When it comes to your survival, you’ll find that your chances to get through tougher situations are significantly improved when you have a source of electricity. Unfortunately, when there’s a survival situation, the grid stops being reliable.
For this reason, many survivalists ensure that they have a good solar-powered generator so that they can have an easy-to-use source of juice when things go south. In this guide, we’re going to show you some of the market’s most reliable portable solar power generator models so that you can stay safe.
How Does a Portable Solar Generator Work?
Solar-powered products utilize photovoltaic cells to convert UV rays into usable energy, and these generators effectively use an inexhaustible fuel source, which is the sun. This stands in stark contrast to a standard generator, which will convert standard gasoline into a usable flow of electricity, which can be scarce during the tough times.
The photovoltaic cells virtually utilize the suns light to separate electrons from atoms, which create a charge, and since you won’t have to work to collect sunlight, it’s a very convenient way of powering your device or survival gear.
All of the devices that you’ll see below operate at the portable level, and as a result, they are all convenient to keep other devices like phones and computers powered so that you can depend on them longer. Most have a standard electrical outlet, and several also have USB connectors, which will allow you to more easily charge your smartphones and other such products.
For example, with one of these generators, you can quickly and easily power a short-wave radio, a standard radio, a television, and charge up a smartphone on a single day’s worth of UV. Many of these products have extra features that make them a must-have for anyone looking to increase their chances during a survival situation like a hurricane or earthquake.
Some Advantages of the Best Solar Generator
Simply put, these generators are amazing in most survival situations. Here are a few ways they stand out compared to other products that don’t utilize UV for power:
The Sound Level
If you’ve ever utilized a gas-powered generator, you definitely understand that they can kick out a real racket. This is particularly troublesome when you’re out there trying to survive because sometimes, you need to not draw attention to yourself or your family.
For this reason, portable solar generators really shine. These generators make no noise, and they can be placed in a sunny area while just soaking up rays silently. Remember, in a survival situation, everyone will be looking for juice, so a product that doesn’t quite announce itself is always going to be preferable.
The Level of Fumes
In addition to the slight hassle of having to pull a pull-string to get a generator started, you’ll also be burning gas, which produces a very unpleasant level of fumes. This is because these generators generate electricity via an internal combustion engine, which produces chemical reactions that cause fumes. Those mini explosions also cause carbon scarring, and some of that burnt carbon works its way into the air.
With a portable solar power generator, this is not at all an issue because the sunlight is doing most of the work and the energy being generated is emission-free. This is ideal because the gas fumes are dangerous, but consider this: would you run a gas generator in an enclosed area? Solar generators can be used indoors as long as they have access to a steady stream of UV.
It’s nice to have a source of energy that’s going to be available, barring nuclear winter, for at least another five billion years. The sun has been powering life on the planet for billions of years already, and with good photovoltaics, you can use this same powering flow of energy to run your devices.
These portable generators also tend to last for long periods so that you can rely on them for the duration of most survival situations. While admittedly the output isn’t quite as steady as generators that use gas power, in the long run, you’ll definitely be able to draw more power from them.
Some of the Best Solar Generator Features to Consider
As you can see by now, a portable solar-powered generator is very advantageous, and fortunately, many have some key features that will sweeten the deal significantly. In this part of our guide, we’re going to show you a few features to consider so that you can get the most bang for your buck:
While you’re out there in the wild, you may find that you’ll need to power various devices like laptops, smartphones, or CPAP devices. A good photovoltaic portable generator will provide you with all the ports you need to charge and power a few devices simultaneously.
While this may drain the power a bit, having multiple connectors can boost the versatility of a product. Additionally, the types of ports can also include USBs, AC outlets, and 12V outputs.
This is useful in just about any survival situation because you may need light to avoid calamity, especially if the grid fails and nighttime foraging/hunting is required. LED flashlight bulbs don’t require a lot of energy, which is why products with built-in flashlights can be convenient.
Compared to gas units, solar generators tend to be much more lightweight. This means that you can store one in a bug out bag without significantly adding to your carry weight. When searching for a product of this type, err on output, but also consider the overall weight when making a decision. With a lightweight product, you also may be able to carry multiple generators for more potential juice.
The Portable Solar Generator Reviews
Jackery has made quite the name for themselves in the realm of portable power, and with this solar power charger, you can use the sun to provide electricity for your various devices. While this charger won’t quite power devices with more than a 200-watt energy requirement, it’s more than enough to help keep smaller devices juiced.
The Explorer has two USB slots and a standard AC outlet. In the sun, you can charge the unit within about 10 hours, and there are also options to power up using a car’s cigarette lighter or a standard outlet. Both of these methods take about eight hours, but they can be unreliable sources, especially if survival best practices are needed. The total device only weighs about 6 pounds, and it’s relatively easy to toss it on a hook on a backpack/bug-out bag.
This product is very compact and lightweight
There’s enough juice to charge a smartphone 18 times
The LED display is easy to read
The handle is large and very ergonomic
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With a 42,000mAh capacity, it shouldn’t be too surprising that this solar generator can be invaluable when you need a steady source of power. This particular unit stands out because it is priced very reasonably, and since it has such a high capacity, you get your money’s worth. This is also the first product in our guide that features a particularly bright LED flashlight that you can use for survival situations . Additionally, this device comes with several accessories that include a cigarette lighter adapter for output and a car charger so that you can get juice from your battery.
This device also has three USB ports, a universal plug that can be used for most power standards, and three DC 12-volt outputs. Via a 60-watt solar panel, which isn’t included with the purchase, you can charge the device in anywhere between seven and nine hours, which is very fast and adds a lot of convenience to the overall experience, especially since you’ll always be able to find enough sunlight for a charge.
This has a considerable capacity
It weighs less than four pounds
It has a built-in flashlight
It has a MPPT controller to balance out voltages
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If you need ports, this SUAOKI product offers four USBs, an AC outlet, and four 12-volt DC outlets, so you’ll have options. Also, this product has a capacity of 40500mAh, so you’ll have plenty of juice to power most smart devices. For example, a modern Samsung S10+ has a 3500mAh battery; with one of these power stations, you can charge this type of device 11 times. This means that you’ll have the power to make emergency calls for almost a month.
With a 40-watt solar panel, you’ll be able to have a full battery in about eight hours, so you can charge it almost at your leisure. The S270 has a built-in inverter that brings 150 watts at maximum output via the AC connector, so you’ll be able to power up some relatively large devices. There are even two large LED lights at the front, so you’ll be able to see, even in the darkest parts of the night.
The blue lights at the top will indicate power levels
One of the USB is capable of fast charge speeds
It can be charged via a cigarette lighter as well
It doesn’t have a power regulator, so if you overcharge, the battery can be damaged
The battery indicator light doesn’t turn off
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This product stands out because of its relatively compact design and its ability to power 250-watt devices like electric drills, hair dryers, toasters, and induction cookers. In total, it has a capacity of 64,800mAh, which is a fantastic amount of power that will charge most smart devices dozens of times. To charge it, you’ll need to purchase an external solar collector, and you can expect a full battery charge cycle to take about 10 hours. However, since this device will power lights, laptops, and other large devices, this slightly long charge time isn’t much of an inconvenience.
In total, the generator only weighs about 6 pounds, so it’s relatively easy to carry along more than one if you’re bringing other people. Also, it has a universal socket assembly that’ll allow you to plug in international plugs.
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Another Rockpals product, this portable power station packs in even more power. In total, the device has a top-end capacity of 75,000mAh, so you can rely on it to keep multiple devices nice and charged up. In fact, with such a large capacity, you can get about four hours of viewing time on a 32-inch television and more than two dozen charges of a standard smartphone.
Insofar as connectors, this device has four USBs with fast charge capability, an AC outlet, three DC2 12-volt adapters, and a large cigarette adapter. It also has two front-facing LED lights that can definitely serve as illumination on dark nights. You’ll also like the fact that the generator has a reasonably comprehensive LED display towards its top; you can use this to monitor things like capacity, charging time, and voltage.
It weighs less than eight pounds
It’s very compact
It has a hugs battery capacity
It’ll power a CPAP machine for four nights on a charge
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We hope that our guide to the best portable solar generators has helped you find a product that will suit your survival needs.
Each of the generators that we’ve selected for our reviews can have a lot of use when you need power, so take another look at our reviews if you still aren’t sure which works best for your specific needs.
If we were to select a favorite, it would be the ROCKPALS 300W Portable Generator. This generator has multiple means of charging, a built-in flashlight, and plenty of ports for your devices.