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Best Solar Generator for Off Grid Living Top 10 for 2023. Solar power cube 1500

Best Solar Generator for Off Grid Living Top 10 for 2023. Solar power cube 1500

    Best Solar Generator for Off Grid Living [Top 10 for 2023]

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    Howdy, fellow Off-gridders! My name’s Jeff, and I have a vital solar generator question.

    Do you know one of the trickiest parts of cutting ties with the traditional networks and finally going off-grid? The problem is finding reliable power!

    How can I still get consistent, sure-fire electricity to juice up my stuff when not connected to traditional sources or camping among the prairie and pines?

    Luckily, we have to look no further than overhead, my friends. I’m talking about systems to keep the electricity flowing with solar power!

    That’s right. I’m talking about getting juice from that lovely lemon in the sky and catching some high-quality solar power!

    I’m not saying you need to invest in some crazy army of solar panels that might cost you half the farm, either!

    These handy-dandy portable power sources take the convenience and efficiency of larger arrays and condense them into boxes only. In most cases, slightly bigger than a desktop computer to harness all that solar goodness dripping down from the heavens and turn it into useable power!

    Though these generators may not be the best bet for powering homes, they pack plenty of punch as a backup during blackouts or bring on an adventure to recharge your devices.

    These things can be your saviors when you desperately need some electricity while keeping you off-grid and free.

    What are the Best Solar Generators for Off-Grid Living?

    The best solar generators for off-grid living will have enough kilowatt-hours to power the appliances you use around your homestead. So what are the best solar generators for living off-grid? We reviewed dozens of solar-power generators and hand-selected the following.

    • Best Overall Solar Generator: BLUETTI AC200p
    • Strongest Solar Generator: Goal Zero Yeti 6000X
    • Best Solar Generator for your Budget: Westinghouse IGen600s 296Wh
    • Best Portable Solar Generator: Jackery Explorer 1000 Portable Power Station
    • Best for Powering Lots of Devices at Once: Ecoflow Delta
    • Best Solar Generator for Get-Togethers: BLUETTI EP500 5100Wh Power Station
    • Easiest Solar Generator: Wagan (EL2547) Solar e Cube 1500 Plus
    • Best Solar Generator for Grills: ALLWEI Portable Power Station
    • Best Looking Solar Generator: Tacklife p50 500Wh Portable Power Station
    • Best Solar Generator for Fridges: Lycan 5000 Power Box

    We also want to review the best solar generators under 500 in more detail below.

    Best Solar Generators – Our Top Picks

    We think the BLUETTI AC200p is the best solar generator overall. But, it’s not perfect! It’s not the most affordable, nor is it the most portable solar power generator.

    That’s why we also want to showcase the top 10 best solar generators. Whether you need power for your backyard barbeque, RV, or off-grid life, one of these models should help.

    If you read the start of this article, you know I’m a bit partial here, but I think the BLUETTI AC200p is the best all-around unit for most.

    Its combination of power and the three abilities (affordability, reliability, and portability) make it an excellent choice. It’s perfect for individuals looking for a solar generator that can do almost anything!

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    This solar generator lives up to its name and is a beast when it provides solar power. With a 2000 watt AC inverter and a 6071-watt-hour generator, you can guarantee yourself you’ll be able to stay plugged in for days no matter the location or situation.

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    It’s used by countless professionals to power up tools and provide relief in disaster locations. The Yeti 6000X, though pricey, is an excellent choice for anyone looking to get the most out of their solar-powered generator.

    It’s perfect for those with heavy items that need to stay powered up like handsaws or even when they need to give their electric cars a few extra miles when desperate.

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    Need portable, renewable power, but can’t afford to lose your shirt? Look no further than Westinghouse’s IGen600s solar generator.

    This compact, hand-held solar generator is great to have when you need to keep smaller devices charged and ready for action.

    Able to recharge laptops twelve times over, the IGen 600s 296Wh will give a good bang for your buck, making it an excellent choice for off-gridders on the move or your next camping trip.

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    Coming in at a featherweight heft of 22 pounds, with an ergonomic handle for easy grabbing and going, the Jackery Explorer 1000 provides exceptional power with optimal portability.

    With three pure sine wave AC outlets, multiple USB ports, and 1000 wattage output, this powerful little generator makes the most of its lightness by offering a reliable power source on the go.

    If you’re someone who needs strong power anywhere? Then look no further than the Jackery Explorer 1000 to keep your devices going wherever your adventures demand.

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    This versatile power station has a ton of ability to power all your devices at once. With 13 ports, including 6 AC outlets, you can hook up most anything to your Ecoflow Delta at once.

    And with a max output of 1800 watts, it can keep your most essential items alive and kicking for a while before you need the generator to soak up more sun.

    One max charge of the Ecoflow Delta can equate to over 100-charges of most modern phones, making this generator a go-to for anyone with a host of devices that need to operate continuously.

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    Are you looking to have friends over for a cookout or party? Maybe you know they’ll bring some speakers, a pellet grill, and even an electric guitar? You’re going to need a power source that can support the ruckus!

    The BLUETTI EP500 will give you all you can handle and more. It has an on-unit Smart-screen and an accompanying app. the app grants easy power-distribution management to whatever devices hook up to it.

    Add in the 15 versatile outlet options, including two wireless charging pads, and you and your guests will have options aplenty when it comes to getting your next get-together rowdy with the help of solar power.

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    Most solar generators on this list require you to purchase additional solar panels to hook into that sunny goodness, but not the Wagan Solar e Cube.

    This complete generator comes with panels apart from the package allowing it to boast some of the most consumer-friendly words one can read on a box: No assembly required!

    For those of you who want a straightforward solution and don’t want to deal with purchasing the right panels to fit your generator, the Wagan Cube might be the unit for you. It has a price roughly equivalent to the BLUETTI AC200p. It also has a bulkier size making it a hassle to store and wheel about your yard.

    But, if you can deal with its cumbersomeness? Then you might have the perfect out-of-the-box generator for your off-grid needs

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    Need to fire up your pellet grill but don’t have a plug? Look no further than the ALLWEI Portable Power Station 300W.

    This carry-friendly solar generator lets you hook up to one of its outlets to get your grill going when you’re on the road. It’s also perfect for roasting up your latest catch out on the homestead.

    With a built-in cooling system that can automatically turn off and on, this system is ideal for powering up grills and other items that run at high heat.

    So if you’re looking to do some serious cooking without damaging your power station, look no further than the ALLWEI for your next grill session.

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    Who says solar power can’t look good? When it comes to power, most of us want something to get the job done, but some are also looking for something with a sleek design that will make us say WOW while also powering up our stuff.

    The Tacklife p50 is a cube that looks like something built from a Lego factory. Its minimalist design and weight of 13.6 pounds allow its owner to put it almost anywhere while still keeping the aesthetics of any homestead.

    But don’t let it looks fool you. The Tacklife p50 has 500Wh capability meaning it can power up your devices while looking good

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    Properly storing food is one of the trickiest parts of any off-grid lifestyle. Failure to connect a fridge or freezer to a reliable power source could needlessly destroy high-quality and hard-earned food. Potentially many pounds! Why trust your consumables to anything other than the best?

    For running full-size fridges, I like the Lycan 5000 Power Box. It has a fast-charging ability, and it expands in times of need. Add in its 3500W continuous output, and you can expect this generator to power your fridge for around 60 hours.

    That’s two and a half days of juice to keep your perishables from having to get tossed.

    Though on the pricier side, the Lycan 5000 is worth the investment for those looking to keep their food safe and secure while living off-grid.

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    Best Overall Solar Generator: BLUETTI AC200p

    I’ve dug deep into solar generators, so you don’t have to. I’ve researched dozens of products to find the best generators that can fit what you’re looking for, depending on your budget, setup, and how you intend on using the generator. So keep reading to discover the best generators for your needs.

    But before we get there, let me tell you what works best for me! And why I chose it as the right generator for my life to help paint the picture for what might be best for you.

    I’m a BLUETTI AC200P guy myself, and I love it!

    The BLUETTI packs a wallop at an affordable rate. While not the cheapest of the bunch out there, I’m sold on this generator’s reliability and durability.

    BLUETTI is known for creating exceptional products. The materials they source (LiFeP04 battery cells and BMS technology, which means kick-butt tech) give me comfort in knowing that I’ll be owning this generator for a while.

    According to their website, they boast a life span of 25-30 years. The long lifespan means that I’ll probably have this generator living with me longer than I will my kids!

    I like to buy nice rather than buy twice! So having that assurance makes me feel confident in my choice that I won’t need another generator for some time.

    It’s got the power to back it up too.

    I live in the frigid Northeast, where a good blizzard can knock me off traditional power sources for days. But the BLUETTI AC200p can keep my mini-fridge running for an additional 24 hours with a single charge. The charge means there’s no need to throw away and waste all that stored up frozen meat and beer.

    It’s also not bulky either. Some of these generators can get a little cumbersome, but the BLUETTI fits conveniently in the garage, sliding right on the shelf next to the solar panels needed to capture the power.

    So while not the strongest out there, I went with it because I think of it as the best all-around. The BLUETTI can keep your vital devices charged for a good while. But also not break the bank.

    And I like my bank in one piece, thank you very much.

    But that’s just me and what fits my lifestyle at the moment. As I said, dozens of other generators can fit even modest budgets and needs.

    So keep reading to find out the best solar generator for your off-grid living conditions.

    What to Look for in a Solar Generator

    Are you still having trouble deciding which solar generator is right for you? Try to understand your own electrical needs and compare the spec sheet of potential generators.

    Here are a few things to consider when looking at solar generators.

    Running Watts

    A generator’s running watts tell how much electricity the unit can produce continuously. Gather up the devices you think you’ll want to run on the generator and then add together the total wattage required for the devices. (Hint: most appliances tell you the required wattage somewhere on the device.)

    So long as the total wattage of your devices is less than the generator’s total running watts, you should be good to go!

    Watt-Hours

    Watt-Hours, also shorthand referred to as Wh, indicates how much power can be distributed from the generator for 60 minutes on a fully-charged battery.

    For example, a 1000Wh solar generator could power up a 100-watt fridge for roughly 10 hours. This calculation can be inaccurate, though. It is often affected by temperature and device age.

    For a basic estimate, multiply the total wattage of the thing you need to power by the duration of use. A generator with a Wh rating bigger than the result should do the trick.

    Recharge Time

    Look at a generator’s recharge time to estimate how long it will take for a depleted battery to reach full charge. The generator’s spec sheet should detail the amount of time needed related to the amount of power received from solar panels.

    But a word of caution, solar energy can often be impacted by foul weather. So be wary of weather conditions before making final calculations on how and when you’ll use a solar generator.

    Solar Panels

    Most solar generators do not come with solar panels.

    Bummer, I know. So unless you’re buying the Wagan Solar e Cube 1500 Plus, you’ll need to purchase separate panels to power up your generator courtesy of the sun. Make sure that you have or can buy compatible solar panels with your generator.

    Details of panel requirements usually come on the equipment’s spec sheet or product box, so do your research before committing a generator!

    Conclusion

    There are endless amounts of solar generators to choose from that can keep that green, reliable energy flowing to your homestead or camper.

    Your needs and budget also help determine the best solar generator for off-grid applications. How many appliances do you use – and for how often?

    Whether it’s power, portability, or prettiness you’re after, there’s a generator for you, and I’m hopeful that the above list will help make that decision a little easier for you.

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    A solar generator is a great choice, no matter which one you choose. So what are you waiting for – and can we help in any way?

    We know that choosing the best solar generator is tricky – and it’s also a big decision.

    So – if you have any questions about choosing the best solar generator, don’t hesitate to ask.

    Author

    Jeff has been a writer for more than 15 years. He has written 10 fantasy novels, published numerous short stories, and contributed pieces to a variety of sites. He spends his days in rural Massachusetts where he is currently in the process of getting his home off-grid with the help of his wife and two boys. When he’s not typing away or adventuring with his family, you can find him cooking, traveling, and trying to adopt another pet. View all posts

    Best Solar Generators For Home That You Can Buy Right Now

    Are you stocking up on supplies in preparation for a power outage? Solar energy delivered by a solar generator is the way to go. They are quiet, odorless, and do not contribute to climate change, in contrast to gasoline-powered generators.

    Solar generators produce power by converting solar energy to electrical energy and storing it in a battery for future use.

    Determine the quantity of energy you’ll need to run appliances, tools, and technology in the case of a power outage or for anything else you’ll require in the wilderness before investing in a solar powered generator.

    Quick Comparison

    • Brand:BALDR
    • Wattage:330 watts
    • Item Dimensions LxWxH:11.6 x 8.27 x 7.68 inches
    • Brand: BLUETTI
    • Wattage:2000 watts
    • Item Dimensions LxWxH:16.5 x 11 x 15.2 inches
    • Brand:EF ECOFLOW
    • Wattage:3300 watts
    • Item Dimensions LxWxH:15.7 x 8.3 x 10.6 inches
    • Brand:Wagan
    • Material:Gel
    • Item Dimensions LxWxH:24.25 x 18 x 24 inches

    Once you’ve calculated the wattage needed, be sure to look for a generator that is the proper weight, size, and outlet configuration. The following are the market’s top 10 solar-powered generators.

    What is a Solar Generator?

    Solar generators function in conjunction with solar panels to supply crucial backup power to your house when it is required. This is helpful not just during blackouts, but also while living off the grid or camping. Generators are available in a range of shapes, sizes, functions, and brands.

    These are just a few of the advantages of solar energy; let’s have a look at some other ways you may directly profit from solar.

    Solar panels have a life expectancy of 30 years (longer if properly maintained). The savings on your energy bills over time may more than offset the initial purchase and installation costs. State and federal tax deductions are available for solar panels.

    Bear in mind that some deductions are system and area specific. Fortunately, financial support is also available if you need it.

    Apart from the aesthetic appeal of your new hydroponic garden, having a solar panel adds value to your property via the long-term savings, tax credits, and environmental benefits it delivers.

    When combined with storage to store extra solar energy, you may reduce your dependency on large electrical grids and maintain energy independence, which is crucial if you live in an area prone to blackouts due to severe weather.

    Is It Worth Having a Solar Generator?

    Solar generators are powerful enough to power a refrigerator. However, it must be of sufficient power to do this.

    For example, a 100 watt solar panel can only power a refrigerator for a limited duration, necessitating the use of a battery. This is because 100 watt solar panels can generate an average of 400 watt-hours of power every day. A refrigerator with a combined freezer consumes around 2000 watt-hours per day.

    This means that a solar generator with a capacity of 2000-3000 watts would be required to power it continually throughout the day.

    Solar-powered generators have an average lifespan of 25–35 years, depending on the brand and quality. It is an investment, but one that will eventually pay off. Additionally, many solar generators come with warranties, which means that you can get them fixed if anything goes wrong.

    A Jackery Explorer 500 is ideal for camping because of its small size and lightweight construction, as well as its easy-to-use handle. Additionally, it may be charged by a solar panel, a power outlet, a vehicle’s 12V output, or an electric generator, making it very versatile.

    Charge your phone without having to rely on power outlets or clumsy extension cables. This makes it excellent for usage in the great outdoors, since it can power a blender, tools, pellet smoker, and heated blankets, among other things.

    Solar Generators You Should Try

    By now, you should understand what to look for while shopping for a solar-powered generator. Have no fear if your head is spinning as a consequence of all this information.

    We’ve prepared a list of various unique generators that are worth exploring. Each of these brands is trustworthy, gas-free, and environmentally friendly. We’ve highlighted many of each generator’s most critical components.

    Jackery Explorer 500

    Jackery was formed in 2012 by a group of daring engineers that believe that electricity should be portable, outdoor-oriented, and approachable. With over 9 years of experience in the business, Jackery is a global energy leader in reimagining the use of clean energy for outdoor living.

    With a standard pure sine wave AC connection, this Jackery Explorer 500 portable power station (518Wh) provides dependable power to a wide range of AC-powered devices, such as a television.

    A standard 12V/10A carport and three 5V/2.4A USB ports provide power and charge for all your automotive appliances and small electrical devices, such as vehicle coolers, air pumps, vacuum cleaners, laptops, and phones. Participate in a camping event unlike any other.

    Ideal for RVers, easily stored in RVs and trailers, strong enough to operate an RV ceiling fan, RV lights, and all your electrical devices without requiring intricate settings; This generator is also ideal for an outside grill party, as it can power a small blender, pellet smoker, small domestic ice shaver, and projector, creating the perfect atmosphere for a movie and grill party with friends and family on a starry summer night.

    The Explorer 500 portable power station may be used to produce energy in combination with a solar panel. It may be recharged in around 9.5 hours using the Jackery SolarSaga 100W solar panel (charging time varies by location, temperature, and weather conditions), or through wall socket, auto outlet, or generator. Additionally, it has a lighting function that turns to SOS mode when held for two seconds.

    It contains temperature protection, short circuit protection, overcurrent protection, overpower protection, and overcharge protection to ensure the device’s safety. If you have any problems while using the site, please contact us; our support team is available at all times.

    Pros:

    • Pure sine wave AC inverter.
    • Can be recharged through wall sockets.
    • 7 output options.

    Baldr Portable Power Station

    • Brand: BALDR Wattage: 330 watts Item Dimensions LxWxH: 11.6 x 8.27 x 7.68 inches

    The BALDR power station has one AC outlet, three USB 3.0 Rapid charge ports, one type C port, one cigarette lighter port, two DC connections, and one wireless charging port. You may charge up to nine devices at the same time.

    This gadget is great for usage in the event of a power outage, on vacation, or while camping. It can charge a range of gadgets, including smartphones, tablets, laptops, walkie-talkies, GoPro cameras, and drones.

    It may provide a more pure current, hence reducing the likelihood of device failure. Smooth and noise-free electrical waveforms. Can convert DC to AC power, which is required by the majority of electronics.

    It may be combined with the Baldr 120W to produce a one-of-a-kind solar power generator that can be fully charged in 5-8 hours, allowing you to utilize it while storing energy for the length of your travel. When hooked into an electrical outlet, it takes around 5-8 hours to charge. When connected into a 12V carport, it charges about 7-8 hours.

    This gadget is equipped with a battery management system (BMS) that safeguards against overcharging, low/high voltage control, excessive current, temperature, short circuit, and overload, as well as a low battery alert. You may confidently use this gadget at any time and in any area.

    The 288wh power station measures 9.5 x 6.1 x 6.5 inches and weighs 7.1 pounds. It has a foldable silicone handle. This device is small and portable, and it will provide energy wherever you go.

    Bluetti AC200P Portable Power Station

    • Brand: BLUETTI Wattage: 2000 watts Item Dimensions LxWxH: 16.5 x 11 x 15.2 inches

    The AC200P power plant is a behemoth. The AC200P is capable of charging a wide variety of high-wattage equipment, including refrigerators, window air conditioners, hair dryers, microwave ovens, coffee makers (up to 2000W), heaters, electric grills, and drills.

    The AC200P delivers peace of mind in the case of an emergency with a mind-boggling 2000Wh of energy storage. With the AC200P, you can protect your family and meet your diversified power needs during unexpected power outages.

    The AC200P may be completely recharged in as little as 3-3.5 hours with a maximum solar input of 700W. MPPT is the method of solar charging. resulting in up to 40% faster solar panel charging times. Charging totally takes 4.5 hours with a single 500W ac converter and 2.5 hours with a dual ac adapter (need one DC7909 to XT90 cable).

    Additionally, it may be fully recharged in around 10 hours/20 hours when used in conjunction with a 24V/12V automotive. Concurrently, AC (500W)PV (700W solar input) recharge the AC200P in around 2.2 hours.

    It has six alternating current outlets, one 12V/25A RV port, two 15W wireless pads, one PD 60W USB-C port, four USB-A ports, one 12V/10A car port, and two 12V/3A car ports. This all-in-one power station is great for use at home, parties, camping, and tailgating, as well as serving as a backup power source during a power outage.

    Our key concerns are stability and safety, as well as the 3500 year life cycle. Intelligent touch-screen LCD display showing current, voltage, power, temperature, and charging status in real time.

    Intelligent temperature-activated fan-keeps the AC200P cool by running fans at a temperature of 45°C or less, resulting in an extremely silent environment. Its cutting-edge “BLUETTI ECO” mode may help you save up to 50% on wasted energy.

    Ecoflow Delta Portable Power Station

    • Brand: EF ECOFLOW Wattage: 3300 watts Item Dimensions LxWxH: 15.7 x 8.3 x 10.6 inches

    EcoFlow utilizes industry-leading research and experience to develop ground-breaking solutions that push the frontiers of design, intelligence, and power.

    The EcoFlow DELTA has six AC outlets (100V-120V 1800W 3300W Peak), two USB-C ports, two USB-A ports, two USB-A Rapid charge ports, and one regular DC 13.6V plug for charging your smartphone, laptop, camera, drones, in-car gadgets, CPAP machine, refrigerator, and blender at any time.

    The EcoFlow power station is equipped with a lithium battery pack that can be successfully charged using a 10-65V solar panel (not included), an AC wall converter, or a car charger. We highly oppose the usage of solar panels installed by third parties.

    To save energy, if the AC power consumption of the EFDELTA is less than 20W, the AC power is automatically turned off after 12 hours. The rated power of your gadget is between 1800W and 2000W; it may be run for three minutes and then shut off.

    Delta may be recharged from 0% to 80% in one hour and from 0% to 100% in two hours. DELTA can be recharged at ten times the pace of the majority of portable power stations on the market using just a standard AC connection thanks to ECOFLOW’s innovative X-Stream Technology.

    DELTA is compatible with all solar panels currently on the market. With optimum sunlight and a 400W solar input, DELTA can be totally recharged in around four hours. It accepts direct current inputs ranging from 10 to 65V. Please refer to the instructions for connecting a single panel or for connecting up to three or six panels serially or parallelly.

    DELTA is a 1260Wh portable power station that is ideal for a range of outdoor electrical demands, including home, travel, camping, and lengthy automobile excursions.

    Pros:

    • Recharges from 0% to 80% in 1 hour
    • Compatible with any solar input
    • 13 output options

    Wagan (EL2547) Solar E Power Cube 1500 Plus

    • Brand: Wagan Material: Gel Item Dimensions LxWxH: 24.25 x 18 x 24 inches

    Solar E Power Cube Plus Solar Generator from Wagan Tech is the ultimate portable power source. This kind of renewable energy is particularly user-friendly. This straightforward all-in-one machine is ready to use right out of the box; all you need to do is charge the battery. There is no assembly or connection needed.

    Without a doubt, this is a must-have tool for everyone who goes camping, tailgates, barbecues, appreciates the outdoors, or just wants peace of mind.

    Unlike other solar items, this one is immediately usable after being removed from its packaging. It requires no assembly or connection on the part of the user. This convenient all-in-one gadget is ready to use immediately after charging.

    Wagan Tech’s Solar E Electricity Cube 1500 Plus is the pinnacle in environmentally friendly portable power. 5 integrated solar panels charge the internal battery. They fold out from the top of the device and roll out on each side.

    Utilize solar energy to power your AC, USB, or DC gadgets from any location. Alternatively, use the accompanying AC home and DC car adapters to recharge the 100 AH AGM/gel hybrid battery (45 percent bigger than Wagan Tech’s 2546 variant). This renewable energy source is simple to use and very user-friendly.

    The Solar E Power Cube is equipped with an AC power inverter that generates 1500 watts continuous power and 3600 watts peak surge power, two 115 volt AC outlets, two 12 volt DC outlets for powering DC devices, two USB power ports (5 volts, 2.1 amps combined), and a digital LED voltmeter display for monitoring battery status.

    Solar e Power Cube is an excellent choice for deep cycle applications. Built-in monocrystalline solar panels provide a total of 80 watts (16 watts each panel) and operate at a 17 percent efficiency.

    After the first battery charge, this easy-to-use, all-in-one machine is ready to use. No assembly is required. Additional solar panels and batteries (sold separately) may be added in the future to increase charging and powering potential.

    The side has a handy fold-out storage section for personal necessities such as a phone charger. Its foldable handle and strong wheels make transporting it exceedingly simple.

    The plug-and-play Solar e Power Cube 1500 Plus collects solar energy and generates fume- and noise-free AC and DC power, making it ideal for interior usage. Additionally, a protective cover is supplied. A light bulb, radio, wireless router, laptop or desktop computer, thermoelectric cooler/warmer, television, refrigerator/freezer, microwave, smartphone or tablet are all examples of uses.

    Buyer’s Guide

    What To Consider when Buying a Solar Generator?

    Bear in mind that each solar generator is unique. For example, there are several economical solar generators available – it’s only a matter of determining your needs. Bear in mind that the more the wattage produced by a generator, the more costly it will normally be.

    Not all solar-powered generators are created equal. Numerous aspects must be considered when deciding which solar generator is the greatest fit for you.

    Number of Panels

    Certain generators are included, while others must be purchased separately. Monocrystalline solar panels, polycrystalline solar cells, and thin film solar panels are the three kinds of solar panels.

    Each kind of panel has a distinct efficiency rating, with monocrystalline panels being the most common and efficient. However, thin panels are the most cost-effective and lightweight alternative.

    Accessibility and Weight

    Are you planning to travel with your generator? If so, bear in mind the weight – you don’t want to be hauling anything substantial through the woods. Consider portability elements such as a light weight and an easily accessible handle.

    Generator Capacity

    A solar generator’s battery capacity indicates the entire amount of energy it can store. Additionally, it is good to learn their power rating (the maximum amount of electricity they can supply at one time).

    They will most likely generate less energy but for a longer period of time if they have a low power rating but a big capacity battery. Always double-check the watt (W) power unit and the watt-hour (Wh) total watts generated or used in an hour.

    Battery Type

    The two most common types are lead-acid and lithium-ion. While lithium is a very lightweight substance that is often used to power equipment, lead-acid batteries are better suited for powering bigger goods such as cars. While lithium-ion batteries are more expensive, they also last far longer.

    Controllers

    Due to their efficiency, look for three-power point tracking (MPPT) charge controllers. This enables the current flowing between the solar panels and the batteries to be regulated.

    Inverters

    These convert the direct current (DC) generated by solar panels to alternating current (AC) (AC). They are incorporated into photovoltaic solar energy systems. The pure sine wave inverter is the most efficient inverter, but it is also the most expensive.

    Final Thoughts

    It’s always good to have a backup plan in place in life, but this is especially true when the power goes out. While gas-powered generators may suffice, they are loud, emit toxic fumes, and need a secure fuel storage place. Furthermore, they contribute to global warming.

    On the other hand, solar generators are ecologically benign, easy to run, do not need fossil fuels, and are getting more affordable as solar technology progresses. They are particularly helpful in emergency situations when other fuel sources are unavailable or inaccessible.

    Solar generators absorb solar energy through stationary or portable solar panels, convert it to electrical energy, and store it in a battery for later use.

    After determining the required power, consider other alternatives such as USB charging ports and rechargeable batteries. You may avoid blowing your budget by choosing a more efficient generator than a more expensive equipment.

    Is your solar generator going to be used at home or on the go? For mobility, look for units that are lighter and easier to transport, as well as those that include components in a robust box rather than as individual parts.

    When picking the finest solar powered generator for you, consider the kind of appliances, equipment, and gadgets that need charging and the frequency with which you will be without a conventional power supply.

    Jenny Kim

    Jenny Kim is the Solar Director at Green Building Elements where she is responsible with helping make solar power more accessible and affordable to anyone that wants to take advantage of the many benefits of solar energy. Jenny holds a Master of Science in electrical engineering from Virginia Tech where she paid her way through college as a top-performing inside sales representative for SolarCity. You can connect with Jenny on LinkedIn.

    Best Solar Generators

    Let’s look at some of the best solar generators on the market today. Whether you want to bring it camping, use it in your home, prepare for an emergency, or all three, these sweet little packages can cover all your needs.

    Solar generators come in all sizes, from little 150 Wh babies to keep your phone charged on a weekend camping trip, to 1,500 Wh that can run larger appliances.

    We highlighted seven of our favorites, three smaller options (150 – 500 Wh) and four large options (1000 Wh) to compile our top list of the top 7 best solar generators for 2021.

    Top 4 Best Solar Generators for 2021

    Let’s dig into each of these generators a bit more, starting with the smallest capacity and moving up to the largest capacity.

    Solar Generator Reviews

    Suaoki 150 Wh Portable Solar Generator

    Quick Look: 150 Wh capacity, 150 W peak, Lithium-ion battery, 2 AC outlets, 4 DC ports, 4 USB ports, 18-month warranty

    Suaoki’s 150 Wh portable generator is the most portable option on our list. At just 150 watt-hours of capacity from its lightweight lithium-ion battery, this generator weighs just 2.9 pounds and measures 7”X4”x5”, making it small enough to throw in your backpack for an all-day picnic in the park.

    With 2 AC outlets (one with 3 prongs and one 2 with prongs), 4 DC ports, and 4 USB ports, you and your friends can keep your phones, speakers, and other small items charged. The 150 watt-hour capacity is more than enough to charge up a few phones and a tablet each day, but not much more than that.

    The generator can be charged at home, in the car, or via a solar panel. Suaoki recommends a 60 to a 100-watt panel to efficiently charge the battery and they also claim that, in full sun, a 60-watt solar panel will charge the battery bank in 6 to 10 hours. The generator actually includes an MC4 to DC port adapter, so you can just buy a solar panel and plug it in without purchasing any extra equipment.

    Suaoki provides an 18-month warranty for the generator and customers report that the company is quite easy to work with if something goes wrong. People use these little generators for all sorts of situations: road trips, car camping, and emergency power outages.

    Some users have complained it doesn’t power a CPAP for more than a few hours, but that’s just because they more than likely don’t fully understand the power needs of CPAP machines, which need much more electricity than this small unit can provide. Again, this generator is for small gadgets, not larger equipment.

    Most customers though love the convenience of backup generator you can simply throw in a backpack, and praise the build quality and styling.

    Bottom Line: A well-priced and extremely portable backup generator perfect for keeping phones and tablets charged up. However, if you’re looking to power a real energy-hogger, you’ll need to move up in capacity.

    Renogy Phoenix Solar Generator Suitcase

    Quick Look: 210 Wh capacity, 150 W peak, Lithium-ion battery, 1 AC outlet, 2 DC ports, 4 USB ports, 12-month warranty

    One of the coolest solar generators out there. If you want to impress friends and feel like a spy all at one time, check out Renogy’s 210 Wh Solar Generator Suitcase. When closed, it looks like any other hard-sided plastic case used by a musician or cameraman. Upon opening, however, you find a 20-watt solar panel with a hidden lithium-ion battery tucked inside!

    While more expensive than other similarly-sized generators, the Renogy Phoenix is intelligently designed and well-built and is one of the most-loved products on our list.

    The 210 Wh battery is enough to charge up your phones, tablets, DSLR cameras, laptops, and other gadgets, but with a peak power rating of 150 watts, there’s not enough juice to keep energy hogs like a coffee maker or blender going.

    The integrated 20-watt solar panel can certainly keep the small battery charged up, but be prepared for a wait, as one customer reported it took 10 hours for the solar panel to fully charge the battery under decent sunlight. If you want to speed that process up, you can also connect an auxiliary solar panel – up to 120 watts – to slash that charge time to just a few hours.

    A small LCD screen just under the handles shows the sun exposure level, so you can find that perfect spot for the fastest charge, as well as the current battery level. You can also charge the unit at home or in the car with the included AC and DC inputs.

    Out of all the solar generators on our list, customers probably love the Renogy Phoenix the most! It’s sleek, lightweight, and easy to use. On top of that, users appreciate the rugged build quality and use the unit for natural disasters, emergencies, and just a weekend out camping.

    Bottom Line: You’ll have to dish out a bit more cash for this all-in-one unit, but you’re getting one of the coolest – and most well-built – products on our list.

    Renogy Lycan Powerbox

    Quick Look: 1075 Wh capacity, 1200 W peak, Lithium-ion battery, 4 AC outlets, 4 DC ports (including 1 car port), 4 USB ports, 12-month warranty

    Renogy is a well-known manufacturer of small-scale solar and battery equipment, so it makes sense they’re on our list of best solar generators. Their Lycan Powerbox is a modern, well-designed product with two wheels and a suitcase handle to pull it along after you. And at 60 pounds, you’re going to want wheels.

    With 1,075 watt-hours of energy capacity and 1200 watts of peak power, the Lycan Powerbox can power just about anything you can throw at it. Of course, it’ll power all the usual gadgets like phones and tablets, but it’s also powerful enough for hair dryers, toasters, and other high energy use devices. At 1,075 Wh of electricity storage, you’d be able to use that 1,000-watt toaster for over an hour straight!

    The high capacity paired with the pure sine wave inverter (as opposed to cheaper modified sine wave inverters) also means CPAP machines and other sensitive electronics aren’t an issue at all for this thing.

    The inputs and outputs are easily accessible right on the front of the box, with 4 AC outlets (the most of any generator yet!), 4 USB outlets, and 4 DC ports. On the input side, there’s a shared solar/car port (Powerpole) and an AC port. The LCD screen gives you a battery reading and notes whether you’re outputting AC or DC electricity.

    Solar panels can be connected in series, up to 36 volts to allow for faster charging. The Lycan also includes an MPPT controller (aka Maximum Power Point Tracking), which allows even more efficient charging – a huge plus for this unit.

    Customers have generally favorable Комментарии и мнения владельцев on Renogy products and the Lycan Powerbox is no different. Users praise the Lycan’s value, fast charging capabilities, and performance, but some warn that the integrated cooling fan can be loud and at least two customers have complained that their units unexpectedly turn off sometimes.

    That’s not something you want to hear, but the Lycan’s still a great option, especially with Renogy’s well-known excellent customer service.

    Bottom Line: Renogy’s Lycan Powerbox is a well-designed solar generator. The wheels and collapsible handle make for easy transport and the capacity is high enough to power almost any gadget you could need on a camping trip or in an emergency.

    Wagan Solar ePower Cube 1500 Generator

    Quick Look: 1200 Wh capacity, 1500 W peak, Lead-acid battery, 2 AC outlets, 2 DC ports (car ports), 2 USB ports, 24-month warranty (6 months for battery), 80 watts of integrated solar panels.

    Wagan’s ePower Cube is probably the most unique product on our list. Similar to the briefcases, it’s an all-in-one solar generator, complete with 80 watts of integrated solar panels that slide and fold out of the top of the generator. Unlike the other solar briefcases though, this generator uses lead-acid batteries instead of the more expensive lithium-ion, so the price is much lower out of the box.

    In fact, every other solar generator on our list uses lithium-ion batteries instead of lead-acid, and this is the biggest difference between the Wagan ePower Cube and all the others. Lead-acid is cheaper, but manufacturers consistently choose lithium-ion for portable solar generators because they weigh about 2/3 less than similarly-sized lead-acid batteries, have more usable energy, recharge more quickly, and last longer. As you can see, there are a lot of benefits to lithium-ion!

    Because of the lead-acid battery, the Wagan weighs a full 122 pounds, by far the heaviest generator on our list and about 2x as heavy as the simarly-sized Renogy generator above. Since it’s built like a cooler, replete with wheels and a collapsible handle, moving the generator around isn’t a huge hassle, but lifting it in and out of cars is certainly going to get annoying.

    One buyer warned the generator must be on a flat, smooth surface for the wheels to work and if you’re not careful, the handle can snap from the heavyweight. As such, consider the Wagan ePower Cube more for emergency power around the home and maybe the occasional camping trip.

    Weight aside, the real benefit of the lead-acid battery is the low cost, and this solar generator comes in hundreds of dollars less than other products here. If you’re looking for a larger solar generator at the lowest price point, the Wagan is probably your best bet.

    The integrated solar panels provide 80 watts of solar power, which should be enough to efficiently recharge on a sunny day, but you can also add additional solar panels as well as batteries for greater capacity.

    Like the other large generators we review, the Wagan’s 1200 Wh capacity and 1500 watt peak power is more than enough to run appliances like hair dryers and blenders, laptops, and all your gadgets, but with just a modified sine wave inverter, as opposed to the more expensive pure sine wave inverter, some sensitive electronic gadgets – especially older models – simply won’t work with this device.

    Bottom Line: While it certainly has a few design flaws, namely the heavyweight, the Wagan ePower Cube is a convenient, all-in-one solar generator that comes in at a much lower price point than any of the others on our list.

    What You Need To Know About Solar Generators

    What Is a Solar Generator?

    A solar generator is simply a box that contains a battery and an inverter, sleekly designed so you can charge appliances directly off the box. Unlike gas generators, solar generators are quiet, easy to handle and transport, and safe to bring indoors. They’re the perfect option for a week of camping or to simply include in your emergency cabinet.

    Inside the generator, the battery stores the electricity and the inverter converts that electricity into AC for your appliances. These solar generators typically have several outlets for different equipment: AC outlets (just like wall outlets in your home) as well as a few USB outlets for your phone and tablet, and finally a few DC outlets for gadgets designed for travel or camping.

    You can typically charge your generator via a solar panel (which can be integrated into the generator but is usually sold separately), a wall outlet at home, or while driving.

    If you want to prepare for long-term emergencies or a week of camping, a solar panel allows you to continue using solar generator without any other power source, but usually isn’t as fast as simply plugging it in at home.

    Solar Generators vs Gas Generators

    Now that we’ve gone through our list of the best solar generators, let’s answer a few questions that we all have, starting with the benefits and drawbacks of solar generators over gas generators.

    • Quiet: Because solar generators are actually just batteries, there’s no noisy engine, so you can use your solar generator at any time of the day or night without bothering your neighbors camping next door.
    • Emissions-free: Solar generators produce absolutely zero emissions, so they’re safe to use in your home, tent, or any other enclosed space without worrying about fumes. Gas generators, on the other hand, can not be safely used indoors due to carbon monoxide emissions. The EPA recommends keeping generators 15 feet from open Windows or doors.
    • Free, limitless fuel: Say goodbye to buying gas! With solar panels connected to your solar generator, as long as the sun’s out, you’ve got available fuel.
    • Little maintenance: Just like any small engine, gas generators can be a real pain. Oil changes, new air filters, new gas filters, winterizing. With solar generators, you don’t have those maintenance hassles. Just charge it up and you’re good to go.

    Of course, solar generators also have their downsides.

    • Higher cost: Solar generators are more expensive than similarly-sized gas generators.
    • Don’t come in larger sizes: Portable solar generators cap out around 2,000 watts. Any larger than that and the weight of the batteries is just too much for portability. Gas generators, on the other hand, can generate 4,000 or more watts and still be quite portable.

    Both gas and solar generators have their places. If you just want a power source in emergencies or for week-long camping trips, a solar generator is perfect for your needs, as they’re quiet and safe to bring inside. If you’re looking to run power tools directly off your generator while you build your off-grid cabin though, a gas generator probably makes more sense.

    What Size Generator Do I Need?

    You should base the size of your solar generator on your energy needs. If you just want to keep your smartphone and tablet charged during an emergency, a generator that is 500 Wh or less should do just fine. If you’re looking to actually power appliances, like a CPAP or coffee maker, you’ll probably want something 1,000 Wh or more.

    Actually figuring out your exact energy needs is an easy, fun problem. Just make a list of everything you want the generator to power, their wattage, and how long you expect to use them on a single charge from the generator. Your list will likely look something like this:

    • Smartphone: 15 watts @ 5 hours: 75 Wh
    • Tablet: 15 watts @ 2 hours: 30 Wh
    • LED light: 9 watts @ 3 hours: 27 Wh
    • CPAP machine: 30 watts @ 8 hours: 240 Wh
    • Total: 372 Wh

    Most manufacturers recommend only using 80% of a lithium battery’s full capacity, so let’s account for that as well:

    So for the example above, you’d need at least a 465 Wh generator, so the Suaoki G500 above would be the perfect option.

    And if you can’t find your gadget’s wattage, the EPA publishes a handy online tool to help you estimate your appliances’ and gadgets’ energy use.

    What’s the Difference Between Watt-Hours and Watts?

    Manufacturers always note their generators’ watt-hour capacity as well as their peak power, measured in watts. While they sound similar, they actually measure two very different facets of the generator. The EIA has published an in-depth comparison of watts vs watt-hours, but let’s take a quick peek:

    Watt-hours (or Wh) is a measure of the battery’s capacity. If your battery is a bucket, this tells you how large the bucket is. A 1,200 Wh battery stores more than a 120 Wh battery, and as such could run a gadget 10x longer than the latter.

    Watts is a measure of the inverter’s peak power. If watt-hours are the bucket, consider watts as the diameter of the bucket’s opening. In other words, how much electricity it can provide at one time. A 1500-watt generator can provide 3x more electricity at one time than a 500-watt generator. High-energy items like hair dryers and coffee makers require anywhere from 1,000 to 2000 watts just to turn on, while laptops and smartphones only need 15 to 60 watts.

    Both your capacity (watt-hours) and peak power (watts) are determined by your energy needs, so take a look at your gadgets and make the call.

    Should I Go With Lithium or Lead-Acid Batteries?

    Most solar generator use lithium-ion batteries to store electricity. While they’re much more expensive than lead-acid batteries, their unique benefits make them the perfect choice for portable solar generators.

    First, they’re extremely compact and lightweight. Lithium batteries are typically 1/2 to 1/3 the weight of similarly-sized lead-acid batteries. Needless to say, this is quite nice when you’re lugging your generator in and out of cars all weekend.

    Second, lithium-batteries can be discharged down to 80% more of their total capacity, compared to lead-acid’s recommended 50%. This gives you more usable energy than a lead-acid battery with a similar capacity.

    Third, they’re able to charge much more quickly than lead-acid batteries, a nice feature while driving or running late to that tail-gating event.

    Lastly, lithium batteries don’t produce noxious fumes like lead-acid and don’t use any caustic components inside, so they’re generally a safer option.

    The downside to lithium, of course, is its high sticker price. However, considering all the benefits above, we think it’s an easy choice to make.

    Do I Need to Buy Solar Panels As Well?

    All solar generators above can be charged via solar panels or a normal AC outlet like you have in your home, and most can be charged via a DC car charger as well. If you’re going on a weekend camping trip, simply charging your generator before leaving the house should be enough, depending on the size of the generator and your energy needs while out in the wild.

    If you’ll be out for an extended trip, a solar panel is a good investment. A few of the solar generators above include solar panels integrated into the generator, but most require you to connect a separate solar panel.

    best, solar, generator, grid, living

    The size of the panel depends on how large your generator is and how quickly you want to recharge the batteries. The larger the generator, the more solar panel you need, but 60 to 80 watts for the smaller generators and 120 to 180 watts for the larger units should let you recharge fairly efficiently. Manufacturers will typically recommend a specific panel size, so take a look at the product manual before making any purchases.

    Recap of the Best Solar Power Generators We Found

    Remember, solar generators are typically divided into two categories: small capacity and large capacity. Small capacity are generally portable and are perfect for camping or emergency preparedness. Large capacity solar generators can be use for larger scale use cases like home backup.

    Compare the Best Solar Power Generators for 2021

    In an emergency or while camping, these generators really do pull their weight, as they’re powerful, quiet, and easy to use. Now all you need to do is calculate your energy needs and pick the best solar generator for you!

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    Solar power cube 1500

    Last Updated on June 12, 2023

    Shop the 10 best options for a solar generator for the house. I’ve rounded up models to keep your lights on while camping, during blackouts, or to sustainably power your home!

    Whether you want a solar powered generator for camping or a solar generator for the house, these are the absolute best solar generators on the market, with pros and cons to each one. These are some of the best solar powered generators due to their versatility, power, and sustainability, making them stand out across the market. There’s even a whole house solar powered generator on this list, capable of generating enough power for your home in the case of an emergency or blackout!

    Some of the links in this post are affiliate links; for more information please see my disclosure policy.

    the best solar generators

    Going camping or looking for backups in case of a power outage? Unlike their gas-powered counterparts, the best solar generators are quiet, smell-free, and don’t contribute to climate change.

    Solar generators create power through solar panels (typically sold separately), converting it into electrical power, then storing it in a battery for later use.

    Before investing in a solar powered generator, make sure to estimate how much power you’ll need to run appliances, tools, and tech in case of a power outage or whatever you’ll need in the wilderness. The best solar powered generator for you will be the one that provides enough power for your needs.

    Once you know how many watts you’ll need, be sure to look for a generator that has the right weight, dimensions, and outlets. Here are the 10 best options for a solar powered generator for house or camping needs, and beyond!

    what is a solar generator?

    A solar generator is a device that works alongside solar panels to provide essential automatic backup power to your home when you need it.

    This comes in handy during power outages, but it can also be used for off-the-grid living and camping. There are many different types of generators that range in style, size, function, and brand.

    For more information on how solar energy works, check out my post Is Solar Power Worth It?

    how does a solar generator work?

    A solar generator works when a solar panel converts sunlight into direct current (DC) electricity that passes through the charge controller.

    Then, the solar energy is stored inside the battery. The inverter turns the electricity into accessible alternating current (AC) power.

    best whole house solar powered generator for off grid living

    If you’re going off the grid or looking for a whole house solar powered generator, the Bluetti Off-Grid Solar Generator AC200P is perfect for you.

    This model can charge most high-power appliances such as fridges, window air conditioners, hairdryers, microwave ovens, coffee makers (Max 2000W), heaters, electric grills, drills, etc.

    You can also power up to 17 devices simultaneously thanks to the wide arrange of output options.

    best solar powered generator for camping

    For camping, a Jackery Explorer 500 is ideal because it’s portable and lightweight with an easy to use handle.

    It can also be charged multiple ways via solar panels, wall sockets, a vehicle’s 12V output, or an electric generator — which makes it very versatile.

    You can also charge up without having to worry about wall outlets or long extension cords. That makes this generator perfect for the great outdoors – use it to power your blender, tools, pellet smoker, heated blankets, etc.

    best, solar, generator, grid, living

    pros and cons of a solar generator

    For your convenience, I’ve made a list of the top pros and cons of a solar generator.

    • Free energy from the sun
    • Clean energy
    • Quiet operation
    • Low maintenance costs
    • Lasts several years

    Just remember that every solar generator is different, so this is a generic list. For example, there are several solar generators that won’t break the bank. It’s really just a matter of what you need.

    Keep in mind — the more watts a generator can dish out, the pricier it will generally be.

    what to look for in a solar powered generator

    Not all solar powered generators are created equal. When deciding which solar generator is right for you, there are some things to consider.

    • Solar panels: Some generators come with them, while others will have to be purchased separately, so be mindful of this. There are three common types of solar panels — monocrystalline panels, polycrystalline solar cells, and thin film. Each varies in efficiency, with monocrystalline panels being the most common and efficient. However, thin panels are the lightest and most affordable.
    • Weight: Are you planning on using your generator on the go? If so, weight is something to factor in – you don’t want to lug something heavy around the wilderness. Look for additional portability aspects like an easily accessible handle too.
    • Battery capacity: Battery capacity indicates the total amount of electricity a generator can store. It’s good to also know their power rating (how much power they’ll deliver at a time). If they have a low power rating, but high battery capacity, they’ll likely deliver less electricity for a longer period. Always check the Watt (W) for a unit of power and Watt-hour (Wh) for the total amount of watts generated or consumed in an hour.
    • Battery type: Lead-acid and lithium-ion are the most common types. Lithium is lightweight and often used to power tools, whereas lead-acid batteries are better for powering things like automobiles. Lithium-ion batteries are a bit more expensive, but they also last longer.
    • Charge controller: Check for three-power point tracking (MPPT) as these are the most efficient charge controllers. This will help regulate the current between the solar panels and the battery.
    • Inverter: These convert direct current (DC) from solar panels to alternating current (AC). They’re built into the solar generators. A pure sine wave inverter is the most efficient inverter but also the most expensive.

    best solar powered generators

    So, now you know what to look for in solar powered generators.

    If your head is spinning from all this information – don’t fear! I’ve rounded up a list of solar powered generators that get the Going Zero Waste seal of approval. All these brands are reliable, gas free, and efficient.

    I’ve gone ahead and highlighted some of the most important features of each generator, but it isn’t an exhaustive list. Be sure to check out their websites for more information.

    jackery explorer 500 solar portable generator

    • 500W portable power station with 518Wh power capacity
    • Pure sine wave inverter
    • Relatively light 13.3 pounds
    • 7 output ports
    • Lithium battery
    • Charged from an AC wall outlet or with a Jackery SolarSaga solar panel

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