Heltec active balancer, factory direct, no branding, cheaper!!!!

Brandon8792

Solar Enthusiast
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Nov 20, 2019
Messages
59
Hey guys! So on my journey to finding a very good active balancer, I ran across the brand Heltec from here on the forum.
Seemed good enough to me. They offered to do $24 or $48 depending if I wanted to do 16s 1.2a, or 16s 5a.
Well of course I searched around, and found a seller on eBay. Come to find out, their the factory that makes these for everyone!! Which is typical, people slapping their name on a product.

anyways, they agreed to match the price Heltec is charging, it won’t have any brand name on it, and it was free shipping. (I’ve found China shipping seems to cost me $30-$60 for small orders so price matching with free shipping is great to me).

www.ebay.com

New Version 5A Balancer 4 LTO LiFePo4 Li-ion Battery Active Equalizer Balancer | eBay

LTO IS Li2TiO3. LFP IS LiFePo4. LPO IS LI-ION Lithium. Maximum balance current: group error 0.1v1a; 0.5v3.5a; 1.0v5.5a (18awg 30cm cable test). Balance accuracy: 5mv. Balance accuracy ≤ 5mv. Sleep current ≤ 1mA.
www.ebay.com

www.ebay.com

2S~8S 10S~17S Li-ion LiPo Lifepo4 LFP Battery Active Equalizer BMS 1.2A Balancer | eBay

17S version can use for 1S ~17S. The smaller the current, the static power consumption does not exceed 20uA! With balance instructions! Lithium battery active balance energy transfer board Lithium battery active equalizer High efficiency energy transfer equalization.
www.ebay.com

I hope this helps people.
 

Ampster

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May 3, 2020
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Kenwood, California
I bought one to test. I hooked it up to test on an 8S pack that was unbalanced pack I am using for testing until my 8 other cells arrive. The single LED lit up but none of the others. After days it seemed to do nothing.

Are the other LEDs supposed to come on? I may have a broken one. I bought it on Amazon so I can send it back.
 

Brandon8792

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Nov 20, 2019
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Not sure still waiting on mine to arrive from China. Mine was straight through the factory so idk if someone makes a lower quality off brand or not tbh
 

grizzzman

Some say "Why" and some say "Why not?"
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Sep 21, 2019
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I bought one to test. I hooked it up to test on an 8S pack that was unbalanced pack I am using for testing until my 8 other cells arrive. The single LED lit up but none of the others. After days it seemed to do nothing.

Are the other LEDs supposed to come on? I may have a broken one. I bought it on Amazon so I can send it back.
What style capacitive? Inductive?
 

grizzzman

Some say "Why" and some say "Why not?"
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Sep 21, 2019
Messages
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I had the same issue. Has to be .100 out to work. The inductive work at the upper end of the charge cycle. Make sure the version is at least 1.4. Version 1.3 wastes power into heat.
 

Ampster

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Thanks. The delta is less than .100 so that is why it is not working. I will bring one cell down and see if it does anything. It is version 1.3 so that may be a reason to send it back.
 

sid the seagull

Slip slop slap
Joined
Nov 12, 2020
Messages
64
What is the consensus of using both an inductive and capacitive balancer ?
Inductive to work out the top . Capacitive to work at the bottom?

I’ll have a crack at it next year with some made up second life packs.
 

grizzzman

Some say "Why" and some say "Why not?"
Joined
Sep 21, 2019
Messages
1,267
I tried that. The capacitive was so slow as to be useless. I did use 4 of the inductive at the same time. Within 4 cycles they had balanced the pack to the point of no longer triggering at all. Last year I had a version 1.2 turn into a massive heater. I will only plug them in while I’m around to monitor.
 

solardad

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Apr 13, 2020
Messages
399
These are crap. I purchased a 12s version and they did not really do anything impactful even when i 'forced a cell' into the balance range.
 

Ampster

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May 3, 2020
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Kenwood, California
Thanks. I just received this one from Amazon and while it is only 1 Amp it is configurable and is cranking away on some seriously unbalanced cells in a test pack. For me as a data hound I like having the Bluetooth connectivity to my phone.
I am sending the Heltec back to Amazon..
 

adriansantos

New Member
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Apr 28, 2020
Messages
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20210126_101327.jpg20210126_101050.jpg

Am using the 5a Heltec, old version i think. Before my these cells gets unbalance with 1 reaching 3.73, 4 months now with balancer and seems to be doing good. i also have the newer 4s version of heltec, the max i got was 2amps transfer, but since my bms also has passive balancer, not sure it really can reach 5amps
 

lonertic

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Apr 23, 2021
Messages
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I had the same issue. Has to be .100 out to work.
man that's a deal-breaker right there :( ... on LiFePo4 chemistry that's like almost 50% SoC difference before you'll see a 0.1v difference! on my JK BMS I set the delta threshold to be 0.01V... I'd be interested in this if they have a version that triggers on 0.01 or less... because on a larger capacity cell like a 200Ah cells, this is like saying you'll be almost 4kWh out of balance before the balancer even wakes up!

I'm actually still quite confused by one of @Will Prowse 's video (
) on Active Balancers being a waste of money. if you take a look at this graph https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet...LTXYv_1LlbcFqE4gxMgK8SrMvs/edit#gid=968848831, LFP cell at 3.35v is 90% SoC, and 3.25V is 40% SoC.. so there's a whole gap of 50% SoC missing in between that 0.1V ... this is a huge issue on larger cells. I have 200Ah cells that experiences a full charge/discharge cycle every day (yes i have a power hungry house), so brand new cells without active balancers will be out of balance in less than a week (that actually happened to me. I took his advice and ran my brand new cells without active balancing for a few days to test the theory.. 3 days later, 4 cells out of my 16 completely bloated, one even completely internally shorted! luckily no kaboom or toasty garage).. at $200 a pop that was a very expensive lesson. anyway, point is, I find that even 2A balancing current on my JK BMS is grossly inadequate, these are 200Ah cells.. that means if they're out by any significant difference, that'll take up to 100 hours to balance them, and I have a 24 hour cycle. To mitigate that risk, ideally I'll want 20A balancers but those probably don't exist on ebay/AE/amz, so I'll probably have to settle for a 5A... @Will Prowse if you're here could you shed some more info on your theory that active balancers are a waste of money? That's been quite the opposite of my experience and that assertion could be dangerously misleading to newbies
 
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nonoceb

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Jun 10, 2021
Messages
55
active balance is pointless on a grade a cell but can be usefull to keep not matched cell together a lot more time especialy at high discharge/charge rate
 

Steve_S

Offgrid Cabineer, N.E. Ontario, Canada
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active balance is pointless on a grade a cell but can be usefull to keep not matched cell together a lot more time especialy at high discharge/charge rate
I run QNBBM-8S Active Balancers on ALL of my packs. 2 are Bulk 280AH Cells, 1 Matched & Batched 280's, 1 350AH 2p8S Recycled EV Grade LFP.
Once primary charge is complete and my system enters into Float mode, the active balancers level everything up to within 10-15mv on all the packs. The bulk cells will deviate far more & they do than the Matched cells. The EV cells, well they are an odd creature.

There are many balancer systems out there, some good, some not. ALL are particular to their application as well and you have to be 100% certain the Active Balancer you are looking at is the Correct one for Your Application, Battery Chemistry ESPECIALLY. Most important, it has to be properly sized for the cells you are dealing with. A 10AH cell versus 100AH or 200AH will all need the right capacity to be effective. THIS is where many people fail when shopping as this requires more detailed knowledge & understanding and no marketer is very clear on it. This stuff is NOT unversal.
 

nonoceb

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Jun 10, 2021
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For me active balancing is usefull to get long life on a battery pack not perfectly matched.
Imagine this real 4S case : 278ah - 279ah - 280ah - 279ah
the less capacity cell 278ah will be degrade faster because his voltage swing a little bit more than other and these little degradation amplify the degradation along the life of the 4S battery.
Putting 1A active cell balancing is enough to solve the problem for a full 0.5C discharge. 1A cell balancing only at the top soc is doing nothing against but everything will be ok if soc don't go < 20%
 

ecofly_power

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Oct 8, 2021
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5
if you choose the active balancer, I think need to confirm it is from HeltecBMS , just suggestion !!
 

Fosse

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Nov 18, 2019
Messages
82
What is the consensus of using both an inductive and capacitive balancer ?
Inductive to work out the top . Capacitive to work at the bottom?

I’ll have a crack at it next year with some made up second life packs.
Is this possible or a really bad idea?
 
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