decided you need a new battery room. Maybe your current battery charging area is outdated, or perhaps your fleet is just now large enough to justify the expense. Regardless of the reason, your new battery room’s success depends on a great plan — from choosing the ideal location to optimizing equipment. Battery room planning tools from BHS help... Continue Reading
  • Washing Forklift Batteries and the Law: What You Need to Know

    Washing forklift batteries is a simple maintenance task, but like so many warehouse operations, this activity is subject to serious legal regulations. Don’t let that scare you away from the job; washes extend the operating life of your batteries and lift trucks, plus they keep your workplace safer. But it’s crucial that you obey the law when you wash batteries.... Continue Reading
  • Safety Tips for Washing Forklift Batteries

    If you want to keep your forklifts running at peak efficiency, you must wash your batteries. But washing forklift batteries isn’t without its challenges. The runoff from the process is full of acid traces and heavy metals that aren’t safe for your employees. Luckily, there are some simple solutions to increase safety during battery washes. By following these tips, you... Continue Reading
  • Why Washing Forklift Batteries is a Crucial Maintenance Task

    With all of the day-to-day tasks involved in running a warehouse, it can be easy to overlook a crucial part of your operation: preventative maintenance. Forklift batteries must be washed regularly to keep your fleet profitable. Establish a strict washing schedule for your batteries and stick to it. You’ll see the following benefits in no time: Longer Battery Life –... Continue Reading
  • TCLP Analysis: How Environmental Regulators Test Your Battery Wastewater

    If you’re washing your forklift batteries (and you are washing them, right?) then you’re also producing hazardous waste. Battery wash water contains traces of sulfuric acid and toxic metals that the EPA regulates heavily. In order to avoid enormous fines and possibly even criminal charges, every facility manager should understand exactly how the EPA goes about determining whether your wastewater... Continue Reading
  • Why Wastewater Disposal Is An Essential Part of Forklift Battery Maintenance

    To keep your forklift batteries running efficiently, you have to wash them periodically. But maintenance procedures don’t stop there — you must also make provisions to safely dispose of runoff from the washing process. Failing to do so could subject your business to massive EPA fines, or even land you in jail. Facility managers who are new to electric equipment... Continue Reading
  • Planning a Spare Parts Inventory for Your Lift Truck Fleet

    To keep your operation productive, you need to look for every possible way to improve day-to-day efficiency — and in many cases, this means planning for the unexpected. Every operation that uses material handling equipment will eventually need to repair both its lift truck fleet and its battery handling equipment, and immediate access to spare parts can drastically improve recovery... Continue Reading
  • Green Battery Washing Practices for an Eco-Friendly Storage Facility

    Of all the forklift battery maintenance tasks required to keep a fleet running at peak efficiency, battery washing may pose the greatest environmental challenge overall. Battery wash wastewater is heavily contaminated with a variety of pollutants, including: Sulfuric Acid Lead Copper Rust (Iron Oxide) Particles Dirt and Organic Matter In order to comply with green initiatives (along with federal, state... Continue Reading
  • Planned Maintenance for Battery Handling Equipment

    Everyone knows that cars need regular, scheduled maintenance to keep running at peak performance, and battery handling equipment is no different. No one wants to lose valuable time and productivity when a machine is down. Keeping a regular schedule of maintenance will extend the life of battery changing equipment and help limit emergency downtime. Daily equipment inspections and Planned Maintenance... Continue Reading