Introduction: Upgrading DIY PowerBank for Smartphones & Other USB Compliant Device

Picture of Upgrading DIY PowerBank for Smartphones & Other USB Compliant Device

This is an upgraded DIY Powerbank projects for:

•DIY 1-Home made Powerbank using AA Batteries

•Links found here:

iPhone DIY Powerbank


•DIY 2- Home made Powerbank using 3 pcs of 18650 2200mAh Li-iOn battery (6600mAh)

•Links found here:

Step 1: Before & After Upgrade

Picture of Before & After Upgrade

*Images below shows the following:

Image 1 "Before"
Image 2 "After"
Image 3 "Rechargeable AA NiMh type @ 2800mAh

Step 2: *Type of Battery Connections

Picture of *Type of Battery Connections

How to wire Batteries &

How Battery works -simplified

Image 1

•DIY 1 Powerbank using AA batteries used "Serial Connection"

Step 3: USB Step Down Chipset

Picture of USB Step Down Chipset

•Batteries used for upgrading DIY 1 Powerbank 2800 mAh NiMh x 8 pcs in Series connection

= 1.5v x 8 = 12v dc •Upgrade from Single USB chipset upgraded to Dual USB chipset 12vdc input to 5vdc output via USB

Slot 1 = 2.1 mAh Slot 2 = 1.0 mAh

Step 4: AA NiMh Powerbank Specs

Picture of AA NiMh Powerbank Specs

DIY 1 Project Specs:

•2800 mAh

•Weight = 220 g = 7.7 oz

•Size: Width = 3.5 " Height = 2.0 " Depth = 2.0 "

Step 5: *Performance/Tests/battery Options

Picture of *Performance/Tests/battery Options

Performance upon tests:

• Can full charge iPhone 4 plus 40% left juice using NiMh 2800 mAh

•Other Types of AA Batteries Specs in mAh (capacity)

•Primary (non-rechargeable) zinc–carbon (dry cell) AA batteries have around 400–900 milliamp-hours capacity •Zinc–carbon batteries are usually marketed as "general purpose" batteries. Zinc-chloride batteries store around 1000 to 1500 mAh are often sold as "heavy duty" or "super heavy duty". •Alkaline batteries from 1700 mAh to 3000 mAh cost more than zinc-chloride batteries, but last proportionally longer.

•List of other Battery Types

Step 6: *DIY 2

•Minor upgrade was applied here(before it was transparent that can be mistaken as a dangerous device.
•Spray painted with metallic Black

Step 7: *Battery Wirings Simplified

Picture of *Battery Wirings Simplified

How Battery works -simplified for this project

•DIY 2 uses Parallel Connection

Step 8: Wiring Diagram

Picture of Wiring Diagram

• How to wire:

Very simple!

Step 9: *DIY 2 Project Specifications

Picture of *DIY 2 Project Specifications

DIY 2 project Specs:

• 6600 mAh (2200mAh x 3)

•USB and Micro USB support

- Input 5vDC via Micro USB - Output 5v DC via USB

- 800 to 1.0 Ah charger is required to charge powerbank

•with Auto Stop Charge and Discharge controller chip

• 9 hrs to full charge powerbank via MicroUsb

•Led light indicators

Blue- when discharging

Red- when charging powerbank

• compatible to any USB compliant device like mp3s,digicams,router,pocket wifi ,portable DVDs,smartphones & tablets.

•Weight =230 g

= 8.11 oz

Step 10: DIY 2 Project Specification

Picture of DIY 2 Project Specification

DIY 2 project Specs:
• 6600 mAh (2200mAh x 3)
•USB and Micro USB support
- Input 5vDC via Micro USB
- Output 5v DC via USB
- 800 to 1.0 Ah charger is required to charge powerbank
•with Auto Stop Charge and Discharge controller chip
• 9 hrs to full charge powerbank via MicroUsb
•Led light indicators
Blue- when discharging
Red- when charging powerbank
• compatible to any USB compliant device like mp3s,digicams,router,pocket wifi ,portable DVDs,smartphones & tablets.
•Weight =230 g
= 8.11 oz

Step 11: Test Results

Picture of Test Results

Performance upon tests:
• Can full charge iPhone 4 and HTC Sensation up to 3 Times
from low battery stage of 15%
• Can 1 time full charge an iPad mini from low battery stage.

•added more images of upgrade

Step 12: Instructables Links

Picture of Instructables Links

Links on How to build Powerbank using AA Batteries

iPhone DIY Powerbank

•Links on How to build iPhone/Smartphone DIY Powerbank


LorenzoB (author)2016-04-20

Hello! Can I put in 5x18650 Li-ion batteries connected to a circuit that was originally designed to hold one (I will be changing the case). But just wondering about the amperage/voltage. Also, should they be wired in parallel or in series? I would like to get a constant 5v 1A out through a single USB (like in your design 1)?

Thank you!

rodski (author)LorenzoB2016-04-20

That depends on your chip,check your chip datasheet first.And read my article

"How Powerbank Works" here :

Hamidi5 (author)2016-04-18

Very good


SanchitK4 (author)2016-03-05

Can i charge my phone with ni mh batteries?

rodski (author)SanchitK42016-03-06

yes,you can use high capacity NiMh battery to charge your phone.

JanR31 (author)2015-12-02

where can i find a step-up regulator?? can i find it from old electronics?

TheGhzGuy (author)2015-10-15

Hello there!

Just curious, where did you get that Micro USB + USB Type A Female, thing?

"Input 5vDC via Micro USB - Output 5v DC via USB"


rodski (author)TheGhzGuy2015-10-15

i bought it here from a local store,but you can buy it similar to the one i used-


TheGhzGuy (author)rodski2015-10-15

Thank you so much! That's very helpful!

rodski (author)2015-09-11

That depends on your battery capacity and what method are you gonna charge it.If you are building a home made powerbank.,i suggest you read my article here:

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-11

i have 9 laptop battery how long do i need to charge it

rodski (author)2015-09-10

Yes you can use 2 amp to charge your device for as long as your device support 2amp charging.

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-05

2A for charging?

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-05

i cant buy car charger with micro usb can i use a usb 2 A?

rodski (author)2015-09-05

Some single usb car charger had an LED indicator too.,just look for the ones that have an indicator like this.

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-05

if the car charger dont have led indicator?

i use the single car charger

the dual car charger have a indicator?

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-05

can i add you on facebook?

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-05

what kind of car charger did you buy

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-05

how do i put the led indicator?

rodski (author)2015-09-04

The car charger i used here has a prebuilt LED indicator.

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-04

how to put led on a car charger to know if the battery is fully charged and how to charge do i on the switch to charge it? how did you do to indicates the led to a car charger

ejsixthman (author)2015-09-03


how to know if the power bank is fully charge

using led

rodski (author)ejsixthman2015-09-03

•DIY 1-Home made Powerbank using AA Batteries
*you need to detached the rechargable AA batteries and recharge it using your AA battery charger.

rodski (author)ejsixthman2015-09-03

Red light -indicates charging PBank batteries
Blue light- indicates recharging devices
•Blue and Red LED light will auto stop when it meets battery full charge state.

dmahato (author)2015-09-02


I am not a electronic geek; I only have small information about calculation.

I really like the concept; and your DIYs are the inspirations for me to indulge into electronics.

1. I think with this set up the charging time will be too high; somewhere around 6-10 hrs.

2. Moreover, if a battery gets damaged, there is no protection for this !!! Imagine it starts drawing current from charged cell or so !!!

rodski (author)dmahato2015-09-02

Good to hear that my DIYs inspires you.,regarding charging time,well that depends on how much capacity that your battery holds.My 6600 mah DIY PB has •Auto Stop Charge and Discharge controller chip•which took 8.25 hours to fully charge it.,For more info i suggest that you read my article re: How Powerbank Works

dmahato (author)rodski2015-09-03


mizu-chan0614 (author)2015-08-12

Hai just a question though umm.. i'm inexperienced when it comes to things dealing with wiring and well pretty this kind of stuff so um my questions are;

can we use any kind of battery? we're trying to charge phones that requires 3.7V and has about 2200 mAH so can you recommend a specific battery? (smartphone btw)

how do you connect the batteries? i want to use the serial arrangement one so um yeah

can i charge this powerbank (by adding a few changes) just like how i charge a normal powerbank? will it be safe though o.o

so umm i hope i'm not annoying you or anything, we're just making this for a science project and i wanted to make sure that i know everything so thank you! i hope you can reply to me soon

rodski (author)mizu-chan06142015-08-12

I recommend reading my article which can be found here:

Powerbank "How it Works"

rodski (author)2015-07-10

Sorry for typo error,here's my reply:
•That depends on how you connect your batteries.
•Batteries connected in series- increases its voltage (vdc)but the capacity remains the same.
•Batteries connected in parallel-increases capacity (mah) but the voltage remains the same.

TheGreatResistor (author)2015-07-10

so the more batteries you add the more mAH you get right??

rodski (author)2015-06-21

@Jerico JamesC

First,know your batteries
( individually).you did'nt mention the brand & model of your powerbank.,and you didnt mention if your powerbank was RATED AS REAL CAPACITY or Just a marking capacity.,anyways.,Car chargers only need 7-24 vdc.,so work it out with your battery.,you have to connect your batteries in series to produced the required voltage on car charger.(do not exceed 24vdc) 3 li-ion batteries will work(11.1 vdc).,
Regarding about the mah capacity of your powerbanks.,I suggest you read my article 
"Powerbanks- how it works"
it will helped you understand how powerbank works.
Powerbank "How it Works"

Jerico JamesC (author)2015-06-21

sir my power bank is turning on once i press the switch on button but it shuts down after 1 sec, i think the board has a problem, is a usb car charger's board okay with a 20800 mAh battery? would it overcharge?

deus.mikecherry (author)2015-03-17

I have a question, i have 2 powerbanks (5600 mAh ea.) that still works but have broken cases.. i wanted to see if i could wire the cells from each unit in parallel and then, the part that i'm concerned about is using the same logic board from either of the two units for charging the cells and charging anything connected to the USB.

rodski (author)deus.mikecherry2015-03-17

@deus.mikecherry I tried it twice,but i connected only 3*18650 cells with same capacity of 2000 mah into one chip module(aside from this DIY project).,And they still works fine with charging and discharging.I havent tried 4 cells in parallel.In your case if your are sure enough that both of your powerbanks were built on a Real Capacity and on the same brand it should work too(try it at your on own risk) because chip modules are built to handle certain capacity.,and in my case on this project,my chip module can handle up to 2800 mah lion batteries,but the only available 18650 in store was 2200 mah at that time i bought it.(which i combine in parallel as you can see in my project) i can see that eack of your powerbanks consist of 2* 18650 batteries with 2800 mah each giving you a total of 5600 mah capacity for each powerbanks.,Right?dismantling them and connecting 4*18650 cells in parallel connections build into one module chip will be fine.That will give you a total capacity of 11,200 mah into one powerbank.(note:Do this at your own risk and i wont be responsible for any damage it would result as i based this recommendations upon my experiences in powerbanks.)

deus.mikecherry (author)rodski2015-03-19

both units are of the same make/brand. i have not completely took them apart yet but each unit has 2 flat type cells.Thats what i thought too.. and maybe worst that could happen is i fry the module chip while charging or recharging. If i do find a suitable case I'll put a temp. sensor switch between the cells.

It should work. Power bank circuits mainly just charge the power cells. and monitor voltage to see what the 'total' voltage is. If you connect all 4 together (in parallel) you will have a higher capacity but with the same voltage. The only thing I would see that could be affected is the overall capacity. When connecting them the voltages of each cell should be very close together so they can discharge at the same rate and charge at the same rate as well. It is always good to check on capacity that is left in your cells. Ideally they should all be relatively close.

Yes heat will probably be your issue if the voltages are not the same (same with capacity as it will continue to try and charge all the cells to get one higher).

I highly doubt the charging module will fry. The worse that can happen is the battery blows up by overcharging. I would tested it out of box first. Make sure all voltages are the same and then 'charge' it. monitor the temp. Hopefully it stops charging before it gets hot (then it's most likely fine). Then discharge it and recharge it again and see how it does again.

I see. Thank you for your input. I will test this in a controlled environment, cycle the batteries before connecting them. then cycle them again and monitor temp.

rodski (author)2015-03-23

@Shailesh Bhoyar

Step up power module chips

Shailesh Bhoyar (author)2015-03-23

from where I get 5DCV usb chips

rodski (author)2015-02-06

@NormanS1,here's the module's link:

Step up power module

NormanS1 (author)2015-02-06

Hello rodski, this is very similar to power banks I have been making, and your is really great! Can you please provide a link for the charge/discharge module you used? I have not been able to find any that has both functions. Thanks!

rodski (author)2015-01-19

@Seamster ...,glad you liked it!

rodski (author)2015-01-19

@Dantet ,the usb chip i used can handle 18650 lion battery.,in your case i think so.,make sure they all consist the sane mah.,mixing diff mah wasnt a good idea.

Dantet (author)2015-01-18

i have a bunch of laptop battery cells from a macbook battery with a faulty logic board, is it possible to use them with those usb boards

seamster (author)2014-09-04

Interesting. Thanks for sharing.

About This Instructable




Bio: Electronics hobbyist and a DIYer and i love doing this stuff.
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