Are you concerned about the lifespan of your wheelchair battery?
Whether you are a skilled or inexperienced power wheelchair user, it is essential to learn how to maximize battery performance with your electric wheelchair.
One of the most important things you’ll need to know in order to get the most out of your new chair is how to charge the batteries effectively.
Every electric wheelchair on the market today uses deep cycle batteries, and if they aren’t charged properly, they will wear out way faster than they should.
Keep reading to learn some maintenance recommendations as well as instructional directions for properly maintaining them.
About Power Wheelchair
Power or electric wheelchairs are powered by lithium ion batteries, which typically take 6 – 8 hours to fully charge.
If you are charging them for the first time, it may take a little longer.
Some wheelchairs feature only one huge battery with the option of adding another.
The majority of devices on the market come with two lithium ion batteries that each have a capacity of 6 AH (ampere hour).
How to Charge a Dead Power Wheelchair Battery
There are several methods for charging a dead electric wheelchair or mobility scooter battery.
You may charge it with another battery pack, a pulse charger, or by hiring a professional.
At the same time, it is important to understand the best practices for using and charging a battery.
A proper wheelchair battery charge can allow you to extend the functional life of your batteries by several years at times.
Battery Care Tips
Most wheelchair batteries will have a one-year warranty. The following are some battery care ideas:
- Check your manual. It should include battery care advice as well as things you should do to guarantee that you can operate your wheelchair safely.
- You should fully charge your new batteries before the first use, which might take up to 10 – 12 hours.
- During the first two weeks of use, you should avoid discharging your batteries by more than 30% to 40%. This may limit your activities, especially if you need your wheelchair to get to work every day.
- It is recommended to charge batteries every night for extended periods of time (6 hours or more), even if they have not been used much throughout the day.
- It is always best to use the battery charger that came with your device. If you need to use a replacement charger, attempt to use the same manufacturer’s original charger.
- You should not deplete your batteries by more than 80%. Deep discharging might shorten the life of your battery. Unlike nickel-cadmium batteries, lithium ion batteries do not have a charge memory and hence do not need to be fully discharged and recharged.
- Batteries should be stored at room temperature. Extreme heat and cold can also shorten the life of a battery.
Despite our best efforts, wheelchair batteries may get entirely dead due to long inactive periods or complete depletion during usage.
You should ideally remove your battery from the wheelchair in the event of long periods of non-use.
Batteries may also progressively deplete if they are repeatedly deeply discharged.
In certain circumstances, you will be unable to recharge your batteries using the standard charger that came with your device.
You’re lucky if your batteries are still under warranty, because you’ll be able to get them replaced.
However, if the warranty is no longer available or has expired, you may wish to charge your dead wheelchair battery using one of the ways listed below.
Do-It-Yourself Method for Charging a Dead Wheelchair Battery
The aim of this plan is to deceive your device charger into charging a fully charged battery.
You will need the following tools, which are either easily bought online or in a store, or which you already have in your home.
- The drained battery
- A functional battery with suitable voltage capacity that is preferably similar to a dead battery in terms of technology. A second battery with the exact identical characteristics will be the best option. This might be your wheelchair’s backup battery. However, if you have been using both batteries simultaneously, both batteries are likely to be dead.
- Jumper wires to connect the batteries to the charger
- Voltmeter for measuring voltage
- Timer (found on most mobile phones)
- The charger included with your device
The first step is to connect the charged battery and the dead battery in parallel, with the positive end linked to the positive end and the negative end attached to the negative end.
It is important to note that the charger should not be connected to the batteries at this time.
If the charger is plugged and turned on, sparking may occur.
However, sparking can be avoided by connecting the positive connection first.
The second step is to connect the charger to the good battery.
At this time, the dead battery will gradually begin charging through the good battery.
To avoid any potential problems, you should ideally monitor the procedure continuously.
Check to see if the drained battery is heating up after about an hour and as frequently as possible.
It is recommended that you stop the operation immediately if the battery begins to heat up or if a hissing sound is heard.
Heating indicates that something else is amiss with the battery or that the battery cannot be revived.
You should also continue to use your voltage meter to measure the voltage of the drained battery on a regular basis to ensure that it has reached at least 10.5 volts.
Ideally, this should take between one and two hours. When this occurs, it is best to remove the good battery from the apparatus.
After carefully disconnecting the charger and removing the good battery, only the dead battery should be attached to the charger.
After that, you should keep charging until the dead battery is fully charged. If your charger displays full charge, follow the indicator; otherwise, keep checking the voltage with the voltage meter, and the whole charge procedure should be completed in three to five hours.
While the methods described above are effective for recharging a completely depleted battery, it is strongly advised that if you are using a wheelchair, you should undertake this activity under supervision or with the assistance of family members.
You should not be concerned if your electric wheelchair battery is completely exhausted and will not charge with your device charger.
Depending on the condition of your battery, you or a competent technician may choose to revive it using a pulse charger rather than replacing it.
Finally, if you have decided to purchase a new battery and dispose of the old one, it is critical that you do so carefully.
Batteries that are discarded carelessly have a harmful influence on the environment owing to lead discharge.
Check with your city or municipality to see if they have a battery disposal program.
You can also check for approved battery recycling centers.
There are also battery stores that will pay you a modest amount for a dead battery due to the pieces that they can extract from it
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do wheelchair batteries last?
Generally, power wheelchair batteries that are fully charged last up to 8 hours or about 10 miles.
The health of the battery influences the amount of time and distance the wheelchair will run on one charge.
As batteries age, the travel time on one charge lessens until a replacement is needed.
How long does it take to charge a dead battery?
Recharging a dead car battery can take at least 4 hours, and even up to 24 hours depending on the power of the charger and the size of the battery.
Usually, battery chargers put out around four amps, but there are more powerful chargers out there.
How do you charge a dead non removable battery?
If the device still won’t power on, trickle charge using a manufacturer-approved USB cable plugged into a computer.
Many times devices that are completely dead recover after 45 minutes to 2 hours using this trickle-charge method.
After the device recovers, finish charging by plugging into a wall outlet.
Can we replace a non-removable battery?
The experts at your manufacturer’s authorized service centers can replace your dead or dying internal non-removable battery quickly and efficiently without damaging your device.
Should I leave my mobility scooter on charge all the time?
When you put your scooter or wheelchair on charge, leave it until it has been fully charged and the light shows green.
Sometimes this can take 12 hours or more so we recommend charging over night.