What’s The Best Solar Power Generator For Camping? Introducing The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro
Did you know that an estimated 50 million Americans went on some kind of camping trip in 2022? For many, that trip represented a rare and golden opportunity to get away from it all for a few days, to unplug, light a fire, watch the stars and maybe strum a few bars of “kum-by-ah”. We know that many of you enjoy the digital detox that camping offers and don’t mind “roughing it” for a few days and getting back to nature.
But other campers still like to retain some level of modernity and day to day normality even when they get back to nature. Personally, when I go camping I love to bring my portable bluetooth speaker and pump out some tunes and on longer camping trips, I kinda need my laptop at some point or other (occupational hazard of being a digital nomad).
Camping is evolving and no longer does sleeping in a tent in a forest mean the lights have to go out. In this post we will look at Solar Powered Generators for camping for those of you who want to stay energised when you get outdoors!
Do You Really Need a Power Generator For Camping?
Ok lets deal with the big question – do you really NEED a generator for a camping trip?
The short answer is obviously no, a solar generator is not a camping essential. People have successfully camped for hundreds of years without power so clearly it is not a camping essential in the way that water and a tent are!
The long answer however is that it ultimately depends what kind of camping trip you are taking. If you are just heading out for one night then you can probably rely on your torch, phone and speaker batteries to last the night and bring along a portable power bank for back up just in case.
However, if you are going for a multi day or multi-week camping trip, those torch and phone batteries are gonna wane and no portable USB charger will hold enough charge to keep on refilling them.
Portable camping power generators are also indispensable for glamping trips (that’s glamorous camping) in order to keep the fan, fridge, hair dryer and wide screen TV going.
Another great use for camp ready power generators is camping at music festivals.
What is The Most Suitable Solar Power Generator For Camping?
Camping power generators come in many different forms and many different shapes and sizes. Some run on gasoline or diesel and while these are effective, they can prove to be expensive to run as well as ecologically unsound.
Other generators can be charged at home from the mains power but if they go dead out in the woods, it’s a long trek back home to charge them again.
Then there are solar powered generators which draw their energy from sunlight. Not only are solar powered generators eco-friendly, they are also perfect for camping trips as they can be recharged in the field.
Over the next section we are going to take a look at one of the best solar powered generators for camping trips that we have tried.
Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro
Designed in California, the Jackery 1000 Pro is basically the golden state epitomised. It mixes pioneering, eco-conscious renewable tech that literally runs off the sun and powers camping trips!
Let’s take a closer look at the Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro’s most important specs;
- Charging from mains in 1.8 hours
- All-round reliability
- Foldable carrying handle
- Dual PD 100W design
Word up, The Solar Generator 1000 Pro can be fully charged and ready to light up in just under 1.8 hours – that makes it the fastest solar recharging yet released by Jackery and a lot faster than a number of other comparable products.
Weighing a mere 11.5 KG (2 kg lighter than its near competitors), the 1000 Pro is seriously lightweight and offers portability, convenience and practicality all at your fingertips. This generator is so light that you can comfortably carry it up hills and into valleys.
Easy to Set Up
The 1000 Pro has been designed for use by lay people and not engineers. As such it is very easy to set up and use utilising led screens and “Press and Play” operating model.
Safety and reliability are important in generators. The last thing any of us want is to set fire to our campsite and the entire forest right? Well the Jackery 1000 Pro uses pure Sine waves for stable power – safety does come first and this and the product guarantees the perfect balance of safe and reliable solar charging that keeps both the Jackery itself, and your devices protected against over-hearing and power surges.
Peace and Quiet
Some generators hum quite loudly when running and when charging which can well and truly disrupt the peace and serenity that campers are looking for. This one however does not and the Jackery 1000 Pro works very quietly that you will hardly even notice it.
Longevity and After Sales Service
As with any consumer item, you have 30 days to return the Jackery and get a full refund if you are not happy with it. Beyond that, the Jackery 1000 Pro comes with a free 3 year manufacturer warranty plus an optional 2 year warranty for customers who purchase the generator directly through the Jackery website.
Additionally, the charge lifecycle of the 1000 Pro lasts for 8 – 10 years (based on 2 uses per month) although of course, this will vary depending on how well you look after the model.
Is The Jackery 1000 Pro Worth Buying?
In our view, the Jackery 1000 Pro is an excellent model which performs well against other generators in its class and is realistically priced. While 1,500 USD is certainly not cheap, the fact is that cutting edge outdoor technology comes with a premium. However, if you buy the Jackery 1000 Pro at Amazon using the link below, then you can get 15% off. Or even better if you buy it directly from Jackery then that discount increases to 20% an incredible saving of 300.
If you want to take a closer look at the Jackery 1000 Pro in order to help you decide, then check out this little demo video;
It’s a time for us to reflect on how our actions impact the environment, and to take steps to reduce our carbon footprint, conserve resources, and preserve our planet for future generations. Today, Earth Day has become the biggest secular holiday worldwide, and it’s celebrated by millions of people across 190 countries. So let’s unite and do our part to protect our home, the Earth!?
And while Earth Day is a truly great initiative, it’s important to use Eco Friendly gear all round as much as possible. And for this reason, we recommend using Solar Generators over fuel generators wherever possible. In celebration of this, Jackery are having an earth day sale that runs between 14th – 22nd April 2023.
Other Uses For A Solar Power Generator
While the Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro is primarily designed for camping, it does have some other uses.
Firstly, having a solar power generator can help to reduce household power bills. If you live in a sunny region, simply stick it out in the garden every few days to charge it up and then use it to power some of your household devices.
Having a solar generator could also prove invaluable in power cuts or following heavy storms when it can take a few days to get the power cables running again.
Moving on, the generator is also ideal for garden parties and outdoor gatherings – my friend threw a huge birthday party last year and used a solar generator to power the DJ gear and PA system in the music gazebo.
Final Thoughts On The Jackery 1000 Pro Solar Generator
We appreciate that generators are not cheap to buy. Still, our take is that the right one is to be seen as an investment; a piece of gear that can last for years of repeated use. A Solar powered generator is a fantastic piece of household and outdoor equipment with a multitude of different uses.
Furthermore, over the years we have seen and tried quite a few different solar generators and can testify that the Jackery 1000 Pro is amongst the best on the market.
And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links. That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!
Jackery Explorer 300 Review Test (Plus Comparisons)
I’ve wanted to own a Jackery portable power station for a long time, and the Explorer 300 was my first choice.
After testing it and comparing it to its competition, I discovered several aspects that stood out to me. Here is what I uncovered.
Overall Score: 7/10
The Jackery Explorer 300 is the lightest solar generator in its class, at 7.1 lbs. It has six commonly-used output ports, one of them being a 60W USB-C PD port that’s used as an input or output.
The Jackery 300 is expensive at 299.99, but if you need the most power you can get with as little weight as possible, this is the best system to get.
The Jackery 300 is geared towards people who want the most compact portable power station without sacrificing battery capacity. Its size and weight make it one of the largest systems of its kind that can fit comfortably inside a standard backpack.
Specifications of the Jackery Explorer 300
The Explorer 300 right after I finished solar panel testing
Output Testing – 6 Port Options on the Jackery 300
Jackery 300 ports
I tested each port and my results can be found below.
AC Port Testing
AC output testing the Jackery 300
The AC ports achieved their 300W continuous limit in my testing.
The AC ports are rated for 300W continuous and 500W peak. I used my Jackery 1000 AC charger combined with my power strip which powered my LED strip lights, laptop and USB charging brick, and my desk fan.
All of these appliances and chargers combined to about 300W of continuous power.
As seen from the image above, it went over 300W multiple times in my testing and did not go over about 315W.
After running this test for at least five minutes, the cooling fans were smooth and did not emit much noise.
USB and Car Port Output Testing
USB and car port DC output testing
My results from testing the USB ports and car port are the following:
The USB-A QC 3.0 port emitted the same wattage as the standard USB-A port. In my video highlighting my testing, I explain that this could be my own testing error, as the QC port can output more than the 12W I received.
Although my testing could not confirm or deny the QC USB-A port’s capabilities, it was still able to output the same as a regular USB-A.
I used the car charger from the Jackery 300 to connect to my Jackery 1000’s input port to get the 78-82W of power. Although the car port is rated for a maximum of 120W, I did not have any other car port charger cable available to test the limits of the 120W capabilities.
Considering that the car port output is regulated, it should be able to reach 120W without issue.
Using the USB ports in combination with the car port was flawless because it outputted the ideal power to my devices according to what they would allow.
In the image above, you can see a total of 150W from all of these outputs combined.
- Sherpa 100AC power bank: 60W from USB-C port
- iPhone 7: 7W from USB-A QC 3.0 port
- Jackery Bolt power bank: 3W from USB-A port
- Jackery Explorer 1000: 80W from 12V car port
What will the Jackery 300 power?
The Jackery 300 will power: Third-party car battery clamps (compatible with Jackery power stations)
If you’re looking for a portable jump starter that is also a power bank, I reviewed the Fanttik T8 Apex and I highly recommend you check it out.
I have used this jump starter on several occasions to jump-start my own car. A portable jump starter is priceless – especially when driving in a remote location. Check out my T8 review here: Fanttik T8 Apex Car Jump Starter Review (Testing Comparison).
Input Testing – Charging Up the Jackery 300
The following lays out the basic questions regarding charging the Jackery 300 and then I dive deeper into my own testing from all charging methods.
How do you charge a Jackery 300?
The Jackery 300 charges via solar panels, a wall outlet, or a car port – all of which plug into its DC input. The USB-C PD input can be used either by itself or in combination with the wall charger to charge its battery. A wall and car charger are included in the base Jackery 300 package.
The DC input is located on the left-hand side of the Jackery and the USB-C PD port is found at the top of the USB port section.
Combining the Jackery 300’s USB-C PD input with the wall charger (using the DC input) is its fastest charging method. Its charging time along with all the other methods can be seen below.
Does the Jackery 300 have pass-through charging?
The Jackery 300 has pass-through charging, however, it’s not recommended to utilize this feature because it will decrease the cycle life of the battery at a higher rate than normal. This happens because the battery heats up faster than the cooling fans can cool it down.
The above is for most cases. Using pass-through charging occasionally with a small output and input will not damage the battery.
The heat generated from this is not significant enough because the cooling fans will most likely work effectively to bring down the Jackery’s internal temperature.
For example, if the input is 60W and you’re just charging your phone from a USB output, the Jackery’s battery will be perfectly fine.
An example of excessive pass-through charging for the Jackery 300 is when you output 200W from the AC ports and use the wall charger simultaneously.
This will create way too much heat along with battery issues down the line.
You may not experience issues with the power station for a long while after using the excessive pass-through method, but it’s probably not worth the value that will be lost.
AC Wall Charging Test
Jackery 300 AC charging
Using the wall charger I was able to get 77W into the Jackery 300 consistently. This was a surprise to me as it states on the charger that it is rated for 90W of power. Having a 13W difference in power changes the charging times significantly when the battery is dead or low.
Nevertheless, at this rate, the recharging time from 0% battery life is about 3.8 hours when dividing the 293Wh battery by 77W. The rated charging time from Jackery is 4.5 hours, so it will still recharge as fast or faster than the rated AC recharging time.
When recharging, there was no cooling fan noise that I could hear. I did have one of my office fans running below my desk, so this could’ve dampened the noise I heard from the Jackery. However, even if I didn’t hear the fans running due to this, the noise level was low enough for me to not be disturbed from its recharging.
This noise level is not the same compared to my OUPES 600W solar generator. From testing this system, its cooling fans were active and easily heard when recharging it. The noise from this power station was not disturbing, but compared to the Jackery 300 recharging process, the Jackery is the clear winner.
Car Charging Test
Jackery 300 car charging
Using the provided car charger, I got a consistent 80W of power from the cable to the Jackery.
This is more power from the AC charger and is not typical from my testing of both the OUPES and Rockpower 500 solar generators.
Usually, the car charger emits less energy into the system than the AC charger, but the Jackery is surprisingly equipped with a powerful car charger.
When connecting the car charger to my car’s auxiliary port, there was no light signaling that the charger was on. This was not an issue, though, because I could tell that the charger was snug when inserting it into my car’s port.
Solar Charging Test
Solar charging the Jackery Explorer 300
Using my Elecaenta 120W solar panel, I got a maximum input of 88W into my power station on a sunny day.
This proved to me that it can input what its specifications say on paper since the Jackery 300’s max solar input is 90W.
Before I reached 88W, I was getting a consistent 66-67W in the same sun conditions.
Jackery 300 solar panel charging 66W
- Widened the panel about one inch as it wasn’t fully opened
- Tilted it a little further back for a better angle
- Moved it about 6-12 inches to the left of where I had it because there was a tree that looked like it could’ve been blocking out some sunlight
And then, voila! I got 88W into the Explorer 300.
Solar charging Explorer 300 at 88W
I’m not sure what exactly happened in this situation, but messing with the panel a bit and adjusting it made a big difference in output power.
I tested solar charging a second time about a week after the first test, and the similar 66-67W input was showing up on the Jackery’s screen on a clear day.
I performed very similar troubleshooting to my panel and after a few adjustments, I realized the main thing that caused the Jackery to accept the full 84-88W of solar power was that I moved the panel on a flat surface.
My backyard is not perfectly flat, and for both of my solar panel tests, they were on bumpy ground.
I realized that the ground was causing part of the panel to be blocked by the incoming sunlight because the grass was covering the bottom 2-3 inches of that part.
Simply evening out the panel allowed the sun to hit it correctly, and then I received full power into the Jackery 300.
Solar Panel Pairings
Jackery 300 with Elecaenta 120W solar panel
- Allow the maximum amount of efficiency from transferring solar power into the battery
- Negate extra solar power from charging the battery too quickly
My main recommendation for you is the Elecaenta 120W portable solar panel. I used this panel during my testing at it received 88W in full sunlight.
This is almost perfect for the 90W maximum input allowed in the Jackery 300.
The most power I’ve ever received from using my Elecaenta panel was 96W. This is more than the Jackery 300’s limit, but since it has an MPPT charge controller, it will be able to divert the extra wattage without issue.
As another option, Jackery offers two solar panels within the Jackery 300’s range, the SolarSaga 60 and 100 (seen below). Jackery SolarSaga 60W solar panel Jackery SolarSaga 100W solar panel
The SolarSaga 60W panel is slightly more expensive than my Elecaenta solar panel at 179.99 and the SolarSaga 100W panel is 299.99.
From several reviews on Amazon as well as reviewing other YouTube tests, the Jackery 60W panel gets around 40-50 watts of power on a clear, sunny day, and the Jackery 100W panel gets 60-80 watts of power in similar conditions.
I would recommend the 60W panel if you do not mind slower recharging times and if you want a lightweight option (it weighs 6.6 lbs).
However, if you want the fastest recharging times regardless of price, the Elecaenta 120W panel or the SolarSaga 100W panel are your best options.
The SolarSaga 100 actually weighs less than the 60W panel (5.5 lbs).
The downside is that this panel is still relatively large even when folded, as it folds once over to dimensions of 24 x 21 x 1.4 inches.
The Jackery 300 consists of an outer shell/casing made of hard plastic. Both its orange cooling vents and grey exterior seem to be equally rugged and capable of taking an accidental fall on the ground without damage.
On the back and sides of the Explorer 300, I noticed several screws that keep it together.
Each side vent has four screws and there are six screws on the back of the system.
Jackery 300 side vents, screws, and screw holes
There is no wobble on any part of the Jackery. I tested this several times to see if the handle or vents would maybe jiggle a bit, but it was (and is) solid.
The handle has a textured grip for carrying it about with ease. However, the handle’s plastic is not sweat-resistant. I was reviewing the construction of the system for my YouTube channel and I noticed my slightly sweaty hands couldn’t fully grip the handle when lifting it up. I could pick it up without issue, but it slipped in my hand a bit unless I firmly grasped it.
Jackery Explorer 300 handle and rubber bottom
The bottom of the Explorer 300 has four orange pads on each corner. They are made of rubber and grip easily to several surfaces.
I’ve used it mainly outside and in my office, but it doesn’t move at all on my desk or on the picnic bench where I was taking photos of the Jackery.
After reviewing its overall construction, I’m confident that if I accidentally dropped my Jackery 300, it would still function properly without any issues.
Jackery 300 vs. Rockpals 300 vs. EcoFlow River
The EcoFlow River 600 is the best option of the three because it has more ports, the fastest recharge times, and the highest AC output. However, it weighs more than both the Rockpower 300 and Jackery 300.
Check out the specifications of each system below.
If you want a Jackery solar generator instead of the above options, the Explorer 240 and the Explorer 500 are the lower and higher tiers surrounding the Explorer 300 in the Jackery lineup.
Below, I’ll briefly compare the Explorer 300 to the 240. If you’d like to see more details of the Explorer 500, I compare it to the Explorer 300 in my article found here: Jackery Explorer 300 vs 500 – Overview Analysis.
Jackery Explorer 300 vs. 240
Overall, the Jackery Explorer 300 is better than the Explorer 240 because it has more port options and a higher solar input. Its 60W USB-C PD port can charge devices five times faster than a standard USB-A port. However, the Explorer 240 is 100 less expensive than the 300.
The Explorer 240 might be the best option for you if you’re looking to get a Jackery power station that’s similar to the Explorer 300.
- 2x USB-A
- 1x AC port
- 1x Car port
You can find more information on the Jackery 240 in my review post here: The Jackery 240 – Solar Charger for the Outdoors.
How many years will a Jackery battery last?
A Jackery battery will last 1.37 years until it reaches 80% capacity when cycled once per day. This applies to all Jackery portable power stations, as they all have the same lifecycle rating of 500 cycles to 80% capacity. However, battery longevity depends several additional factors.
The amount of time its battery will last also depends on the size of the battery, how often it’s used, which appliances are being used, and how well it’s maintained.
Battery capacity in combination with the appliances used are both crucial aspects of this question.
If you’re looking to power a refrigerator solely from a Jackery solar generator, you will want a larger battery and you will need consistent power during several hours of each day.
This will limit the number of years the Jackery will be fully functional because its battery will be discharged and recharged to a significant degree on a daily basis – using up its lifecycles fast.
If you only use a Jackery power station when you go camping every month, then a smaller system can last for several years.
It all depends on the frequency of battery lifecycles used.
The longest-lasting solar generators have LiFePO4 batteries. This is because they typically have the most battery lifecycles compared to standard lithium-ion and lead-acid batteries.
I wrote an article on LiFePO4 solar generators and I recommend checking out the models listed because they will simply outlast the competition: 6 Best LiFePO4 Solar Generators (Stats, Pricing, and Analysis).
Likes Dislikes of the Jackery Explorer 300
What I like
- Combined USB-C and AC charging – Can charge in 2.5 hours from 0-100%
- Lightweight – Jackery solar generators are some of the lightest you can find – the Explorer 300 is no exception
- USB-C PD port – A 60W USB-C that can input and output power is a valuable port that is not very common in smaller portable power stations
- Versatile – It is one of the lightest and most compact systems in the 300Wh range and can fit in a standard backpack for on-the-go activities
- High attention to detail – The MPPT charge controller, regulated DC ports, and solid construction make it an overall well-built system without shortcuts
- Simplicity – Jackery portable power stations are arguably the easiest to use: every port is labeled and outlined, there are LED lights for each port group as well as the input, and all being said, you probably won’t need to investigate your manual for any “how-to steps” or subtle features
What I don’t like
- Cycle life – Although it is average for the industry, 500 cycles to 80% battery capacity is starting to become less desirable as LiFePO4 batteries last much longer
- Car port cover quality – I know it’s a particular critique, but it’s not marine-grade like my other portable power stations I currently own (OUPES 600W and Rockpals Rockpower 500)
- LCD screen – It has a simple, easy to use screen, but it doesn’t show data that several users could find helpful when using it (Ex: input volts and amps, time until battery is depleted) and the numbers on the screen are small and can be hard to read for some
- Third-party solar panel charging – Both of my solar charging tests started at 66-67W of input, but then went to 84-88W when making very small adjustments to the solar panel; it seems that this was more-so due to the Jackery not functioning well with a third-party solar panel than the solar panel not being optimized for the best output
- Price difference compared to Jackery 240 – At 300, the Jackery 300 is 100 more than the Explorer 240 model; unless one of these improved port options are desperately needed for your situation, the 240 will provide most basic power needs
Should You Get the Jackery Explorer 300?
You should get the Jackery Explorer 300 if you need the lightest portable power station in the 300Wh range that can also fit in your backpack. It is the most compact system (9.1 x 5.2 x 7.8 in) compared to the Rockpals Rockpower 300 (10.5 x 5.3 x 8.5 in) and EcoFlow River 600 (11.3 x 7.3 x 7.7 in).
If you don’t need the lightest or most compact system, then the Rockpower 300 is the closest to the Explorer 300 in terms of weight and features – yet it costs 100 less (similar price to the Jackery 240).
If you want the absolute best portable power station in the 300Wh range, the EcoFlow River 600 has by far the best features/specs compared to any other system in this class. However, you will be sacrificing weight as it’s 3-4 pounds heavier than the Jackery 300 and Rockpower 300.
Jackery 300 FAQs
- The Jackery 300 is not discontinued. You can find it in stock on Jackery’s website. However, it was unavailable for a short period of time when I was looking to buy mine. In fact, I bought mine from Ebay when it was unavailable from Jackery and other retailers.
- Can the Jackery 300 power a TV?
- The Jackery 300 can power a TV if the appliance’s power consumption is under 300 watts. For example, my old 32-inch LCD TV consumes about 100 watts of power continuously. Check your TV’s wattage reading to see if it can work with the Jackery 300.
- How long does the Jackery 300 last?
- The Jackery 300 lasts for 500 battery charge cycles before it reaches 80% of its original capacity. This means that you can discharge and recharge its battery about 500 times before its original 293Wh capacity reduces to about 235Wh (80% capacity).
Hi! I’m Max and I am passionate about off-grid solar technology and adventure! I’m using my knowledge of solar generators, solar panels, and everything in between to provide you with the best tools to keep you powered while off the grid. Read more about me here: About Max Peters.
Solar generators come in all shapes and sizes, however, they all have the same purpose, which is to power your devices and/or appliances. When you need to power large appliances with one of these.
With so many rigid solar panels available on the market today, the ideal one for you may be hard to find. After testing the BougeRV 180W solar panel myself, I found that it has several qualities that.
My name is Max Peters and I have a passion for off-grid gadgets and adventure. I studied sustainability in college and want to share with you the best in solar generators, panels, lights, and more to make your outdoor adventures unforgettable!
This site is owned and operated by Maxwell Peters. Maxwell is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Maxwell also participates in affiliate programs with Clickbank, CJ, ShareASale, and other sites. Maxwell is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies.
Top 6 Solar Generators Complete Generator Buyer’s Guide
Are you looking for the best solar generator money can buy?
But feeling completely lost on how to chose the best one for your needs?
We’ve taken years of solar generator experience, tons of real world examples and laid it all out so that by the time you’re done reading this, you’ll be a solar generator expert.
You’ll learn everything there is to know about solar generators.
If you just want to know what the best solar generators are, keep scrolling just past the table of contents.
Table of Contents
EcoFlow Delta 1800 Solar Generator Quad Kit. 1,659
The EcoFlow Delta has quickly become one of the most popular solar generators on the market. With an 1800 watt inverter, 1300 watt hour battery and 400 watts of solar input, the EcoFlow Delta is a 30lbs beast.
EcoFlow Delta 1800W / 1300wH Solar Generator Specs:
- [Newest Model]:DELTA 1800
- [100% Battery Capacity]: 1260Wh (350Ah,3.7V)
- [Compact Design] Dimensions: 15.7 x 8.3 x 10.6in (40 x 21 x 27cm)
- [Light Weight]: 30.9lbs (14kg)
- [Works in all Weather] Charge Temperature: 32-113℉ (0-45℃)
- [Discharge In Freezing Temperatures]:.4.113℉ (-20-45℃)
- [Testing and Certifications]: UL, CE, FCC, RoHS, PSE
- [Cell Chemistry]: Lithium-ion
- [Shelf Life]: 1 Year (meaning it will hold it’s charge for 1 year if sitting on a shelf)
- [FAST AC Charge Time]: 90 minutes from 0-100% Charge, X-STREAM Charges @ 1200W max
- [400 Watt of Solar OR Wind DC Input] Charge Input: 400W 10-65V 10A max
- [Car Charger Included] Charges: 12V/24V 10A max
- [TONS Of Power]: 6 x AC Plug, Pure Sine Wave Inverter, 1800 Watts continuous (Surge of 3,300 Watts), 120V 60Hz.
- [2 x USB-A Ports]: 12W per port, 5V 2.4A max
- [2 x USB-A Fast Charge Ports]: 28W per port, 12V 2.4A max
- [2 x USB-C Ports]:60W per port, 20V 3A max
- [1 x 12V (Car Cigarette Type) Ports]: 108.8W, 13.6V 8A max
What can the EcoFlow Delta 1800 Actually Power?
Bluetti AC200 Max Hex Kit. 2,979
The highly anticipated AC200 MAX is the first expandable power station from Bluetti. Given that Bluetti is one of the most respected brands in the industry, this is a huge leap forward for solar generators and definitely something worth getting excited about!
- Weight: 28.1Kg/61.9lbs
- Capacity: 2048Wh Built-in
- Battery Cell Type: Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4)
- Lifecycle: 3500 (to 80%); 6000 (to 50%)
- AC Input: 500W
- Solar Input: 900W (10-45V), Max 15A
- ACSolar Input: 1400W Max.
- Car Input: 11.5-14.5V;23-29V,7.9-8.4A
- AC Output: 4 x AC 100-120V, 1 x NEMA TT-30 2200W continuous (2200W2750W, 8-10s), 4800W surge
- DC Output: 1 x 12V/30A Super DC1 x 12V/10A Cigarette Lighter Port2 x 12V/10A DC 5521 output
- USB Output: 2 x 5V/3A USB-A2 x 18W USB-A 18W1 x 100W USB-C
- Wireless Charging: 2 x 15W Wireless charging pad
- Scalability: Expandable W/ Up to 2 x B230’s or 2 x B300’s
- Smart connection by: Bluetooth
- Environmental Requirements: Storage Temperature:.20-40C (-4-104 F)Discharge Temperature:.20-40C (-4-104 F)Charge Temperature: 0-40C (32-104 F)
- Warranty: 2 Year Hassle Free Warranty
- Dimension/Weight: 16.5inch x 15.2inch x 11 inch 28.2Kg/62lbs
What Can the Bluetti AC200 Max Actually Power?
|CPAP Machine (40W)||40 Hours|
|Slow Cooker||40 Hours|
|Basic Power Tools (80W)||20 Hours|
|Air Conditioner (8,000 BTU)||3-7 Hours|
|32” LED Television||22 Hours|
|Laptop Computer||20 Recharges|
|Standard Smartphone (iPhone 12)||200 Recharges|
What’s Included With The Bluetti AC200 Max Hex Kit
EcoFlow Delta PRO Nomad Kit. 4,689
The DELTA PRO is the most powerful solar generator EcoFlow has ever released! This highly anticipated home battery system was designed to offer users full power security and off-grid independence, no matter where they are.
Not only does it contain an enormous 3,600Wh deep-cycle battery, it is expandable, meaning it can seamlessly connect to multiple 3,600Wh expansion batteries for a mind-boggling total battery capacity of 25kWh!
- Capacity: 3600wH
- Extra Battery: Delta Pro support up to 2 DELTA Pro Smart Extra
- Batteries / Smart Generators
- AC Output Ports: 5 x AC Outlet, 3600W total (Surge 7200W)
- Max Device(s) Power Supported by X-Boost: 4500W
- DC Output: 2x USB-A 12W / 2x USB-A Fast Charge 18 W /2x USB-C 100W / Car Power 126W /2x DC5521 38W
- Anderson Port: 12.6V 30A
- AC Charging: 1800W Max, 120V-15A,3000W Max, 240V-12.5A
- Solar Charging: 1200W Max, 11-150V,13A
- Car Charging: Support 12V / 24V Battery
- Battery Chemistry: LiFePO4
- Cycle Life: 6,500 Cycles to 50% Capacity3,500 Cycles to 80% Capacity
- Connection: Wi-Fi / Bluetooth / Whired
- Dimension: 25 x 11.2 x 16.4 in / 63.5 x 28.5 x 41.6cm
- Net Weight: Approx. 99 lbs / 45 kg
- Warranty: 3 years (KS only)
What Can The EcoFlow Delta PRO Nomad Kit Actually Power?
|CPAP Machine (40W)||60 Hours|
|Basic Power Tools (80W)||30 Hours|
|32” LED Television||35 Hours|
|Laptop Computer||30 Recharges|
|Standard Smartphone (iPhone 12)||300 Recharges|
- Ships from USA!
- 1 x EcoFlow DELTA Pro 3,600Wh / 3,600W Solar Generator
- 3 x 200W Rigid Solar Panels (12V Monocrystalline). Rigid or Folding
- 1 x XT60 to MC4 Solar Panel Cable (11 ft. long cable)
- 1 x 30 ft 10 AWG MC4 PV Solar Panel Extension Cable
- 1 x Pair of MC4 Branch Connectors
- 1 x AC Standard Wall Charger
- 1 x Carrying Case
- 1 x Car Charger.12V to XT60 cable
- 2 x Sets of Z-Brackets for mounting panels
- 1 x Cable entry housing for solar panel cables
- 1 x Free 10,000 Word Solar Generator Setup Maintenance Guide
- 2-Year Manufacturers Warranty
- Lowest Price Guarantee
- Lifetime Customer Support (Phone, Email or Live Chat)
- FREE Shipping
EcoFlow Delta MAX Quad Kit. 2,089
The EcoFlow DELTA MAX is one of the most anticipated solar powered generators ever built for off-grid, RV, Van Life, and home backup emergency situations. It offers expandable battery capacities starting at 2kWh all the way up to 6kWh. The Delta MAX is also the fastest charging solar generator on the market, fully re-charging in under 2 hours, and comes with 3600W dual charging.
EcoFlow Delta MAX Solar Generator Specs:
- Batter Capacity: 3600Wh (Watt Hours)
- Extra Battery: Support up to two Delta MAX Smart Extra Battery
- AC Output Ports: 6 outlets, 2400W total (Surge 5000W)
- Max Device Power supported by X-boost: 2800W
- AC Charging Input: 1800W Max, 15A
- Solar Charging Input: 800W Max, 11-100V, 13A
- Battery Chemistry: NCM
- Net Weight: Approx. 48lbs
- Warranty: 24 months
What Can the EcoFlow Delta MAX Solar Generator Actually Power?
|CPAP Machine (40W)||40 hours|
|Slow Cooker||20 hours|
|Basic Power Tools (80W)||20 hours|
|32” LED Television||22 hours|
|Laptop Computer||20 hours|
|Standard Smartphone (iPhone 12)||200 Recharges|
What’s Included With The EcoFlow Delta MAX Solar Generator Quad Kit:
- Ships from USA!
- 1 x EcoFlow DELTA Max 2,016Wh / 2,400W Solar Generator
- 4 x 12V Monocrystalline Solar Panels (Your choice)
- 1 x 50 ft. PV Solar Panel Extension Cable (10 AWG)
- 1 x Set of PV Branch Connectors for Series-Parallel Panel Configuration
- 1 x 400W AC wall charger for charging from any standard wall outlet
- 1 x PV Solar Charging Cable (PV to XT60)
- 1 x Car Charging Cable (Car to XT60)
- 1 x User Manual
- 1 x 2-Year Warranty Certification
- 1 x Free Digital Copy of our 10,000-word solar generator setup maintenance guide
- Free Shipping
- Lifetime Customer Support (Via phone, live chat email)
Titan 500 Watt Kit. 3,995
For those looking for the absolute biggest solar generator money can buy, look no further than the Titan Solar Generator from Point Zero. The Titan is an absolute beast of a unit, capable of backing up an entire home’s power with solar electricity. That being said, keep in mind it’s in a category of its own when it comes to pricing availability.
The Titan solar generator is typically a made to order unit carrying a minimum 4-6 week lead time (post Covid-19 pandemic)
Titan Solar Generator Specs:
- Battery: 2000wH Lithium Ion
- Inverter: 3000W / 7700W Surge
- 2 MPPT Charge Controllers
- Charging Options: Solar panels, AC, DC
- Outputs: 6 AC wall outlets, 4 DC (12V) ports, 1 RV Plug (30amp), and 8 total USB ports
- Shelf Life: 3-6 Months
- 2-Year Warranty
- Weight: ~35 lbs. (plus batteries)
What Can the Titan Solar Generator Actually Power? (Per battery pack)
|Smartphones (5-7 watts)||330 hours|
|Tablets (25-40 watts)||66 hours|
|Laptops (50 watts)||40 hours|
|Electric Blanket (Queen Size, 75 watts)||26 hours|
|50 LED LCD TV (65 watts)||26 hours|
|Refrigerator (55 watts)||36 hours|
|Chainable USB LED Lights (6 watts)||330 hours|
|CPAP Machine (30 watts)||66 hours|
What’s Included With The Titan Solar Generator 500 Watt Kit:
- Ships from the USA!
- 1 x Titan solar generator (inverter 2,000 watt hour battery)
- 5 x 100 watt solar panels (total of 500 watts of solar)
- 1 x 50 foot mc4 extension wire (4 wires)
- 1 x 2-way mc4 branch connector
- 1 x 15ft mc4 extension set (4 wires)
- 1 x cigarette to SAE (for charging from a car)
- 1 x MC4 to SAE (for resetting battery with solar)
- 1 x MC4 to anderson adapter (for connecting solar panels)
- 4 x 30 watt USB adapters (2 with two USB, and 2 with 1 USB, and 1 usbc)
- 1 x AC charger (20A)
- 1 x Setup Installation Manual
- FREE Copy of our 10,000 Word Solar Generator Maintenance Guide
- Free Shipping
- Lifetime customer support (phone, live chat and email)
Base Camp Solar Generator Kits. Start at 1,909
The Base Camp Solar Generator Kits include everything you need for a SHTF situation including low watt draw LED lights and an EMP bag capable of protecting your solar generator and all of the necessary parts and pieces you need to run your solar generator kit.
You can see all of the different base camp kits below:
Base Camp Solar Generator Kit Pros :
The biggest advantage to the base camp solar generator kits is the fact that they have everything you need to be properly prepared for a grid down situation.
It’s a 1-click emergency backup power option with solar generators powerful enough to truly keep you and your family safe in any sort of short term OR long term grid outage.
Base Camp Solar Generator Kit Cons:
One of the cons on the base camp solar generator kits would be the fact that they do not come with an EMP bag for the solar panels. Even though this may not be necessary as it’s still up in the air weather or not an EMP would totally ruin solar panels. it would be nice to see an EMP bag for the panels included.
Lastly, the generators included in the base camp solar generator kits are a little pricier and heavier but that said, they are meant to truly provide you with enough power to get through any emergency situation.
Watch: Base Camp Solar Generator Kit Overview
What’s Included With The EcoFlow Delta Base Camp Solar Generator Kit:
- Ships from USA
- 1 x EcoFlow Delta 1800W / 1300wH Solar Generator
- 4 x 100W Rigid Solar Panels (12V Monocrystalline)
- 1 x XT60 to MC4 Solar Panel Cable (11 ft. long cable)
- 1 x 30 ft MC4 PV Extension Cable for solar panels
- 1 x Pair of MC4 Branch Connectors for connecting panels
- 1 x AC Standard Wall Charger
- 1 x T10 EMP Bag / Carrying Case
- 1 x Car Charger.12V to XT60 cable
- 1 x FREE Set of low watt LED string lights
- 1 x FREE Emergency Power Preparedness Guide
- 2-Year Manufacturers Warranty 5-Year Warranty on Solar Panels
- Low Price Guarantee
- Lifetime Customer Support (via Phone, Email or Live Chat)
- FREE Shipping NO Sales Tax!
3 Solar Generators To AVOID!
#1. AVOID: Patriot Power Generator
Launched in 2015, the Patriot Power Generator has built a name for itself in the prepper community as a backup power option in case SHTF. However, at 2400 for a solar generator that’s half the size of the top solar generators listed above, it’s VERY hard to recommend the Patriot Power Generator. For a more in-depth review on this, read our patriot power generator review article here.
Patriot Power Generator VS the EcoFlow Delta 1800 Solar Generator (Chart):
It’s pretty easy to see why the most popular and best patriot power generator alternative is the EcoFlow Delta 1800 Solar Generator Quad kit with 4 x 100 watt solar panels.
Top 3 Reasons You Should Avoid the Patriot Power Generator:
#1. The EcoFlow Delta solar generator has twice as much battery capacity same size inverter AND a bigger surge on the inverter (for handling high powered appliances)
#2. The EcoFlow Delta weighs over 15lbs less than the Patriot Power Generator
#3. The EcoFlow Delta cost over 500 LESS than the Patriot Power Generator and it more than twice the bang for the buck!
#2. AVOID: Jackery 1000 Portable Power Station
The Jackery 1000 falls on this list because based on its specs and price point, it feels as though you’d be better off going with a Bluetti EB150 or even the EcoFlow Delta. For the extra 150-300, the value far exceeds the additional cost.
For example, the jackery retails for 1000 and has a 1000 watt hour battery and 500 lifecycles whereas something like the Bluetti EB150 has a 1500 watt hour battery and 2,000 lifecycles for around 1200. The Delta also has a 1300 watt hour battery and 1800 watt inverter (output) compared to the Jackery’s 1000 battery and 1000 output for around 300 more.
All that said, there are simply better solar generator options available at the same price point as the Jackery 1000.
#3. AVOID: Goal Zero Yeti (1500X, 3000X, 6000X)
For the same reasons as the Jackery, it’s hard to recommend the Goal Zero options as their price points come in much higher and the specs are almost always less than those of the 7 solar generators listed above.
Goal Zero has a built a very good name for themselves and are a socially responsible company but when it comes to value for dollars, we believe there are better options available to you.
The biggest concern with the Goal Zero solar generators is their 500 rated life cycles. This means that after 500 full uses, the battery will start deteriorating. When comparing this to solar generators like the Bluetti AC200P and/or the Titan solar generator, these both have over 2,000 life cycles.
Which solar generator kit should you buy?
For most people, the best option here is going to be one of the EcoFlow Delta, Bluetti AC200P, Bluetti EB240 or one of the base camp solar generators. These each have a nice mix of battery and output and fall within most peoples budgets.
However, if you’re looking for as much power as possible, you may want to consider one of the modular solar generators in the Titan or Lion Safari ME.
If you’re looking for a solar generator in the sub 1,000 range, there really isn’t much different between a lot of the brands and specs. Something like the EcoFlow River 600 or the Jackery Explorer 500 are going to be the best option here but more on smaller solar generators next.
What exactly is a Solar Generator?
The easiest way to think of a solar generator, is just like a standard gas generator you might see at a campground or in your dads garage, but instead of twisting the top off and putting fuel in, a solar generator is built to take-in solar power (from panels), then it stores that power in its battery (AKA fuel tank) and converts it to useable AC power just like a normal gas generator does.
A solar generator offers a clean, quiet, maintenance free alternative to your standard gas generator which requires you to buy fuel, do routine oil changes, worry about noise, and more.
Solar generators are very similar to gas powered generators in that they vary in size/power output but are still generally compact, portable machines capable of supplying you with power when camping, in an emergency power outage situation, or anywhere you might think of using a traditional gas generator.
You might be thinking, what’s the catch then, why the heck would ANYONE buy a gas generator anymore if you can get a solar generator instead? It’s a valid question, that being said, there are a number of things to consider when it comes to figuring out IF and WHICH solar generator makes the most sense for you.
There are also some pros and cons worth considering as well as a number of different factors you need to take into account when shopping for the best solar generator to meet your needs.
Best Small Solar Generators (Sub 500 watt hours)
Not everyone needs upwards of 1000W of power, that being said, the FOCUS of this article is on helping people make a big buying decision. However, for those looking for a small battery to bring on weekend trips or to have handy in the case of an emergency, there are some solar generators available that can deliver a reliable amount of electricity at a low cost. In fact, there are many small, portable solar generators that can do the trick.
One of the biggest names in recreational solar generators is Rockpals. Rockpals units, like their 330W solar generator. are capable of storing enough electricity to run your phones, laptops, lights, and minifridges in a device that weighs less than 10 lbs. Plus, at around 280, rockpals are one of the cheapest ways to safely run medical devices like CPAP machines silently throughout the night.
Top 3 Small Solar Generators:
Additionally, those with smaller electricity demands should consider a solar generator from Lion Energy. Both Lion’s Safari LT and Cub Go are handy for bringing and harnessing solar energy on the move. These devices weigh just 11 and 3 lbs respectively and are great for continuously powering devices like laptops, phones, cameras, and other small electronic devices.
Should We Really Call it a Solar Generator?
There are plenty of opinions about the word “solar generator”. You’ve probably seen people arguing in YouTube and Комментарии и мнения владельцев about whether or not they should even be called a solar generator. Often the logic goes something like “they don’t even generate anything, so how can you call it a solar GENERATOR?”. Which is fair enough, however, it begs the question, does a gas generator actually generate anything?
They both turn a different source of “fuel” into usable power, which we’ve come to know as a generator. So for sake of keeping things simple, we’ve decided to go with the term solar generator.
The only major difference between gas generators and solar generators, is the fact that a solar generator requires solar panels to input (fuel) solar power, whereas gas generators require some type of fossil fuel to generate the electricity.
Quick Overview on the Evolution of Solar Generators:
Solar generators have been around for years, popular amongst the DIY community back in the early 2000’s with Goal Zero coming along around 2007 with the first form of a done for you portable power station.
From there, many brands have entered the market with some of the most well-known solar generators being the Inergy Kodiak, the Inergy Apex, the Jackery Honda, Bluetti Solar Generator by MaxOak, the Titan solar generator by Point Zero as well as the EcoFlow Delta by EcoFlow.
The solar generator market has evolved a ton in the past 10 years which is why you’ve probably started considering one more and more. Just a few years ago solar generators weren’t nearly as powerful and cost twice as much. As time goes on, we believe they are only going to become more powerful and more cost effective.
What are solar generators usually used for?
Electricity is such a part of daily life that often we take it for granted. Unfortunately, when it is unavailable, we tend to realize how much of modern society relies on electricity.
As a convenient way to create, transport and use electricity, solar power generators can be extremely useful to have in many different scenarios.
Before we dive in, it’s important to understand that solar powered generator is very similar to a gas powered one, except it’s burning solar energy instead of gas. Below, we will outline some of the most common uses for solar generators.
Solar Generators As Emergency Back-up Source Of Power
If your home loses access to electricity from the utility, it can be extremely stressful. For your safety and well-being, you will want to have source of electricity that can power your fridge, fan, medical devices (CPAP machines), phones, and more. In certain areas, grid blackouts can last for hours, days and weeks on end without any real indication of when service will resume.
As an emergency source of electricity, solar generators are especially useful in areas that are subject to:
In critical conditions, it may be unsafe to travel and stay with loved ones. For homes in areas with potential to lose power, it is important to have life sustaining resources available in your home. With an emergency back up solar generator kit, you can keep your appliances and communication equipment powered by a completely free source of energy. So long as the sun is shining, you can harness and deploy solar energy wherever it is needed.
Solar Generators For PGE Grid Blackouts
In 2019, Pacific Gas and Electric, a California utility company, cut off the electricity of 179,000 customers in the face of a new wildfire threat. Although designed as a safety precaution, the company received extreme backlash for disconnecting thousands of families’ access from their electricity during a critical and dangerous situation. Rightfully so, as homes in the midst of wildfire threats need electricity more than ever to power cell phones, food storage devices (fridges freezers), fans, and medical devices.
Unfortunately, this may be a growing trend, as preemptive grid blackouts have been reported in recent years and threatened by additional California electric providers. The worst aspect of this new practice is that there is no definitive timeline on how long the outages will last. Without the option to opt out, the utility is in complete control of your power. As the food spoils in the fridge and your cell phone battery begins to deplete, it is crucial to have access to a backup source of electricity.
The best way to set up and use an independent electricity power station is with a solar powered generator kit. Even in smoky conditions, a solar generator can charge and continuously run life sustaining devices like cell phones, small electric appliances, CPAP machines, refrigerators, lights and more.
Solar Generators for Emergency Preparedness
For emergency preparedness and survivalists, there is nothing more important than being ready for when “shit hits the fan” (SHTF). Although this is not the prettiest way to describe the event, neither a slow or immediate collapse in society is certainly not going to be easy to watch. For this reason, a solar generator kit is an essential part of any emergency plan for when SHTF.
Here are the main reasons why people love solar generators for emergency backup:
- Nearly Silent Operation (stealth)
- Rated for Indoor Use
- Extremely Portable (Grab and Go) Power
- An Unlimited Source of Free Energy
As you can see, solar power generators are perfect for when SHTF. A solar generator is stealthy, in that it can be used indoors and does not create a lot of noise. If you are on the go, a portable power station is ideal because the battery can be recharged anywhere the sunshines. Oh and don’t forget, sunlight is free! The last thing you will want in the end of times is to have to stop at the gas station.
Recreational Uses for Solar Generators
Of course, you don’t need to be prepared for the end of the world to enjoy an exceptional amount of use out of a solar generator. For outdoor enthusiasts and sports fans alike, having a little extra power around is always a great idea.
Most commonly, solar powered generators are used recreationally for:
- Overlanding (Road Trips)
- And Enjoying the Outdoors
For all of these instances, a portable power generator can keep the fun going while powering mini fridges, electric coolers, speakers, phones, and more. In sunny conditions, solar generators can be used to supply an essentially unlimited amount of power during festivals or long excursions into the wilderness.
Portable Power for a Mobile Lifestyle
Of course, if you enjoy overlanding and the outdoors as much as some people, you may be inclined to go out and explore the world full time. For those that are living in an RV, van, or skoolie, a solar generator is one of the easiest ways to establish an easy, reliable source of electricity.
Although there are some road warriors out there in an old box truck or ambulance, solar power generators are extremely popular in:
- Recreational Vehicles (RVs)
- Vans (Van-life)
- Schoolbuses (Skoolies)
- Boats (at Sea or on the Lake)
Despite how glamorous it may seem on social media, life on the road can be tough. So if you’re not an electrical engineer, a solar generator kit is a quick way to set up an off-grid power system. Not only is this sure to rid any anxieties you may have had about the often-intimidating process of setting up solar, a solar generator is extremely easy to use on a day to day basis.
With a variety of available plugs and ports, solar power generators are great for:
- Setting up Mobile Workstations
- Powering Interior Lights
- Kitchen Appliances (Fridge, Blender, etc.)
- Entertainment (TVs, Video Games, etc.)
- Medical Devices
Solar Powered Generators for Professional Services
If there is a blackout, it becomes more dangerous than ever to be in the need of a professional service. Luckily, many hospitals in North America have plenty of backup power sources, but what about smaller practices or those in remote locations?
In addition to emergency power, there are actually many practical and professional uses for solar generators that people take advantage of everyday. This includes:
- Medical Offices
- Vet Clinics Mobile Animal Businesses
- Remote Job Sites
- Construction (Primarily Indoor)
In California, the PGE blackouts have caused many life-saving professionals to rely on alternative, affordable sources of energy to continue working. Solar generators can be easily transported and do not emit any harmful toxins that would prevent them from being used indoors. For this reason, they are great for safely powering medical devices, computers, and construction equipment in areas where utility power is temporarily or permanently unavailable.
Solar Generators for Medical Devices (CPAP Machine, Oxygen Concentrators etc.)
If you rely on an electric medical device for sleeping, breathing or anything else, the thought of a power outage can be extremely stressful. Until recently, the main options for this type of situation was going to a friend or family members or having a gas generator running outside.
Solar generators are quickly becoming the most popular options for people looking to power a cpap machine, run their oxygen concentrator and more. Wether it’s running your cpap machine in a power outage or on a weekend camping trip. you can set your solar generator directly beside your bed and enjoy a good nights sleep.
What Can A Solar Generator Actually Power?
The sky’s the limit in terms of what a solar generator can power. Some solar generators are like marathon runners, they don’t output a ton of power at once, but will last a very long time whereas other solar generators are like sprinters, they can output a ton of power, but don’t last quite as long.
This means some portable solar generators are designed to merely charge a few cell phones, high powered generators can handle loads of electricity to meet the demand of most households. Although this list is certainly not definitive, solar energy generators are most commonly used to power:
- Food Storage (Refrigerators and Coolers)
- Electronic Devices (Phones, Laptops,Tablets, etc.)
- Entertainment (TVs, gaming systems, speakers, etc.)
- Appliances (Kitchen, medical, power tools, etc.)
- Lights, Fans, Electric Blankets !
Steps For Choosing the BEST Solar Generator to meet YOUR needs:
This is usually the hardest part of shopping for a solar generator, trying to figure out which one is best for you. You can watch YouTube videos until you’re blue in the face but it can still feel daunting! Not to worry though. we’re here to save the day and make buying a solar generator super simple.
The first step in determining which solar generator makes the most sense for you, comes down to one question: what are you looking to power? So with this in mind, write down or take a mental note of the 3-5 main things that you would like to power with a solar generator so that the rest of this section makes more sense.
It’s also important to note here that although solar generator technology is moving quickly, it’s still fairly unrealistic to think a solar generator would be capable of running your entire home including heating, cooling, water pumps etc. As mentioned before, these work more like portable gas generators than a whole-home Generac solution.
That being said, it’s not unrealistic to get a solar generator capable of powering multiple fridges, freezers, lights, electric blankets, charging phones, laptops, TV’s and more all while the generator is sitting on your dining room table!
Now that you know what you’d like to power. It’s time to get a little more technical. There are 3 main specs/numbers on every generator that you really need to be paying attention to when it comes to choosing the best solar generator for your needs:
The 3 main numbers/features we need to pay attention to when sizing our solar generator are:
- Battery Size / How long it will last. Measured in watt hours (wH)
- Input / Recharge rate from solar and/or AC/DC. Measured in Watts (W)
- Output / Inverter size. Measured in watts (W)
#1. Battery Size / How Long It Will Last. Watt Hours
Your solar generator’s battery size is basically its fuel tank. So we want to be looking at the watt hours when trying to figure out how big the battery is. This number has nothing to do with “what can it power” but more “how long could it power X” (more on this shortly). The size of the battery is almost always directly proportional to the cost of a solar generator, as the more lithium battery, the more expensive the generator. However, this almost always means, more storage capacity = you can run your electric devices for longer periods of time.
#2. Charging Rate / Solar Input
When weighing your options, the efficiency and speed at which you can charge a solar generator’s battery is one of the most important real-time factors to consider. If you’re hoping to continuously run your system with solar energy, you will want to find a generator that is rated to quickly charge your battery with PV solar panels.
On the other hand, if you mainly plan on charging your solar generator at home by plugging it into the wall before your next adventure, then you will want to pay close attention to AC (wall outlet) charging times. In both solar and AC charging, time is everything when it comes to generating and using your electricity. High efficiency charging systems lead to the best overall user experience.
I nput / Recharge rate from solar and/or AC/DC
The second thing to consider is “how long will it take to recharge the generator from 0%”? This is determined but the amount of input on each generator. So you might see, up to 500W of solar input, or 1200W of AC input when charging from the wall. Generally the bigger the input, the quicker the generator will recharge but more on this in our video below!
#3. Output / Inverter Size
Lastly, the size of the inverter is very important to consider when thinking about what devices you want to power with your solar generator. This number is what determines the “can it run X” question since you’ll need a big enough inverter to handle something like an air conditioner for example (the battery size just tells you how long you can suck that much out via the inverter before it’s drained.
Inverters are rated at continuous and surge wattage load levels (i.e. 1500W continuous, 3000W surge). The continuous wattage is rated so as to illustrate the electric load a solar generator can handle for a long period of time. The surge rating is more of a “safety net” for small periods of high demand, such as when you start up an air conditioning unit. If you want to power high wattage devices, then you will have to get an inverter that is rated to a capacity higher than the sum of your electrical appliances.
MUST Know Solar Generator Equations:
We created this short video to teach you 2 equations you need to know when trying to figure out 1. How long will X solar generator last? AND 2. How long will it take to recharge X solar generator from the wall and/or solar panels?
Keep these in mind, or write them down so you can plug and play the numbers with each solar generator.
Solar Generator Kits. What are they? Pros Cons:
Bluetti EB240 Quad Kit (Best Selling Solar Generator Kit)
Before we dive into the best solar generators available today, let’s quickly talk about solar generator kits. What are they, how they work and the benefits of getting a complete solar generator kit.
Solar generator kits are a done for you package that comes with everything you need to get up and running including solar panels, branch connectors and mc4 pv solar panel extension cables.
Pros of Solar Generator Kits:
- Include everything you need! You won’t have to worry about getting anything else.
- Panel Compatibility. It’s important the solar panels are compatible with the solar generator and that they meet the proper specs.
- Bulk Pricing. Usually, when you buy a complete kit, the pricing will be better than buying everything separately.
Cons of Solar Generator Kits:
- Solar Panel Options. You may be limited to the type of solar panels included with the kits.
- PV Extension Cable. There may not be long enough extension cables included with the kits so you will have to add more to your order.
Aside from this though, buying a complete solar generator kit is usually the way to go as it’s much easier, less complicated and gives you peace of mind knowing everything will work together.
Watch our video on which solar panel connectors you’ll need / come in the kits:
Looking at the tiers of solar generators below will also help you get an idea of what tier solar generator you should be looking at. By doing this, you’re going to eliminate a lot of “potential” options that are not in the tier of generator you need.
Solar Generator Tiers
Now that we’ve covered what are the best and worst solar generators available, we want to give you a way of thinking about all of them so we’ve come up with three tiers of solar generators.
Tier three being the smallest and least powerful and Tier one being the biggest and most powerful.
Tier 3 Generators. 100-1000 watt hour batteries 50-500 watt inverters
These solar generators have less than 1000wH batteries and inverters of 500 watts or less. This means they would be great for charging cell phones and laptops as well as running a little 12V DC camping fridge for a weekend.
These generators are NOT really an option for home back up and full size refrigerators.
Popular Tier 3 solar generators are:
- EcoFlow River 600 Solar Generator
- Jackery 500 Jackery 1000 portable power station
- RockPals 520wH solar generator
- Goal Zero Yeti 500 solar generator
Tier 2 Solar Generators. 1000-2000 watt hour batteries and 1000 watt inverters
These solar generators have between 1000wH and 2000wH batteries and inverters of 1000W or more. This the most popular tier of solar generator, especially when it comes to home backup, RVing, Van life and emergency preparedness. These size solar generators are great for running a full size fridge, TV, lights, fans and even small air conditioners.
These generators usually have 400W of solar input as well meaning they can take in lots of power during the day while the sun is shining, allowing you to use power all day, while still going into the evening at close to 100% battery.
Popular Tier 2 solar generators are:
- EcoFlow Delta 1800 Solar Generator
- Bluetti EB150 Solar Generator
- Bluetti AC200 Solar Generator
- Inergy Flex Portable Power Station
- Goal Zero Yeti 1400 solar generator
Tier 1 Solar Generators. 2000 watt hour batteries and 1000 watt inverters
These solar generators have 2000wH batteries and 1000W inverters/output. This the top of the mountain in terms of biggest and most expensive solar generators on the market. These are also the closest to a home backup power supply that you can get These size solar generators are great for running just about anything around the house, camp or off grid property.
These generators usually have 500W of solar input which means they can take in lots of solar power during the day while the sun is shining, allowing you to use power all day, while still going into the evening at close to 100% battery.
Some popular Tier 1 solar generators are:
- Titan Solar Generator
- Lion Safari ME Solar Generator
- Bluetti EB240 Solar Generator
Now that we’ve established what to look for in a solar generator and the different tiers. You should have it narrowed down to at least which tier generator you’re going to need.
Solar Generator vs. Gas Generator: How do they compare?
As we’ve already alluded to, solar generators are most commonly compared to their predecessors, gas generators. Gas generators have been used for decades for home backups and remote work sites, however, solar generators are steadily growing as competitive alternatives. Below, we will outline some of the major advantages and disadvantages when comparing solar and gas generators.
Let’s start with the reasons why more and more people are adopting solar generators over traditional gas generators.
Pro: Indoor Usage
Above all, the ability to be used indoors is one of the most convenient innovations that solar generators have brought about. Unlike gas generators, when a solar energy station is in use, there are no toxic fumes released. If the power goes out, a solar energy generator can be utilized to run electronics, appliances, and medical devices anywhere in your home.
Pro: Silent Operation
Compared to the racking noises of gas generators, the silent hum of a solar generator at work allows for a peaceful user experience.
This also makes solar energy generators popular for those in small spaces like vans and RVs. If you’re camping, you can even bring one in your tent to charge your phone or power your CPAP machine.
Pro: Unlimited Source of Power
You read that correctly, solar generators run on an unlimited source of power: sunlight. With the right set of solar panels, a solar generator can provide a continuous source of electricity in any location where the sun shines. Even in areas where sunlight is scarce, a few hours of direct sunlight may be enough to charge highly-efficient solar generator kits. Solar generator can also be charged off of your standard wall outlet, or from the cigarette port in your vehicle. Giving you three ways of recharging the battery.
Pro: Use it at the same time that it is charging
You’ll love the fact that solar generators can charge and discharge their battery at the same time. Most solar generators even show you the exact charging and discharging rates in real time. In general, it is very easy to use your solar generator to power your electronics and charge its battery at the same time with solar panels, AC or DC power.
The reason this is so KEY, is because it means you can run your fridge, make lunch and watch TV during the day while the generator is charging and around 5-6pm when the sun sets, your generator will be back to 100% battery and ready to power you through the night (after powering you all day long!)
Pro: No Extra Costs
The main thing to understand about sunlight is that it is free. Free! Until they figure out a way to tax it, solar generators can be run at absolutely no additional costs after buying the equipment. With a fuel generator, refueling requires additional trips to the gas station, costing both time and money.
Pro: Off Grid Capabilities
As they can be run continuously in remote locations, solar generators have a much higher off-grid potential than gas generators. Whether you are overlanding, out at sea, or tucked away in your remote mountain cabin, a solar generator can be used to generate electricity without having to go to the store or pay a utility bill.
Solar generator kits are essentially miniature power plants that can sustain your electricity needs so long as you would like to remain off of the grid.
Pro: No Maintenance Required
Throughout the lifespan of a solar powered generator, very little maintenance (if any) is required. Although, like all electronics, device parts may fail, high quality solar generators are typically protected in thorough product warranties.
On the other hand, gas generators are high maintenance devices, requiring parts, fuel, and filter changes necessary after specified periods of run time. This requires additional tools, skills, and time taken to monitor and upkeep a gas generator to its fullest potential.
Solar generators deliver not only a better, but also a longer lifespan than most similar sized-gas generators. While diesel generators typically last 20,000 to 30,000 hours, smaller residential gas generators only deliver between 2,000 and 3,000 hours of power.
Solar power generators lifespan is measured in battery “life cycles”, meaning how many times the battery can be fully charged and discharged. Most solar generators are rated between 1,000 and 2,500 lifecycles. The crucial difference here is that each lifecycle can last any amount of hours, all depending on your usage. If typical usage takes 5 hours to drain your solar generator’s battery, 2,000 life cycles at 5 hours each equals 10,000 hours of power. This is the equivalent of 4 to 5 gas generators.
Con: Higher Upfront Cost
In today’s market, gas generators typically have a much lower price point than solar powered generators. If you are looking for the cheapest way to get a lot of electric power, a gas generator will be the easiest option.
Of course, a gas generator incurs more cost over time with the need to purchase fuel. This, combined with a longer lifespan, often makes a solar generator a better long-term investment in terms of cost per watt hour of electricity.
Con: Limited Power Output
Of course, the most common criticism solar generators have in comparison to gas generators is the limited amount of power output. Solar generators are limited to the capacity of their inverters, and are generally less powerful than gas generators overall. Whereas you may be able to power 500W of continuous electricity with a solar generator, for the same price, you may be able to run 3000W of current with a gas generator. (This is the biggest determining factor when it comes to solar generators and something we’ll go more in-depth on later in the article).
That being said, there are more and more solar generators that are pushing the envelope in terms of power output (The Titan and Lion Safari ME for example). However, in order to run large loads for a sustained period of time, solar generators require large battery capacities for when sunlight is not directly available (which gets expensive since most solar generator batteries are lithium). This can make solar generators extremely costly, when compared to lower-priced, high-power gas generators.
Con: Limited Sunlight Hours
In a remote setting, a solar powered generator is limited to the amount of sunlight hours it can utilize each day. Solar panels still work on cloudy days, but in a limited capacity. This makes it challenging to sustain use of a solar powered generator in areas that experience long periods of overcast or limited direct sunlight hours per day.
Although it requires a steady supply of fuel, a gas generator can be recharged anytime, day or night. To compensate for this limitation, many solar generators can also be recharged using a wall outlet or vehicle port.
Solar Generator vs Whole-Home BackUp Generator (Think Generac)
When it comes to whole-home backup power solutions such as a Generac natural gas generator, there are some things we need to consider when comparing this option with a solar generator.
A Generac whole-home backup solution is going to enable you to live like normal, when everyone else is without power. You won’t be able to flick the lights on and run the central air off of your solar generator, that being said, you won’t have a monthly gas bill with your solar generator.
A Generac also means you’re relying on a gas company to ensure your home has a power source, so this doesn’t always sit well with people looking for a truly self-reliant back up power system. Overall, the cost of going with a Generac installation will almost always far outweigh that of a solar generator, but with those added costs do come some serious benefits.
If you’re looking for more of a cost effective way to ensure you have some sort of power supply during outages, then a solar generator is a great alternative. It’s important to understand though that this means pulling out panels, setting up cables and running extension chords throughout the house, which to some people can seem like a lot of work.
What can’t you use a solar generator for?
Although they are great for a lot of applications, solar generators are not always the best choice for generating remote electricity. Most solar powered generators are rated to provide a continuous amount of low demand electricity over a long period of time. Limitations in battery and output capacity typically limit a solar generator’s ability to run:
- 1 HP Well Pumps
- Full Home Backup Systems
- (Some) Air Conditioning Units
- Large Construction Sites
Although some solar power generators, like the Titan solar generator and Lion Safari ME, are technically large enough to run bigger electrical loads, they may not always be the best solution.
For bigger watt draw applications like well pumps, 240v electricity and whole home back up situations, a traditional gas generator may make the most sense. Well pumps typically require 4000 to 6000 watt pumps whereas the biggest solar generator on the market right now is the Titan solar generator at 3000 watts of output.
If you’re set on doing solar for your well pump or other big appliances, you may want to consider a standalone solar energy system, with large and separate components, rather than an all-in-one package.
How Does a Solar Generator Actually Work?: The Components of a Solar Generator (What’s Inside)
Okay, now that we know what a solar generator is, the pros and cons compared to gas generators, let’s get technical! Solar power can seem both confusing and complicated, but a solar generator is actually a fairly simple machine and the goal of this guide is to dumb things down. We’ll go over each part inside a solar generator and then tie it all together at the end.
The Battery (Usually Lithium)
We all know gas generators have a fuel tank that you pour gas into, right? Well a solar generators “fuel tank” is simply the lithium battery inside of it. The bigger and more expensive the generator, usually the bigger the lithium battery or fuel tank. The battery size of your solar generator will determine the length of time you can use it, before having to recharge the system again. Most commonly, the size of the battery is measured in watt hours (Wh).
Today, most solar energy is stored in a lead acid or lithium ion battery. For solar generators, lithium batteries are the best choice. This is because they can be discharged to full capacity, used in any position, require no maintenance, and have longer, more efficient lifespans.
We will dive into how to figure out which battery size makes the most sense for you and “how long it will last” further down in the guide.
You can input power into a solar generator via solar panels (DC power), your car cigarette port (DC Power) or from any standard wall outlet (AC power) and being able to charge your solar generator from multiple sources is a huge advantage.
In general, most solar generators come with MC4 (or MC-4) cable adapters that allow you to easily connect any standard solar panel. An MC4 cable is the most widely used wiring for DIY solar energy systems. With some generators or panels, an adapter may be required. This could be included with your product or may need to be purchased separately. Most people opt for a solar generator kit since these include EVERYTHING you need.
The Solar Inverter (Outputs / Pure Sine)
Solar energy is always generated and stored as direct current (DC) electricity. Direct current is a form of electricity that only flows in one direction, making it ideal for small, closed systems like the battery of a cell phone or a flashlight. Most of what you will want to power with your solar generator though will require AC power.
Alternating current (AC), is a form of electricity that can travel any direction. Because of this, it is able to power many different devices at a variety of voltages. For this reason, AC power is what is most commonly used in homes.
So the solar panels input DC charge into your battery and the power inverter inside the generator takes the power off of the battery and allows you to suck out AC power into common household appliances.
All solar generators have different size power inverters, which are usually measured in watts (W). The size of the inverter in the generator will determine what sort of appliances you can and can’t run. A coffee maker or air conditioner for example will require an inverter of at least 1000 watt or more, whereas cell phones and light recharging, may only require a 500 watt inverter.
Outputs / Plugs
Obviously, solar generators have many plugs and ports so that the energy stored within can be used. Most solar power stations have a variety of USB ports (type A and C) for charging small devices like phones, laptops, and portable speakers.
You will also find one or more standard 110V AC wall-plug outlets to power standard devices. Some power stations also include a 12V DC outlet, similar to the “cigarette lighter” in a vehicle.
These plugs are what allow you to suck power out (via the inverter).
Solar Charge Controller (MPPT)
In order to prevent the battery from becoming overcharged and damaged from any of the 3 charging methods we mentioned before (Solar panels, AC wall outlet, car port), most modern solar power stations come with a built-in charge controller.
The job of a charge controller is simple: to limit the amount of electricity being sent to the battery, even if the solar panels are generating electricity while plugged in and operating in the sun, in order to “protect the battery” from over charging. There are a few different names for solar charge controllers and they are sometimes simply known as “regulators.”
You’ve probably seen people talking about MPPT charge controller vs PWM charge controllers, but for sake of simplicity, you want to get a solar generator with an MPPT charge controller. This a more efficient, newer technology that will mean your generator will last longer. Sometimes generators have no built in controllers, in this case, check our sizing guide of solar charge controllers.
The third and final number you’ll see people talking about when it comes to solar generators is the amount of solar input, usually measured in watts. Some solar generators can handle 100 watts input and some can handle 2000 watts of solar input.
The more solar input, the faster the battery will charge and the more power you’ll be able to use up during the day. We recommend going with a solar generator that has at least 200-300 watts of solar input.
Battery Monitoring System
With energy constantly being pushed in and out of the battery, a battery monitoring system (BMS) is a fancy word for a system that protects the battery from over voltage and other situations. It also works to allow screen displays, which provide you with a full detailed report of the battery’s current capacity level, current power input and output. A quality solar generator should allow you to see the rate at which electricity is being generated or used.
As their popularity grows, different solar generator manufacturers are included with interesting bonus features to make their products stand out in the marketplace. For most portable systems, a solar generator will include a handle or strap to make carrying a miniature power plant nice and easy. Some solar energy generators even include built-in LED lights or disntict operating modes.
How to Use Maintain a Solar Generator
Without over-complicating things, using a solar generator is as easy as pressing the “on” button. Whenever the battery is charged, a solar powered portable power station is extremely user-friendly, in that it is incredibly easy to use.
From the simplest models to the high-powered machines, solar generators typically have a power switch and a number of outputs and ports. Simply flip the switch and plug in your electronic devices. From there, use the system’s monitoring capabilities to see when your battery will run out.
Solar generators can be recharged when the battery is completely dead, or while the battery is partially full and the system is in use. In this sense, they can be used continuously in the sunlight, or charged and taken to a remote location to be used overnight.
We recommend storing your solar generator fully charged and checking them every three to six months in order to ensure everything is working properly. It can also help to use them for a day every three to six months to keep them fresh and ready for when you need them most!
How to Charge Solar Generators Battery
As we’ve alluded to earlier, a solar generator gets its name from the ability to be recharged with solar energy. However, with new technologies developing daily, modern solar generators can also be charged using AC power from your home, or DC power from your vehicle.
Charging a Solar Generator with Solar Panels
Connecting solar panels to a solar generator is the best way to create a truly off-grid, renewable electricity system. With solar panels, you can recharge your portable power station anywhere in the world, so long as the sun is shining.
Each solar generator has a manufacturer’s input rating, which recommends the maximum amount of solar power that can charge the battery without causing any damage. For small systems, a typical solar generator may be rated to handle anywhere from 50W to 500W of maximum solar input. Of course, there are outliers, as tiny systems may only handle 20W, while high-powered generators can handle upwards of 1000W of solar energy input.
Charging a Solar Generator with an AC (wall) Outlet
If you are headed out for a weekend of camping or tailgating, plugging your solar generator into an electrical outlet in your home is a great way to charge the battery. Although this may take a long time (Up to 20 hours for the Yeti Goal Zero) with some models, overnight charging is a convenient way to prepare your portable power station.
New solar generators, such as the EcoFlow Delta, have Rapid AC (wall outlet) charging speeds as low as 2 hours to fill the battery to capacity. With this in mind, solar generators are now one of the best ways to quickly ready and deliver large amounts of electricity in an emergency or simply recreational situation.
Charging a Solar Generator with a Vehicle
For those on the go, whether as a full-time van-lifer or a weekend warrior, having a solar generator that can be charged with your vehicle is a convenient way to generate power on the road. Although some models may require a seperate adapter, many solar powered generators have a DC input port, of which you can connect to your automobiles auxiliary power outlet.
Although this source of 12V DC electricity was originally designed for a cigarette lighter, it can be used to steadily charge a solar generator’s battery. Because solar energy is stored as DC electricity, some generators DC charging may be faster than plugging the system into our home AC wall outlet.
What Solar Panels Do I Need For My Solar Generator?
Solar generators are all rated to handle a specific amount of solar input. Depending on the size of the device, any given solar generator may be able to handle 100W or 1000W of solar power.
With that being said, it is not always recommended to push a generator to its limit at all times. In fact, wattage ratings are approximate, and ideal sun conditions may actually cause solar panels to “overproduce” electricity. In this sense, we usually recommend sizing your solar panel system slightly below a generators rated capacity. For example, a 500W rated power station is probably safest charging with 400W of solar input.
Watch our how to tutorial on connecting solar panels to any solar generator:
Another important thing to keep in mind is that solar generators with an even amount of panels are going to work the best. These systems are easier to wire, and there are many options for convenient 100W, 200W, and larger solar panel packages.
Sunlight Hours Per Day: Why They Are Important
In any given area in North America, a piece of land usually receives approximately 5 to 7 “good” sun hours every day. This exact figure is highly dependent on location, weather conditions, and season.
In order to generate electricity at the absolute best rate, solar panels work much better during the middle of the day. Although it may be light out, the “good” or “ideal” sun hours for solar energy systems typically last between 11 AM and 4 or 5 PM.
When calculating how quickly your solar panels can charge a battery, it is important to remember that estimations are usually given in ideal sunlight conditions. This means that solar generators that require over 10 hours of sunlight to recharge will rarely be able to do so in one given day. For this reason, efficient solar charging speeds and large input solar capacities are important features of a high quality solar generator.
What Type of Solar Panels Can You Use With a Solar Generator?
Solar energy has been harvested from the sun to create electricity for decades, which means that the technology has been (and still is) evolving. With that being said, solar generators can be recharged with pretty much any kind of modern solar panel. This includes:
- Rigid Solar Panels Photovoltaic [PV]
- Flexible Solar Panels
- Foldable Solar Panels (Solar Suitcases Blankets)
Flexible vs. Rigid Solar Panels? (Pros and Cons)
We are constantly asked, which is better, flexible or rigid solar panels? And to tell the truth, there is no correct answer. Like many of the individualized nuances that go into building the best solar energy system, there are instances in which flexible or rigid solar panels are the best choice.
Flexible solar panels are, well, flexible. They are ultra-thin and can be contoured to angles typically around 30 degrees. Because of these features, they are great for contouring to curved surfaces, such as the roof of an RV or the bow of a boat. Flexible solar panels are also very lightweight and easy to install or detach.
So although flexible solar panels will save you space and money on installation costs, they are also generally less efficient than rigid solar panels. Throughout its lifetime, a flexible solar panel is also much more likely to get scratched or damaged, which will limit its output potential.
Rigid solar panels are more commonly used in larger applications for their efficiency and durability. In general, rigid panels are permanently mounted on a fixed location, however new technologies like “solar suitcases” have made portable rigid panels a possibility. Although they are heavier and may require permanent installation, a rigid solar panel will almost always outperform a flexible solar panel over the course of its lifetime.
Standard Solar Panels vs Folding Solar Suitcases Solar Blankets
You may have heard the term solar suitcase or solar blanket while doing your research on solar generators. Solar suitcases are basically just two solar panels, hinged together and that come with a handle so that when you fold them together (like a suitcase) they are extremely portable and easy to maneuver.
Solar suitcases also come with stands or legs already built-in, making them super simple to setup and angle into the sun. No leaning them up against the deck, house or picnic table and no need to mount them anywhere permanently.
Solar blankets on the other hand, are generally super slim solar panels that fold up like a blanket into the size of the blanket that would sit on the couch in your living room. These are generally less powerful but are a great portable option for trickle charging your generator while camping or outdoors.
Warning (Charge Controllers): Most solar suitcases have a built-in charge controller. when it comes to using these with solar generators, you must either remove the charge controller manually OR buy a solar suitcase with NO charge controller (because the solar generator already has a built-in charge controller).
Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline Solar Panels (Pros and Cons)
To get into even more detail, within both flexible and rigid solar panels, options are available for monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar panels. Both mono and poly, as they are sometimes abbreviated as, are both types of high efficiency photovoltaic (PV) solar panels.
The difference between these two types of panels comes down to how they are constructed. Monocrystalline panels are built with solar cells all made up of one single crystalline silicon. Conversely, polycrystalline solar cells are created by melting together multiple fragments of the different silicon crystals.
Monocrystalline solar panels are generally more efficient and consequently more expensive than their polycrystalline counterparts. Generally speaking, mono solar panels are darker (usually black) than poly solar panels, which tend to be more blue in color.
Solar Panels That Cannot Be Used with a Solar Generator
What’s important to understand is that only photovoltaic (PV) solar panels can be used with a solar generator to create and store electricity. There are many people who are more familiar with thermal solar panels, which use solar energy to create heat. Thermal solar panels are generally used to heat a home’s water tank and cannot be used with a solar power generator to create electricity.
You must also pay attention to the amount of volts and amps that each solar generator is capable of handling since they generally can’t take a full size residential panel.
How to Wire Setup Solar Panels for your Solar Generator
Connecting your solar generator to one or more solar panels is not difficult, but can be intimidating for those without any experience. Thankfully, you do not need to be a licensed electrician to wire solar panels for an off-grid, DIY setup. Here, we will outline the different ways to connect your generator to a solar power source.
Wiring a Single Solar Panel to a Solar Generator
For most small solar generator setups, wiring solar panels is extremely simple. If you are connecting one solar panel (or multiple small panels packaged as one unit), to a solar generator, it is as simple as plugging your television into a wall.
For most standard setups, it is extremely easy to connect your solar panels and your solar generator with an MC4 (sometimes written as MC-4) cable. Plug the opposing connections into the panels and generator, and voila, you are now operating a small, off-grid electric power plant.
Of course, like a battery, solar panels have a positive and negative terminal. In general (like on your car’s battery), solar wiring is color coded in that positive is red and negative is black. It’s critical to plug-in the correct terminals to prevent damage to the system.
Solar Panels In Series vs. Parallel Connection for Solar Generators
For a little more power, many people connect multiple solar panels together in order to maximize the charging speed of their generator’s battery. There are two ways to connect multiple solar panels: series and parallel circuits.
The image above is of a series circuit. Here, the solar panels are connected as essentially one large panel. Series connections are the easiest way to wire together solar panels. In a series, all of the solar panels are required to have the same voltage and amperage rating, while being connected with a consistent wire gauge.
A series connection is achieved by connecting the solar generator to the positive terminal of the first panel and the negative terminal of the last panel. In between, connect all of the positive and negative terminals of each neighboring panel. To calculate the total input levels of your solar system, you can add up the wattages and voltages of the panels, whereas the total amperage remains at the level of one single panel.
In a series, solar energy follows the saying that a chain is only as strong as its “weakest link.” Series-tied solar panels are aligned in a continuous, closed loop that requires the current to travel in one direction through the system before heading to your generator. Therefore, if one solar panel were to malfunction and brake, the entire series would no longer generate electricity.
Solar Panels In Parallel
Alternatively, the image above showcases solar panels in a parallel connection. The difference here is that each panel is free to generate electricity as its own, separate unit. In a parallel circuit, the electricity is free to move directly from each panel to your solar generator.
In order to wire a parallel circuit, you must connect all of the panel’s positive terminals together, as well as all of the panel’s negative terminals together. Generally an MC4 “branch connector” is used to connect a generator’s positive or negative input to the output from multiple panels.
Here, the amperage of the entire system can be found just the same as the wattage. For each measurement, simply add together the solar panels’ individual ratings to get the total amperage or system wattage. The difference here is that the total system voltage is equal to each individual panel’s ratings.
Solar Panel Series vs. Parallel Connections (Pros and Cons)
For solar panels wired in a series, here are the main advantages:
- Less Wiring
- Low Amperage (current)
- Low Levels of Electricity Lost Across Long Wiring Set-ups
With those in mind, it is important to understand that series connected solar panels are only limited to performance of the lowest panel’s output. If your panels are mounted on a vehicle or receive partial shade coverage throughout the day, then a series connection is not ideal. Additionally, wiring together too many panels in a series may overload your solar generator’s voltage input rating.
Alternatively, let’s take a look at the pros of wiring solar panels in a parallel circuit:
- Panels Perform Individually (Great for Partially Shaded or Mobile Systems)
- Low Total System Voltage
- Protected Against Single Panel Malfunctions
Here, it is clear that parallel connections are the best for instances in which solar panels may be receiving different amounts of sunlight. However, most large residential systems are wired in a series. This is mainly to prevent wiring costs from escalating while panels are typically arranged and installed to receive the same amount of sunlight per day. Of course, with smaller DIY systems attempting to squeeze every bit of electricity from the sun, parallel connections are more popular for solar generator set-ups
Series AND Parallel (Combination) Solar Panel Connections
Okay, ready to get a bit more complicated? If you are looking to get the maximum amount of solar charging on a van, RV, or skoolie, then you may want to consider wiring your solar panels in a series and parallel connection. By combining the two of these methods together, you are able to generate the most electricity in varied-sunlight environments without overloading your systems amperage. For most people, a series and parallel combination is well worth the extra cost of wiring.
Above, you can see the simplest version of a “series parallel” connection. Here, sets of two solar panels are connected in “series groups.” From there, each series group is connected together in a parallel, using an MC4 branch connector to receive the positive and negative terminals from each series group. In the image below, you can see how this system can be scaled to incorporate 8 solar panels.
Here, each solar panel group can function as a separate unit, generating its own maximum amount of electricity in varying sunlight conditions. Additionally, wiring together multiple panel groups in a parallel connection limits the systems overall amperage. In the image above, each series has an output of 5 amps, which combined together create 20 amps in a parallel connection. If each panel was only connected in a parallel (rather than in 4 different series), then the total amperage would be 40 amps. This would require a heavier wire gauge, which would not only cost more money upfront, but also increase the risk of power loss while being transferred.
How to Mount Use Solar Panels with a Solar Generator
We get asked a lot of questions about how to set up and mount solar panels so that they can be used to charge a solar generator. The truth is, solar panels can be positioned in any way shape or form, so long as they are facing the sun. This means that solar generators can work with both mounted and portable solar panels.
Permanently Mounting Rigid Solar Panels
Depending on what you are mounting it on, solar panels can be permanently installed using a few different methods. Most commonly these include the use of:
- Z brackets
- L brackets
- Rail Systems
- Tile Hooks (for tile roofs)
- And more
Solar panels can be permanently installed on roofs, ground mounted poles, large vehicles, boats and RV’s and used to charge the battery of a solar generator. If desired, a solar generator can easily be unplugged and transported to be charged or used in another location.
Mounting Flexible Solar Panels
Flexible solar panels are very easy to install, and can be done in a variety of ways. They are a practically attractive option for RV owners who do not wish to drill a hole in their roof.
Most commonly, flexible solar panels can be temporarily (or permanently) installed with specially designed two-sided tape. This allows the solar panels to contour to a curved surface and makes it easy to attach and reattach.
Setting Up Portable Solar Panels for Solar Generators
Of course, portable power stations sometimes work best with portable solar panels. Foldable and suitcase solar panels are becoming a popular way to transport high efficiency, rigid solar panels. Fairly often, portable solar panels come with attached hardware that make it easy to set up at an angle towards the sun.
How to Monitor and Maintain A Solar Generator
One of the best things about a solar generator is that it is extremely easy to maintain. There are no moving parts in a solar generator and you will never have to worry about heading to the store to get more “fuel.”
Today’s top solar generators are generally warrantied under long periods of guaranteed use. As with any commercial product, it is not recommended to try and fix a solar generator on your own. Instead, it is advised to send the device back to the manufacturer in the event of a system malfunction.
Solar Generator vs. DIY Hard Wired Solar Power System (RV’s, Van Life Off-Grid Homes)
As you can see from its components, a solar generator is nothing more than an all-in-one solar power system or a mini off grid solar system in box. For those looking for renewable energy in remote locations, there is always the option to simply build your own DIY solar energy system by sourcing and installing each of the components. Below, we will outline the advantages and disadvantages to using a DIY solar energy system vs a solar generator.
Overall, portability is the one clear advantage that solar generators have over DIY solar energy systems. Solar generators are meant to be charged and taken to remote locations as easily as possible. Even if your solar panels are permanently mounted to your roof, you can still plug in your solar generator to charge and bring it elsewhere when it is full.
Here, standalone DIY solar energy systems are limited in that they can only be used where they are installed. Even in small spaces like cabins or RV’s the ability to bring your power station wherever you need is completely invaluable.
Pro: Multiple Ways to Charge
Of course, in addition to charging with sunlight, solar generators can also generally power their batteries with AC or DC power. If you’ve got a standalone solar energy system, then you are limited to electricity generated from sunlight.
Whereas this may be enough for low use or ideal locations, it is always a good idea to have a backup plan. With a portable power system, the battery can be recharged in a pinch if there is limited sunlight available.
Pro: Ease Of Use
than anything, however, solar generators are designed to be flat out easy to use. As everything is packed into one convenient device, solar generator users do not have to worry about excess wiring or the quality and performance of individual components.
In addition to the helpful display screens, generating electricity with a solar power station is extremely user friendly. For the most part, all you have to do is set up your solar panels and then plug in the devices you need to power.
If you’re on the road as a full time van-lifer, or in an emergency situation, the last thing you will want to worry about is any extra step necessary to power your lifesaving equipment. Compared to a standalone solar energy system, solar generators take the time and stress away from installing and maintaining individual electrical components.
Unfortunately, it is true that a quality solar power generator may cost you more than you were hoping to spend. If you are only looking for a small bit of electricity, then you may be able to find all of the low-cost components of a DIY solar energy system at a fraction of the cost of a solar generator.
So, if you’re not afraid or too busy to install the components yourself, you will likely be able to lower your investment costs with a standalone DIY system. Of course, some solar generators come at a tremendous bang for the buck. In some cases, solar generators may even cost less than the sum of their components.
Con: Power Limitations
As we mentioned above, solar generators may not be the best option for powering an entire home. Although there are some devices capable of it, full-household setups are usually better as traditional solar energy systems.
With the freedom to size a battery and inverter to exact specifications, standalone solar energy systems can be sourced and installed to meet any residential demand. If portability or ease of use is not a factor, DIY systems may deliver the best overall ROI.
Most Frequently Asked Questions About Solar Generators.
Can you keep the solar generator plugged in at all times?
Yes. Whether you have your solar generator plugged into your wall or a set of solar panels, there are generally no issues that would cause damage to the system. Most well-designed solar generators have charge controllers and internal functions to limit the amount of power going to a battery at full capacity. With that said, solar generators also have a significant shelf life. Many systems can retain a full battery capacity for 3, 6, and 12 months after charging the device.
How many ways can you charge a solar generator?
There are typically 5 ways to charge a Solar Generator:
- With the AC power (from the wall)
- Solar Panels
- Vehicle’s 12V cigarette plug
- Gas generator (using the AC charger)
- Wind turbine
Can you charge a solar generator off of a gas generator?
Yes. To charge your solar generator from a gas generator you simply plug your AC charger (standard wall charger) into the gas generator. You will need to ensure the gas generator you have is powerful enough to handle your solar generators AC power needs. Typically we recommend a minimum 2000W gas generator.
Is there a warranty on a solar generator?
There is a warranty with almost all generators, however each warranty could be different. Most Generators come with a two year warranty. We advise you to reach out if you can’t find the proper information, and someone will be able to tell you the appropriate answer.
What does the shelf life mean?
The term “Shelf Life” is referred to when looking at how long a solar generator can be stored away, before the battery storage is effected.
Again, most generators are recommended to be used once every 6 months, but each unit has a little different shelf life, typically 3-12 months. It is advised that once every 3 months minimum you cycle your solar generator.
Is a solar generator noisy?
Some Solar Generators have a small amount of noise. This is the sound of the fan kicking on to ensure the unit does not overheat. Almost unnoticeable. Still a much more noise-friendly environment than using a gas generator.
How long will a solar generator last?
To calculate late how long a solar generator will last, follow this formula: The total watt hours (Wh) of battery divided by your electricity usage load in watts (W).
Your battery’s capacity is easy to find, as it will be included in your device’s manual. For this example, let’s say you have one of Bluetti’s 2400Wh.
Calculating your electricity usage is a bit more complicated. In this example, let’s say you are running 200W of lights with your Bluetti. Here, the Bluetti could power the lights for about 12 hours (2400Wh / 200W).
Of course, most people run multiple devices with their solar generator. From fridges and coolers, to cell phones and tablets, every single lifesaving and luxurious electronic device requires a different amount of electricity to run. We’ve created this solar load calculator to make it easy to calculate how much electricity you would like to use.
Additionally, what is important to understand is that a solar generator can be used while it is also being charged. In this sense, a solar generator can be run all day, without dipping into the battery’s reserve until the evening hours. Here, charging devices in the afternoon while your solar generator is being recharged is ideal. With a full battery capacity heading into the evening, a solar generator can be used to safely power devices indoors for entire nights.
How long will it take to recharge my solar generator?
It is very easy to calculate how long it takes to charge the battery of a solar generator. Simply use this formula: Battery Capacity (Wh) divided by solar panel wattage (W).
Let’s say your solar generator has a battery capacity of 1000 watt hours (Wh). You want to charge the battery with your 200W solar panel. This means that it will take approximately 5 hours (1000Wh / 200W) to fully recharge the battery.
Of course, this is not going to be an exact figure. Solar panel efficiencies and lost power in the generation process limit the amount of solar electricity that can be produced. In reality, a 200W solar panel many only produce 175Wh of electricity in one hour, rather than the full 200W it is rated to produce.
Furthermore, if you have multiple solar panels, simply add up the combined wattages in order to calculate the total solar input wattage of your array.
Can I use two different solar panels to charge my solar generator?
Yes, well, it depends. In order to increase the charging speed of your solar generator you can add as many solar panels as you would like, so long as it is below your device’s total solar input threshold. Similar solar panels can be wired together in a series or parallel connection.
On the other hand, using solar panels with two different wattages or voltages is not recommended and potentially dangerous.
Can I make my own solar generator?
By all means, yes, it is possible to make your own solar generator. By definition, any battery-backed off grid solar energy system is technically a solar generator. However, the term “solar generator” has come to refer more to an off-grid renewable energy system that is also portable.
In this sense, it is possible to create a DIY solar generator by privately sourcing each of the system’s components. In addition to the electric devices, you will also need to assemble the machine into one fixed, portable unit. When it is all said in done, DIY solar generators are rarely worth the price of labor and convenience that some of today’s popular commercially available power stations offer.
Can I use a solar generator in cold and hot temperatures?
Solar generators are temperature friendly units. That being said, they do have temperature regulators built into them. If trying to charge or use the unit while in a temperature that is too cold or too hot, it will result in an error code.
This is to allow the customer to understand the limits of your generator and to prevent the unit from being damaged. The ideal temperature is between 50°F and 85°F.
You can generally discharge the unit in below freezing temperatures, but cannot charge the generator from the sun or any other power source unless it’s above freezing.
How long should a solar generator like this last me (in years)?
This is usually determined by how many Life Cycles the solar generator has. That being said, if stored in a temperature controlled environment and used properly, a solar generator should easily last 10 years of solid use.
Can I use a solar generator indoors?
Yes. Solar generators do not emit any harmful gases when in use, so they are rated to be safely used indoors. This important feature, in addition to their silent operation, makes solar power stations great for powering CPAP machines and other devices indoors and throughout the night.
Can I connect a solar generator like this to my house with a transfer switch?
It is recommended you reach out to a licensed electrician if you are looking to alter your home’s electrical setup. That being said, it is possible to hook up a solar generator a 4-6 circuit 110V transfer switch to run things like lights, TV, fans and more in the home.
Is there a Pure Sine Wave inverter in a solar generator?
All of the solar generators we sell have pure sine wave inverters inside. Anything else would risk damaging your electronics.
Why are solar generators more expensive?
In short, solar generators are expensive because they are made with expensive materials. The technology to store and convert usable electricity is expensive, especially when it is compressed down into the size of a small microwave.
Although high price tags may dismay some interested individuals, what really must be considered is the long term benefit of a solar generator. Sunlight is free, so there are no additional costs to maintain or run your portable power station. With some systems being rated for 1000’s of life cycles, the actual cost of a solar generator is minimal when compared to the amount of electricity it can produce.
What is the difference between DC and AC power?
Direct current (DC) and Alternating Current (AC) are the two main types of electricity. DC power moves in one direction, alternating current can move back and forth. Solar power is generated and stored as DC electricity. In order for it to be used by most household appliances, solar energy is sent through an inverter which “inverts” it into usable, AC power.
Can I use my solar generator while it is charging?
Yes, of course you can. Solar generators can charge and discharge their battery at the same time. For some devices, advanced interfaces display charging and discharging rates in real time. In general, it is very easy to use your solar generator to power your electronics and charge its battery at the same time with solar panels, AC or DC power.
The reason this is so KEY, is because it means you can run your fridge, make lunch and watch TV during the day while the generator is charging and around 5-6pm when the sun sets, your generator will be back to 100% battery and ready to power you through the night (after powering you all day long!)
Can I charge a solar generator with my vehicle?
Yes. Many solar generators can be charged using the 12V DC power from your vehicle’s auxiliary port. Some models may require an adapter and charging speeds vary depending on the battery size and efficiency.
Are there EMP Shields For Solar Generators and Do I Need One?
Yes. There are some high quality EMP bags available for solar generators and generators in general. It’s a Smart investment in protecting what is already a valuable asset (your generator electronics). If you’re interested in learning more about EMP bags, we recommend checking out our EMP shields here.
Do you have solar generator kits that include everything?
We do. If you’re looking for a done-for-you all in one kit that includes everything you need we recommend checking out our complete kits here or giving us a call today at 877-242-2792 as we’d be happy to help you pick the best solar generator kit for your needs.
We hope this solar generator guide has made you feel like an expert! We’ve poured everything we know into this and are going to keep updating month by month in order to ensure it stays fully up to date. If you still have questions, concerns or just want to talk solar generators feel free to give us a call at 877-242-2792 and we’d love to hear from you!
Once again, for a complete comparison of the best solar generators on the market, see our comparison chart below (feel free to save it!)
What is a whole-house solar generator?
Nov 24th 2022
A whole-house solar generator is a special kind of solar generator that is equipped and powerful enough to power homes.
But what is a solar generator?
A solar generator is simply an all-in-one device that combines several solar technologies into one portable device.
The devices combined in a solar generator are:
Together the above devices when combined into a portable unit form a solar generator. It’s important to note that some manufacturers may call solar generators by different names if the solar panels don’t come with the portable unit. Examples of these names are:
Whole house generators are especially attractive to homeowners with little knowledge or expertise in solar and electrical wiring.
Whole-house solar generators are an attractive solution to your power needs because:
Their components work well together: The compatibility of a solar generator’s components is high and it’s easier to monitor and manage the unit with the DC Home App.
They are easy to install: A whole-house solar generator only needs a few connections to start working.
There is no need for complex calculations and component matchmaking: The components come in the right pairings for
They are portable: Unlike a traditional solar setup, a solar generator is not fixed and can be used for other purposes, e.g., camping, parties, construction, etc.
Can a solar generator power a whole house?
Yes. A solar generator can power your whole house if you pick the right one.
If you pick a solar generator with:
An insufficient battery capacity (energy storage measured in Watt-hours and Amp-hours) won’t be able to power your home for a long time
An insufficient inverter power output (measured in Watts) won’t be able to power your whole house. In fact, the solar generator may refuse to work completely.
Therefore, picking the right inverter with sufficient battery capacity and power output to satisfy your energy needs is crucial.
If you want to learn how to pick the right whole house solar generator, check out the section below with the subheading, “What size solar generator do you need to run a house”
Which is better, a whole house generator or solar?
The short answer is it depends on your unique situation.
Much as it is tempting to pick one over the other, things aren’t quite that simple.
If you are an average homeowner with little electrical knowledge, a solar generator is usually the better choice because solar generators have many advantages that cater to your specific needs. Solar generators features:
Simplified connections that shorten setup time.
Portability that enables you to carry your solar generator and use it for other purposes like parties, camping, construction, etc.
Easy to manage and monitor through one unified app or system using smartphones and other devices.
On the other hand, a traditional solar setup (fixed) might be better for individuals who aren’t afraid of some hands-on work and calculations. Traditional solar setups such as the solar panel installations on the roof involve more installation steps than a solar generator and will entail buying many more standalone components that you would need to mix and match.
Traditional solar’s benefits that are attractive to another group of people are:
The resulting setup more accurately matches your unique energy usage and needs. Unlike solar generators that usually come with cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all specifications.
A traditional solar setup is sometimes more affordable than a solar generator.
The opportunity to tinker and get intimately familiar with your solar system.
What size solar generator do you need to run a house?
To determine the size of the solar generator you need to run a house, here’s what you need to know:
Firstly, you need to know how much energy you use each day and each hour (measured in Watt-hours): You can get this information from your power utility bill. If it’s not listed on the utility bill, you can calculate the number of Watt-hours you use each month by subtracting your last two months’ energy usage (measured in Watt-hours, Wh). Take the result and divide it by the number of days to find the energy used each day. The average US household uses between 15000Wh to 30000Wh each day.
Secondly, you need to know how much power you will use at any given moment (measured in Watts): To calculate this figure you must make a table with all your devices and sum up all their Wattages to find the total power output needed to run your home. According to data from the Energy Information Agency (EIA). the average home needs an average of 1250 W each hour (30000 W/24 hours). Note that 1250 W is an average load NOT the actual load on the system. In reality, the load ranges from 1000W to 7000W. So the Lycan 5000 might be equal to the task after some adjustments.
Once you have this knowledge, you can determine the following:
1.The size of the inverter: The size of the inverter should at least be 120% greater than the power needed by your house. Suppose your total wattage is 3000W. In that case, your inverter should be around 3600W.
2.The capacity of the battery: The storage capacity of your solar generator’s batteries should be twice that of your energy consumption when there’s no sunlight. Suppose you use your batteries overnight and use an average of 500Wh for 12 hours. In that case, your total consumption would be 6000W. So your ideal battery capacity would be 12000Wh.
3.The number of solar panels: The minimum number of solar panels you need is calculated by dividing your battery pack’s storage capacity (Watt-hours) by the product of your region’s peak sun hours and your solar panels’ wattage. Let’s say you have a 10000Wh battery pack, 5 peak sun hours, and 320W solar panels. You would need at least seven 320W solar panels to charge your battery pack. And this is only a minimum estimate that doesn’t account for any power you might use while your battery is charging.
If all these calculations confuse you, don’t worry. Try out our simple solar powered calculator that will do all the calculations and even give you recommendations.
How much does a whole house solar generator cost?
The price of whole house solar generators ranges from a few hundred dollars to well over 6000.
Comparatively, you might find that our generators offer better value for your money, including long battery lifespans and device warranties.
The whole house solar generators you can buy with a modest budget below 1500 are the Phoenix 500 and Phoenix 1000. These two generators are not enough to replace grid power but they should be enough to tide you over emergencies.
PHOENIX 500 Solar Generator
The Phoenix 500 Power Station costs around 500 ( 499.99), which is a bargain considering the value it offers.
The Phoenix 500 comes with a 495Wh lithium-ion battery pack and an 800W inverter.
It’s important to note that the Phoenix 500 is not an ideal whole house generator because of its small size. A better option would be the Lycan 5000. However, if you are set on the Phoenix 500 because of its affordability, we recommend you buy two Phoenix 500 devices that you can run in parallel to double their abilities.
Phoenix 1000 Solar Generator
You can own the Phoenix 1000 by spending around 1000 (989.99)
This device comes with a 998.4Wh of LiFePO4 battery capacity and a decent 1500W inverter AC output. You can even run power-hungry devices using the Phoenix 1000’s iBoost technology that can support a load of up to 3000W. You can connect two Phoenix 1000 to double the capacity to 1997Wh and boost AC output to 2700W.
Lycan 5000 Solar Generator
The Lycan 5000 is the ideal whole house solar generator because it is specifically tailored to meet the average home’s energy needs. The Lycan 5000 boasts a 4800Wh LiFePO4 battery capacity and an AC power output of 3000W (7000W peak power).
How to choose the best whole house solar generator?
Here’s what you should know if you want to choose the best whole house solar generator:
Battery Lifespan and Storage Capacity: A solar generator is a huge investment so it should be able to last for a long time to make it worth its cost. For the best experience, a whole house solar generator should have LiFePO4 batteries (can last 10 years if used correctly) and an energy storage capacity of at least 4000Wh.
Inverter Type and Output: The ideal inverter in your generator should be a Pure Sine Wave (PSW) inverter that is compatible with all electronics. In addition, the inverter’s AC power output should at least be 3000W.
Cost: For the best value for your money, your chosen solar generator unit should cost around 5000 or less. When it comes to buying solar generators, cheaper isn’t always best as cheaper solar generators are guaranteed to have low-quality components like lead acid batteries that may last for a year.
Recharge Stats and Options: The best solar generators can charge using two methods at the same time. This will drastically reduce the time needed to recharge to around 1 hour. Take, for example, the Lycan 5000 that can charge using AC power from the grid (max 2400W) and Solar Panels DC power (max 4400W) at the same time for a max input power of 6800W.
Expandability: Your energy needs today won’t necessarily be the same as tomorrow’s. Your family might have more members or you might get more electronics that need power. Either way, you need a solar generator with an expandable battery pack that can accommodate any future changes in your energy needs. The Lycan 5000 is an excellent choice because its battery pack is expandable from 4800Wh to a maximum of 19200Wh.
Best solar generator for homes
It’s no secret that we think that the Lycan 5000 solar generator is the absolute best solar generator for your home. If you are not convinced, let’s take a look at some of its features:
Long-lasting 4800Wh battery pack expandable to 19200Wh: The LiFePO4 batteries with a lifespan of 4500 lifecycles can easily last for over 10 years. over, the expandable battery capacity should be enough to meet your needs.
A 3500W inverter with a peak power rating of 7000W: 3500W should be enough to run most of your household appliances. If you have many power-hungry devices it’s recommended not to use them at the same time. In addition, the 7000W peak power should be able to support the startup of most of your devices.
Max 6800W power input for fast recharge: Charging at the maximum 6800W will cut down your recharge time to around an hour. This means you can use the extra energy for whatever you want. For example, you can feed back the excess power back into the grid and make a profit.
Can be used as an uninterruptible power supply (UPS): If you have critical electronics that must be kept running 24/7 or you simply don’t like interruptions, the Lycan 5000 can seamlessly take over as your power supply whenever there’s a blackout.
With the above features, we believe you will find the Lycan 5000 to be the best solar generator for your home. If you buy the Lycan 5000 during a sale you can enjoy an excellent one-of-a-kind discount. Keep tuned on Renogy whenever it’s a holiday!
You might also consider buying the Phoenix 1000 or Phoenix 500 if the Lycan 5000 is more than you need now. If you buy the Phoenix 1000 or the Phoenix 500, we highly recommend you buy two of them so you can run them in parallel for twice the performance.
Check out the Lycan 5000 and our other products. or contact us if you have any questions.