There is no denying that we are increasingly dependent on our electronic devices. We are used to being always connected. However, the batteries of our mobile phones, tablets, or laptops are only enough for a few hours of continuous use, and in the middle of nature, there is no electric current to recharge them.
Fortunately, nature itself has some of the best sources of energy. This is the case of solar energy, thanks to which, and as long as you have a solar battery, you will be able to charge your electronic devices wherever you are. Doesn’t sound bad at all. Now you need to choose the right one. Please keep reading, and we help you do it.
Solar Power Banks
- The main application of solar power banks is to charge electronic devices, such as mobile phones, tablets, or laptops, for more or less prolonged periods, either when you get lost in nature or when you take an incredibly long trip.
- In general, solar charging is only recommended when there is no electric current access since charging from the electricity grid is much faster and more efficient.
- When buying a solar portable battery, the essential purchase criteria are its charging capacity, weight and dimensions, charging speed, and connections.
The best solar power banks
Next, we present the classification that we have prepared with the five best solar power banks currently available on the market. We have designed it including batteries that we consider to offer the best value for money. Of course, we have only chosen well-known brands.
- KEDRON S1R069
- POWERADD Apollo 2
- Gnceei Adwsad
- Innoo Tech TB788
Solar portable battery with 24,000 mAh (milliamp hour) of charging capacity and compatible with all USB devices. It has three 2.4 A (amp) USB ports, allowing it to charge up to four devices simultaneously, taking advantage of its wireless charging system. Of course, it does not support upload and download at the same time.
It has a practical screen that indicates the percentage of loading and unloading. Its dimensions are 165 x 85 x 2 mm, and its weight is 360 g. It comes in an excellent design that combines black and red. Besides, it is specially designed to offer high protection levels to avoid damaging the devices during charging.
POWERADD Apollo 2
Portable solar battery with 12,000 mAh capacity and IPX3 protection against dust and water. Besides, it is covered by a protective plastic to protect it against accidental bumps or falls. Its input is 5 V (volts) and 2 A, while the output is 5 V and 2.4 A. It has two USB ports, allowing it to charge two devices at the same time.
It is also possible to charge it by connecting it to the electrical current. It comes with a practical hook so that you can hang it from your backpack and load it while you move through the field. It has several flashlight modes and an SOS function. It also incorporates a practical lighter. Without a doubt, an ideal piece of equipment to include in a survival kit.
A portable solar battery with four solar panels for faster-charging speed is up to 75% faster. It has a capacity of 20,000 mAh. Also, it allows charging through electric current, either with a plug or with the DC port of a car. Besides, its 2.4 A USB ports are protected to protect them from water.
It is a waterproof and shock-resistant device, so it is ideal for taking it to nature. Its dimensions are 155 x 80 x 25 mm, and its weight is only 380 grams. It has two USB ports, so it allows you to charge two devices at the same time. Also, it has a flashlight and indicator lights of the charge level.
Portable external solar battery with 24,000 mAh of total charging capacity and with the possibility of recharging through the electrical network or the solar panel that it incorporates. In the former case, it can be fully charged in about 11 hours via the 2.4A adapter.
It has input through USB-C, Lighting, and Micro-USB port. Besides, it has four 2.4A USB outputs so that you can charge up to four devices simultaneously. Of course, it does not support simultaneous upload and download. It comes with a practical LED flashlight. And it is built with high-efficiency solar panels.
Innoo Tech TB788
Portable solar battery with 20,000 mAh charging capacity and IP65 protection, making it waterproof, shockproof, and dust resistant. It has two USB ports with 2A and 5V charging and one USB Type C port with 3A and 5V charging. It can charge two mobile phones at the same time. It weighs 499 g, and its dimensions are 18.5 x 13 x 3 cm.
It integrates highly efficient Sunpower photovoltaic cells, although charging through the electrical grid is much faster. It has four LED lights to indicate the charge level and an LED flashlight. The manufacturer offers the possibility of returning the battery within 30 days, so you can test it and return it if you are not satisfied.
Solar Power Bank Shopping Guide
What you should know about solar power banks?
If you are considering acquiring a solar power bank, you must consider a series of crucial questions. After all, there are different models of solar batteries, and not all offer the same benefits. For this reason, in this section, we propose to clarify the main questions you may have.
What exactly are solar power banks?
The banks power solar are the small solar external battery that can charge other electronic devices without connecting to a power source and have solar panels that allow them to be recharged from solar energy. Anyway, practically all combine the electric charge with the solar charge.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of solar power banks?
Having a solar portable battery offers many advantages. Still, without a doubt, the most important is that with them, you can charge your electronic devices without the need for an electrical current connection. In this way, they can be used in full nature. You can know these and other advantages and disadvantages by consulting the following table.
- They allow you to charge your devices without connecting them to the electrical network
- They allow you to charge your mobile in nature
- They are portable and take up little space
- They are straightforward to use
- Can be charged directly to the mains
- They require many hours of sun exposure to achieve a full charge
- For whom is it advisable to buy a solar power bank?
Solar portable batteries are especially recommended for nature lovers, especially if you spend long periods in areas without access to electricity. In this way, you can continue to have your electronic devices, with the many advantages that this implies.
In what situations may you need a solar power bank?
Solar portable batteries are handy if you are going to spend several days in the countryside if you are going to a music festival and are staying in a tent or making a long trip by train, plane or bus and this one is not. It has power outlets or USB connections to charge your devices.
What are the solar panels of solar power banks?
Portable solar batteries are made up of one or more solar panels that, in turn, are made up of small photoelectric cells. These cells can be made of high-quality monocrystalline or polycrystalline silicon, although the latter tends to worsen. In the following table, you can see the differences between one and the other.
|When they offer better results?||They are more recommended for cloudy days in which solar radiation is lower||They allow us to obtain better results on sunny days.|
|Fabrication process||Its manufacture has a high energy cost and is slower.||Its manufacture is cheaper and faster.|
|Efficiency||They are slightly more efficient.||They are less efficient than monocrystalline ones.|
|Price||Its price is higher.||Its price is lower.|
How is it better to charge the solar power bank?
In general, it is advisable to charge solar batteries through the connection to the electricity grid since solar charging is much slower. Most manufacturers recommend using solar charging only when there is no access to electrical current. This is a consequence of the small size of the solar panels of these devices.
What is the difference between a solar power bank and a solar charger?
Both solar power banks and solar chargers allow you to charge your devices wherever you are. In this sense, they have a similar function. However, the former are portable batteries to store the energy they obtain from solar radiation or the electricity grid. On the other hand, solar chargers do not have an internal battery and, therefore, their only function is to directly transfer the energy they obtain from the sun from the solar panels to the device you are charging. Thus, it seems clear that solar power banks offer greater flexibility.
Solar Power Bank Purchase Criteria
When it comes time to purchase a solar power bank, you must consider a series of purchase criteria. To make the selection process more bearable, we have selected those that, in our opinion, is the most important. Thus, you can have a complete buying guide that can help you adjust the value for money as much as possible.
- Dimensions and weight
- Loading capacity
- The speed at which it loads
- Battery charging time
- Number of connections
Dimensions and weight
Size and weight are fundamental criteria when choosing a portable battery since you will have to carry them with you in your suitcase or your travel backpack. And even more so if you are going to do long excursions in the field or the mountains, in which case you will have to carry them and the rest of the equipment for hours.
However, do not forget that more weight implies more load capacity, so, ultimately, you will have to choose based on what your main priority is: load capacity or light and comfortable battery to carry. However, solar batteries are not usually hefty, as they rarely exceed five hundred grams.
The charge of a battery is measured in milliamp-hours (mAh). Today, you can find models with charging capacities that can reach 50,000 mAh. Keep in mind that a mobile battery does not usually exceed 5,000 mAh, and that of a tablet usually oscillates between 8,000 mAh and 12,000 mAh. In the following table, you have some examples:
|1||iPhone Xs Max 3,174 mAh.||3,174 mAh.|
|2||iPhone X 2,716 mAh.||2,716 mAh.|
|3||Samsung Galaxy S10||3,400 mAh.|
|4||Honor 9 Lite||3,000 mAh.|
|5||iPad Air 2||8,600 mAh.|
|6||Microsoft Surface Pro 3 i5||5,547 mAh.|
The speed at which it loads
To know how fast an external battery will charge, you must look at its output voltage and amperage. The voltage should be similar to the original charger of the device you will charge; otherwise, it may be damaged. In the case of cell phones, it is usually 5 volts (V).
Thus, ultimately the determining factor is going to be the output amperage. The higher it is, the faster the battery of the mobile, tablet, or laptop you want to charge will charge. In general, you will find portable solar batteries with output amperages between 2 and 3 A in most cases.
Battery charging time
You must consider the charging time of the battery itself, either in the case of charging from the electrical network or in the case of charging taking advantage of solar radiation. The latter requires much longer, often more than 24 hours of direct exposure. The charging time through the network depends on its charging capacity and its input amperage.
Solar portable batteries are electronic devices that you usually take with you on your field trips or trips. Therefore, they will be exposed to the possibility of being hit, falling, or experiencing unwanted accidents. Therefore, if you do not want your life to be concise, you should choose one with good resistance.
In the same way, it must be waterproof, lest an unexpected rain ends up damaging it. And also resistant to dust and fine particles. Of course, keep in mind that the fact that it is waterproof does not make it submersible. Lastly, make sure it is made of quality materials.
Number of connections
Another aspect that you should consider is the number of connections that the solar battery has. It will depend on how many devices you can charge at the same time. Similarly, you must check what type of these connections are. You can find USB connections (of different types), micro USB, or DC, among others.
With a portable solar battery, you can charge your devices without the need for an electrical current. Therefore, they are an essential accessory for nature lovers and for people who travel very frequently. With solar power banks, you can charge your mobile phones, tablets, and even laptops.
Most can also be recharged by connecting them to the electrical current and having a large charging capacity. In short, they are convenient and very versatile equipment. Of course, choosing the right one is not always an easy task since you have to consider a series of factors such as its capacity, its loading speed, or the number of connections.