What’s wrong with cheap industrial lithium batteries?

There are no obvious differences in the design or features of forklift batteries and other material handling batteries. Technical indicators such as voltage, Ah capacity, and other parameters must meet the requirements of the main vehicle standard. A battery management system’s (BMS) functionality is often the reason for significant price differences between brands, but there are also other components of the “total product” that affect price: delivery and installation, integration with forklifts and chargers, service and parts availability. Choosing a lithium forklift battery that is reliable and safe is essential for optimal performance and longevity. By choosing the right battery, you can maximize the efficiency of your organization.

Why do cheap industrial lithium batteries remain so cheap?

A major influence on retail prices may be cheap overseas labor when production expands. It is a relatively niche market, however, when it comes to material handling. Shipping costs are higher and delivery times are longer, which offset this advantage. How did things turn out after that?

The main problem is the limited functionality of high-quality battery modules and base-level BMS that are not automotive-grade. Second, the CAN bus system is unstable, despite the good quality of the components. These factors affect the performance of industrial lithium batteries. Batteries are powered by their core, according to us. Only the best-quality batteries with the safest technology are used to extend battery life and increase energy and power density. With its wide temperature range, it can operate even in extreme weather conditions. BMS also provide real-time diagnostics, adjust individual cell charging, optimize the battery, and protect it from degradation. Also, the Advanced Controller Area Network (CAN bus) serves as a communication system for the battery. The CAN bus functions both as a central hub and a means for communicating battery condition information to the BMS. A high-quality component also prevents overheating during high-current charging and discharging. With the highest quality components, BSLBATT forklift lithium batteries maximize performance. Charge and discharge processes. High-quality components like lithium battery modules, BMSs, and CAN bus systems cannot be adjusted according to the actual working conditions of the customer. Additionally, the battery lacks advanced features, which may result in a price advantage, but may also cause problems for users.

Below, David, a professional electrical engineer and top forklift expert at one of BSL’s distributors in Mexico, shows how cheap industrial lithium batteries purchased online from overseas can be delivered to your doorstep just as easily as forklift batteries. It requires AAA batteries to operate the remote control. That’s not true. Taking out the old battery requires a second forklift or crane, and connecting and testing it requires a technician. There are three aspects of an inspection: connectivity, safety, and operation. Installing and setting up BSLBATT’s lithium batteries is usually included in the price. It is expected that labor costs will rise for initial installation due to potential service needs.

When the spare parts are not available, the downtime cost equals the rental cost. If a replacement is not made in a timely manner, business operations will suffer.

Online purchase of a lithium industrial battery resulted in a problem

A BSL distributor in Mexico, David, an electrical engineer and top forklift expert, tells this story. An electric forklift battery distributor in Mexico provided a quote to a customer in Monterey for 15 5,000-pound battery units. Due to the higher price of “the Internet” compared to BSL’s Mexico distributor, it lost the bid.

A profile of David can be found at: https://www.lithiumforkliftbattery.com/bsl-batteries-north-america.html

The public transportation company sent the customer a lithium battery and charger for his forklift a month later, but he was unable to replace the old battery. BSL’s distributor in Mexico will deliver and install the new battery, and the old battery will be removed and disposed of properly. Rather than paying BSL directly for installation, customers pay its Mexican distributor $220 per battery.

An additional battery accessory was shipped to the customer after he experienced battery failure approximately 90 days later. For a fee of US$500, David can help the customer replace damaged parts.

A forklift stopped again as customers waited for their units. A total of nearly $600 went towards the rent. The process also involved headaches and downtime, as well as the time it took to overcome them.

He purchased the battery from the Internet for an extra $1,500, David explained. In the end, the customer demonstrates that he understands local support for the product and will not repeat the mistake.”

How can industrial lithium batteries be best managed?



According to David, lithium technology is not used at all by most forklift dealers in Mexico. Their batteries are often made by themselves or by artisanal battery producers whose technology has not yet been fully developed. The safety of these batteries is significantly questioned, and many battery systems today look as if they were cobbled together with jumper cables. Companies today play with fire too often! To help more forklift dealers choose the best industrial lithium battery, I feel it is necessary to elaborate on four points. It’s not comprehensive, of course, but if a vendor can’t answer your questions in these areas, then they aren’t worth working with.


Price is not as important as safety

In terms of cost and safety, battery technologies are diverse. It is recommended that you pay the premium. It is more expensive and dangerous to have battery accidents than to buy safe, high-quality batteries in the long run. Our products have passed UL2580 testing and are all PICC insured for our customers’ peace of mind!

https://www.lithiumforkliftbattery.com/lithium-forklift-battery-ul2580.html UL2580 test certification video

Speak with other long-term users of the battery or check accident statistics with the supplier.

  • A temperature and cooling management check should be performed
  • A lithium battery prefers a temperature between 25°C and 30°C, just like a human. Battery design is primarily concerned with temperature and battery management systems (TMS and BMS). A high or low temperature can degrade performance or even permanently damage it.
  • A battery can suffer permanent damage if a fire occurs before venting. If your supplier has mentioned battery outgassing, that’s a big red flag.
  • There are adjustable liquid cooling systems, which allow you to heat or cool the liquid according to your preferences. This ensures optimal performance regardless of the ambient temperature.
  • You should avoid batteries that do not have an active temperature management system.

Take a close look at the packaging

  • The best place to look for loose wires is on the printed circuit board. The more visible and present the wires, the more likely the device will fail.
  • Ensure that the cells are safe from fire by asking about the fire safety measures in place. The best companies implement fire safety systems and fire response plans to ensure fires are contained.
  • It is important to pay attention to companies that strive to keep cool. I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to good battery management.
  • There should be a lot of difficulty in accessing the battery. It is important not to expose these systems to the elements since they are high voltage and high current systems. Redundancy should be built into packaging as much as possible.
  • A higher yield is indicated by plastic or molded parts. As a result of the extensive investment in high-volume production, the manufacturer has molded aluminum components.
  • Battery systems customized for your application should be avoided. The modular products you choose should be able to be used in many different industries.
  • In order to manage battery performance, insulation is crucial. Honeycomb packaging and insulated containers are two things you should look for.
  • As a result of the modular design, safety and redundancy are assured.

It is important to check the fine print, experience, and performance in the field

Several batteries can be made at a time by some equipment manufacturers. Unlike small battery technology companies, large battery companies have thousands of references and applications. Battery knowledge is not the same as device application experience. Perfection is difficult for complex systems.


The standard is to provide cycle life of 80% DoD based on a percentage of “depth of discharge.” If the percentage is lower than 80%, the battery life will be reduced.


Cycle life should be stated by the manufacturer if it is theoretical or measured. Does it need to be verified on the ground or in a laboratory? Due to the short commercial lifespan of the technology, only a few companies have demonstrated field application data.

To conclude

Industrial lithium batteries from different brands may have almost identical technical specifications, dimensions, weights, connectors, controls, and appearance designs. There are, however, risks associated with treating industrial lithium batteries as commodities. As well as differences in mechanical and electrical design, electronics, and software, there are also differences in the availability of parts and local support. An operator must understand the benefits and trade-offs of all products in order to avoid potential downtime and additional labor costs.



Eric Yi


As chief engineer for our company since 2012, he has won “Hefei gold worker” and another honorary title. A lithium iron phosphate battery with a lead type low temperature water system won the fifth award of “Excellent” technology innovation achievements in Hefei as the fifth worker. The development of ternary aluminum shells, lithium iron phosphate aluminum shells, and lithium iron phosphate plastic shells.