DEWALT’s New FLEXVOLT™ Battery Platform

FLEXVOLT Convertible Battery Pack Offers 20V and 60V

The insanely paced evolution of cordless batteries took another giant step forward last week when DEWALT introduced the World’s First convertible battery pack with their FLEXVOLT system. This unique new battery pack automatically switches between 20V Max and 60V Max (18 volt and 54 volt nominal) depending on the cordless tool that it’s connected to.

egraphicThe new system of FLEXVOLT tools run on 60V Max and 120V Max and these new batteries are backward compatible with all 20V Max cordless tools. While existing 20V Max batteries won’t operate the new FLEXVOLT tools, those older tools will surely benefit from these new larger capacity battery packs.

How Does FLEXVOLT Work?

If you’re head is hurting trying to understand this new convertible battery pack then join the club. Mine has been killing me from the moment the curtain lifted on this new battery pack, but it’s not as crazy as you might think. The key to this new way of delivering power is all in how the multiple cells within the battery pack are wired together.

For the FLEXVOLT battery packs DEWALT is using fifteen (15), 2 Ah, 4V Max (3.6V nominal) cells within the pack. DEWALT has designed the pack so that the 15 cells are wired differently for 60 volts and 20 volts depending on the tool. They also have their new miter saw set up to run on two 60 volt packs which equates to a cordless miter saw running on 120 volts.

For the 20 volt configuration DEWALT uses three sets of 5 cells wired in parallel to generate 60V Max at 6 Ah. See the diagram below for the configuration. Basically each set of 5 cells is 20 volts (max), added up in 3 sets. Think of it as having 3 20V packs in the same pack.

parallel_batteryWhen the tool needs 60 volts max, DEWALT has the battery wired differently so that all 15 cells are wired in series. This creates a total of 60 volts max at 2 Ah. In this arrangement there is a much higher voltage, but a trade-off down to only 2 amp hours vs the 6 amp hours that the 20V configuration gives. You can see the image below and how differently that pack is wired.

series_battery

High Demand Tools Go Cordless

This new line of cordless tools from DEWALT continues to cut the cord on tools once thought to be only powered by AC current. The introduction of the cordless tablesaw is no doubt a game changer for those working in remote areas with limited power. This new lineup includes the following tools:

  • 120V MAX* 12″ Cordless/Corded Sliding Miter Saw 2 Battery Kit, SKU: DHS790T2 – $799
  • 60V MAX* 8-1/4 Table Saw 1 Battery Kit, SKU: DCS7485T1 – $499
  • 60V MAX* 7-1/4″ Circular Saw with Brake2 Battery Kit, SKU: DCS575T2 – $379
  • 60V MAX* 1/2″ VSR Stud & Joist Drill 2 Battery Kit, SKU: DCD460T2 – $479
  • 60V MAX* Reciprocating Saw 2 Battery Kit, SKU: DCS388T2 – $379
  • 60V MAX* 4-1/2″ – 6″ Grinder with Kickback Brake 2 Battery Kit, SKU: DCG414T2 – $379

Later this year DEWALT will also release a 60V, 9 Ah battery pack to increase the run-time. We’re looking forward to getting these new tools on the jobsite so we can see how they perform. Stay tuned for reviews and videos!

About the author

Todd Fratzel

Todd Fratzel is the Editor of Tool Box Buzz and the President of Front Steps Media, LLC, a web based media company focused on the Home Improvement and Construction Industry.He is also the Principal Engineer for United Construction Corp., located in Newport, NH. In his capacity at United he oversees the Residential and Commercial Building Division along with all Design-Build projects.He is also the editor of several other sites including: Home Construction & Improvement and Today's Green Construction

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