Best Portable Solar Generator Reviews

Updated October 12, 2020

A portable solar generator is a very reliable clean power option, whether you’re traveling or just want an extra source of power at home. These small generators absorb and store power from the sun’s rays, making them a great option for camping.

If you live in a sunny area, keeping a portable solar power system at home offers a backup power source in an emergency. With so many different portable solar powered generator options on the market, it can be difficult to narrow down the best one for your needs.

We’ve rounded up some of the best portable solar generators on the market to help you make this decision.

Best Portable Solar Generators

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1 Goal Zero Yeti 150 Portable Power Station
Best For Low Budgets
Goal Zero Yeti 150 Portable Solar Generator
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Camping World
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2 Kalisaya - KP401 KaliPAK Portable Solar Generator Kalisaya KP401 Portable Solar Generator
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3 Jackery Portable Outdoor Solar Generator
Best Overall
Jackery Explorer 500 Portable Solar Generator
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4 Rockpals 500W Portable Power Station Rockpals Portable Power Station Solar Generator
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5 Suaoki - 400Wh Portable Generator Power Station Suaoki Portable Power Station Solar Generator
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6 Nature's Generator - Gold System 1800W Solar & Wind Powered
Best For Higher Budgets
Nature's Generator Gold System Portable Solar Generator
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1. Goal Zero Yeti 150 Portable Solar Generator

Highlights
  • Travel-friendly design
  • Thick plastic casing
  • Easy-carry pop-up handle
  • Overcharge protection
Best For Low Budgets
Goal Zero Yeti 150 Portable Power Station

This small and portable solar powered generator’s 150Wh battery can generate 80W of continuous power, which is good for charging phones, laptops, and other smart devices. Capable of supplying current in 5V DC, 12V DC, and 110V AC, it can power 3 different sets of appliances. Charging takes 6-12 hours on solar, 6 hours via AC outlet, and 4-6 hours through car adapter.

The generator’s weatherproof casing protects it from sun and dust while the legs can absorb minor shocks. It features a quiet cooling fan to help control the temperature of the unit and prevent it from overheating.

Specifications

Size:
7.75 x 5.75 x 6.75 inches
Voltage:
12V
Wattage:
80W Continuous, 160W Peak
Output:
12V, 10A (DC Output - 6mm), 5V 2.1A each, total 10W max (USB Output x2), 12V 10A (Car Port), 110V AC, 60Hz, 80W Continuous, 160W Peak Surge (AC Output – modified sine wave)
Power Source:
Solar Panel, AC Wall Outlet, 12V Car Adapter

Pros

  • Convenient port placing
  • Display screen for battery percentage
  • Solid, compact build
  • Wide compatibility

Cons

  • May take some time to charge via solar
  • Lacks water resistance

2. Kalisaya KP401 Portable Solar Generator

Highlights
  • This 384-watt generator is great for powering small electronics and camping appliances.
  • It has 4 USB ports as well as 2 12 volt DC ports. 
  • This generator relies on a 26Ah lithium ion battery and uses four solar panels. 
  • It comes with a compatible smartphone app, which you can use to control the generator remotely.

If you’re looking for a small but reliable solar generator, this model from Kalisaya might be a good fit for you. It is very lightweight, and the brand makes a waterproof backpack, which you can purchase separately.

It also has a built-in shoulder strap. The kit contains four flexible solar panels, which you can easily configure for optimal sun absorption. It comes with four USB ports as well as 2 12 volt DC ports, which are compatible with a wide range of electronics.

Specifications

Size:
13.5 x 13.5 x 6.7 inches
Voltage:
12V
Wattage:
384 watts
Output:
40W
Power Source:
Solar

Pros

  • This generator is very small and compact, with foldable solar panels that are easy to move around.
  • The flexible solar panels are ideal for camping trips.
  • In addition to a total of 6 outlets, it also comes with an AC/DC adapter and a car adapter.
  • The smartphone app makes it easy to control the generator anywhere.

Cons

  • This device doesn’t have as much power as some other models.

3. Jackery Explorer 500 Portable Solar Generator

Highlights
  • Informative 2” LCD display
  • Built-in large LED flashlight
  • Pure Sine Wave Inverter
  • Multiple output ports
Best Overall
Jackery Portable Outdoor Solar Generator

Capable of running 500W plus a peak surge for devices that require 1,000W to start, this solar power generator is great for powering portable devices such as laptops, smart devices, and even a small refrigerator. Its 3 USB ports make it convenient to charge your phone and USB-ready devices, while leaving the AC outlet and 12V car adapter free to power up your other appliances.

Its 518Wh lithium battery can be charged via solar panels for 14 hours, via wall plug outlet for 8 hours, and via car adapter for 16 hours. The built-in LED display lets you keep track of the power input and output, as well as the remaining battery percentage, so that you can plan your allocation properly.

Specifications

Size:
11.8 x 7.6 x 9.2 inches
Voltage:
21.6V
Wattage:
500W Continuous, 1,000W Peak
Output:
12V, 10A (DC Output - 6mm), 5V 2.4A each, total 30W max (USB Output x3), 110V AC, 60Hz, 500W Continuous, 1,000W Peak Surge (AC Output – pure sine wave)
Power Source:
Solar Panel, AC Wall Outlet, 12V Car Adapter

Pros

  • Compact design
  • Added safety with internal breakers
  • Sturdy, easy-grip handle
  • Battery life of 500 cycles

Cons

  • Doesn’t support devices rated over 500W
  • Slower battery recharge compared to specific counterparts

4. Rockpals Portable Power Station Solar Generator

Highlights
  • 7 management system safety features
  • High-capacity 540Wh lithium battery
  • Multi-port output
  • SOS function

Not only is this solar powered generator designed for performance, it’s also designed for safety with its multiple security protection features and an SOS light signal function in case of emergencies. Its safety features include voltage and temperature control, low battery alarm, and protection from overcharge, overcurrent, overload, and short circuit. The pure sine wave inverter protects sensitive devices while powering them up. 

The recharge time of this solar generator is 6-7 hours via solar panels, AC wall plug outlet, or 12V car adapter. It can also be used to power CPAP machines for emergency medical use in case of power outages.

Specifications

Size:
10.24 x 6.7 x 6.82 inches
Voltage:
10.8V
Wattage:
500W Continuous, 1,000W Peak
Output:
12V, 4A (DC Output x2), 5V 2.4A each, total 10W max (USB Output x3), 18W (USB Output – Type C), 12V (Car Port), 110V AC, 60Hz, 500W Continuous, 1,000W Peak Surge (AC Output – pure sine wave)
Power Source:
Solar Panel, AC Wall Outlet, 12V Car Adapter

Pros

  • Bright emergency light
  • Automatic shut-off feature
  • Easy-to-read LCD screen display
  • 4 USB ports

Cons

  • Not waterproof
  • Lacks master power-off button

5. Suaoki Portable Power Station Solar Generator

Highlights
  • This 400Wh compact generator connects to solar panels, generating enough power for small appliances.
  • It has a sleek design with an LCD screen that indicates the current power level. 
  • This generator has 4 USB ports, 2 AC converters, and 2 DC ports for convenience. 
  • It comes with a car charging cable, jump start cables, and a wall charger. It also comes with a port for cigarette lighters.

This Suaoki solar generator with panels is a reliable option for traveling or as a backup power source for small appliances. The generator connects to solar panels, but can also source power from AC wall sockets.

It has USB, AC, and DC power outlets. This means the generator is very flexible in terms of the type of devices you can use. It has a very sleek design with an LCD screen, which you can use to easily monitor the input and output of the generator. This model is lightweight and compact for easy carrying.

Specifications

Size:
9 x 5.5 x 9 inches
Voltage:
120/240 AC, 12 DC
Wattage:
400 W
Output:
300 watt rated, 600 watt surge
Power Source:
Solar, AC

Pros

  • The design of this generator is very aesthetically pleasing, and it’s compact enough for easy travel.
  • The LCD screen makes it easy to monitor the generator’s output.
  • It has many different ports, so it is compatible with many different electronics.
  • This generator can recharge by connecting to indoor AC power outlets as well as the solar panels.

Cons

  • The generator isn’t powerful enough to charge large appliances. Using this generator to power larger appliances could be dangerous.

6. Nature's Generator Gold System Portable Solar Generator

Highlights
  • This 1800 watt inverter solar generator produces 720 watts of output.
  • It has a 60Ah internal battery that sources energy from the polycrystalline solar cells. 
  • This generator has 3 AC outlets, 1 DC outlet, and 2 USB outlets. 
  • An LCD screen displays the battery life and output when the generator is on.
Best For Higher Budgets
Nature's Generator - Gold System 1800W Solar & Wind Powered

This device from Nature’s Generator provides enough power for a long camping trip, or can even work as an emergency generator at home. It connects to 100 watt solar panels with high-quality polycrystalline cells, and has an 1800 watt sine wave inverter. This produces an output of 720 watt hours. If you need extra power, you can use the back panel to connect to a 600 volt or 175 amp expansion.

The generator connects to the solar panel using a 50 foot cord. Both the generator and the solar panels have wheels for easy connectivity. The generator has 3 120 volt AC outlets, 1 DC outlet, and 2 USB outlets, so it connects to many different types of devices. The solar input jack can connect to any type of solar panel, and there is also a wind input jack to connect to other power sources. An LCD screen conveniently indicates the battery life, output level, and more.

Specifications

Voltage:
120 volt AC
Wattage:
1800 watts
Output:
720 Wh
Power Source:
Solar

Pros

  • The generator and solar panel both have wheels for easy portability.
  • With USB, AC, and DC ports, this generator can support many different types of power.
  • The LCD screen makes it easy to monitor the battery life of your generator.
  • This generator also has an expansion port, which you can use to connect it to other power sources.

Cons

  • This generator does not have as many power outlets as some other models of a similar size.

Portable Solar Generator Buying Guide

Types

There are a few different types of portable solar generators available to choose from. Before purchasing a solar generator, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the different types that are available and the benefits that they offer. 

Portable Solar Generator

A portable solar power unit  is small, compact, and easy to move around. It will fit comfortably in a car and is ideal for those who travel frequently. 

They are a particularly great option for camping trips where you don’t have access to other power sources. Portable generators cannot store as much energy as larger stationary generators, but are easier to move and recharge. 

Standby Solar Generator

A standby solar generator is larger than a portable generator and generally has a larger energy capacity and run time. Standby solar generators are excellent to keep at home in case of a power outage, particularly if you live in an area that frequently sees sunny days. 

Standby solar generators may be more difficult to move than a smaller portable generator, and they may also require more storage space. 

Uses

There are a few different ways that you can use a portable solar generator. Whether you’re traveling or want extra power at home, a solar generator is a great way to do it while being conscious of the environment. Here are a few of the ways you can use a solar generator. 

Solar Generator For Home

Having a solar generator at home is a great backup power option, and can help you make the transition to clean power. If you live in a sunny area, you can use your solar generator to charge your smaller electronic devices and reduce your reliable on other types of power. Using a solar generator can help you reduce your electric bill and minimize strain on the electrical grid as well. Having a solar generator at home is also very helpful in the unlikely event of an emergency. 

Solar Generator For Camping

It’s also very helpful to have a solar generator for camping. If you frequently camp, you know how frustrating it can be when you don’t have accessible power sources. You can easily charge your solar generator during the day and use it to power your light sources and other electronics at night. 

When choosing a solar generator for camping trips, you’ll want to make sure that it is compact enough to move around easily and that it can fit in your vehicle safely. We’ve compiled a guide on best generators for RV, which will give you generator options running on different fuels. 

Emergency Solar Generator

You’ll always want to make sure you have a backup source of power in an emergency. Solar backup generators are great emergency generators for those that live in warm areas, because all you need is some sunshine to get the generator working. 

When choosing an emergency solar generator, focus on how much power the generator can store as well as how durable it is. An emergency generator needs to be extremely reliable. 

Portable Solar Generator Kit

For the technologically inclined, consider getting a portable solar generator kit. These kits allow you to build your own system wherever you need solar power. With a kit, you can customize the number and configuration of solar panels, so you can create a generator that suits your needs. 

Keep in mind that generator kits do require time and effort to assemble, so they are best for people who already have experience with generators and building their own electronics. 

Power

The amount of power your solar generator has is another key factor to consider when shopping. When deciding how much power you’ll need for a battery powered generator, think about what appliances are most important for you and how much power they require. 

1500 Watt Solar Generator

A 1500 watt solar generator is a great option for powering smaller appliances. It’s a particularly good option for camping or any other travel-related electricity needs. 

1500 watt solar generators are small and portable, but are still powerful enough for light use electronics like a refrigerator, television, lamp, and other small electric appliances. 

5000 Watt Solar Generator

If you are planning on using your solar generator to power your entire house in an emergency, you may want to consider a larger 5000 watt generator. 

While these generators are much larger and may be more difficult to carry around, they have enough power to run several small appliances at once. They can also power larger appliances that may be too much for a 1500 watt generator. 

Noise Level

One of the most frustrating things about using a generator is the noise. Powerful generators can be very loud, making it difficult to have a conversation when you’re nearby. Luckily, solar generators are much quieter than other types of generators, which makes them much more pleasant to use. This is particularly true for a humless solar generator, which is designed to reduce or eliminate noise coming from the inverter. 

If you’re curious about how loud your generator will be, look at how many decibels it produces. For reference, a normal conversation is about 60 decibels, while a rock concert is about 120 decibels. 

Size

Another factor to consider when selecting a solar generator is the size. You’ll want to make sure that you can easily carry the generator with you while traveling. You’ll also want to make sure that your generator can comfortably fit into a car or a storage area. 

A small solar generator won’t have as much power, but it will be much more portable and easier to move around than its larger counterparts. Consider the generator’s dimensions as well as its weight – sometimes small generators are still very heavy. 

Display

Some solar generators have LCD displays that indicate important information about the generator. Not every generator has a display, but they are a handy feature to look for. They typically will indicate the battery life, output, run time, and other relevant information about the generator. Some generators will also connect remotely to your smartphone, which you can then use to control the generator from afar.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can a Solar Generator Power a House?
A:

Some solar generators can power a house, and are a good backup option to have in an emergency. For a solar generator to power your entire house, it will need to have at least 10,000 watts.

You may also want to consider getting multiple solar generators that you can attach together to boost the total power output. If you live in an area that gets a lot of sun, having solar generators on hand can be very helpful in an emergency.

Q: Are Solar Generators Loud?
A:

While solar generators do make some noise, they are not as noisy as electric generators or other types of generators. Solar generators sometimes make a slight humming noise or buzzing noise, although there are some models that are practically silent.

Many people prefer solar generators for group camping trips, because they won’t interrupt your conversations or disturb people around you.

Our Verdict

A portable solar generator is an easy way to keep your electronics running on a camping trip or in the event of a power outage. If you live in an area that gets a lot of sun, you can even use a portable solar generator to power your smaller devices on a regular basis. 

This is a great way to reduce your reliance on traditional energy sources. Solar generators are also very eco-friendly, because they rely entirely on the sun’s natural rays and don’t emit any pollutants. When choosing a portable solar generator, it’s important to select a model that fits your needs in terms of size and energy level. With so many solar generators on the market today, you’ll be able to find a model that suits your needs.