Factors To Consider Before Your Purchase
If you decide to go with a portable solar generator, there are many options to choose between. Most options have all-in-one designs that include the solar panels, inverter, charger controller, and battery some solar generators, however, do not come with solar panels and require you to buy them separately. Be sure to find out whether this is the case before you make your final purchase.
In addition to cost, there are three main factors to consider when choosing a solar generator: its portability, its battery storage capacity, and its inverter rating. Portability is the most straightforward: youll want a generator that is lightweight and easy to move around, especially if you plan to bring it with you on trips. You may want to look for one with wheels and handles to make it even easier to transport.
Youll also want a generator with a higher storage capacity so that youll be able to power your devices for a longer time without having to recharge the batteries. The last thing you want to happen is for your solar generator to run out of charge when the sun isnt out. Finally, youll likely want a generator with a higher inverter rating. Generators with a low inverter rating may not be able to power high-wattage appliances. Before buying a generator, make sure it has an inverter rating that matches what you would need to power the items you want to run.
Can A Solar Generator Power An Rv
Yes, you can use a solar generator to power your RV. Thats not only a possibility its also an advantage in many ways.
Solar generators are environmentally-friendly, portable, versatile, dont consume fuels , silent, and easy to use.
However, there are a few crucial factors you should consider:
Firstly, you have to determine how much power your RV requires. Secondly, you must understand the basics of your RVs electrical system. Finally, you need to find the solar generator that best suits your needs.
We know these things are easier said than done. But dont worry well guide you through each one of these steps.
How Long Does A Solar Generator Last
Depends on what you mean by the term last. If youre talking about the overall lifecycle of a solar generator, remember that the technology is still pretty new, so there really is no definitive answer to that question. But the current general consensus in the solar community is anywhere from 25-35 years.
If, however, youre talking about last in terms of how long a solar generator will last throughout the day, our answer is simple: a solar generator will last you as long as either the sun is out or until all the power is drained from the internal battery. If you leave your solar generator out in the sun all day and allow the power to build up in the battery, your generator could last you anywhere from 1-10 hours, depending on the size of your solar generator, the number of devices/appliances youre attempting to power, and whether or not youre continuously running your solar generator. We know thats kind of a vague answer, but the next question may help clear that up a bit.
Recommended Reading: What Is Solo 401k For Self Employed
How To Connect A Portable Solar Generator To An Electrical Panel
A solar generator is a convenient and practical device that can act as an all-in-one solar power station. They give you the flexibility to run a fully off-grid solar power system, but they can also act as an additional source of solar electricity for those that still rely on the grid for the majority of their power needs.
If, for example, you relied heavily on the grid to supply power to your home, you would be left without power in the event of a blackout or partial grid failure. This is where a solar generator can really come in handy. When paired with one or more solar panels, a solar generator can act as a reliable source of power during emergencies and power outages.
The question many people ask is: how do I connect a portable solar generator to my homes electrical panel? Whether you currently own a solar generator, or you are wondering if one would be a worthwhile investment, we are here to tell you how you would go about plugging a solar generator into your homes electrical panel.
What is an Electrical Panel?
An electrical panel, which is sometimes known as a breaker panel, looks like a small metal box with a door. They are usually mounted directly to the wall in a low-traffic area of the house. Inside the electrical panel, you will find all of the breaker switches for your home.
Six Dirty Little Secrets About Portable Solar Generators
Thinking about investing in a portable solar generator to protect yourself and your family during power blackouts? Watch out. Most of the so-called best solar backup generators promise far more than they deliver.
Ordinary people pay good money to buy energy security for tough times, only to find theyve bought a piece of expensive, short-lived solar junk that delivers no security at all. But things can be much better for you.
Portable solar generators really do have something to offer, but only if you know enough to avoid being fooled.
This blog shines a light on the most common dirty solar generator secrets. It explains some of the typical design limitations and false claims in plain language, but more importantly it shows you how to get yourself the kind of real, reliable, long-lasting solar energy protection you and your family need. No tricks, no slimy language, just plain facts on how to build, maintain and expand your own super-reliable solar generator so you can take effective responsibility for yourself.
Read Also: How To Qualify For Solar Panels
Buyers Guide To Portable Solar Generators
When the lights go out, a portable generator can meet critical household energy needs. A gas-powered model is an option, but its loud, dirty and when you run out of gas, youre out of luck.
Solar generators harness energy from the sun to make electricity. Theyre clean, easy to use and require no dependence on fossil fuel. If youre considering one as a backup power supply, but find the technology intimidating, keep reading to learn more about how they work and how to choose the best portable solar generator for you and your family.
How Long Will A Solar Generator Last During Power Outages
The expected run time for solar generators is dependent on the battery capacity, amount of charge on the battery, and the amount of power needed by the appliances to which the generator is connected. Thus, it is crucial to estimate how much power your appliances need before purchasing a solar generator. For example, heavy-duty devices need large solar generator power while small electrical devices may be powered by a small solar power battery.
To determine the estimated run time, you need to look at the product description and check if it shows power or battery capacity. Solar generators power is indicated in watts and its capacity in watt-hours of amp-hours. The higher the numbers are, the more power the generator has.
Take note though that a solar generator with high potential power does not automatically guarantee long run time. Run time is also dependent on the load. Take the case of a 500-watt solar generator. It could keep an LED light on for about 100 hours but the same generator will only power up a mini-fridge for about 10 hours. So getting the right solar generator size is crucial.
Don’t Miss: How Much Value Does Solar Add
Your Daily Energy Usage
Another thing you need to take into account is your daily energy usage, as it will help you determine both the battery size of the solar power stations, as well as the size of the solar panels.
If you are not sure how to calculate your daily energy usage, there are a few ways to do that.
You can either look at your past energy bills or use an online calculator like this one:
Lets assume the average household uses around 30kWh per day.
This means that your solar batteries system must have 36kWh of capacity and your solar panel array must be able to produce at least 30kWh per day.
Assuming you get around 4 peak sun hours per day, this means that you need an 8kW solar system to recharge the generators lithium ion batteries.
The Explorer 1500 Values
- Massive Capacity and High Watt Power: 1534Wh capacity, Lithium-ion Battery, 1800W Running Power and 3600W Surge Power
- Multiple Output Ports: Featured with PD 60W USB-C ports, 2 USB-A ports , and 3 AC outlets, the Explorer 1500 can power 7 appliances all together at once
- Safe Design: With 6-layers safety system and Battery System Management to monitor individual cell and battery health
Key Factors When Shopping For A Solar Generator
Solar generators come in different sizes and shapes, so picking one that will address your personal needs should be your priority. Choosing a solar generator can be challenging, especially when you are presented with different options, so we created this shopping list as a good starting point.
Since not all portable solar backup power generators are the same, people need to know what the generator can and cannot do. Knowing how you intend to use your generator should help guide you to the right solution.
Some of the top brands to compare include Jackery, Goal Zero Yeti, Bluetti, EcoFlow, Point Zero Energy, Renogy, and Tacklife. Each company makes its products unique, so a closer look at what each one offers can help you make a sound decision.
Why Build Your Own Diy Solar Generator
The number one reason to go the DIY route when it comes to solar generators is cost. Name-brand solar generators cost upwards of $2,000, which eliminates nearly all of the cost savings you would get from using the sun for energy rather than gasoline or the electric grid. By comparison, you can build a custom DIY solar generator for less than $500.
Another reason to build your own power unit rather than opt for a packaged model is that you can customize it to meet your needs. Want a built-in light, high current ports, USB outlets, or another custom feature? You can add that into your DIY solar generator.
Building your own solar generator also means that you know what all the parts are and what they do. This is important since it allows you to maintain your generator over time and replace parts as they go bad. Whereas you might have to scrap a $2,000 premade solar generator when the panels start to fade, for example, you can simply replace that part on your DIY unit and keep on producing power.
Of course, theres one more big reason to go the DIY route its fun! Whether youre a seasoned DIYer or a novice to electrical diagrams and wiring, building a DIY solar generator is a relatively straightforward and highly rewarding project.
Recommended Reading: How To Set Up A Solar Power System
What Will I Need To Build A Solar Generator
Picking out the parts that youll use to build your solar generator is one of the most exciting parts of this project. Theres a lot of leeway to customize components to fit your vision, so feel free to look for alternatives to the components well suggest.
The first thing you need is a case to build your solar generator in. This is essential to making your solar generator portable, allowing you to protect it from bad weather by moving it inside, take it camping, or to move it around your home to follow the direct sunlight. You could use a large plastic container from your local box store, which would be extremely cheap and many models are mounted on wheels. If youre worried about protecting the internal components, consider something a bit more heavy-duty like a Pelican case or a sturdy suitcase.
Next, you need a power inverter. Solar panels produce DC power, but most of the appliances and electronics in your home run on AC power. The wattage of your power inverter is important, since you want to have enough wattage to use all of the power that your solar panels can produce. Unless youre using multiple panels, a 2,000- or 3,000-watt inverter should work well.
The last major component you need is a battery. Ideally, look for a deep cycle battery that can be discharged repeatedly without reducing its lifespan. Importantly, your battery should also be able to be used in any orientation, since your portable solar generator may be used when its laid down or stood upright.
By Step Solar Generator Daisy Chain Guide
As an Amazon Associate, this site earns commissions from qualifying purchases. For more details, clickhere.
Portable solar generators or power stations are ideal for camping and outdoors, and they are light enough to carry. Even better is you can daisy chain solar generators to produce more power. If you are new to solar power, the steps given here are easy to follow.
Two solar generators can be joined together by a daisy chain cable, doubling its power. Solar power stations can also be connected to multiple solar panels by plugging the PV panel output cord into the station.
You May Like: Is Leasing Solar Panels A Good Idea
How To Build A Diy Solar Generator: In
Solar power generators are both cool and useful. With a DIY solar generator, you can power some of your home appliances throughout the day to cut down on your electricity bill. Or, you can build a DIY solar generator for camping, for running power tools out in your yard, or for just about anything else you might use a traditional gasoline generator for. Best of all, a solar generator can help keep your essential appliances running indefinitely in case the power grid goes down for an extended period.
Building your own solar generator is much less expensive than buying a premade one, and its surprisingly simple even if youre not much of a DIYer. In this guide, well walk you through everything you need to know about how to build a DIY solar generator so you can start using the sun as your energy source.
Battery Capacity And Power Rating
Capacity is the total amount of electricity a solar battery can store, but it doesnt reflect how much power it can provide at a given moment. For that, youll need to check the batterys power rating.
In general, a battery with a high capacity and a low power rating will deliver less electricity, but for longer periods and vice versa.
Remember that solar generators run on stored energy. A system can have enough panels to make a thousand of watts of energy, but if the battery stores only 500 watts, thats the most power youll have without adding more capacity.
Its critical to note that only the best portable solar generators have batteries that can be simultaneously charged while being used. This is called trickle charging and unless you have multiple batteries to cover your power needs over several days, this is an important feature.
If your battery needs less than eight hours to recharge, an average portable generator with trickle charging capability should provide consistent power, replenishing itself on sun power alone. Without trickle charging capability, youll be out of power for as long as it takes to recharge the battery.
Most portable generator components are sized to maximize the capacity of each for the sake of efficiency. Expanding one component usually means youll have to upgrade others, but the important part is that better systems can be expanded to meet changing needs.
Don’t Miss: Do Solar Panels Charge At Night
What Are The Pros And Cons Of A Solar Generator
Solar generators let you take the power of the sun anywhere you go! Image source:
Whether you need to keep your lights on when the grid goes down or you want to charge your phone on a camping trip, solar generators are a great way to have extra energy on hand.
But, how do portable solar power generators stack up compared to conventional gas-powered generators? We take a look at how solar generators work, weigh their pros and cons, and discuss if a solar generator is the right investment for you.
Run A Camper On A Solar Generator
You can plug a camper into a solar generator, and I know this since I do it myself as Ill talk more about down below.
Related Post: Can a solar generator run an air conditioner?
Whether its possible or not with a specific solar generator depends on how many watts its inverter can handle. If your 12V batteries are not full, as soon as you plug the camper into the solar generator, its going to start charging the 12V batteries . This can use between 100-500 watts.
Therefore I recommend a solar generator with at least a 500W inverter, although higher is to prefer.
Read Also: Which Way Do You Face Solar Panels
Solar Battery Charging Basics: Use A Solar Panel To Charge Your Battery
Solar energy has become one of the most valuable sources of renewable energy. People globally have gone solar since it helps reduce the ever-rising power utility bills. If youre using solar panels to generate electricity, you may be required to understand the solar battery charging basics.
When trying to solar charge batteries, it is essential first to understand the several steps involved and the essential components that must also be there for the charging process to occur.
How Do I Know If I Need A Solar Generator
We actually cant tell you if you need a solar generator, but here are some things to consider that may help you decide whether or not to get one.
If you regularly experience:
- Fear of the rapture
- The need to be prepared for doomsday or the like
You may want to consider getting a solar generator. They can help combat power outages during those times of extreme weather, or they can give you peace of mind knowing you have some sort of defense against the difficult times if, and when, disaster strikes.
Read Also: Is Solar Really Worth It