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8 Tips to Select the Perfect Portable Solar Generator for Outdoor Adventure



People take part in outdoor adventure to clear the mind and connect with the natural world. Some also get the adrenal rush from outdoor activities. Whether it’s camping, boating, hiking, or road biking, outdoor adventure leads to improved confidence, reduced stress, and physical development.

One problem with outdoor adventure is that you won’t be able to stay connected to your family. Your family members may feel anxious about you when you adventure outdoors.

With a portable solar generator, you can do two things at once: enjoy time outdoors and stay connected with your loved ones. Portable solar generators provide portable energy without giving out harmful greenhouse gases (GHG) similar to gasoline or diesel generators.

In this guide, you will learn about complete information for selecting the right portable solar generator for your outdoor adventure needs.

1. Power Requirements

The first thing that you should consider when buying a portable solar power generator is the power requirements. Depending on the power requirements, you should select a generator with a specific wattage.

Consider making a list of all the appliances that you want to power using the solar generator. Next, find out how much wattage each appliance will take. Once you have determined the individual wattage, you should next find out the aggregate wattage of items that you want to charge together.

You should buy a slower power generator with power that is about 60 to 90 percent larger than the required wattage. This is because solar panels don’t generate full capacity. Higher end solar generators such as can generate about 97 percent of full capacity. Low-end generators can generate 60 percent of the stated power.

For instance, suppose that you have determined that you need 300 watts to power the appliances during the outdoor adventure. In this case, you should select a portable solar generator with at least 500-watt capacity.

2. Weather Conditions

Weather conditions should be considered when buying a solar power generator. If you intend to use the generator in wet conditions such as a boat, you should consider buying a system that water resistant.

Water can damage standard portable solar generators. Make sure that the solar panels are fully encapsulated due to which water cannot penetrate inside.

Low-quality solar generators generally are not water resistant resulting in delamination failures. You should buy high-quality solar power generators since it will save you money in the long run.

3. Battery Capacity

Do you intend to camp for a week or more? If so, you should buy a solar generator with a bigger capacity battery.

Battery capacity is determined in Amp-hour. A 100Ah battery can deliver up to 20 hours power at a rate of 5 amps in one hour. For outdoor use, you would probably need a lower capacity battery.

If you want to charge small electronic appliances like a smartphone charger, a battery with 33Ah power capacity will be adequate. However, if you plan to power larger appliances like a portable fridge on a boat, you will require a battery with at least a 100 A.H. capacity.

4. Battery Type

Apart from battery capacity, you should also select the right type of battery. Lead acid batteries are cheaper and more cost-effective for charging higher wattage appliances.

For small battery capacity, the best choice is a Lithium battery. They are not only lightweight but have a longer charging capacity. However, they are pricey due to which they are not suitable for large solar power generators.

5. Solar Power Efficiency

Solar power efficiency is another important consideration when buying a solar power generator. The generator’s efficiency rating refers to the energy conversion rate. In other words, efficiency reflects the rate at which solar energy is converted into DC electricity.

A solar panel with high efficiency will be able to output at near stated capacity. The small solar panel with high efficiency can produce larger power output as compared to lower efficiency larger solar panel.

Generally, monocrystalline solar panels are more efficient. They have a higher efficiency value as compared to the less costly polycrystalline solar panels. So, it’s recommended that you buy a solar generator with monocrystalline panels for optimum output.

In addition, you can also consider solar panels with thin-film technologies. While the efficiency of these panels is lower as compared to monocrystalline panels, they are a good choice for outdoor adventure due to company size and flexibility.

6. Weight of Solar Power Generator

Weight is another important consideration when buying a solar power generator. For outdoor adventures such as camping and hiking, you should consider a lightweight generator.

A small size generator is recommended if you plan to use carry the generator when moving.  Lightweight generators can weigh just half a pound. Larger portable generators can weigh up to 35 pounds.

7. Durability

Lastly, you should consider the durability and quality of the solar panel. Consider buying a sturdy solar panel with rust proof frames and legs. In addition, the latches should be durable that can withstand the wear and tear especially bumps on the road.

In case you want to use a solar panel in a dusty area, you should buy a solar power generator that comes with dustproof handles and cover.

8. Warranty

Never buy a solar panel that does not come with a warranty. With a warranty, you can rest at ease knowing that you won’t have to incur an additional cost.

You should buy a generator with at least a 2-year manufacturer warranty. Also, read to the fine print to make sure that you don’t have to pay anything once the unit malfunctions.

Take Away

A portable solar power generator can be your perfect companion during an outdoor adventure. Make sure that you select a power generator with proper battery capacity and power ratings. The portable generator should be durable and also come with a warranty. You should buy a generator with monocrystalline solar panels as they generate electricity with optimum efficiency. Avoid thin-film or other low-quality solar power generators as they tend to degrade faster resulting in a reduced lifetime.