Even the largest power banks eventually run out of energy. This can leave you powerless (literally) and stranded until you can reconnect to the mains.
Unless, of course, you invest in one of the many portable power sources, like a solar charger. Solar chargers, which draw power from the sun’s rays, are convenient to plug into a power outlet.
While we haven’t yet reached the point where solar to electric conversion efficiency is high enough to eliminate the need for power grids, these handy solar chargers should keep you going through those dreaded “critical battery level” times so you can go back to more important activities.
Suppose you’re an avid camper or someone who’s trying to decrease their environmental footprint, then no worries. You’ve come to the right place.
Keep on reading for our full breakdown of one of the highlights of renewable energy sources that are portable in nature. Welcome to the solar age.
Solar Portable Power Sources 101: How Do They Work?
Portable solar chargers are essentially power banks on wheels. They are powered by lithium-ion batteries that store and distribute energy. The gadget also has a micro USB port hub. Depending on your power bank, this hub may contain one or two USB ports, including a USB C port. These ports may be used to charge your power bank as well as connect it to charging devices.
The addition of a built-in solar panel distinguishes a solar charger power bank from a standard power bank. The device’s battery is linked to this solar panel. The panel generates energy and stores it in the batteries when exposed to sunlight.
A portable solar power bank can provide you with an extra charging option. It will charge itself just by being exposed to sunshine. It’s beneficial to have a self-sustaining power outlet.
You won’t have to worry about your power bank running out of juice while you’re on the move. Water-resistant casings are included with some of the finest solar two USB ports. They can charge two gadgets at once and withstand a lot of wear and tear.
The Unique Perks of Solar Power Banks
The capacity to store energy and the time it takes to charge a power bank are the two factors that define its quality. One of the best things about solar power banks is that they don’t have to choose between these two aspects.
Solar charging will, of course, take longer than regular charging through a micro USB connection. However, this isn’t a disadvantage because you can always charge your power bank via its USB output connection.
The amount of charge and charging time that a power bank can store are determined by its battery capacity. More cells are found in larger power banks. This enables them to keep a tremendous amount of energy at one time. However, this implies that they take longer to charge fully.
When all factors are considered, solar charging power banks are unquestionably superior to traditional power banks. They do so because they improve on an existing design.
So, if you’re on the market for a new power bank that’s environmentally friendly, one that also packs a punch, then look no further than the Jackery Explorer 1000.
The Features You Want in a Solar Power Bank
A simple online search will net you many different solar power banks that all look kind of similar. So, how to pick the right one for your needs?
Well, let’s explore the key features you’ll want to keep in mind when you’re shopping.
The Panel Size
The panels on most portable solar chargers are tiny, about two watts or less. Thus, they serve as a sluggish, emergency charging method, with the battery doing most of the job.
Suppose you expect to be away from an electric outlet for an extended period and will be relying more heavily on the solar component of the device. In that case, you should choose a more extensive solar panel. If this is the case, a folding panel charger, which is still relatively small, may be a better choice.
Wireless charging, lighting, and carry handles are all standard features of chargers.
Consider a waterproof or shockproof charger if you intend hiking, kayaking or rafting, mountain biking, or other active activities.
Consider how many gadgets you’ll be carrying with you that will need to be charged, as well as how frequently you’ll be away from an outlet.
If you’re simply going sightseeing and need to keep your phone charged, a battery with a capacity of less than 10,000 mAh should suffice. If you’ll be away from the grid for many days and need to charge numerous gadgets, choose a battery with a capacity of 25,000 mAh or more.
Charge Speeds: The Average Time It Takes to Charge a Solar Power Bank
The amount of time it takes for a solar power bank to charge is determined by its battery capacity, solar panel quality, and charging technique.
You may use solar energy or USB ports to charge most solar power banks. If you use USB ports, they will charge at a standard rate. Solar charging, on the other hand, may take a long time.
According to a preliminary estimate, a solar battery bank can charge 500mAh in 1 hour if kept in direct sunshine. Please keep in mind that this number is based on a very speculative estimate.
Ready to Make the Switch to Green?
Not only are the new portable power sources showing up on the market better for the environment, but they’re also better performing than their predecessors.
We hope that our guide has shed some light on the different portable solar power options that you now have on the market. A simple online search and a look at the specs will help you pick the perfect portable charger for your needs.
And, if you’ve enjoyed reading our article, then you’ll love checking out our additional tips and tricks. All of those (and more) will be available to you in our technology and energy sections.