6 Charging & Maintenance FAQs: How To Properly Care For Wheelchair Sealed Lead Acid SLA Batteries

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How well even the best wheelchair batteries work in the short term and over the long haul depends on the care and maintenance you give them.  The performance also depends on making the proper selection for your individual needs.  For example, if you take long rides, you will need to buy a wheelchair battery with the appropriate capacity. 

Once you purchase your battery, it’s important to read through and follow your wheelchair manufacturer’s charging instructions.  Routine battery maintenance will extend the quality and longevity of your wheelchair batteries.  By following these guidelines for charging and using your wheelchair batteries, you can greatly increase their life and performance. 

Q:  How often should I perform battery maintenance?

A:  Ideally, routine battery maintenance should be performed weekly, but no less than monthly. Every week, you’ll want to at least check battery connections.  Periodically, check cables and terminals and clean them with a wire brush if corrosion appears. 

Q:  Does it matter if I leave my battery in a cold or hot environment?

A: Yes, as far as the life of the charge and the life of the battery itself go, temperature does make a difference.  If you can avoid it, don’t expose your battery to any extreme hot or cold temperatures or at least limit exposure to extreme temperatures as much as possible.  The ideal is to keep your batteries at room temperature.

Q:  What if my battery is completely drained?

A:  Wheelchair SLA batteries stay much healthier when you keep them charged at all times.  Batteries that are left in a discharged state for an extended period will begin to deteriorate.

Q:  Does it matter which charger I use?

A:  Yes.  Always use the accompanying wheelchair manufacturer’s or battery manufacturer’s charger.

Q:  How often should I charge my wheelchair battery?

A:  Make sure to charge your battery as soon as possible after use.  If you use your wheelchair every day, it’s best to charge your battery every night.  When you plug in the battery charger, make sure the meter or indicator light is on to confirm that it really is charging.  Never use the wheelchair before it is done charging.  Incomplete charging can weaken your wheelchair batteries over time.

Q:  How can I prevent my battery from overcharging?

A: In order to avoid overcharging your battery, make sure it is not attached to the battery charger for more than a 24-hour period.  Overcharging can cause permanent damage.  Many chargers have LEDs to indicate when charging is complete.

Some of the most common causes of shortened battery life are: not using the appropriate charger; exposure to extreme temperatures; overcharging; and not following manufacturer’s charging instructions.

Following these battery charging and maintenance tips will keep your wheelchair battery healthy, in great condition, and provide you with many extra days of use before replacement. Ultimately, the reliability of your batteries depends on how well you care for your batteries. Wheelchair batteries that are well cared for have the potential to last up to two years. But if you’re doing all this and notice that your battery is not lasting long between charges, it may just be time to purchase a new wheelchair sealed lead acid battery.

If you’re looking to save money when purchasing your battery, look for value-priced wheelchair batteries that have all the quality of top brands, without the high price.  Many of the best online sellers offer a one year warranty and replacement batteries for wheelchair brands including Amigo, Burke Mobility, Chauffer Mobility, Drive Medical Design, Everest & Jennings, Hoveround, Invacare, Pride, Shoprider, Sunrise Medical and more.  Depending on the wheelchair model, battery prices can range from $50-$300 and up. 

For more information or to find the best wheelchair battery for your individual needs, visit our website at, email, call 630-295-6800 or toll-free at 877-469-4225.

By jennymwright

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