In this article, you’ll learn:

  • The definition of opportunity charging
  • How to get started with the process

Opportunity Charging Forklift Batteries - What is it?

Warehouses across the country are running multiple shifts in a day which can be hard on equipment like forklifts. It then poses a problem when you need to factor in time to charge and let them cool down. Warehouses are turning to opportunity charging to allow them to work more efficiently. The improvement of lithium-ion battery technology has allowed opportunity charging to become a more common practice.

Opportunity Charging Battery

Opportunity charging a forklift is when an operator takes advantage of any downtime to charge a forklift battery. That means the forklifts are plugged into chargers when operators are on breaks, lunch, or changing shifts. Once an operator is ready to get back to work, the forklift will have enough charge to work until there is another opportunity to charge. 

You can use a lead-acid battery or a lithium-ion battery for opportunity charging. When utilizing opportunity charging with a lead-acid battery, you can experience downsides like reduced battery life and more maintenance requirements. These downsides are why many facilities are transitioning to lithium-ion batteries. Unlike lead-acid, you can extend the lifespan of a lithium battery with opportunity charging.


One key benefit of opportunity charging is not losing valuable operation time. You can charge your forklift during employee’s lunch breaks, preventing downtime, and increasing productivity. Opportunity charging can also extend the batteries’ life span, lowering overall costs. Plus, opportunity charging increases safety by reducing travel time between charging areas. Just keep in mind the initial investment to create the charging station. 


Opportunity charging allows you to charge the battery for short intervals, reducing downtime. Standard charging requires charging the battery all at once. The standard method is more involved with the forklift battery needing eight hours to discharge, recharge and cool down. And the company needs a designated battery space. On the other hand, opportunity charging involves the battery remaining in the lift truck and plugged into a charger. Some facilities may have banks of charging stations for this purpose.


Fast charging typically starts at a higher charge rate then opportunity charging. It works best for three shift operation or ones requiring heavy usage of equipment. If your company has limited space, it also reduces the need for battery change out rooms. However, there are a few things to consider.  This type of charging can lower the battery life, and you need to charge the battery to 100% at least once a week. In addition, you will need special chargers.

What Do I Need to Start Opportunity Charging Toyota Forklift Batteries?

You will need a training period to help get your operators trained to plug the lift truck into the charger during every possible opportunity to ensure they have enough charge to operate not just during their but also the next shift.

When properly implemented, opportunity charging will reduce downtime. If you want to bring opportunity charging to your facility, contact us to set up an appointment with an expert.

If you decide opportunity charging is right for you. Consider adding to your feet to keep up with increased demand. 

How & When to Water Forklift Batteries

Proper battery watering methods are vital to reaching the full life expectancy of a forklift battery.

What are the advantages of using Lithium-Ion batteries for forklifts?

Companies around the world are transitioning to alternative energy solutions such as lithium-ion batteries for forklifts. Learn the advantages of lithium.