Expert Buying Guide on Portable Solar Chargers
If you spend a lot of time in the outdoors, a solar charger is an essential accessory since there are no handy power outlets in the wild to keep your gadgets powered up. These chargers use solar panels to generate energy from sunlight in order to recharge the internal batteries of devices. However, choosing the best battery charger that provides you with the power you need can be challenging. Here are some of the considerations to find the best portable solar charger:
The wattage of the charger
The amount of electricity a solar panel generates is measured in watts. The more power-hungry the device you are charging, the more wattage that you need. While a five watt panel enables you to charge most small devices such as mp3 players and basic cell phones, you will need at least seven watts for smartphones and fifteen watts for tablets.
The charger should have USB ports that can accommodate most 5V smart devices, to ensure that it would work with your particular gadgets.
The type of internal battery it uses
The most commonly used are nickel-cadmium and nickel-metal hydride, although Lithium-ion batteries have become popular recently since they are lighter and hold charges longer.
Most Reliable Portable Solar Chargers in 2018
Now that you know what to look for, here are our recommendations for the best portable solar charger. These chargers combine affordability with the feature set that you need to keep your devices charged when you’re in the outdoors. Look them over and we’re sure you’ll find one that suits your needs.
This powerful solar bank can be charged using sunlight or from a wall outlet, providing it with flexibility of use since you can take it with you on camping trips to charge your devices or use it for an emergency charge where there is no handy wall socket. It can handle a variety of power-hungry gadgets, including iPhones, iPads, iPods, as well as digital cameras and even Samsung and Blackberry devices. Charging is done by just touching the LED indictor to turn it on or off. To ensure that your battery life is protected, there is also an over-charge protection function. However, it is not intended as a primary charger, but only for emergency topping-up of the charge of your devices.
The charger comes with a USB cable and four adapters to ensure that it can handle virtually any device. It is highly portable since it weighs less than thirteen ounces and measures just 4.7-inches by 0.9-inch by three inches. It also has a handy mini night-light feature for when you’re camping.
This solar charger offers a combination of portability and high power to ensure that your devices are always charged while you’re out camping or hiking outdoors. It uses high-efficiency Sunflower cells that convert between 22% and 25% of sunlight into energy, substantially higher than the average 15% efficiency of comparable rival panels. The proprietary iSolar technology allows the charger to adjust the voltage and current output to ensure it delivers up to 2.4A of current quickly when under direct sunlight. The charger generates enough power to charge both an iPad and a cellphone simultaneously, and it has dual USB ports that can accommodate a variety of smart devices with 5v USB output.
It also boasts of high portability as it is one-third lighter than comparable solar panels, while eyeholes in the frame make it easy to attach to backpacks. The kit includes four hooks as well as a micro USB cable. It weighs less than 22 oz and measures 12-inch by 7.2-inch by 0.51-inch when folded and 23-inch by 12-inch by 0.12-inch when opened.
When you’re on the go, you can’t be bothered to plug in your devices to charge them. The Apollo 3 offers the ideal solution to this problem, as when it is fully charged, you can get an empty-to-full charge for an iPad and three charges for an iPhone, as well as close to two charges for other large capacity smartphones. All you have to do is charge the powerbank from your computer or a wall socket and when it’s fully charged, you’re ready to go.
It has a USB output port that allows it to accommodate any 5V USB charging device; and you can charge up to two devices simultaneously. The charger also features built-in Li-ion Polymer solar cells that can be used for emergency charging, but not as a primary charging source.
The kit includes a micro USB cable as well as connecting tips. It weighs just 5.6 oz and its compact design means that it will fit easily into your backpack or any bag. Its dimensions are 5.5-inches by 3-inches by 0.64-inches.