Channel Rebalancing

Hello Everyone!

First time Umbrel node user. I built my node using a Raspberry Pi4 and a 1TB SSD. The process was pretty straight forward and took all of 30 minutes to put together. After boot up, I let my node sync to 100%. After that, I provided liquidity into my on-chain bitcoin wallet.

A few days later, a buddy of mine and I decided to open up our very first lightening channels together. We both decided on 400K sats, and he opened a channel with me for 400K, and I opened a channel with him for the same amount.

After both channels were opened, my Umbrel’s Lightening Wallet is showing his channel having a “max receive” of around 400K sats and a “max send” of 0 sats. Likewise, my channel is showing a “max send” of around 400K sats and a “max receive” of 0 sats.

When we both tried to rebalance our channels using RTL, we both received the “No_Route” error message. At first we thought we were doing something wrong but upon further research, it seems to me that because we each opened up a channel between us and we both decided that 400K sats was going to be our channel size, we theoretically already have a balanced channel together?

Is my reasoning more or less correct, or are we missing something and still need to rebalance these channels?

Does the rebalancing aspect of maintaining lightening channels only come into play when a node has multiple channels open with different nodes?

Consider your channels already balanced. You have 400k to send and so do they. If you sent them 400k then the only option would be that they could send you 800k and you have nothing to send.
When balancing its possible that you tried to send from a channel that didn’t have adequate outbound liquidity.

Thanks for the reply! This is more or less what we were thinking as well.

For now, we shouldn’t worry about rebalancing until we have more channels open with other nodes and when transactions are actually being routed back and forth, right?

Since my friend and I really don’t have a reason to send transactions to each other for the time being, I guess these two channels will just sit as they are for a while, which we have no complaints about.

Yes, once you have more channels and they become off balance then you would rebalance them. Leaving your two channels as is will never change unless they give you sats or you give them sats. Once you both open more channels then payments will begin routing through you both. If only you open more channels then you’ll get routing but not them.