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Compare prices and reviews of solar providers near you online. Largest portable solar generator

Compare prices and reviews of solar providers near you online. Largest portable solar generator

    Ranked: 5 best solar generators that will keep your lights on

    Having a solar generator is one of the best ways to make sure you have power right when you need it.

    If your power goes out at home, or you want backup power for your next RV camping trip. a solar generator will have you covered.

    With their lightweight, portable design, solar generators give you reliable access to energy without having to worry about pollution, noise, or fuel costs like you do with conventional gas generators.

    Editorial note: This is an unbiased review: we have no financial ties with any of the companies mentioned, nor do we earn money from affiliate advertising. The content of this blog is based on research and information available at the time of writing.

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    SolarReviews is the leading American website for consumer reviews and ratings of residential solar panels and solar panel installation companies. Our industry experts have over two decades of solar experience combined and maintain editorial independence for their reviews. No company can pay to alter the reviews or review scores shown on our site. Learn more about SolarReviews and how we make money.

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    What is a solar generator?

    Solar generators aren’t really generators at all. they’re portable battery storage systems. However, because they are used for the same purposes as traditional generators, the name stuck.

    The main components of a solar generator are the solar panel and the rechargeable solar battery. Simply place the solar panel in the sun, and let it do its work! The panel turns the sunlight into electricity that is then stored in the battery.

    Then, you have stored solar energy ready for when you need it!

    best solar generators ranked

    There are many different solar powered generators on the market. We’ve compiled a list of the 5 best solar generators to help you find the right one for your individual needs.

    Renogy Phoenix 200

    The Renogy Phoenix 200 is ideal for shorter camping trips. Image source: Amazon

    Best: Portability

    Price: 128.99 Buy Now

    Key features: Perfect for charging small devices, small and lightweight

    Capacity: 189 Wh

    The Renogy Phoenix 200 is the smallest solar generator on this list, making it perfect for short overnight camping trips or a movie night in the backyard. At just 4.6 pounds, the Phoenix 200 won’t weigh you down.

    It’s the perfect solar generator for charging devices like phones, laptops, and cameras. However, the Renogy Phoenix 200’s small size means it isn’t the best choice for whole-home emergency power.

    The Phoenix Renogy 200 includes a 110 V AC outlet, three USB-A ports, one DC power output port, a USB-C port, and a carport. The battery also acts as an LED Flashlight, making it perfect for outdoor adventures.

    Jackery Explorer 500

    Jackery’s Explorer 500 is a great mid-sized solar generator that won’t break the bank. Image source: Jackery

    Best: Value

    Price: 529.99 Buy Now

    Key features: Very powerful despite its small size, ideal for traveling, serves as a great emergency backup power supply

    Capacity: 518 Wh

    The Jackery Explorer 500 all-in-one solar generator will give you the most bang for your buck.

    It includes a high-quality, pure sine wave inverter, as well as an MPPT charge controller to ensure your battery recharges safely. Its compact size makes it great for traveling.

    Just because it’s small, doesn’t mean it isn’t mighty. the Jackery Explorer has enough energy stored to power a minifridge for 27 hours, charge an iPhone 53 times, or run a television for 7.5 hours!

    So, not only is it great for camping and boating trips, it is a great emergency backup power supply, as well.

    When paired with a 100-watt solar panel, the Explorer will charge in 9.5 hours. The portable power station includes three USB ports, an AC power outlet, and a 12-volt car charger. It also has an LCD display to help you monitor the charge and discharge status of your battery pack.

    Goal Zero Yeti 400 Lithium Portable Power Station

    Goal Zero’s Yeti 400 is ideal for camping and boating because of its compact size. Image source: Goal Zero

    Best: For camping and boating trips

    Price: 449.95 Buy Now

    compare, reviews, solar, largest, portable, generator

    Key features: Powerful enough to run small appliances, can fully recharge using various sizes and types of solar panels, can be charged with a wall outlet or car

    Capacity: 396 Wh

    Goal Zero’s Yeti 400 is a great mid-sized solar generator that’s perfect for extended off-grid camping and boating trips. It can also serve as a backup power source to charge your electronic devices in case a grid outage occurs.

    What’s great about this solar power generator is that it can fully recharge in about 6 to 12 hours using a 100-watt solar panel. If you pair it with a higher-wattage solar panel, it may charge faster. It can also be charged by plugging into a wall outlet or using a 12-volt adapter for your car.

    The 396 watt-hour (Wh) battery stores enough energy to recharge a smartphone over 20 times, a laptop up to 5 times, or a small television for 3 hours. It also delivers enough power to run small appliances, like minifridges. Larger appliances will not be able to run on the Yeti 400.

    Point Zero Energy Titan 1000 solar briefcase generator kit

    Point Zero Energy’s Titan 1000 briefcase solar generator kit is one of the most powerful solar generators on the market, making it great for home power backup. Image source: Point Zero

    Best: For home power backup

    Price: 5,645 Buy Now

    Key features: Very powerful, includes a built-in inverter and charge controller, foldable solar panels, high-powered AC output charger allows for quick charging

    Capacity: 2,000 Wh

    Point Zero Energy’s Titan 1000 briefcase kit is a top choice among homeowners looking for home backup power due to its large size.

    With 1,000 watts of solar panels and a battery capacity of 2,000 Wh, this is one of the most powerful portable solar generators on the market. It also includes a built-in inverter and charge controller. The Titan solar generator system can be paired with more batteries if needed.

    The Titan solar generator has enough power to run even your largest appliances, like your fridge or washing machine. When the sun is out, the 1,000-watts of solar panels can run your electronic devices without draining the battery, and it’s able to charge in as little as 4 hours thanks to its high-powered AC output charger.

    The Titan 1000 battery weighs in at 35 pounds and includes five foldable monocrystalline solar panels, so it can be used on the go but is also well suited as a home power backup system.

    Does solar-plus-backup battery storage make sense where you live?

    Goal Zero Yeti 1400 Lithium with Wi-Fi Boulder 100 Briefcase Solar Kit

    The Goal Zero Yeti 1400 and Boulder 100 Briefcase Solar Generator Kit’s versatility makes it our pick for best overall solar generator. Image source: Goal Zero

    Best: Overall

    Price: 2,199.95 Buy Now

    Key features: Lightweight, can be charged by solar panels or wall outlet, includes an app that helps you monitor your energy use

    Capacity: 1,425 Wh

    Goal Zero is one of the most popular solar generator manufacturers around.

    Their Yeti 400 is a great choice if you’re looking for something to back up your home in the event of a power outage. It has 10 total ports that guarantee you’ll be able to power all of your devices. It can even power a fridge for 32 hours!

    Despite having 1,425 Wh of storage capacity, the Yeti 1400 lithium-ion battery weighs just 43.7 pounds. So besides being a great source of emergency power, it’s portable enough to be brought on long camping trips.

    The Yeti 1400 can be charged using solar panels or with a wall outlet. A 100-watt solar panel is recommended if you will only be using about 10-20% of the energy stored within the battery. If you anticipate your power consumption to be more than 20%, consider getting additional panels.

    You can monitor exactly how much energy you use from the battery with the Goal Zero app when you are connected to Wi-Fi.

    How to pick the right solar generator for you

    There are a few key things to consider when shopping for a solar generator. The most important thing to think about is the intended use of your solar generator.

    If you want a solar generator for extended camping trips, mid-sized solar generator battery banks like the Goal Zero Yeti 400 and the Jackery Explorer are great choices. They have enough storage capacity to charge devices multiple times while having a high enough continuous power output to run small appliances for a few hours.

    If you want to be able to power entire areas of your home in the case of a power blackout, you’ll probably want a larger battery to meet your power needs, like the Titan 1000. Not only does it have enough battery capacity to charge devices, but it delivers enough power to run your refrigerator, as well.

    Also, keep in mind what size solar panel you need. Larger solar generator batteries can oftentimes be paired with solar panels that have a higher wattage than those used for small batteries. Small to mid-sized batteries can be paired with 100-watt solar panels for a charging time between 8 and 9 hours.

    Final thoughts on solar generators

    Solar-powered generators are a great alternative to noisy, gas-guzzling conventional generators. The days of being tied down by wires and plugs are over. you can head out on your next camping trip anywhere with solar-powered generators.

    Solar generators can also give you peace of mind in emergencies. Even if the grid goes down, when the sun comes up, you’ll be able to run your devices and appliances.

    However, the best way to keep your lights on in the event of a power outage is to install a rooftop solar power system paired with solar battery storage. Not only will the battery keep your lights on when the grid goes down, but the solar system will power your home and save you money every day of the year.

    High Output Solar Generator, (3000W to 5000W Available), Portable Solar Battery Box w Inverter, USB, 12V Inputs/Outputs

    This solar generator is all about packing the most power in the smallest footprint. Cutting Edge Power solar generators are designed to provide more inverter output and more battery capacity than any other solar generator available. Completely customizable with add-ons like wind turbine controls, charge controller upgrades and battery options, no other solar generator can match our performance specs for a generator of this size!

    Here’s what makes it special:

    • Use your own battery, or use ours!
    • Maximum battery capacity – When equipped, this solar generator can be customized with up to 7,200Wh of battery capacity!
    • Maximum inverter output – Up to 5,000W continuous output (10,000W surge output)
    • Maximum solar charging input – Charge at up to 450W standard and up to 1,200W with full upgrades.
    • Made in USA with serviceability in mind. Charge controllers, inverters and batteries are all mounted with hardware that’s easy to work on with standard hand tools. Nothing is permanently mounted with rivets, or closed up in a plastic case.

    Being able to supply your own battery or use our battery makes this solar generator one of the best and least expensive options on the market. Featuring our new high performance solar charge controller, these solar generators can be used with virtually any 12V battery on earth. Installing your own batteries is super easy: Just connect the supplied 5/16” ring terminal wires to your battery’s posts. Cutting Edge Power solar generators are completely modular with connections to add more batteries in the future.

    Future maintenance is easy with simple hand tools and off-the-shelf parts, unlike some solar generators that are worthless if one component fails.

    Cutting Edge Power lithium battery packs are welded, assembled and tested in Houston, TX. Even better, our lithium batteries are factory-installed when purchased with a solar generator. Our lithium batteries provide about 450% lifetime and 100% run time over traditional lead acid batteries. Plus, they’re about half the size.


    Battery chemistry compatibility:

    12V Cutting Edge Power lithium (3S)

    Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4)

    compare, reviews, solar, largest, portable, generator

    (A 12V automotive starting battery will function, but run times will not be ideal)

    Solar charge controller technology:

    PWM (MPPT upgrade available)

    Maximum solar panel input open circuit voltage (VOC rating on your solar panel label):

    55V DC (100V DC with MPPT upgrade)

    Maximum solar panel input working voltage (VMP rating on your solar panel label):

    40V DC (90V DC with MPPT upgrade)

    Maximum solar panel input power:

    (Let us know if you need more solar input capacity)

    Solar charge controller power consumption at idle:

    compare, reviews, solar, largest, portable, generator

    Inverter watts refers to the maximum continuous output.

    Max surge output is 2 x the continuous rating.

    (1) Solar panel connector pair

    (1) 12V/24V Pair input/output 5/16” post terminals for connecting external batteries, optional wall charger, or devices

    3000W Pure Sine:

    (2) Household 110/120VAC/1PH/60HZ 3-prong outlet

    (1) 110/120VAC/1PH/60HZ Terminal Block (Hot/Neutral/Ground)

    (1) 12V socket, 30A (360W max output)

    (1) 12V/24V Pair input/output 5/16” post terminals for connecting external batteries or devices

    USB-C/USB-A: See “Output Technology” section below

    4000W Pure Sine:

    (2) Household 110/120VAC/1PH/60HZ 3-prong outlet

    (1) 110/120VAC/1PH/60HZ Terminal Block (Hot/Neutral/Ground)

    (1) 12V socket, 30A (360W max output)

    (1) 12V/24V Pair input/output 5/16” post terminals for connecting external batteries or devices

    USB-C/USB-A: See “Output Technology” section below

    5000W Pure Sine:

    (2) Household 110/120VAC/1PH/60HZ 3-prong outlet

    (1) 110/120VAC/1PH/60HZ Terminal Block (Hot/Neutral/Ground)

    (1) 12V socket, 30A (360W max output)

    (1) 12V/24V Pair input/output 5/16” post terminals for connecting external batteries or devices

    USB-C/USB-A: See “Output Technology” section below

    (1) USB-C PD (1) USB-A QC 3.0:

    18W Max. Output Power (5V@3.4A, 9V@2A, 12V@1.5A)

    • Supports DCP (BC1.2, Apple, Samsung)
    • Supports Qualcomm Quick Charge Protocol QC2.0 and QC3.0

    Supports Samsung Fast Charge Protocol AFC

    Complete solar generator: 5 years

    Solar charge controller: 5 years

    Lithium Battery (If equipped): 5 years


    An introduction to solar generators and Cutting Edge Power:

    Solar generators are an excellent investment for hurricane / natural disaster preparation, backup power for your home, camping, tailgating, medical devices, refrigerators, air conditioners, construction equipment and tools, CPAP machines and more. Future maintenance of Cutting Edge Power products is easy with simple hand tools and off-the-shelf parts, unlike some solar generators that are worthless if one component fails. Designed in America and professionally wired in Houston, TX so you can rest assured you’ll have the best performing solar generator available.

    Featuring our new high performance solar charge controllers, these solar generators can be used with virtually any battery on earth. Installing your own batteries is super easy: Just connect the supplied 5/16” ring terminal wires to your battery’s posts.

    Cutting Edge Power lithium battery packs are welded, assembled and tested in Houston, TX. Even better, our lithium batteries are factory-installed when purchased with a solar generator. Our lithium batteries provide about 450% lifetime and 100% run time over traditional lead acid batteries. Plus, they’re about half the size.

    CEP300 Charge Controller

    This solar generator features our CEP300 charge controller. The CEP300 is our most popular solar charge controller and features a high input 450W of solar capability as well as 55V maximum solar panel VOC. If you need more power input or a higher VOC, you may be interested in upgrading to our CEP440 MPPT solar charge controller.

    The CEP300 features plenty of adjustable settings as well as a Large Back-lit LCD display which shows system status, solar input current, solar input voltage, battery voltage, and battery state of charge (%).

    Remote Wi-Fi monitoring can be easily added with Cutting Edge Power’s Smart Tech Power Meter.

    about our lithium batteries


    Cutting Edge Power’s wind and solar lithium-ion battery modules are the best way to pack more power and run time into a smaller space. Leveraging the amazing performance of our lithium cells and the resulting smaller footprint, our battery modules provide up to 450% lifetime and 100% run time over traditional batteries!

    The cells are imported from the most reputable cell manufacturers in the world that also supply Tesla and other high performance companies. Cells are arranged in plastic holders. These plastic holders are a custom in-house design and they’re made in our shop. The cells are then welded together using a special machine designed and built by Cutting Edge Power! The plastic holders are then assembled and mounted inside your solar generator. All of this is done in Houston, TX.

    Each cell array is continuously monitored by redundant Battery Management Systems (BMS), not just one like most battery manufacturers. If one module were to go out, you would still have the remaining modules in operation. The multiple BMS systems protect all cells against overcharging, overdischarging, as well as overcurrent. They also equalize all the cell voltages and keep the pack running cool.



    Our lithium battery modules will be factory installed in any Cutting Edge Power solar generator when purchased together. Adding a lithium batteries to an existing Cutting Edge Power solar generator is as easy as ordering a pizza with our custom drop downs.

    We call them modules, because our entire solar generator product line is modular. We understand sometimes you need testing before you know how many batteries you need. battery modules can easily be added later and it only takes about 5 minutes.

    We don’t believe in proprietary connectors or special permanent installations. No other connection or additional assembly on your part is required! Terminals on our battery modules allow you to quickly and easily replace old batteries. You can even replace our batteries with a different type or manufacturer!

    Why are they so small, what’s the catch?

    Our battery cells were pioneered by the auto industry so they have a high energy density in order to keep cars lightweight and extend their range. This means a smaller battery pack can have up to 2x the run time as a standard SLA battery. Combining the small size and higher energy density, our batteries will maximize your run time in a compact solar generator!

    DIYers love our lithium batteries for the small footprint, cool operating temperatures and high energy density!

    Only our lithium batteries provide about 450% lifetime and 100% run time over traditional lead acid batteries. Plus, they can do this in about half the size!

    Compared with traditional batteries, Cutting Edge Power lithium ion batteries have a higher run time, higher cycle lifetime, better power density and charge faster. They also weigh less than LiFePO4 and a single module can even provide a higher discharge rate than multiple SLA or LiFePO4 batteries! In wind and solar applications, our lithium batteries have proven to be superior against lead acid, NiCd, AND lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries.

    What Is a Solar Generator?

    This article serves as a starting point to get in the know regarding “solar generators”. What is a solar generator? Do they actually work? What do I need to know before I buy one? What can I use them for? Read on and find out…

    What is a solar generator?

    At its most basic level, a solar generator is the combination of a large battery with solar panels. They work by capturing sunlight via your solar panels, storing the energy captured by sunlight into a battery, and then converting that energy into AC power for you to use. They typically come with wall outlets, USB outlets, and even DC outlets too.

    While the term isn’t entirely accurate, as they don’t generate power in the way fossil-fuel-powered generators do, the term has stuck. We prefer to go by the term “portable power station”, but for the purposes of this article, we’ll be using “Solar Generator”.

    Do solar generators really work?

    In short, they work for anything a traditional generator can be used for without the fumes, smell, or high maintenance. While it’s true that a big limitation in the past has been output, with solar generators lacking when it comes to powering heavy-duty devices, this has been remedied in recent years with EcoFlow’s X-Boost technology. on that later.

    The key thing that sets solar generators apart from their archaic counterparts is that you’ll need to charge them rather than give them fuel. If you’re charging with solar panels, you’ll just want ones with an solar panel connector for maximum compatibility, such as EcoFlow’s range of portable solar panels, and of course, sun. You can read more about what kinds of solar panels you might consider here.

    That being said, solar isn’t the only way to charge up. Almost all solar-powered generators can charge via wall outlets too, with some supporting a bunch of charging methods. In this way, solar generators are much more flexible than traditional generators. EcoFlow DELTA Pro for example lets you use wall outlets, car outlets, solar panels, Smart Generators, or even EV charging stations. Storing renewable energy is now easier than ever.

    What should I consider before buying a solar generator?

    Okay, so let’s assume you’re on board with the idea of solar generators replacing traditional gas generators, or perhaps as a generator alternative. What factors should you then consider with this new technology?

    Capacity: The thousand-watt question

    The first and most important factor you’ll want to look at is how big the battery itself is since you won’t be using a tank full of gas to power your appliances. A larger battery usually means more capacity, which is measured in ‘watt-hours’. The more watt-hours, the longer you can power your appliances before needing a recharge. Let’s take two extremes for comparison when it comes to capacity and portability:

    EcoFlow River 2

    Perhaps the most portable solar generator going, River 2 is the smallest of the River 2 series and comes in at 256 watt-hours. It’s almost like a giant powerbank with AC, DC, and USB outlets to power your devices. It’s great for short trips, camping, or just to throw in your on-the-go bag.

    EcoFlow DELTA Pro

    DELTA Pro — on the other hand — is the largest deviation from old-school generators. It comes in at 3600Wh and can be expanded all the way to 25,000Wh with extra batteries Smart generators. It can integrate directly with your home circuits via accessories and can power your home for days on end during an emergency. And, you can monitor it all from your phone. That’s a whole lot more functionality than a traditional generator.

    How many watt-hours do I need?

    Here, a bit of math comes in handy. Just add up the amount of watts your devices require and multiply that by how many hours you’ll need to use them for. Then, leave yourself a buffer for conversion inefficiencies. Here’s an example:

    Let’s say an extended power outage hits and you need to power a fridge for 4 hours. A large fridge can use up to 200W an hour, especially if turn-on cooling is required. In this case, you need a battery with more than 1000Wh (200×4). A good fit here might be the 2000Wh EcoFlow DELTA Max, with 2000Wh you’ll be able to keep your fridge running throughout the blackout, with a spare 1000Wh or so left over to account for any inefficiency. With that leftover energy, you could even use your microwave and charge up your devices, too.

    You can browse a bunch of solar generator sizes here, varying from 210Wh–3600Wh.

    Output Outlets: What can you run on a solar generator?

    Different solar generators come with different sets of outlets and can run different things. At a minimum, you’ll want AC wall outlets so you can plug in your appliances with ease, as you would at home. However, newer offerings are much more convenient, offering fast-charge USB outlets, DC outlets, and even wireless charging pads. A good middle ground might be the EcoFlow DELTA, a 1200Wh power station that allows you to power up to 13 devices at once.

    Beyond just outlets, you’ll also want to consider how much the solar generator outputs. Older, cheaper models tend to lack output, meaning you won’t be able to power larger appliances such as microwaves. However, all EcoFlow solar generators have high output capability and come with X-Boost technology allowing for surges in output requirements. DELTA Pro, for example, can even power appliances that require as much as 4500W. That’s AC units, heaters, and the like all covered.

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    Battery Chemistry: LFP vs. NCM Batteries

    An important factor that you might not know about coming from a fossil fuel generator is battery chemistry. Different solar generators use different kinds of batteries. The two main ones are NCM batteries and LFP batteries. Each has its own advantages.

    Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP) Batteries: The workhorses

    LFP batteries — named after their elements (LiFePO4) — are designed for long-term, regular use. If you’re looking for a solar generator to be used as a home battery, you’ll likely want an LFP battery since you’ll be cycling it multiple times a week. These have a cycle life almost 5 times that of the NCM alternative. The sacrifice LFP batteries have is that they’re heavier, so if you opt for an LFP battery, make sure it’s easy to transport. EcoFlow DELTA Pro or any of the River 2 series would be a good pick here.

    Lithium Nickel Manganese Cobalt Oxide (NCM) Batteries: Flexibility first

    NCM batteries can be smaller, lighter, and work just fine in temperatures as low as.20°C. They’re the default pick for most portable solar generators as they are easy to carry around, throw in your trunk for camping, or move around the house. EcoFlow’s DELTA series uses lithium (with the exception of the Delta Pro, which uses LFP). The downside of LFP is that lower cycle life of around 800 cycles before degradation to 80% capacity. That won’t be as big a factor if you’re only using yours for trips.

    Solar Input: What solar panel do I need?

    Solar-powered generators don’t necessarily work with any solar panel. You should check the solar input that your solar generator supports to ensure that you can use the solar panel you have or intend to buy. EcoFlow’s solar generators all have high solar inputs for their size. Ranging from 110W for the River 2, to 1600W for the largest model, DELTA Pro.

    Just like with fossil-fuel generators, solar generators are used for a ton of applications, here are three of the most popular applications:

    Solar generators for home backup

    Blackouts are on the rise across the US, and energy set to increase due to scarcity and inflationary pressures. As a result, people are using solar generators to power their home appliances as source of renewable, emergency power. In general, larger portable power stations like DELTA Pro are a good go-to for full home backup, with smaller solar generators such as DELTA being good for powering the essentials.

    We wrote a dedicated article on this here, that’ll take you through how people backup their homes with solar generators.

    Solar generators for camping

    Another popular use for solar-powered generators is camping. The attraction is that you can take your campsite to the next level with outlets. We take them for granted indoors, being able to just plug in whenever we need them, now we can do it in the wild. Just make sure not to check your slack messages, perhaps boil yourself a brew instead.

    Here, you’ll likely want to opt for a power station that puts portability first such as River 2 Pro, since you’ll be carrying it around with you. However, if you’re going all out, DELTA Pro or Max works here too.

    We wrote a full article exploring this topic further here.

    Solar generators for RVs Vanlife

    Did you know vanlife is booming? Since the pandemic, people are looking for alternate ways to travel, and some have even taken the move to the road permanently. Solar generators and RVs or vans are an ideal match. They provide power to your setup, paired with portable solar panels attached to your roof, you’ll have renewable energy on the go. Here, your pick depends on your needs. Large RVs might warrant a large power station, with small vans only requiring a kilowatt-hour or two for a few small appliances and devices.

    Here’s some more detail on the topic with another piece we put together.

    Which solar generator is right for you?

    With all that in mind, you’ll be starting to formulate an idea of what you need. Calculate how many watt-hours you require, then weigh up your priorities following that. Outlets, solar compatibility, charging methods, and of course portability. To make the choice a little easier, we’ve put together two articles for some further reading, one on the more portable River 2 series, and the other on the DELTA series.

    Born and raised in the UK, Kris is a 4.0 International Business grad from Sheffield Business School. After working in the tech industry for half a decade in Shenzhen, China, he’s now Lead Copywriter at EcoFlow. Kris is a renewable power enthusiast uses solar generators to run his DJ gear in exotic locations.

    What Size Solar Generator Do I Need? (Power Station Tips)

    A solar generator is a highly convenient and versatile power source. You can use one to access power while on the go or as a backup source of energy for your home. Before buying one, you might be asking yourself, what size solar generator do I need?

    This is certainly an important question. Buying the right size solar generator will ensure that you have an optimal source of power without paying more for one than you have to.

    But perhaps the real question you should be asking is, what size power station do I need for my solar generator?

    This is because a “solar generator” can technically refer to a solar solution that combines two (or more) components. A Jackery Solar Generator consists of:

    The solar panels – which collect the solar energy from direct sunlight.

    The power station – which stores the electrical power converted by the solar panels.

    In this article, we will help you figure out what size power station is most suitable for your solar generator goals. Keep reading to learn how to calculate the right power station size, along with other information about solar generators, so that you make the best choice.

    How Power Stations Are Sized

    Power stations are typically sized in watts (W). This is a measure of power that’s used to calculate the rate of energy transfer. But what you really need to know is that the greater watts a power station has, the more power it can provide you in a single charge. That being said, there are different watt measurements to pay attention to when deciding on a power station.

    Continuous Power

    The first measurement is usually called continuous power. This is the amount of power that a power station can provide consistently.

    Peak Power

    The second measurement is usually called peak power. This is the maximum amount of power that a power station can provide in a short burst.

    Continuous Power vs. Peak Power (An Example)

    Here’s an example. Think of when you turn on your air conditioner. It needs a quick burst of power to get started. That’s peak power. But the amount of power needed to continuously run the AC unit is generally lower. That’s continuous power.

    Some appliances, such as refrigerators, need a burst of 3-7 times their normal power needs to get started. Keep in mind, your power station needs to be able to accommodate this peak power requirement to run the appliance. So, if you are looking for a solar generator to run a refrigerator, simply meeting the continuous power requirements won’t be enough.

    Continuous power will likely be the more impactful number for you to think about. It’s what tells you how much power you will get from a single charge of your power station under normal conditions.

    How to Calculate Your Optimal Power Station Capacity in 4 Steps

    Jackery sells power stations to meet a wide variety of power consumption needs. Our products range from 167Wh of capacity to as high as 2,060Wh of capacity.

    How Many Watts Do I Need in a Solar Generator’s Power Station?

    To figure out which Jackery product offers the right power capabilities for you, you’ll need to perform the following calculations:

    Step 1: Select What You Want to Power With Your Power Station and For How Long

    The first part of picking the right power station for your needs is understanding what those needs are. This means selecting the specific devices that you want to power with your solar generator, and setting a rough estimation of how long you’d like for its power station to provide that power.

    Tip: Be sure to only pick devices that you can plug into your Jackery Power Station. For example, things like water heaters are often hardwired into your home. So, the chances are you wouldn’t be able to power one with a power station. (Unless you also hardwire that device to your home.)

    Here are some common devices that people power with solar generators:

    • Laptops and PCs
    • Phone chargers
    • Kitchen appliances
    • Hairdryers
    • Air conditioners
    • Video game systems

    Step 2: Find Out How Much Energy Each of Your Selections Uses

    Once you know what you want to power, it’s time to figure out how much energy you need to do so.

    The starting point towards calculating this is finding out how many watts your devices need to run. This number is often listed somewhere on the device itself. But if you only see a measurement for amps, you can multiply that number by the item’s voltage to convert into watts.

    Next, you need to pick how many hours you want to be able to use each of your devices. Then, multiply the number of hours that you’ve selected by the watts of each item. This will give you the total watt-hours you require to be able to power each device.

    You want to power two 60 watt lightbulbs for two hours each. To find the total amount of watt-hours of power you need:

    • Get the total hours: Multiply 2 hours of power by 2 light bulbs. (2 x 2) = 4
    • Get the total wattage: Multiply 2 light bulbs by their 60 watts. (2 x 60) = 120
    • Multiply them together to calculate the total watt-hours. (4 x 120) = 480

    Then, divide your answer by 0.85 to account for a constant energy consumption rate of 85% when the device is in charge.

    This results, in you needing a power station that can provide at least approximately 564 watt-hours to meet your goal of being able to power two 60 watt lightbulbs for 2 hours each.

    Step 3: Add All Of Your Watt-Hour Answers Together

    You need to perform the calculation shown in the previous step for each item you want to power with your Jackery Solar Generator.

    Then, simply add all of the answers together to get the total amount of watt-hours that you need the power station to provide and reach the goals you have for it.

    For example, let’s say you need 400 watt-hours to power your lights, 300 to charge your phone, and 300 to charge your laptop. Your total watt-hour requirement would be 1,000 (400 300 300).

    Step 4: Determine the Watt-Hours of the Power Station You Want

    At this stage, you have all the information that you need to pick the right portable power station.

    Simply take your answer from Step 3 and compare it to the wattage offered by each power station that you look at. Just make sure that you pick a power station that has a higher wattage than your total watt-hour requirement calculated in Step 3.

    Can a Solar Generator Power a House?

    Note that unless you purchase a large Jackery Solar Generator (such as Solar Generator 1500 with an portable power station with 1,534Wh capacity), you likely won’t be able to power everything in your house for multiple hours with a solar powered generator.

    If you find that the answer you got in Step 3 is higher than almost every power station you look at, then you may need to go back and reassess what you really need to power with it. If you can lower yourself down to just the essentials, then you will find a solar generator that works for you without having to break your budget to buy it.

    The Benefits of Buying a Portable Solar Generator

    Portable solar generators are a dynamic backup power option. You can use them both in your home and when you’re on the go. They’re purposefully made smaller than dedicated home backup solar generators to offer this flexibility.

    As they feature a power station that you charge with portable solar panels, you essentially plug the portable solar panels into the power station until it’s charged. Then you can use the power that you’ve created on almost any appliance or electronic device that you want.

    Many people purchase portable solar generators to get access to clean power while enjoying the outdoors. Then, as an added benefit, they can use the generator as a backup source of energy for their homes whenever they need one. It’s this versatility that’s made portable solar generators so popular.

    Power Station Sizing FAQs

    Can You Charge Any Device with a Jackery Power Station?

    Jackery Power Stations can power a wide variety of consumer devices since they feature USB ports, a DC carport, and pure sine wave AC outlets.

    Your device will need to be powered with one of these methods and use a level of power that is compatible with the Jackery Power Station you select.

    Can a Jackery Power Station Jumpstart My Car?

    No, you cannot jumpstart a car with a Jackery Power Station. But you can charge a car’s battery with a power station. So you can use your Jackery product to get the battery charged enough so that you don’t need to jumpstart it.

    How Long Can a Jackery Power Station Power My Device?

    This is entirely dependent on the amount of power that your device uses. You need to perform the watt-hour calculation (shown above) and compare that figure to the wattage of the Jackery Power Station model you select. Doing this will give you the answer you are looking for.

    What Size Jackery Power Station Is Best for Me?

    This will depend on how much power you want to get out of your portable solar generator. If you want to maximize the amount of power you get, then you should consider either our Explorer 1,500 Portable Power Station or our Explorer 1,000 Portable Power Station.

    Jackery Power Station Size Options

    Jackery provides a wide variety of power stations to make it easier for you to find one that fits your needs. We’ve put together a chart to help you figure out which is right for you.

    Check out this table to get a better sense of the type of power you can expect to get from several popular Jackery Power Stations:


    Solar generators provide clean, renewable energy as a low-maintenance power source for wherever you need it. Whether that’s in the home, the outdoors, or both. They can be a very worthwhile investment. However, it makes sense to buy the right size for your energy needs.

    That’s why Jackery offers solar generators equipped with power stations of various sizes to ensure you find the one that suits your goals and budget. Always keep in mind what devices you are looking to power and for how long.

    If you are unsure how much power you need, we hope this article helps you to calculate the right size power station, and consequently, the right size solar generator for you.

    For more information on Jackery Solar Generators and the various size power stations they come with, take a look at our solar generators page.

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