As we go out, we either use public transport means or drive our cars. Most of us cannot last a few hours without our tablets or smartphones. We also need remote controls to switch to our favorite channels while watching TV. This shows that we interact with batteries in our everyday life. This is especially true if you use a fully powered wheelchair. Batteries fitted to mobility scooters, and electric wheelchairs need to get charged and well taken care of to enjoy the freedom and comfort this equipment offers. So, how long do wheelchair batteries last?
Usually, it takes approximately 8 hours to fully charge wheelchair batteries However, new batteries might take 10 or more hours of charging. A fully-charged battery can hold the charge for several hours. The potential travel range can be around 10 to 20 miles. However, the sustainability of power will depend on various factors:
1. The type of the batteries installed
First, you need to check if your wheelchair has sealed lead-acid or gel batteries. Enquire from the vendor, or you can check it (although very risky).
- Gel Batteries – When new, charge them fully. After that, ensure you recharge them when the battery gauge indicates a low charge. This will ensure you don’t get stranded with flat batteries. And in such a scenario, ensure you have a backup. After around 15 charges, always ensure to charge the cells at the end of the day. Never allow them to run completely flat. Gel batteries are known to last longer than sealed lead-acid batteries when taken care of.
- Sealed Lead-Acid Batteries – Once you get the wheelchair, ensure to charge these batteries to full capacity. Recharge them at the end of the day regardless of the power charge in the cells. If you cannot manage to charge them daily, you can charge them once a week. After every two months, discharge the batteries to a low charge and recharge them again. Importantly, make sure the batteries never run completely flat.
2. Age of Batteries
Once the batteries are over 18 months, they tend to lose power quickly, and the range decreases. This may be the right moment to replace the power wheelchair batteries.
The surfaces on which the wheelchair is can affect the length of time the batter can keep the charge. Rough terrains will drain power fast than when used on flat and smooth surfaces.
4. Rider’s Weight
The rider’s weight can also affect the battery power.
The Best Way to Charge Your Batteries
Here is a great video about how to charge dead wheelchair batteries:
Regardless the type of batteries you have; ensure you use the charger supplied with the wheelchair. More so, ensure your wheelchair is fully charged which will be indicated by a green light. Sometimes, it can take 10 hours or more. So, it’s recommendable to charge it overnight. Even when not in use, the wheelchair battery should be kept fully charged. This will extend the lifespan of the batteries and give you a good idea of how long do wheelchair batteries last.
Note: If the chair will not be used for an extended period, it’s advisable to disconnect the batteries from the wheelchair. It will allow them to drain their charge naturally.
We hope this article has helped you determine how long do wheelchair batteries last.