Wheelchair Battery Support
Ventilators should operate on a separate rechargeable wheelchair battery to ensure that the ventilator will not fail even if your chair battery power is used up. For safety you should also have an alarm to indicate low battery power and an emergency communication system.
Be sure your batteries are fully charged before leaving home as it can be dangerous if you get stranded somewhere without help. You should routinely have your batteries checked for proper fluid levels and charge capacity. Battery life is typically 3-10 hours of continuous operation.
The wheelchair battery can limit the operation of the power wheelchair, so be sure to get the right size and kind. There are two major types of batteries. Manufacturers design their power chairs for use with the deep cycle lead acid battery. Typically there are two batteries in series using 12 volts each for a total of 24 volts of electricity to drive the power wheelchairs.
Wet Cell Deep Cycle or Gel Cell Deep Cycle
For the ultimate wheelchair safety for users manufacturers usually recommend the gel cell batteries over the wet cell batteries because of environmental concerns and easier maintenance. In addition to this, the two types of wet cell batteries (vented and sealed) are not allowed on airplanes.
Wet cells require more maintenance with the need to check the water level regularly and the chance of a chemical spill could occur, resulting in skin burns. There is a chance of overcharging or overfilling these batteries.
There are two types: manual and automatic. Constant supervision is needed for the manual and the automatic detects when the battery is full. It charges the battery at a lower rate and shuts off when the battery is full, however it continues to provide a charge so you never want to leave the battery on a charger for more than 24 hours.
Be sure to get the right charger for your battery type as damage may occur by using the wrong charger
Wheelchair Battery Safety
Sensors should be built into the battery and the wheelchair charger to detect the correct charge so damage does not occur. Some chairs come with color coded or specific charge cords to decrease the risk of damage due to an incorrect connection. Be sure you have the right electrical configuration for your country.
To sum it up, the main characteristics of the deep cycle lead acid battery are its capacity (described in ampere-hours), its current rating (described in amperes), the type of cell (wet or gel) and the type of charger. The larger the wheelchair battery the greater the range you can use your power chair.