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Best Solar Generator for Off Grid Living Top 10 for 2023. Outdoor solar generator

Best Solar Generator for Off Grid Living Top 10 for 2023. Outdoor solar generator

    Solar Generators for Camping and Van Life

    At Goal Zero, we’re big fans of solar power, but solar is only really useful if you have a way to store and use all that power you collect. That’s why we love solar generators. They combine the clean energy of solar power with the convenient portability of battery power stations so you can do more and stay out longer.

    What is a Solar Generator?

    A solar generator is a combination of solar panels and a power station. You can use solar panels to collect and convert energy from the sun. The power station lets you store the energy you collect and then use it to power your devices.

    Choosing a Solar Generator

    A solar generator is the perfect addition to your next camping trip or van build. And when you aren’t on the go, they’re great for home back up. There are three key factors to consider when deciding which solar generator is right for you.


    Solar lets you recharge more or less indefinitely, but the capacity of your power station will impact how much you can run at a time, how long you can keep things running, and how often you have to recharge. For example, if you’re choosing a solar generator for camping, you can get away with less capacity than you’d need for home backup.

    When considering capacity, you’ll also need to think about the amount of solar input you want. A larger power station has more capacity but requires more solar panels to fully charge it. This increases the cost of your solar generator and means it will take up more space.


    Portability is a huge benefit if you’re taking your solar generator camping or on a road trip, but it may not be a priority if you’re installing it at your off-grid or in your home. All of our solar generators can be moved and taken with you, but the smaller solar generators are much easier to carry and move around.

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    The beauty of a portable solar generator is that you can use it however you’d like. If you want the option to run high-energy appliances in a power outage and the option to recharge your laptop while camping, versatility will be a priority. We offer solar generators that are light enough to move but powerful enough to run a TV, grill, or refrigerator for hours.

    The Best Solar Generators for Camping

    Our favorite camping solar generators are small and lightweight, making them easy to set up and move around.

    Taking your solar generator camping lets you recharge phones, laptops, camera batteries, and other small devices, but it also gives you enough power to run a portable fridge and power cooking appliances so you can enjoy good meals throughout the whole trip. These solar generators are easy to move so you can set up near your cooking station in the morning, then move things over to your tent while you recharge your phone during a midday nap, and simultaneously also charge your portable speaker so you can listen to music around the campfire in the evening.

    Yeti 200X solar generators for camping

    The Yeti 200X is only 5 pounds, meaning even your kids can carry it as they help pack up the car. We offer it in 3 different solar generator bundles, depending on how much solar power you want to pair with it.

    We think the Yeti 200X Boulder 50 is the perfect solar generator for camping because it’s incredibly portable and easy to set up. The Boulder solar panel comes with a convenient kickstand so you can set it almost anywhere. It can completely recharge your Yeti 200X in 4-8 hours.

    Yeti 500X solar generators for camping

    Upgrade from camping to glamping with a little extra power. Need a few more ports so you can blow up your air mattress and plug in the portable fridge at the same time as your grill?

    Another favorite solar generator for camping is the Yeti 500X Nomad 100. You get the Yeti 500X which comes with more ports and more power plus the foldable Nomad 100 solar panel that weighs just over 10 pounds, making it easy to move around throughout the day to get the best sun.

    The Best Solar Generators for Van Life

    Versatility is key when choosing a solar generator for van life. Space is limited so it’s Smart to get something compact, but since you’re living there long term, you need something robust enough to run lights, fridges, power tools, and more while keeping your devices charged.

    We offer a lot of great solar generator solutions, but one excellent van life option is the Yeti 1500X (4) Boulder 100. This gives you a power station that can run high-energy appliances and four solar panels you can mount to your vehicle roof or set up on the ground when you find a good stopping spot.

    Solar generators can help you get more out of your next adventure whether you’re headed on a weekend camping trip or a month-long van trek. And when you aren’t hauling it around, they provide home backup power for emergencies. Choose from Goal Zero’s wide selection of solar generators to find one that’s best for you.

    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.

    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, 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!


    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.

    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?

    best, solar, generator, grid, living

    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.


    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

    Portable Power Station vs. Solar Generators: The Differences

    We all rely on electricity to power the essentials in our lives, from necessities (such as refrigerators and heaters) to recreational devices (games consoles, laptops). Regardless of what they may be, we can’t live without them, which is why backup energy solutions are invaluable. They provide us with electricity whenever we need it.

    However, not all power backup solutions operate the same. Two of the most prominent systems increasingly gaining popularity are portable power stations and solar-powered generators. But what’s the difference?

    This guide will take you through the differences, pros, cons, and scenarios in which you’d want a portable power station vs. a solar generator. By the end, you’ll be a backup power expert, empowered to make an informed purchase.

    What Is a Portable Power Station?

    A portable power station (PPS) is an energy-storing unit — the best friend to any intrepid explorer who likes to stay connected while traveling. In simple terms, it’s like an oversized rechargeable battery that stores power for later use. PPS units vary in capacity, usually measured in watt-hours. The higher the watt-hours of your PPS, the more it can power.

    Portability varies from brand to brand, so if that’s a top priority for you, always read the specifications. Sometimes the same brand may even offer power stations of varying weights. For example, the DELTA Mini from EcoFlow weighs just under 24lbs (11kg), but the DELTA Max weighs in at 48lbs (22kg).

    Generally speaking, the larger the device, the more powerful it is. Make sure to evaluate what you prioritize more, weight or power, before committing to a purchase.

    How Does a Portable Power Station Work?

    A portable power station is like a giant power bank, like the kind you might have to recharge your phone in a pinch. In addition to being larger, they can also power much more than just your smartphone, including larger home appliances such as your refrigerator.

    You can supply the PPS with energy by attaching it to a wall outlet or car adaptor. The EcoFlow PPS solutions also have the option to attach a solar panel (sold separately). Depending on the brand, it can reach full charge in under two hours.

    EcoFlow River 2 Portable Power Station

    The EcoFlow River 2 is an example of a robust portable power station. With a 256Wh capacity, it can charge 99% of consumer electronic devices. Three recharging options—wall outlet, car adaptor, or solar charging (panels sold separately or you can buy them together)—ensure backup power wherever you go.

    At just 7.7 pounds, the River 2 is highly portable and ideal for taking on camping trips and similar excursions. And the LFP battery design means it produces zero greenhouse gas emissions, so you don’t need to worry about toxic fumes.

    What Is a Solar Powered Generator?

    Solar generators are similar to portable power stations, with one key difference: they generate energy. A PPS can only store energy, but a solar generator can create it using solar panels.

    Solar generators also use rechargeable batteries to store and provide energy when needed. In addition, one of the biggest draws is its versatility, letting you recharge your batteries just about anywhere because of how solar works. As long as you have the sun, solar panels can convert that sunlight into renewable energy.

    With EcoFlow, solar generators are just as portable as portable power stations. Products like the DELTA Mini 110W solar panel use the same energy-storing unit but include a portable solar panel.

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    How Does a Solar Powered Generator Work?

    When it comes to storing power, EcoFlow solar generators essentially function in the same way as portable power stations. The primary difference is that solar-powered generators include solar panels to recharge their batteries. Solar generators absorb sunlight via the panels, convert it into energy, and store the power for you to use on demand.

    With EcoFlow solar generators, a built-in inverter converts the stored sunlight into alternating current (AC), which you can use to recharge your phone, laptop, refrigerator, and other home appliances.

    The power capacity varies between devices, as does the wattage the attachable solar panels can collect.

    EcoFlow DELTA Pro

    The EcoFlow DELTA Pro with the 400W solar panel is a robust solar generator. It supports a capacity of 3.6kWh that you can expand up to 25kWh. It’s a powerful and durable machine that can run heavy-duty appliances, including refrigerators, televisions, and more.

    The DELTA Pro includes a 400W panel to give you plug-and-play power off the grid. It’s the most reliable and powerful solution for camping, RV living, and home backup.

    What Are the Differences Between a Portable Power Station and a Solar Powered Generator?

    Portable power stations and solar-powered generators are more similar than they are different, but some criteria still set them apart.

    Power Storage vs. Power Generation

    One of the most significant differences is that portable power stations store power, whereas solar generators harness new power by converting sunlight using solar panels. However, if you purchase solar panels to use with your PPS, you are essentially creating a solar-generator setup. Solar generators bundle the PPS and solar panels, allowing you to save money and get everything you need to generate power in one package.

    Power Source

    Portable power stations require an external energy supply to recharge their batteries. Usually, it requires a grid connection, but some also can connect to your vehicle using a car adaptor. You can attach solar panels, but you’ll need to purchase these separately.

    Solar generators come ready-made. You can charge them using a wall outlet, car adaptor, or solar panels. For this reason, solar generators are far more versatile and allow you to go off-grid without worrying about how to source your power.


    Due to the necessary addition of solar panels, generators tend to be a little heavier and larger than PPS systems. However, portability varies significantly.

    A smaller model with solar panels will still be lighter than a more heavy-duty portable power station. Plus, with EcoFlow’s portable solar panels, you can fold up the panels for compact storage and transportation.

    Should I Purchase a Portable Power Station or a Solar Powered Generator?

    To close off our comparison, let’s talk about practicalities. Though both devices are handy for keeping you connected, there are specific scenarios where one has the edge over the other. If you’re looking for real-world examples, you’re in the right place. We have taken three scenarios and examined which product would better suit your needs.


    Getting out into the great outdoors is wonderful, and one of the appealing factors of this may be ‘disconnecting’ for a little while. However, you’ll probably still need at least a little electricity for practical items such as portable cookers, phones, and GPS devices.

    Your first thought might be a portable power station, given that you can take them anywhere. But we give the edge to solar. Since you’ll be outdoors so much, using a generator that gets its power from the sun makes sense. With solar, you know you will have enough energy to keep you going without needing access to the grid.

    Verdict: Solar-Powered Generator

    Home Backup

    Blackouts aren’t fun for anybody, but they can be a little more bearable with the help of a generator. One of the worst things about a total power outage is its effect on your refrigerated and frozen food and your ability to complete routines you may ordinarily take for granted. We rely significantly on electricity, so we need a reliable backup plan when it’s gone.

    For this purpose, we recommend a portable power station. These compact devices often pack enough wattage to run larger appliances, including refrigerators and freezers, so you don’t need to worry about losing food. The DELTA Pro boasts a power capacity of 3600Wh, enough to run household appliances and small electronic devices, and it’s easy to keep charged for when a blackout hits.

    Verdict: Portable Power Station

    Outdoor Events

    Planning the perfect outdoor event can be stressful. Whether it’s a wedding, a festival, or just an excuse to enjoy the summer, you want to ensure everything goes according to plan. This relies upon a power supply that won’t give up when you need it most.

    With that in mind, we recommend a solar-powered generator. What better way could there be to power an outdoor event than by harnessing the power of the sun? You’re likely to be outside all day, and that’s the perfect condition for your solar generator.

    The EcoFlow 160W solar panel is dust and water-resistant, too, so you don’t need to worry about any rainfall (or accidental drink spillages) affecting its performance.

    Verdict: Solar-Powered Generator


    So there you have it! Now you’re ready to go out into the wilderness (or plan the perfect event!) without worrying about how you will power it.

    If you ever feel stuck, just remember that the critical difference between portable power stations and solar generators is the presence of a solar panel and the ability to generate power — not just store it.

    Beyond that, they are very similar!

    No matter which product you opt for in the EcoFlow range, we are sure you will be impressed by its capabilities.

    EcoFlow is a portable power and renewable energy solutions company. Since its founding in 2017, EcoFlow has provided peace-of-mind power to customers in over 85 markets through its DELTA and RIVER product lines of portable power stations and eco-friendly accessories.

    Solar Generators: A Guide to Portable Solar Power

    A solar generator is a portable power station that uses portable solar panels to charge a battery, and the stored electricity can be used to charge or operate other devices.

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    As climate change continues to impact our planet in the form of extreme weather, higher temperatures, rising sea levels, and more, we must look for sustainable solutions to more parts of our day-to-day life. This includes the move to using portable solar power generators to create and store renewable energy for all your backup power needs.

    Not only do solar generators create reliable clean electricity from the sun, but they also reduce the emission of harmful greenhouse gasses associated with traditional portable generators. As a result, manufacturers are working hard to make solar backup generators better and more reliable than their fuel-powered counterparts. This mirrors the growth and popularity of home solar power systems as an alternative to powering your home with fossil fuels.

    With this article, you will better understand what a solar generator is, why solar generators are worth an investment, how to shop for a portable solar generator that’s right for you, and why solar-powered generators should replace traditional gas-powered generators.

    What Is A Solar Generator?

    The term solar generator usually refers to the combination of portable solar panels, battery, battery charger, and inverter into a single device that allows you to capture, store, and distribute power from the sun.

    Solar generators are popular for camping trips, boating, RV trips, and as emergency backup power.

    Unlike a traditional generator, which is normally powered by gas, diesel, or propane and includes an engine, fuel tank, and alternator, a solar generator lacks any moving parts. They’re essentially comprised of four elements:

    • Portable Solar Panels. Captures energy from the sun
    • Rechargeable Battery. Stores the energy captured by solar panels
    • Solar Charge Controller. Manages how much energy goes into the battery
    • Solar Inverter. Converts the sun’s energy into usable electricity

    Thus, a solar generator is basically a portable battery with some photovoltaic (PV) panels attached to collect sunlight.

    A portable solar generator turns out to be a great power supply, whether you’re on the road, camping, or needing electricity during a power outage. Depending upon your situation, you might want a solar generator with a variety of outlets, especially in emergencies where you have multiple power-dependent devices and appliances.

    Typically, solar generators have 12-volt sockets, AC outlets, and USB ports to allow you to charge different devices. The beauty of having several charging options with your portable generator is that you can get the power you need on your terms. For example, you can plug a smartphone directly into the USB port to charge, and then connect an extension cord to the AC outlet to power a set of string lights.

    In most cases, you will have the option to buy components like solar battery storage and panels separately, though you can also buy them as a complete all-in-one kit. We recommend purchasing the accessories you need to generate and store enough electricity for your intended use.

    How Do Solar Power Generators Work?

    A solar battery generator works by creating electricity from sunlight and storing it in a battery for future use. Here is a more detailed breakdown of the process:

    • Solar panels convert sunlight to DC electricity and pass it through the charge controller.
    • The charge controller regulates the voltage of electricity before storage, ensuring the right amount of current goes to the battery.
    • The battery stores all the solar energy for later use.
    • The inverter converts the stored energy from the battery to the AC power that most appliances and devices use.

    Who Benefits From Using Solar Generators?

    Solar generators don’t burn fuel to generate electricity, making them ideal for anyone looking to reduce reliance on gas-powered generators, combat blackouts and other power outages, and have a reliable backup power source option in case of emergencies.

    You can use the energy stored in a solar generator during a power outage, to charge your devices when camping, and as source of energy on an RV or boating trip. Essentially, a solar-powered backup generator is ideal for a range of real-life situations, meaning it’s useful to have around for more than just emergencies.

    People Who Want to Make Eco-Friendly Choices

    Traditional generators run on fossil fuels that pollute the environment. If you’re conscious of the danger these fuels possess, then a solar backup generator is ideal for you.

    People Bothered by the Sounds and Smells of Traditional Generators

    Traditional generators are noisy and stinky because they’re combustion engines running on fossil fuels. Over time and even with proper maintenance, they can become noisier and smellier. If you’re looking for a generator that creates zero sounds and smells, a solar power generator will not let you down.

    People Who Enjoy Spending Time Outdoors

    You will find solar power generators are helpful if you enjoy being outside, yet still want to bring along a few modern perks. For example, during a camping or boating trip, solar batteries come in handy to ensure you have continuous power access. You could string up lights after sundown, charge your phones, run small kitchen appliances, and any number of conveniences you had to do without in the past.

    Key Factors When Shopping for a Solar Generator

    Solar generators come in different sizes and shapes, so picking one that will address your personal needs should be your priority. Choosing a solar generator can be challenging, especially when you are presented with different options, so we created this shopping list as a good starting point.

    Since not all portable solar backup power generators are the same, people need to know what the generator can and cannot do. Knowing how you intend to use your generator should help guide you to the right solution.

    Some of the top brands to compare include Jackery, Goal Zero Yeti, Bluetti, EcoFlow, Point Zero Energy, Renogy, and Tacklife. Each company makes its products unique, so a closer look at what each one offers can help you make a sound decision.

    Your Energy Requirements

    The amount of electricity you need should be your top consideration for determining the size of your solar powered generator. For example, if you plan to use it outdoors, you should calculate how much energy your devices and appliances use when comparing the storage capacity of potential solar generators.

    How Much Electricity The Solar Generator Can Provide

    The longer a generator can provide power, the better. (This is usually calculated in watt hours.) Considering you don’t always know when you will have an opportunity to recharge it, it is best to have one that can run efficiently for a long time. That way, it will be easier for you to go about your daily activities or complete what you were doing, knowing you have enough backup power.

    How Long The Solar Generator Takes To Charge

    In addition to comparing the battery capacity of a solar generator, you should also pay attention to how long it takes for the battery to achieve a full charge. Some even have the ability to quick charge from a home AC power outlet. This will help with planning how much time you’ll need to be without power in the event a recharge is necessary.

    What Features and Benefits are Included

    You can do a lot with a solar generator that has helpful features. For example, more USB ports and power outlets give you the freedom to charge multiple devices at once.

    Weight is another essential consideration, especially if you plan to use your generator for outdoor activities. Batteries can be heavy, so you might want to look for a solar generator that has focused on keeping the weight down if you plan to move it around a lot.

    What the Warranty Covers

    We recommend examining any benefits you might enjoy from the product warranty. The larger and more reputable the company, the more perks you will likely receive to support your solar power generator. The top options include replacement parts for any necessary repairs, as well as a longer length of time your solar generator is covered by the warranty.

    Comparing Portable Solar Generators with Traditional Gas-Powered Generators

    The Pros of Solar Generators

    Investing in a portable solar generator is a good way of reducing your environmental impact and enjoying numerous other benefits:


    Generally lighter than traditional gas-powered generators, solar generators are ideal for outdoor events, camping, emergencies, and general on-the-go activities. Some of them are even equipped with a luggage-like pull handle to enhance portability.

    Low Maintenance

    Wear and tear due to moving parts in traditional emergency generators can lead to high maintenance costs. Solar generators have no moving parts and don’t rely on gas to generate electricity. This design helps lower the possibility of having to pay for repairs.

    Clean Energy

    Solar generators generate clean, renewable energy that doesn’t hurt the environment when running. Traditional generators run on fossil fuels which contribute to air pollution and climate change. As an added benefit, you can access solar energy freely instead of paying for pricey fossil fuels.

    Easy Operation

    Solar generators are easy to use as they don’t require fueling, oiling, starting, and maintaining. Just turn it on, connect your devices, and draw power from it.

    The Cons of Solar Generators

    There are a few disadvantages to using solar generators that you should consider before making a purchase:

    Higher Upfront Cost

    Solar generators typically require a higher initial investment than traditional generators. However, the costs of operating are lower than traditional options, so you’ll save money over time.

    Lower Energy Storage

    Solar generators aren’t ideal if your power demands are too high. For instance, during a power outage, your generator may not be sufficient to operate all devices and appliances in your house. In most cases, they are best for operating a few devices at a time, such as lighting, a television, or a refrigerator.

    Slower Energy Generation

    Compared to traditional gas-powered portable generators, solar generators are not the best option when you need instantaneous power. If your battery runs out of power, you have to wait for it to recharge to get power to your appliances and devices, which can vary depending on the weather conditions. With a traditional generator, you simply need to add more fuel to generate additional power.

    The Pros of Traditional Generators

    Generators powered by fossil fuels do have some advantages, including:


    Traditional options are available in different sizes, and there are smaller sizes that you can bring with you when traveling. Just remember that you also have to carry gasoline, so they aren’t quite as portable as solar generators.

    Familiar Technology

    Having been on the market for years, traditional generators are more familiar to some people. However, that market dominance also means the technology hasn’t been dramatically improved because of the lack of competition.

    Electricity On-Demand

    Traditional generators produce electricity as soon as they receive fuel, while a solar generator must be recharged to provide electricity. Hence, gas-powered generators are more convenient when you need instant power.

    The Cons of Traditional Generators

    Despite their popularity over the years, traditional generators have their shortcomings. Here are some of the reasons why people are ditching them:

    Fuel Costs

    Traditional generators rely on costly fossil fuels to run, which increases their long-term costs over the initial purchase price. You may also have to pay more to access that fuel if you aren’t near a gas station or other fuel source.

    Toxic Gases

    Traditional generators are notorious polluters. Each gallon of gasoline contains about 20.35lbs of carbon dioxide, and the average camping generator emits around 1-2 lbs of carbon dioxide per hour, even when running at 1/4 of the max rated load.

    In addition to carbon dioxide, gas-powered generators can also release other harmful gases into the atmosphere, including carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides, and sulfur oxides.

    Noisy Operation

    Because of all the moving parts that make up a traditional gas-powered generator, they produce a lot of noise when operating. This is especially true for smaller portable generators, which are designed to prioritize size and weight over noise prevention.

    Ongoing Maintenance

    You have to continuously pay to take care of your traditional generator if you want to keep it in good working order. That regular maintenance occurs because the generator uses moving parts to process fossil fuels into electricity, and those moving parts need to be cleaned, oiled, and replaced over time. In addition, the fuel can go bad if it sits unused for a long period of time. Those routine costs definitely impact the total price of owning a gas-powered generator in the long run.

    Key Takeaways

    Solar generators are growing in popularity, and with advances in solar technologies, people who like clean energy are increasingly picking them over gas-powered generators. Solar generators offer low maintenance, portability, clean energy, and sustainable living to combat climate change. The numerous benefits of owning a solar generator make it worth the investment.

    Before you buy a solar-powered generator, make sure you analyze the key features of different brands to pick one that will address your power needs. Brands like ​​Jackery, Goal Zero Yeti, and Bluetti make a wide range of different solar generators to match your needs.

    If you want to store even more backup solar power than even the best solar generator can provide, you should consider solar battery storage that connects to your home solar panel system. While your home solar panels can definitely charge your portable solar generator so you have on-the-go power whenever you need it, solar generators are not designed to act as a home standby generator for your entire home.

    If you’re shopping for backup power options, the experts at Palmetto can help you understand the long-term solutions that are right for your electricity needs and system requirements. Get started today with a Free Solar Savings Estimate, and then speak with one of our solar professionals on how you can always have the energy you need when you need it most.

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