Is your company hesitant to make the switch from internal combustion to electric? Do you wonder if battery-powered forklifts can rise to the challenge of moving multi-ton, heavy-duty payloads. Or maybe you think battery-powered equipment can’t work outdoors, or that it requires battery changes to handle two and three shift operations.
Electric forklift usage is growing, now accounting for 70 percent of the North American market. If you’re part of the 30 percent still using internal combustion (IC) lift trucks, Stryten can help you make the leap to battery power (BP).
We assure you that battery power can meet and even exceed those challenges.
Getting Started With the Switch From Internal Combustion to Electric
First, let’s debunk any misconceptions you have regarding BP.
- Electric forklifts do not require battery changes for multi-shift operations. Stryten’s fast-charging solutions eliminate the need to change batteries. Batteries never leave the truck and are charged during breaks for optimal performance.
- Fast-charging does not damage batteries. Stryten’s closed-loop system enables batteries and chargers to be in constant communication. The charger reacts to changes in a battery’s temperature and voltage, and automatically adjusts charge rates to minimize charge time while without impacting battery life.
- Battery-powered forklifts are engineered to work in outdoor conditions. Today’s AC motors use magnets and are sealed, enabling them to withstand harsh conditions such as sea salt, rain and sawdust.
- AC motors allow forklifts to maintain full power throughout each shift with no loss of productivity.
- Electric forklifts provide power, speed and torque that matches and often exceeds the performance of IC-powered equipment.
What About the Cost of Switching?
For those of you concerned about the cost of switching from IC to BP, consider the following points.
- Today, equipment leasing companies allow the cost of batteries and chargers to be included in a forklift lease. There is often no up-front capital investment associated with the conversion.
- The switch to electric is considered part of the monthly total cost of operations lease expense. This allows your savings to begin on Day One.
- The cost of upgraded electrical service can even be rolled into these leases if necessary.
The Benefits of Making the Switch From Internal Combustion to Electric
Finally, let’s look at the benefits of using battery power in your operation.
- Lower fuel costs – 40 cents of electricity does the same work as $2.50 of gas.
- Lower maintenance costs – With no radiators, fluids, or filters, electric trucks cost up to 40 percent less to maintain.
- Reduced energy consumption – According to the U.S. Department of Energy, electric lift trucks produce the lowest well-to-wheel greenhouse gases of any lift truck fuel.
- Increased sustainability – Electric trucks eliminate on-site CO2 emissions and the need to dispose of used oils and filters; batteries are 98 percent recyclable.
- Enhanced safety – Electric lift trucks have no coolant or engine oil to spill, which reduces accidents, injuries, and damage in the workplace. With no propane tanks, chassis are up to 20 percent shorter. Electric lift trucks can provide better visibility and help drivers avoid accidents.
- Increased performance – With powerful AC motors and up to 100,000 pounds of lifting capability, electric trucks are engineered to move heavy loads in all environments.
It’s time to power your fleet in a different way. Battery power is a superior option, and at Stryten, we are ready to help you make the switch today.
By Bret Aker, Vice President Software Solutions, GNB Industrial Power, a Division of Stryten Manufacturing