Portable Solar Generator Kits

If you are looking for future power alternatives, the solar generators are the right way to go for. As compared to gasoline generators, these are safe and eco-friendly. They are equipped with photovoltaic panels which power them. Since the need for electrical power is necessary, the solar generators may be exactly what most people are looking for. The market is overflowing with a broad array of models, so choosing the best one for your needs can be a backbreaking task. After testing and reviewing more than 15 products, we have finally picked the best 5 models. Have a look at the matrix below and you will surely find something that will meet your expectations.

Top 5 Portable Solar Generator Kits Comparison

1. Goal Zero Yeti 400 2. Jackery 500Wh 3. Renogy Phoenix 4. Suaoki 220Wh 5. PAXCESS 100Watt
BEST MODEL OUR CHOICE
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General Information

Brand Goal Zero Jackery Renogy SUAOKI PAXCESS
Item model Yeti 400 PowerPro Explorer PHOENIX S601 S320-UPGRADE
Dimensions 10.25 x 8 x 8 in 6.5 x 12.2 x 10.2 in 16.14 x 13.77 x 3.89 in 9.84 × 3.39 × 6.30 in 3.15 x 6.5 x 6.89 in
Weight 29 lbs. 12.5 lbs. 12.78 lbs. 5.56 lbs. 4.4 lbs.
Industrial design material Plastic Plastic Aluminum metal casing ABS+PC+Aluminum Plastic

Technical Specifications

Inverter
Output Wave Form Pure sine wave Pure sine wave Pure sine wave Pure sine wave Pure sine wave
Output AV voltage 110-220VAC 110VAC 110VAC 100V 110VAC
Output AC frequency 50-60Hz 60Hz 60Hz 50Hz 60Hz
Max. continuous output power 300W 500W 150W 220W 100W
Battery
Battery type Lithium-ion Lithium-ion Lithium-ion Lithium-ion Lithium-ion
Battery capacity 396Wh 500Wh 16Ah 200Wh 150Wh
Battery standard voltage 12V 12V 14.8V 11.1V 12V
Charging time 20h 7h 10 h (10W)/2.5h (100W) N/A N/A
Solar capacity 20W 85W 20W 15V 50W
Ports
USB ports (Output) 5V/2.1A 2 x 5V/2.1A 4 x 5V/2.4A 2 x 5V/3.1A 2 x 5V/2.1A
DC Output 12V, 10A 6mm DC port 2x12V 10A 6mm DC ports 2 x 12V / 3A 2 x12V/ 5A 3 x12V DC
Cigarette socket/Car port 12V, 10A 12V, 10A 12V 8A 12V 12V

Features

LCD battery display LCD flashlights MPPT Charging Technology 5-LED battery indicator LED display
LCD power display Multi-mode 3W LED Battery Management System (BMS) Battery Management System (BMS)
Battery Management System (BMS) LED Readout

Charging Chart

USB/Wall charger Wall charger GOPRO (1160mAH) Smartphone Wall charger (12V)
Life-a-Life 12V lantern (3Wh) Smartphone iPhone 6S (1715mAH) Smartphones
Smartphone (5-7Wh) Laptops Galaxy S6 (2550mAH) Laptops
Tablet (20-25W) TVs IPAD AIR2 (7340mAH) CPAP machine with DC/DC converter
DVD Player (20-25W) DSLR Camera (1080mAH)
Laptop (50W) Laptop (40Wh)
Desktop computer (100W)
Printer (90W)
32” LCD TV (98-156W)
Radio/Stereo (40W)
Car charger (30W)
Goal Zero Nomad 20
2x Goal Zero Nomad 20’s
Goal Zero Boulder 30
Goal Zero Nomad 100

Warranty&Support

Warranty 1-year warranty/ 30 day money back guarantee 2-year 1-year 18 months warranty 18 months warranty
Safety Standards
Customer Support

Portable Solar Generator Kit Reviews

1. Goal Zero Yeti 400

The Goal Zero Yeti 400 is the best portable solar generator we tested. There are many solar generators on the market, nowadays, but this generator stands out because it is astoundingly easy to use. It is a rechargeable power station able to power a 100W load for more than 4 hours. Its 100W light bulb makes it light for up to 4 hours before recharging it. As compared to other similar generators, this model comes with an LDC display and a wide range of connectivity options. In what regards the power options, keep in mind that it comes with three USB ports, two standard 120V outlets and two 12V connections which can be used in your vehicle. What put it heads and shoulders above the rest is its capability of running various electronics, including TVs, smartphones, laptops, cameras and tables. You just have to plug them in, using either power cords or a USB. It’s recommended to fully charge the generator before heading into the woods. Be aware that it cannot be used to power a portable heater or other high wattage devices.



2. Jackery 500Wh

With a staggering 5 star reviews on Amazon, we are extremely proud to include this solar generator on our list. As you probably know, the solar generators are some of the most useful types of charging devices available in the current market. With this in mind, take a look at the Jackery 500Wh generator. The power capacity of this device is 500Wh, which means about 140000mAh of its initial power capacity. When it comes to charging smartphones, there are no limits. For example, on a Samsung S5 with 2740mAh, there will be no more than 40 full charges.
Above, you will find a comparison chart with the power capacity for various smartphones. Additionally, keep in mind that laptops and tablets can be charged to full power 6 to 10 times or maybe, even more depending on the model. Since it is one of the most powerful solar generators on the market, you would expect to be quite large and heavy. In fact, it weighs 12.5 lbs. It is a lightweight device which can easily be moved from a place to another. At the front, it features an LCD display that provides information about the power capacity that the charger has left. Overall, this source of power will surely satisfy your needs.


3. Renogy Phoenix

The Renogy Phoenix is one of the most efficient solar generators on the market. It is the updated version of the Renogy Firefly model. Since it is an all-in-one solar generator, this model is surely an option worth taking into consideration. It has almost everything you may need to charge your DC devices. As compared to the previous model, it uses an advanced technology and comes with a wide range of external panels. More than that, it is much powerful and charges much faster than the Firefly version. The most important thing to know about this generator is that it comes with a 16Ah Lithium-ion battery, which means about 16000mAh power capacity. Aside from being capable of charging various devices, including smartphones, tablets, laptops, TVs, and other small appliances, this amazing generator also comes with a 12V/12.5A 12V cigarette socket that can be used with a device that uses a 12V outlet. Overall, the Phoenix generator is a great option for travelers who need a portable power unit.


4. Suaoki 220Wh

After testing several solar generators we can confirm that most portable devices with medium size come with a wattage anywhere from 100W to 150W. However, this is not the case of the Suaoki 220Wh which stands out with 220W. With this solar generator, you will be able to power more than one small device at the same time. Or, you will be capable of charging devices that require more power than smartphones, such as fans and lamps. In what regards the battery of this generator, it’s important to know that it has a capacity of 20000mAh. This means that it is The portable feature and small size of this Suaoki model makes it a great choice. More than that, it features a lightweight aluminum allow shell that resist well impacts which makes it great for outdoor activities. The fact that it can be turned into a suitcase is a great way to save space. All in all, the Suaoki 220Wh is everything you need to power your devices in the middle of nature.


5. PAXCESS 100Watt

If you want to keep your devices charged but there is no other power resource around, a portable solar generator may be the best choice out there. After reviewing several models, we can confirm that the PAXCESS 100Watt is surely an option that will satisfy your needs and meet your requirements. With a 40.800mAh lithium-ion battery that is able to provide up to 8 hours of continuous power, this solar generator is much more efficient than many other similar units available on the market. The fact that it can power up in various different ways is a major perk. You can either use your vehicle’s 12V outlet or a 15V2A wall charger. Also, it is equipped with AC, USB and 12V outputs which allow you charge small appliances, including smartphones, laptops or tablets. Overall, it comes with a lot of good things and is a great choice for people who don’t have space for a larger-sized model.

What is a Solar Generator and How does it Work?

Solar generators
If you are new in this industry, it’s very important to understand a few things about generators. Since there are so many types and models of generators in the marketplace. It’s quite difficult to take a decision. But, before choosing one of those traditional and conventional generators that produce a lot of fumes, take a look at the solar-powered types. They are eco-friendly and noiseless. Furthermore, they are portable and can be easily moved from a place to another or carried around to camping or picnic. Solar generators are made of various components. All this process begins with solar panels. The main components of solar power process are the solar panels. Due to these panels, the generator captures the sun’s energy. The energy is stored in a high capacity battery and released through an inverter. The inverter converts the power to alternating current (AC) which is the power typically found in a standard plug-in outlet.

What is Behind our Ratings


Best solar generators
As highlighted above, the market is flooded with so many different models of portable solar generators that it is almost impossible not to find what you really need. However, before making a purchase, it is helpful to narrow your options down by considering these important factors.

  • Battery capacity

  • One of the most important aspects when it comes to generators is the capacity of the battery used. This is certainly one of the most crucial factors to a portable solar generator. The higher the battery capacity, the longer it will work in between recharges. This is strongly related to the actual wattage of the unit, but the rule in this situation is the higher the better.

  • Inverter rating

  • The inverter has the main purpose to convert the direct circuit into an alternating circuit for standard plug-in devices. Also, it can limit the actual existing wattage that can be used at one time. More than that, keep in mind that you won’t be able to charge devices with higher wattage if you use a solar generator with a lower rating. Portable solar generators equipped with inverter chargers can easily collect power through other power sources besides panels.

  • Solar PV input (solar panels)

  • A solar generator is powered by a solar PV input. It allows for continuous use during the day and low recharging times after night usage. In general, these panels are rated by their wattage capabilities. For example, if a solar panel is rated at 300W, it will generate about 300watt-hours in full sun. The PV input is strongly related to a solar generator and its storage capacity. This happens because of the need to store energy for use at a later time.

  • Extra features

  • As you have probably noticed in the comparison chart above, each solar generator comes with a wide array of impressive features. Some of the newest models are equipped with LCD displays, allowing you to monitor the charge of your appliance and the remaining battery of the generator. Also, there are some generators that can be wirelessly connected to apps on your smartphone. This means that you will be able to monitor them remotely. Although all generators have basic features and outlets, there are also models that include other features, such as built-in alligator clips, built-in lights, electronic screens, alarm options and so on.

What to Look for When Shopping for the best Generator


Portable solar generators
As outlined above, there are so many types of solar generators available in the current market, that it’s quite difficult to find exactly what you need. The best generators use an advanced technology and combine all the features you could want in a portable solar generator. Therefore, in order to know what to look for when purchasing the best unit, take a look at the information below.

  • Portability

  • As you might think portable solar generators are designed to be portable, obviously, but you will be surprised to find out that some models aren’t as portable as others. They are more robust and cannot be moved and easily carried around. More than that, some generators have wheels and extended handles, so you should focus on them as they provide a much easier moving experience.

  • Durability

  • If you need a generator for outdoor activities, such as camping and picnic, this is where durability comes into play. While some generators are made of plastic, others have a metal construction which strongly confirms that they can stand up to protect their elements over time. Solar generators made of sturdy construction will ensure years of use. Unfortunately, we cannot say the same for some of the cheaper models that use cheaper imported elements and components.

  • Cost

  • Have you ever wondered how much does a portable solar generator cost today? Take a look at the comparison table above and you will notice that our 5 products are designed to fit any budget. With so many models on the market, it is impossible not to find a quality product for your needs. While some models cost $449.95, other can be purchased for only $143.88. As mentioned above, these generators also have a few drawbacks. For example, if you don’t have a solar setup in place, you have to purchase the solar panels and the generator separately. This means that you are going to spend more money on a solar generator which may require at least two good photovoltaic panels. Overall, however, even if now you are spending a fortune, later these savings will come back to you.

Our verdict


 Renogy Phoenix
It should come as no surprise that we selected the Renogy Phoenix as the best product on the market. What put it heads and shoulders above the rest is its compact design and incredible features. This powerful device is specially designed to power multiple on-the-go appliances, including smartphones, laptops, TVs, tablets and more. In simple terms, its main purpose is to serve as a backup system emergency. As compared to the Jackery 500Wh that comes with an 85W solar panel, the Renogy Phoenix is equipped with two 10W monocrystalline solar panels. It is capable of providing up to 210Wh of energy. Furthermore, it comes with a replaceable 16Ah Lithium-ion battery that provides 16,000mAh power capacity. Although it has almost the same features as the Goal Zero Yeti 400, it is cheaper than that one. In what regards the warranty of this generator, it is good to know that unlike the Suaoki 220Wh that comes with an 18 months warranty, our favorite product is covered by only a 1-year warranty on the accessories, 25-year warranty on the power output and 5-year warranty on materials and workmanship. Overall, this portable solar generator is surely an option worth taking into consideration.

Types of Solar Generators

  • Solar Backup Powered Generators

  • Generally speaking, these types of generators can be used for home backup. They come with a high wattage capacity and are usually equipped with more than one battery in order to increase power storage. In the event of a power outage, these units are able to power lanterns, candle holders and small to medium appliances including laptops, tablets, TVs, smartphones and more. The life the battery strongly depends on the appliances being powered, but generally speaking, it takes a full day to power home appliances and small devices.

  • The pros and cons of solar backup generators
  • If you are looking for a powerful solar generator that doesn’t come with a full system installed, a solar backup generator is exactly what you need. Thanks to its high battery capacities, it is capable of powering your home appliances for long periods of time. More than that, as compared to fossil fuel generators which emit carbon dioxide into the air, these solar backup units don’t produce any emissions. Furthermore, they don’t require special maintenance and can remain in your home in comparison to the fossil fuel units which have to be installed in a ventilated place. However, there are a few drawbacks that you need to consider before purchasing a solar backup generator. Therefore, it’s good to know that they are heavy and cannot be moved from a place to another when necessary. Moreover, they need to be placed in sunny or semi-sunny areas as they need sunlight to charge. They are more expensive than other models and they require more than one solar panel to for a full charge which can also increase the expense.

  • Portable Solar Generators

  • As compared to backup generators, these portable models are much lighter and very easy to carry around. Since most of them are equipped with folding handles, they are very easy to pack and store. Although they have a lower wattage than solar backup models, they are still capable of powering and recharging smartphones, laptops and other small appliances.

  • The pros and cons of portable solar generators
  • These types of generators come with a compact design which can include various accessories. While some models are equipped with a simple pull handle, others feature two back wheels for easy transport. They are not as powerful as other generators, but they can still power and charge small to medium appliances. They can usually power, smartphones, laptops, tablets, lanterns and many other home appliances. They can be used with AC outlets and car adapters as well. Furthermore, as compared to conventional generators, these portable models are equipped with a wide range of features. However, as mentioned before, there are a few drawbacks that you need to consider before making a purchase. When using small panels they will take more time to charge home appliances. More than that, since they are not as powerful as the backup generators, they cannot power bigger devices for a long period of time.

  • Solar Generator Kits

  • If you are looking to purchase a solar generator kits, it’s very important to know what does it include. These kits come with charge controllers, solar panels and generators. The truth is that all these elements can be purchased separately, but this is a time-consuming task which requires a lot of money. With this in mind, choosing a solar generator kit will surely be an option worth taking into consideration. The fact that these kits have all the components together in one package is more than convenient. Also, it is a major plus that all components are manufactured by the same company. Aside from being compatible with you generator, they prevent the user from overcharging and damaging the battery.

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