Battery Monitoring Systems

With Lithium battery’s nearly-flat discharge rate, having a battery monitor is practically required if you want to have any idea of how charged your batteries are. They’re not actually required, they’re just very handy. My solid recommendation is the Victron BMV 712. It’s not the cheapest out there, but it is the best and easiest to work with.

Victron BMV 712

Price: High (~$210)
Bluetooth: Yes
Automatic 100% Synchronization: Yes
Link: Amazon

I highly recommend this battery monitor. Setup is simple with a bluetooth interface to a phone app. It includes an internal alarm and a separate relay that can be setup to activate upon various conditions. Unless you have a solid reason to get something else, get the Victron BMV 712.

Renogy Monitor

Price: Medium ($100)
Bluetooth: No
Automatic 100% Synchronization: No
Link: Amazon

Props to Renogy for trying here, but they missed several major features that the Victron includes and should be on any battery monitor. They missed:

  • Automatic 100% Syncrhonization
  • Peukert Exponent
  • Charge Efficiency Factor

I cannot recommend this battery monitor.

AiLi Current Meter

Price: Cheap (~$45)
Bluetooth: No
Automatic 100% Synchronization: No
Link: Amazon

If you don’t mind the cheap build quality, lack of bluetooth, and all of the failings of the Renogy unit above, this might be your unit. I can’t recommend this unit either, but if you want something really simple and cheap, go for it!