Portable solar panels have taken the solar industry by storm in recent years. Their eco-friendly and cost efficiency properties have been the reason behind their popularity. But with a variety of options out there, what are the best portable solar panels for you?
With portable panels, you recharge your RV batteries or benefit from electricity when dry camping. So, you don't have to worry when there's a power blackout; the panels can be a great backup solution.
Their easy installation, ease of use, and flexibility make them a good choice to complement your existing installation. On the other hand, travelers can easily charge their electronics such as phones, tablets and laptops.
Either for home use or outdoor activities, solar panel systems will suffice and are worth the hype. You don't need to access power from the electrical grid.
Our review will take a closer look at the best portable solar kits in the market. In the end, it will be easy to pick the one that can meet your power needs.
Without further ado, let's begin!
Table of Contents
- 1 The 7 Best Portable Solar Panels Reviewed
- 1.1 1. Go Power! GP-PSK-130 130W Portable Folding Solar Kit
- 1.2 2. TwelSeavan Portable Solar Panel Charger
- 1.3 3. Renogy 200 Watt 12V Foldable Solar Panel
- 1.4 4. HQST 100 Watt 12 Volt Polycrystalline Solar Panel
- 1.5 5. Goal Zero Boulder 100 Briefcase
- 1.6 6. SUAOKI Solar Charger 60W Portable Solar Panel
- 1.7 7. Rockpals SP003 100W Foldable Solar Panel
- 2 Best Portable Solar Panels FAQ:
- 2.1 How to Hook Up Portable Solar Panels?
- 2.2 How Do Portable Solar Panels Work?
- 2.3 What to Look for in Portable Solar Panels?
- 3 Final Verdict
The 7 Best Portable Solar Panels Reviewed
1. Go Power! GP-PSK-130 130W Portable Folding Solar Kit
For those who travel in campervans and RVs, GO Power is another solution to keep you connected with the outside world. This portable solar kit features an impressive energy output. Its high efficiency when it comes to converting solar to energy is another sumptuous thing to love about.
With the presence of the sun, campers or owners will enjoy around 130 watts per hour. That's equal to power your need to power up your appliances, including small fridges, coffee makers, air fryer, together with electronics like smartphones and laptops hassle-free.
Made of durable materials, the kit assures a long lifespan. On the same, it requires little maintenance. Wiping it up with a towel is enough to keep it clean. Do it at least 4 times per year, and your device will deliver the best services ever.
Most importantly, the kit is foldable and clocks only 29 lbs., this makes it easier to carry everywhere your need. Also, the setup is easy and quick; the process is will run in just minutes. Remember that it doesn't require permanent placement. You can make use of it by hooking it up on your car, ATV or boat.
While it's equipped with a solid nylon bag, you can just fold it for easy storage and transportation. Basically, installing this system is cheap, yet it will minimize your power monthly bills.
- Foldable for easy storage and transportation
- Easy setup
- Made of durable materials
- Budget-friendly option
- Impressive energy output
- Solar controller can be defective.
2. TwelSeavan Portable Solar Panel Charger
Another portable solar panels for electric cars is TwelSeavan. First off, it owes a high conversion efficiency. Constructed with monocrystalline solar cells, these solar kits spikes up to 23 percent efficiency while converting electricity into usable energy, offering optimal performance than ordinary solar kits.
Besides, it's highly compatible with nearly all solar generators available out there. 10 DC connectors and an 8mm DC adapter are included to improve. The 4 port smart charging technology allows the user to charge multiple devices at once while it owes fast charging. Connect your tablets, smartphones, cameras and power banks at once.
Notably, the solar kit comes with solid construction. Made from PET polymer, the surface becomes weather resistant, hence ideal for outdoor activity. You don't have to panic because of snow, wind or heavy rain while camping, picnicking and hiking.
Thanks to portability properties. The kit has a compact size and only weighs 9.5 lbs, making it easier to carry around with you. The fact that it's foldable further simplifies its storage. With a rubber handle, it's easy to carry anywhere or everywhere. Finally, it's easy to install and mount.
- Multiple and fast charging
- High durability
- Compact size for portability
- Easy to install
- Wide applications; hiking, camping, home use
- High efficiency and compatibility
- Pricey than some products
3. Renogy 200 Watt 12V Foldable Solar Panel
Renogy is a popular brand in the solar industry. From generators to solar panels to inverters, the company comes with a more upgraded solar panel that strikes 200 watts and 12 volts. This is sufficient power to deliver electricity in any residential or commercial places.
For easy installation, the alligator clips are included. Well, you can set up this system in no time. Even beginners will find it easy. The kickstands help you to mount it without using more effort and time.
Featuring a corrosion-resistant aluminum stand, which is adjustable, allows you to mount it with comfort and at any angle. Along with that, the handle is sturdy and latches for longevity. Plus the 100W waterproof controller, the system has everything in control.
Moreover, it's equipped with a protective casing, which is compatible with sealed, gel and flooded batteries. I would recommend this product as the best solar powered solar panel.
- Excellent performance even under low sunlight
- Quick and easy installation
- Protective casing
- Durable construction
- A 100W waterproof controller
- It's slightly heavy than others we've reviewed
4. HQST 100 Watt 12 Volt Polycrystalline Solar Panel
HQST is among the reputable companies that provide remarkable off-grid solutions. From starter and premium kits to marine solar panels, you'll get all of them here. Featuring polycrystalline solar panels, the kit offers 100 watts solution.
It comes with a stylish carrying case that boosts its portability nature in the solar market. This model is equipped with 36 solar cells that assure 22 voltage output from an open circuit compared to others. Also, there's a PWM included in the package and has a 20Amp output. 10 feet of wiring and charge controller are also included.
This charge controller has 3 stages of charge, overvoltage protection and 2 hours to charge completely. Unlike others, this device comes with a unique temperature sensor that ensures your battery bank is accurately charged.
Additionally, the kit is lightweight and compact. You can carry it with you anywhere, whether camping or hiking; it's easy to hook it up in your campervan or RV and charge your electronics as well as appliances. I recommend this product because of its reliability.
- Reliable and dependable
- Has a durable aluminum casing
- A charge controller included
- High efficiency under low light environments
- Easy installation
- Some users complain about the quality of MC4 connectors
5. Goal Zero Boulder 100 Briefcase
One of the finest portable solar solutions is Goal Zero Boulder, 100 Briefcase. This module is constructed with an aluminum frame and tempered glass and reinforced corners, making it suitable for outdoor activities. So, what's special about this model?
One best feature about this solar kit is the integrated kickstand that helps the user to tilt the panel at any angle to increase solar energy production and generation across the day. You can choose to tilt it at a 45-degree angle.
As the summer season approaches, you can harvest more power effortlessly from the abundant sunlight from the sun. Its light in weight makes most campers prefer it to a solar generator. That means this module is portable to carry around. In case you want to fix the kickstand, it's removable.
The panel comes with a 100W solar output, which is highly efficient to support your power needs. Eventually, the Boulder 100 is stocked with a briefcase that helps your panels to stay safe when not in use. Also, the feature is ideal for portability.
- A kickstand ensures easier installation
- Best for outdoor situations
- 1-year warranty
- High power output
- Heavier than other models in our list
6. SUAOKI Solar Charger 60W Portable Solar Panel
SUAOKI is another workhorse that is worth the value for money. It's compatible with the battery pack, hence a top choice design for most power supply. With SUAOKI, you can build a portable solar generator to strengthen your systems. Either it's your smartphone or tablet, or laptops you want to charge, this kit will deliver the best.
Upgrade charging technology is another sophisticated feature to get in this module. This unit can generate up to 60W output while the conversation efficiency is 20 percent. Such power is enough to power up appliances, RV batteries, electronics and other gadgets.
Since the solar panel is foldable, you can carry it like a briefcase while walking around the camping sites, hiking and traveling. Apart from that, this attribute ensures easy transport. When unfolded, it has a large size so it can hang on your campervan, tent or beaches to generate electricity from sunlight.
Some useful accessories include are one 60W solar panel, connector cable for tablets and laptops, a car charger and 2 DC cables. All these help you in ensuring and easing any activity that needs power. Plus a two-year warranty, you're covered.
- Foldable for easy storage
- Useful accessories included
- Has USB ports for multiple charging
- Easy installation
- Compatible with a solar generator system
- Very long panels
7. Rockpals SP003 100W Foldable Solar Panel
Rockpals SP003 is a turning point when it comes to power solutions. Made for solar generators, this model is highly compatible with almost all solar generators. The 8mm DC Adapter for Jackery plays a vital role in making it work superbly on this.
Thankfully, it comes with a 3 USB smart charging technology. This smart IC chip is special because it intelligently identifies the devices. This maximizes and improves the charging speed. At the same time, the feature protects your gadgets from both overloadings and overcharging.
You'll like its high conversion efficiency. Stocking 23 percent when it comes to efficiency, you can enjoy a staggering amount of free energy that can meet your needs and desires. Out there, when camping, it's simple to hook up in an RV or car.
Made from sturdy Oxford cloth, this kit can withstand all weather conditions. Its surface is not only durable but also water-resistant. No rain, snow or win that can damage it whatsoever. That way, we can deduce that this mode is best for outdoor scenarios.
Finally, it has a foldable design that makes sure that this package is easy to carry, store when you travel in off-grid areas.
- Portable and foldable
- Water-resistant material
- High conversion efficiency
- Multiple USB ports for fast charging
- Compatible with solar generators
- No drawback detected so far.
Best Portable Solar Panels FAQ:
How to Hook Up Portable Solar Panels?
While there are the best portable solar panels for camping to choose from, it's important to learn how these models are hooked either in RVs, campervan or wall. We can charge multiple devices, but let's first understand how solar panels are set up correctly.
Step 1: Power Requirements
The first thing to understand before setting up a portable solar panel system is the power energy requirements. You need to decide about the size of the system you need. Simply compile a list of gadgets that you'll need to power from this solar panel system.
These are like anything from mobile phones, LED lights, coffee make, and a small table fan. Next, sum up the power consumption so as to determine the amount of power output needed.
Step 2: Solar Panels
After you've deduced the amount of power you need, now think about the type of solar and which size will fit your needs. For instance, if your power consumption for appliances is 60W, it would be a wise idea to choose a model that can offer 80W and above.
You can go with flexible panels, regular panels, portable or rugged panels when it comes to types. In our case, the portable kit is compact and lightweight, thus an excellent option.
Step 3: Charge controller and battery
You need to have a connected battery that charges during the day to provide light during the night. Apart from the size and type of solar panels, think about the best battery that can serve your scenario. Just install the battery properly and make sure it lights up for more hours.
Also, choose the best type of charge controller, the MPPT controller or PWM charge controller. MPPT is pricey but efficient, while a PWM controller is cheaper yet less efficient. To get the maximum value of your system, just go for MPPT.
Step 4: Inverter
An inverter is used to convert DC to AC. In most cases, electronics are compatible with AC power, while appliances are supported by AC. It's an advantage to have to ensure maximum utilization. Select a sine wave inverter because it has higher efficiency.
Step 5: Wiring
The final thing when setting up solar panel systems is the wiring. This is the critical part that needs more attention. You may decide to connect your module in series form or parallel form. It will depend on your preference.
How Do Portable Solar Panels Work?
Have you ever looked at solar panels? I know you've noticed the surface of these panels features small cells-these cells made of silicone. So when the sun rays strike and hit the kit's surface, direct current is generated, which is later converted into alternating current.
Portable solar panels are mostly designed to be small and compact for easy storage and transportation. However, they are best for both commercial and residential use. This module is the best option for travelers, as it's foldable and comes with both a carrying case and a kickstand for easy handling and mounting.
Like other systems, portable models should be equipped with important accessories like a charge controller, inverter, battery, and more. All those well make everything easier.
What to Look for in Portable Solar Panels?
While you may need portable solar panels to speed up your power, it's important to look for some things before deciding which model is best for you. So, which are these things that ought to impact your decision.
Solar panel efficiency is one of the decisive factors that can influence your decision. In simple words, efficiency is the conversation rate of solar energy into direct electricity. The higher the efficiency, the more the power output. Small and portable solar panels offer high efficiency of up to 23 percent. Keep in mind that efficiency is the best-selling asset and indicator.
Usage should also help you to determine the model your need. What is the intended use? What's the purpose of installing your system? For example, portable RV solar panels need to be heavy duty. The kit should be a powerhouse to charge your RV batteries, appliances and any other gadget.
When you have only a few gadgets to charge, you can opt to go for a unit with less than 80W output. For boats, you may need large solar systems that are capable of supplying more power.
With advanced technology, the solar panel industry is taking a turning point. The emergence of crystalline technologies has boosted the off-grid market. With their large market, you'll get two main modules, namely, monocrystalline and polycrystalline modules. For portable solar panel applications, you should go with monocrystalline technology due to its high efficiency. For the best portable solar panels for RV, get this unit.
Weight and Size
Of course, for a module to be portable, it must be less in weight. If you're traveling, then you need something light to enhance comfortability. The same thing would happen when you're camping and hiking. Foldable and low weight kits are the best for outdoor activities.
With our comprehensive reviews, it's our pleasure to know that now you can find the best portable solar panels for electricity. Whether you plan to travel off-grid or go dry camping, portable solar panels will give you an easier ride.
Anytime you're making a purchase, remember to check out some features like efficiency, weight and size, technology and usage. That way, you'll enjoy the benefits from day one and so on.
Our top pick is Renogy 200 Watt 12V Foldable Solar Panel. It comes with bonus features that a solar model ought to have. It's not only the portable solar panels for home but also among the best RV solar panels.