Best Solar Panels for Camping: Dependable Power On The Go!
When in the campsite, you will need to have dependable power supply for a lot of things, such as music for your entertainment, lights for safety, and charging your gadgets, among other things. With this, it is a good thing that there are portable power supply products that are available in the market today, which you can conveniently bring anywhere you go. Among others, the best solar panels for camping can prove to be promising.
Portable solar panels for camping are lightweight and compact, making it effortless to carry. They can be recharged through maximizing the power of the sun. While there are many products available, however, this does not mean that you can choose just any product. With this, the rest of this guide will provide you with valuable insights, making it possible to reach a well-informed decision.
How It Works
Before anything else, let us first have a look at how solar panels work. They are equipped with photovoltaic cells. They are the ones that you see at the surface of the panel. These cells will capture energy coming from the sun. They will be stored and converted into electricity. There is a battery that holds the charge until it is ready to be dispersed. Depending on the size and capacity, it can provide the electricity that you need in the campsite.
There are many good reasons why you should consider investing in the best camping solar panels. Unlike generators, they are more portable. It is also a great thing that they are quiet and eco-friendly, basically because there are no emissions. However, if there is one problem, it would be the fact that there is a need to make sure that the sun shines. Otherwise, it will not produce the electricity that you need.
Essential Factors to Consider
If you are looking for the best solar panels for camping, the following are some of the things that will have an impact on the decision you will make:
- Technical Specifications: The first thing that you have to do is to consider the technical details of the product. In this case, the following are some of the most important things to consider:
- Voltage: This is in reference to the measurement of electrical current.
- Wattage: This is the current that passes through the solar panels. If you only need the panels for charging your gadgets, such as camera and mobile phones, four to five watts will be enough. Industrial-grade options, on the other hand, can have as high as 25 watts.
- Amperage: This refers to the strength of the electrical power.
- Portability: It is critical to look at the size and weight of the solar panels. As much as possible, it should be lightweight and compact, which means that bringing it in the campsite will be easy. However, keep in mind that a smaller size would mean lesser capacity.
- Size: It is also important to first consider what gadgets will be charged or used. With this, you can easily determine the right size of the panels. The larger it is, the more power it has. If you intend to use it for cooking or for running power-heavy appliances, you might need a big one.
- Reviews: If you are clueless about which to purchase, you can always rely on the reviews of other people. Just go online, and for sure, you will find a lot of people sharing their insights and experiences. This will make it easier for you to narrow down the possibilities.
- Warranty: This is an important factor to look at if you want to have peace of mind. It is an assurance that the product is built with high standards in mind. Within the warranty period, if it experiences any defects, you can bring it back to the manufacturer and they will repair it for free or issue a replacement.
Top Picks for the Best Solar Panels for Camping
If you cannot decide which solar panel is the best, in this section, we will have a look at five of the best products you might want to consider.
This is one of the top options that should be included in your list. While charging can be quite slow, it does not fail to deliver impressive features. One thing that we loved is the presence of four hooks on the side, making it easy to hang in a place where it gets the most from the sun.
There are two USB charging ports and cables that are already included in the package. This also means that you will be able to charge two devices simultaneously.
The iSmart technology that is integrated in the product is also an impressive feature. With the latter, it won’t take long before it can power up the devices that are charged. Again, while it charges your gadgets quickly, you might have to be patient in waiting for the panels itself to be charged.
- High power efficiency
- Foldable design for better portability
- Comes with metal hooks for easy hanging
- No charge indicator
- Takes quite a long time to charge
Anker is a reliable brand, which is why choosing this this product can provide you with peace of mind. Among others, one of its best features is the Fast Charging Technology, which means that you do not have to wait for a long time before the heat of the sun can be converted into electricity.
The durable construction of the panel is one more thing that makes it impressive. The face is made from PET polymer, which can withstand the test of time. It is also weather-resistant, making it great for the outdoors.
Lastly, it has a compact size. With dimensions of only 11 x 6.3 inches. There is also an elastic loop on the side, which makes it convenient to carry.
- Affordable price
- Durable construction
- Batteries can easily erode
- Output is lower than advertised
This 10-watt solar panel can deliver high efficiency, making it the perfect companion in the campsite. It provides the power that you need in a small package, although there are some users who noted that it is quite heavier compared to most of its competitors.
It has dual USB charging ports. With the latter, it simply means that you have the option to directly plug mobile devices that you will have to charge.
As a bonus, it is also a good thing that it comes with a USB charging battery back, which has 3,000 mAh. For this reason, it can provide excellent value for money since you will be getting more with every purchase.
- Comes with an affordable price
- Efficient conversion of solar energy
- A bit heavy compared to most of its competitors
- Not as long-lasting as others
Although this product can have a steep price, this should not be a reason for you to be discouraged in choosing it above others. The rugged construction is perhaps one of the reasons why it is expensive, providing you with the guarantee that it will last for a long time.
With a weight of only 1.2 pounds, you will also be happy to know that it is lightweight and compact. Bringing this in the campsite should not be a burden on your end as it won’t add significant weight in your camping gear.
It is also worth mentioning that it can provide the best bang for the buck. One of the reasons for the latter is the fact that it already has rechargeable batteries included. The best thing is the inclusion of a LED light that can run for more than 150 hours in one full charge.
- Can be left outside even when raining
- Charges gadgets directly
- Uses low energy when charging
- Can be slow when charging two gadgets
- Quite expensive
The versatility of this product is one good reason to consider choosing it. Aside from being useful in charging your gadgets, you might also love how it comes with charger for your car. There is even a charging clamp that is already included in the package.
Another thing that is impressive in this product is the TIR-C technology. The latter is an innovative feature, which has the ability to immediately determine the current of the gadget that is plugged.
Lastly, it is designed in the shape of a bag. It is also lightweight, making it portable. Bringing it in the campsite will surely be hassle-free.
- Built-in pouch to secure your gadget
- Output is true as advertised
- Excellent customer service
- Expensive price
- May lack durability
The best solar panels for camping are essential for outdoor enthusiasts. It provides the power that you need even when outdoors. With too many options, however, which one should you pick? From the five products, one that I can personally recommend is RAVPower 16W Solar Panel with Dual USB Port. It is compact, portable, and charges gadgets quickly, although charging the panels may take quite a while.