Best Solar Generators – Reviews & Buyers Guide
Author: Best Generator Editor
Solar power generators are a great off-grid alternative power source for light use. Portable solar powered generators are more lightweight, don’t produce any fumes nor run on fossil fuels and don’t make noise like regular portable generators.
Many solar powered generators are actually an all-in-one portable power station with a rechargeable battery that can be charged with a solar panel, wall outlet AC supply or through a CIG port.
Ecoflow River Solar Power Rechargeable Portable Power Station
Running Watts: 300
Surge Watts: 600
Weight: 11 lbs
Capacity: 412 Wh
More features: Has 11 outlets for powering multiple devices and can reportedly hold a charge for up to 1 year.
The Ecoflow River portable power station is quite powerful for a solar power generator and packs that power in a sleek and compact design. It is also a very sturdy design with proven functionality in temperatures between -4° – 140° Fahrenheit.
The Ecoflow River has a capacity of 412 Wh which the manufacturers claim is enough to power light for 100 hours, a mini portable refrigerator for 10 hours and fully charges laptops at least 5 times and mobile phones at least 30 times. You can connect these appliances using any of the 11 outlets including AC, DC and CIG outlets and USB ports.
Above the electrical outlets is an informative LCD screen showing battery level, how much longer it can run and its power output.
It is very lightweight for how much power it has and also nicely portable with its carrying handle. The power station is compatible with the Ecoflow Solar Panel Charger but this is sold separately.
Solar Powered Generator Buying Guide
A solar powered generator has many benefits but they are not suitable for every purpose. Ask yourself the following questions to decide whether a portable solar power generator will work for you and which type is the best solar power generator for your needs.
How much power do you need?
Most portable solar powered generators are very lightweight but this often goes hand in hand with low power output compared to inverter generators and conventional portable generators. First calculate how much power you need by checking the power consumption of all the devices you wish to power with the generator.
Remember that most solar power generators don’t carry much power so if you are hoping to use the generator as a home backup generator you might be better off with a heavy duty solar power generator.
Does the portable power station include a solar panel?
Not every portable power station that is labeled solar powered actually includes a solar panel. Check whether a solar panel is included and when it is not check whether the portable power station works with proprietary solar panels only or can also connect to other solar panels of other brands.
Do you need a quiet generator that does not emit any fumes?
A solar power portable generator is the only generator that is safe for indoor use because it does not run on fossil fuels and so does not emit any fumes. Plus, many models are a rechargeable battery without an engine so they are virtually silent generators.
How portable should the generator be?
Most solar power portable power stations are lightweight making them highly portable. However, a few heavy duty models are heavy and so not suitable for outdoor activities and road trips.
Is solar energy enough?
If you live in a place where you cannot rely on plentiful sun hours, you need a portable power station with alternative charging options. Fortunately, most portable solar power station are also rechargeable through a car outlet or regular wall outlet.
Bear in mind that fully charging a portable power station can take several hours so make sure that you keep the battery charged in case of emergencies. Also, not all units can be used while charging so check for this feature.
Are solar powered generators a good alternative power source for you?