Best portable solar panels for power on the go in 2023


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Aug 12, 2023

Best portable solar panels for power on the go in 2023

In a world where eco-consciousness matters more than ever, portable solar panels offer a solution. These compact powerhouses harness the sun's energy, allowing you to charge devices, power appliances

In a world where eco-consciousness matters more than ever, portable solar panels offer a solution. These compact powerhouses harness the sun's energy, allowing you to charge devices, power appliances and stay connected.

Whether you're a globetrotting traveller, outdoor enthusiast, van lifer or emergency-preparedness advocate, having solar power available in your pocket can prove extremely handy.

From wattage and portability to charging capabilities and durability, join us as we shed light on the best options out there, helping you use solar energy wherever your journey takes you.

Dokio’s all-inclusive kit arrives ready to power your adventures with a 100W solar panel, a 10A controller and a comprehensive set of cables and adapters.

High conversion efficiency is assured through its monocrystalline solar cell, ensuring greater power efficiency in a compact design. Dokio say it's built for durability: the panel features corrosion-resistant aluminium, a waterproof structure and solid handles for longevity.

Whether you're an avid camper, an RV enthusiast or in need of off-grid power, this panel is designed to be versatile as an energy source.

Dokio also provide support, saying they can respond to queries or problems within 24 hours.

Dimensions (L x W x H): 53 x 66 x 5 cmWeight: 8.4 KilogramsWattage: 100WVoltage: 12VEfficiency: Unlisted

BigBlue’s 14W Sunpower Solar Panels feature Smart IC Technology. With USB ports capable of delivering up to 5V/2.4A Max and equipped with SmartIC technology, these panels recognise your device to provide suitable charging efficiency.

BigBlue claim it's designed for adventure, with a compact size, lightweight build and foldable panel bag to it an essential companion for camping, hiking and outdoor activities.

Its sunpower panel converts an impressive 21.5-24% of solar power into free energy, shielded by a unique pet polymer surface that offers rain protection.

Notably, an IPX-4 waterproof level and thoughtful cloth flaps and rubber covers shield the ports from water and dust. However, a vital precaution: avoid laying the panel directly on heat-conductive surfaces like concrete or sand in direct sunlight.

Dimensions: 14.8 x 15.3 x 5.4cm (folded)Weight: 0.36kgWattage: 14WVoltage: 5VEfficiency: 21.5-24%

The EcoFlow 220W Bifacial Solar Panel features a two-in-one bifacial design, capturing power from both sides for maximum efficiency.

Crafted with enduring tempered glass, it's built to withstand time and the elements, boasting up to 23% conversion rate. Self-supporting and angle-adjustable, it's designed to be movable to harness optimal sunlight.

Accompanied by a kickstand case, this solar panel stands out with a thin, one-piece tempered glass design, which EcoFlow claim provides toughness while being half the thickness of conventional panels.

Heat-resistant up to 300°F, it should brave any climate. It’s also said to be 10% smaller than its 220W counterparts.

Dimensions: 82 x 183 x2.5cmWeight: 9.5kgWattage: 220WVoltage: 21.8VEfficiency: 23%

The EcoFlow 400W Portable Solar Panel is designed for camping, RVs and home power needs. With high solar output and a unique folding design, this solar panel converts sunlight into renewable energy with 23% efficiency.

The integrated self-supporting stand optimises energy absorption by allowing you to adjust the angle for maximum sun exposure. Its rugged multi-layered construction is designed for high impact resistance and its lightweight design—just 16 kg—should keep it easy to carry.

With a protective ETFE film and an impressive IP68 resistance level, it's designed to thrive in diverse environments, from humid to dry and dusty.

Dimensions: 105.8 x 236.5 x 2.5cmWeight: 16kgWattage: 400WVoltage: 48VEfficiency: 23%

Hiluckey's Solar Charger 26800mAh Power Bank is designed for wireless charging. It supports all wireless-compatible phones – just requiring you to press the power button and place your device on the centre of the wireless charging pad.

With a 26800mAh ultra-high capacity, this portable charger offers up to 8 charges for a 2000mAh phone or 3 charges for tablets, ensuring up to 8 days of reliable power on a single recharge.

Hiluckey say it can charge four devices simultaneously at full throttle. Its intelligent technology auto-detects your devices' current to provide the fastest possible charging speed (3A max), delivering a full phone charge in 1.3 hours. The USB C port powers up the power bank in 7 hours with a USB C charger.

It's designed to hanging it on your backpack to catch sunlight. It also features a built-in LED flashlight with "Steady-Flashing-SOS" modes, along with a waterproof, dustproof and shockproof design.

Dimensions: 17.53 x 8.38 x 2.79 cmWeight: 0.47kgWattage: 1.9WVoltage: 5VEfficiency: Unlisted

The Anker 625 Solar Panel can transforms up to 23% of sunlight into energy, ensuring a continuous charge for your solar generators even on overcast days.

Anker's proprietary Suncast technology guides you towards optimal sunlight alignment, capturing direct rays for maximum charging power.

Engineered to complement the Anker PowerHouse series, the Anker 625 Solar Panel is compatible with PowerHouse 521, 535 and 757 (sold separately), establishing itself as the ultimate all-in-one power solution for your road trips, camping adventures and RV explorations.

Crafted for convenience, this lightweight solar panel features both a USB-C and a USB-A output port, enabling you to charge two devices simultaneously. It’s also scratch and weather-resistant, which can be great for some added confidence while on the go.

Dimensions: 52.5 x 47.0 x 8.5 cmWeight: 5kgWattage: 15WVoltage: 26.5VEfficiency: 23%

Weight and size are pivotal when choosing portable solar panels, with average sizes often corresponding to different wattage levels.

Lightness and compactness are vital for on-the-go activities and emergencies. For instance, a 50W panel typically weighs around 2.5-3 kg and measures around 66 x 51 cm, while a 100W panel averages 4.5-5.5 kg and measures about 104 x 53 cm.

Opting for the right weight and size ensures effortless setup, ideal placement and efficient storage, all enhancing the integration into your mobile lifestyle.

Durability is a crucial consideration when selecting portable solar panels, as they need to withstand outdoor elements and rugged conditions.

A durable panel is essential for long-lasting performance during camping trips, hikes and other outdoor activities.

To enhance durability, look for panels with scratch-resistant tempered glass, corrosion-resistant frames and weatherproof designs. Reinforced corners, sturdy hinges and impact-resistant materials contribute to a panel's ability to withstand shocks and bumps.

The power you need from a portable solar panel depends on your device requirements, daily energy consumption, location's sunlight availability and intended usage duration.

Calculate the combined wattage or amperage of devices you plan to charge, considering daily usage and battery capacities.

For emergency power, estimate energy needs during outages. Portable solar panels typically range from 5W to 100W or more, with higher wattages suitable for larger devices like laptops or refrigerators.

Efficiency is a critical factor when considering portable solar panels. It refers to how effectively the panel converts sunlight into usable energy.

Higher efficiency panels generate more power from the same amount of sunlight, which is especially important in limited outdoor conditions.

Panels with higher efficiency are compact and lightweight, making them easier to transport. While efficiency can vary, look for panels with conversion rates of around 20% or more for optimal energy production.

Balancing efficiency with your power needs ensures you get the most energy output from the available sunlight, enhancing the effectiveness of your portable solar setup.

Looking for other ways to sustainably harness the power of natural elements? Read our article about the best home wind turbines to reduce your energy bills.

Image Credit: Jackery Power Station/Unsplash

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