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DJI charger: destroys battery after 6 charge cycles!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by mikeydaddio, Feb 25, 2014.

  1. mikeydaddio

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    Beware of the DJI charger. I had a battery go completely yesterday (never discharged them past the FIRST set of reds on the Phantom), and I discovered that the center cell was a complete short. I had a fresh battery (spare) that just came off the charger so I tested all three cells using the balance connector: side cells were 4.25 and 4.38 volts respectively but the center cell was 4.08 volts.

    So the DJI charger is charging the cells to 4.25, 4.08, and 4.38 volts! Now, I don't take those numbers verbatim from "only" a $250 multimeter but the numbers don't have to be absolute: fact is it is charging the cells with ~.3v difference on charge finish. Is it any wonder the center cell was the one destroyed in my other battery? Now I'm down to one battery.

    Just ordered a decent charger off Amazon. Due tomorrow. :oops: I'll protect my investment this time.

    Word to the wise: check your cells in your batteries and be sure your charger is doing it's job!

    I'm not even 30 days out on my B&H purchase of the phantom. Wonder if DJI would replace the battery for me? Seems like the right thing to do. Hell, they should replace the charger and one battery!

    Mike
     
  2. ElGuano

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    I would be just as worried about the overcharge to cell #3. If you're not pushing your batteries to the limit on discharge, you your middle cell SHOULD still be OK by the time you land on alarm level 1. But yeah, not a fan of the DJI charger, an intelligent "4 button" charger with a display was one of the first things I got.
     
  3. RobertLC

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    I'm new to the whole world of LiPo batteries.

    What's a decent charger for the Phantom batteries? Brand and model numbers, please.

    Thanks!
     
  4. HeliRy

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    Location:
    Vancouver Island, Canada.
    I picked up a Turnigy Accucel 8 charger for my batteries (Dinogy 2800), and a HobbyKing 150w power supply for it. The Accucel 6 is also a good option but finding one online can be tough. It's a popular model and many places are back ordered.

    Prices are pretty good too. No need for the $200+ chargers many of the big brand multirotor sites try to sell you. You're only charging 3s batteries, not Dr Brown's Delorean :cool:
     
  5. mikeydaddio

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    This is the one I just got. At that price, it's probably a clone but I can't afford more than that right now after the gimbal and everything else. I'll post an update in the next couple of days to share how well it works.

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HED ... UTF8&psc=1

    Mike
     
  6. OI Photography

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    +1 for the Accucel 6. I'm pretty sure the IMAX B6 charger is the same unit in different clothes, it's in the same price range and has the same great rep as the Turnigy.
     
  7. Shrimpfarmer

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    Can I just clarify, are you talking about the DJI charger for the Phantom 1 here ?
     
  8. DiscoDrew

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    Bummer Mikey! I have had good luck with my original DJI charger and DJI batteries, they have always balanced fine. I did add another charger to the mix with an IMAX B6AC, which I am very happy with. I Intend to buy a couple more B6AC's as I have a mountain of batteries amongst a couple multi rotors. I would call B&H and they will likely send you a new charger and battery. Generally I think they are a fine charger on a 2A load, certainly bad units can be found though. Why not get what you paid for though?!
     
  9. jodaddy23

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    1 OR 2 ? my 2 has many charges and no problem .
     
  10. ericdes

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    You seem to have a malfunctioning charger, and this seems to be an isolated incident.
    Call DJI and let them aware. This should be covered under warranty. T

    Still a bummer for you.
     
  11. DanCH

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    I had a very similar problem to this and made the below thread a while back:
    viewtopic.php?f=4&t=5945&p=44087#p44087

    As soon as I realised what was going on (I guess too late) I went out and bought a volt meter and a good charger. I complained at the shop I bought the Phantom 1.1.1 at and they told me "ofcourse, it's junk". Took me 2-3 cycles just to get the bad cell balanced again.

    But now I have 3 x 2200 Phantom batteries that I am pretty certain are not performing fully. With a weight of around 960g (everything necessary for flight, plus gopro 3+ and a tracker), I should be getting longer than 6 minutes before the 1st battery warning right? Can anyone tell me if that's what I should expect at that weight or am I running with damaged batteries?
     
  12. mikeydaddio

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    To clarify, I have a Phantom 1.1.1 and charging with the DJI charger that came with that. I'll probably write to DJI since I don't think this should be on B&H. My new charger comes tomorrow but so I could get one more flight today, I used this old Eflite charger (650mA) and it did the job:

    http://www.horizonhobby.com/products/EFLC3110

    Took about 4 hours but after one charge, the voltages were:

    4.08
    3.96
    4.15

    Not perfect, and not really fully charged, but at least it's not charging one cell up to 4.38 volts and one at 4.08 like the DJI charger. So the $19.99 Eflite charger is actually doing better than the DJI charger.

    Mike
     
  13. mikeydaddio

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    Yeah, it's sounding that way. Sucks though because I had a decent multimeter sitting here the whole time and it never occurred to me to check each cell off the balancing connector. So the lesson here is: if you have a multimeter, double check that your charger is working properly. I had measured the final charge voltage and it was 12.6 to 12.69 volts after every charge so I thought it was OK... but some were under and some were over. So my message here is a call out for people to check their cell voltages to see how good their charger is really working, so this doesn't happen to anyone else.

    Mike
     
  14. mikeydaddio

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    Just wanted to report that the charger I got is excellent!

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HED ... UTF8&psc=1

    I can't believe the price for the features. Charged both of my batteries and you can monitor each cell as it goes. This thing is accurate to within a hundredth of a volt on each cell (as confirmed with my meter). Discharge mode works really well too! You can even make/save profiles.

    Mike