Poweradd Apollo 7200mAh High Capacity Solar Panel Portable Charger
Solar type: Monocrystalline Solar Panel (highest efficiency rates)
Original Cost: $19.99 on Amazon
The other day I was very bummed to find out that my solar charging battery backup had failed and no longer charged via sun or either USB. I wrote the seller on Amazon from who I purchased the device with no answer. Considering the high failure rate I was seeing while trying to find a fix and the fact that it didn’t cost a whole lot I figured what the heck I’ll try to fix it because what’s the worst that could happen cause it’s already broken.
First problem disassembling
There are no screws so the case just snaps together? Turns out yes but there is an adhesive tab on top of the battery stuck to the back of the solar panel. Pay attention to the wires when taking apart. Loosen the case all the way around with a flat edge blade or screwdriver then pull apart at the bottom end first (opposite of USB ports).
Finding The Problem
What I think happened is that the lithium ion battery protection circuit got activated (lack of better term)? Maybe? So what I did was first check the voltage directly from the battery and got about 3vdc, then on the opposite side of the main protection circuit at about 3vdc. So the battery has a charge which means the battery didn’t fail.
Battery is good and I have voltage so did a component fail?
I decided to start bypassing voltage regulators and charging circuits using alligator clips to see if I could get the battery to turn on. In the end I hooked the voltage entering the circuit directly to the opposite side of this diode or resistor (I forgot to note it and the resolution sucks) then held down the power button. Viola I’ve got power!