5 Best Solar Powered Generator 2020
For those who are looking for the best solar generator and plan to buy them, the ultimate buying guide will be shown below. It has everything you need to know. It will begin with five of the best products available in the market today. Here they are.
1. Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 160
The first solar generator on this list is from Jackery. The manufacturer is indeed very prominent for high-quality generator of many kinds. This solar-generated power source is completed by tons of feature that you will admire. Basically, this product is a small, portable generator, perfect to be brought to camping trips, outdoor trips and a lot of other stuff. The generator works quietly as well, so it won’t bother the surrounding at all.
This generator is has the capacity of 167 Watts, and it is capable to power up small essential devices, such as your phone during the outdoor trips. It has USB ports and some of them are even in the modern form of USB C. The generator can also be use to power up devices in the car as the car charge cable is included in the package. Charging won’t be hard for this solar generator because it takes only 5 hours under the sun to get it fully charged.
- Its design is compact for small generator
- It comes with large battery capacity (167Wh)
- It includes USB-C and USB-A output ports
- Quick charging (only 5 hours)
- It is lightweight (less than 4 lbs.) and extremely portable.
- It is quiet generator
- The car charge cable is included
- It can’t support device more than 100W
2. Rockpals 250W Portable Power Station
The next solar generator you will find on this list is the one from Rockpals. This generator has 250 Watts. It can go up to 300 Watts, too. The generator is built using polymer battery. The design is extremely compact and portable. You should be able to carry the whole generator around so easily as it has handles and it is completely light weighted.
The solar generator has numerous features, including temperature control and overcharge control. It won’t let you overcharge the battery and damage the entire thing. The generator can be charged using three ways: using solar panel, AC cable and USB port. It is so versatile, easy to use, and basically helpful to charge phone, laptops, TV and more.
- It has large capacity and running watts (250-300 Watts)
- It comes with high quality lithium polymer batteries
- Its design is compact and portable
- It has temperature control feature and overcharge protection control
- The cigar lighter plug is included
- It can charge laptop, TV and phone
- There are many ways to charge
- The warranty is not disclosed
3. AIMTOM Portable Solar Generator, 42000mAh 155Wh Power Station
AIMTOM has been famous as one of the most prominent generator manufacturers around the world. They do have several stunning products when it comes to solar generator. This one is the best one to buy. This generator is completed by 155 Watts hours of power. It has LED indicators for the battery to give you the better control of the usage as well.
The battery has multiple USB port and it is very lightweight. You should easily carry the generator as its suitcase-like design provides you with a handle. To charge the battery of this solar generator to its full capacity, it won’t take that long. It should probably take around 7 hours or less to charge the entire thing. The battery also has BSM or battery system management to prevent you from overcharging and damaging the battery.
- It is lightweight and easy to carry (has handle)
- It has 155 Watts hours with multiple USB ports
- The device is lightweight (3,5 lbs.)
- It needs 7 hours to full charge only
- It is designed with lithium-ION battery for better usage
- The LED indicators for battery are available
- It is ideal for camping and outdoor use
- The battery system management is available
- It is not suitable for larger appliances.
4. Westinghouse iGen160s Portable Power Station 155Wh Backup Lithium Battery
Of course, you cannot list good generator products without including Westinghouse product. This Westinghouse solar generator is probably one of the best products you can buy for this purpose. The generator has ultra-fast charging system to make sure that the battery will get full in less than 6 hours. Besides of that, the large Watts capacity can also power up most small to medium-sized appliances around the house.
The solar generator has everything you need. It has lights in the form of flashlight and reading light. It also has USB ports and other types of charging ports. The lightweight generator is also quiet and won’t buzz during its usage. The best thing about it is the fact that it has 2 years of warranty. So, when you screw the thing up, you can at least get the warranty claimed.
- It has ultra-fast charge feature (less than 6 hours) with 155 Watts capacity
- 2 years limited warranty is available
- It is lightweight (3,5 lbs. only)
- It has multiple USB Ports
- The household outlets are available
- It comes in compact, suitcase-like design
- The solar panel is compatible
- It is extremely quiet
- There are built-in flashlight and reading light
- The recoil is sometimes hard to retract
5. Goal Zero Yeti 400 Portable Solar Power Station
The last solar generator product here is from Goal Zero. It is probably not as prominent as the rest of the products above, but the product is surely great and everyone should love this one. It has large power capacity of 300 W. The design is like very compact and it has handle, too. The generator works really well in charging small to medium-sized appliances.
The best feature of this solar generator is that the battery can be chained. Yes, a second battery can be inserted into the generator and it will double up its power. Of course this feature is helpful in making sure that the battery won’t run out during usage. The generator has the ability of charging 7, yes 7, devices at the same time.
- It has large 300W power and capacity
- It’s capable to charge devices and small appliances
- It comes in compact box-like design with handle
- It’s easy-to-charge under the sun
- It can be chained with other batteries for longer runtimes
- It can charge 7 devices at once with 13 hours run time
- LCD display is available
- It is not suitable for large household appliances
How to Choose the Best Solar Powered Generator?
Choosing the right solar generator is one of the most important thing to do when you need a reliable backup power source. Why solar? Solar is basically using sunlight for its main power and sunlight is abundant and free. How to choose the right generator of this kind? There are several tips down below that you can use as guidance. Here they are:
Consider the Size and Watt Capacity
The first thing that you have to know about buying solar-powered generator is the size. There are three sizes or Watt capacity to be exact: small, medium and large. Small generator has the Watt capacity of 1,500 Watts. The medium one is around 3,000 Watts and the large one is around 5,000-10,000 Watts. Consider the purpose of buying them here.
The Purpose of Buying
If you only need the solar-powered generator to power up small gadget and appliances, you need the small one. For camping trips and outdoor usage, usually the medium-sized generator is enough. However, if you need the generator to power up the entire house or for an RV, you need to buy the large one for sure.
Mind the Weight
The interesting thing about solar-powered generator is that they are quite large. This generator is unlike other kinds as the solar panel itself is already big and space-consuming. This is why you should always consider the weight of the generator. If you need the generator to be portable, choose the lightest one that you can find in the store.
The Backup Charging Methods
Of course, sunlight is abundant and free. You can basically charge the generator and convert sunlight into energy all the time. It does not mean that you 100% rely on sunlight as sometimes there is not enough sunlight in a day, especially in a colder season. This is why a good solar generator has to be completed by backup charging method. When you cannot charge the battery with sunlight, you can still do that using good, old-fashioned AC charging.
The Additional Features
There are several additional features in the generator that you have to consider. They should have replaceable batteries, USB ports, several AC outlets and backlit panels. These features will make sure that the generator will work properly all the time.
Must Include Warranty
You do not want to buy solar-powered generator without warranty. There are so many parts in this generator that you have to protect and if one of them is damaged, the entire thing won’t work. This is why a solar-powered generator should have at least 3-years warranty on the solar panel alone.
Choose the Suitable Price
The price of solar-powered generator can range from $200 to over $1,000. The more expensive the price, the more sophisticated the features will be. You have to set a budget and see what type of generator you can get for that range of price. Do not let a generator of this kind ruins your saving.
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How to Build Solar Powered Generator
Sometimes, people do not like the idea of not having a backup power source but sadly they do not have enough budgets to get the store-bought solar generator. The solution for this problem is to make their solar-powered generator. Is it possible? Well, it is, actually. Down below, you can see some of the instructions of how to make DIY generator of this kind.
1. Why Building Your Own Solar Generator?
This is a very basic question, apparently. Why building your own solar generator? There are several answers here and you can really take a good look at them. So, if you still have doubts whether or not to make your own generator, these answers will sort it out. Here they are:
- It is Cheaper
A solar-powered generator can be really expensive, especially when you want the big one. This is why building them on your own seems to be a good idea. You can get the same result with cheaper price in the end.
- Highly Adjustable
As you make the solar-powered generator on your own, it is surely highly adjustable. You can surely select the type of battery you prefer or choose the color of the case of your liking. It is like assembling the best parts that you can find for the generator.
2. What Will You Need for the Project?
As this is quite a serious project, you will need a lot of things to prepare, of course they are including the parts of the generator itself. These are several things you need to prepare to build the generator up. Make sure you take a note and buy these parts for the DIY solar generator.
- Empty Generator Case
- Solar Panel
- Solar Charger Controller
- SLA Charger
- 12v USB Module
3. The Step-by-Step Instruction
Basically, the assembling part of the project is very simple. It can be divided into three main parts. The three parts will be explained down below so that you know the big idea of how to build and assemble a DIY solar generator.
- Layout Case
The layout step is the process when you open up the case and place all parts of the solar-powered generator into the case. Usually, the essential steps here are to mount the battery and the controller inside the case.
The generator won’t work at all without any wiring. This is why wiring is such an important step to take. Generally, you will have to connect the + and – wiring to the battery and to the switch during this step.
- Solar Panel Installation
The last step of building a DIY solar-powered generator is to make sure that the solar panel is installed. It has to be done only after the case is done. Connect the solar panel to the case by using the pre-installed wiring. After that, test the solar panel by turning it on and place it under sunlight.
Advantages & Disadvantages of a Solar Powered Generator
Everything should have plus side and minus side, including solar generator. This kind of generator is praised as one of the best types of backup power source. Of course, it is not only the good thing we are going to explain here. There are also several downsides of the generator that you have to understand. Here are the explanations for everyone to read:
Let’s begin with the plus side. The plus sides of solar generator are quite a lot. You can basically use the generator so easily and get the energy supply like everywhere. There are still lots of good stuff about the generator. Some of them are:
- The energy supply is free
- Easier to maintenance
- More environmentally friendly
- Considerably lightweight
- Multiple power source
Based on the explanations above, solar generator seems really good to use. However, it has some downsides, too. There are several downsides that you need to understand about the generator so that you know what to expect. Here they are:
- The energy supply is unpredictable
- More sensitive to temperature
- Generally more expensive
- Slow charging
- Bulky design
+ Can a solar generator power a house?
The answer to this question is a yes. Yes, a solar generator can power a house. As stated before, there are three types of generator of this kind: small, medium, and large. To power up a house and all the appliances inside, you need to get the large size. This generator with large size has the Watt capacity of 1,000-10,000W and can surely power up a house.
+ What is the best solar generator for home use?
If you want to get the generator for the sole purpose of backup power source for a house, surely there are several things you need to consider while choosing the product. As this is to power up a house, the solar generator must in large size and large Watt capacity. Some of the mandatory features that you have to consider when choosing generator for house usage is:
- The power is around 1,000-10,000W
- Corrosion-Resistant Panel
- At least 1.8 kW power generator plan
- Multiple power source, just in case sunlight is scarce (during colder season)
+ How long do solar powered generators last?
You can hear good news about this question as normally a solar generator will last for 25-35 years. Of course, you need to give it proper maintenance to make it last for decades like that. The maintenance is including storing the generator in dry and secure place, cleaning the solar panel frequently and making sure that the case is completely free of moisture before storing it. That way, the solar-powered generator will definitely last for decades.
+ Are solar generators quiet?
Thankfully, the answer is yes. Many people despise generator because they dislike the annoying buzzing sound. However, solar generator does not use the running machinery, at least not as much as the fuel-powered generator, and they produce less sound. Most of modern solar-powered generators are also completed by inverters, so they can work really quietly. You won’t find those buzzing sounds and noise while using the whole thing. Those are the most important things you need to know about the generator. Now, buying the generator won’t be so confusing since you already know what to expect. This is why reading all those tips and explanations about solar generator is essential.