When you’re working in a factory, with a printing press, or in other industrial settings, battery safety may not be top of mind. You have so many other, more obviously dangerous things hanging around that batteries just don’t seem that risky.
But it’s important to follow battery safety rules all the same. If you don’t know any battery safety rules, we’ve got a few for you when you’re working with Rexroth electric industrial motion control systems.
Don’t heat batteries
The idea is that increasing the temperature of the battery can speed up the chemical reactions. Given just that little bit of extra oomph, the battery might be able to keep supplying power a little bit longer.
Here’s the thing. Heating up the battery can speed up the chemical reactions. This could lead not to a slightly longer battery life but to an explosion.
Don’t recharge batteries
Rexroth’s batteries are not rechargeable. Trying to recharge them can lead to overheating, expansion, and explosions.
Don’t throw batteries into a fire
Rexroth’s documentation specifically says this: “Do not dispose of batteries by throwing them into a fire.” We’re not sure why you would be tempted to do this. If you feel the urge, however, you should resist. Throwing batteries into a fire can lead to explosions.
Batteries should be considered hazardous waste, and you should follow the normal protocols for hazardous materials when you dispose of them.
By now, you have probably noticed a theme running through these warnings. Batteries are inclined to explode. They are made of reactive chemicals in a closed container. Heating batteries can cause them to expand, and the container can open. The chemicals in the battery will then leak from the battery, melt, or mix together in ways that can cause exciting reactions.
You can end up with chemical burns, damaged machinery, or of course explosions.
There is another danger with batteries. Some Rexroth machinery, such as MKD motors, use batteries requiring replacement every now and then. You may not want to pay for the genuine replacement batteries. You may figure you can just grab a similar battery. Pull out the old one, put in the new one, and Bob’s your uncle.
Actually, the amount of time involved in doing this is enough for your machine to lose its configuration completely. You have saved a little bit of pocket change by using the cheaper battery, but your machine is now a very expensive paperweight.
The danger here is not from the battery’s exploding, but from your boss exploding in anger.
If you’re not sure how to replace the battery in your machinery, give us a call and we’ll help you through the process.