You booked a last-minute camping trip and didn’t check to see whether your site had any electrical points. Now, you have no phone chargers, no electrical kettle making hot coffee, and you’re off to bed when the sun goes down and the fire fades away.
If only you had a system set up for portable solar power.
There’d be no need for plugs or noisy and smelly diesel generators. There’d just be a beautiful sunny day that allows you to shed light on your evenings!
There is a lot to be said about being able to generate solar power. Let’s take a look at the setup and whether portable solar power is right for you.
How Does Solar Power Work?
Everyone wants to be able to charge their phones and various appliances on a camping trip. Having a solar power set up gives you the ability to generate power wherever you set up camp.
To generate power, you will need:
- Solar panels
- Charge controls
- An inverter
The panels are made up of silicon solar cells and contain both positive and negative layers. This creates an electric field.
When the sun hits the panels, this creates an electrical current. This is DC power, but appliances require AC power, so the inverter turns the DC to AC.
Portable Solar Power vs. Mounted Solar Power
There are two main options to consider when looking into solar power—roof mounted or portable. Both have their pros and cons and which is your best option depends on your travel habits.
Portable solar power setups are great if you only require small amounts of power. This might be when you want to charge a few basics or have a backup in an electrical campsite.
Portable solar power is easy to transport and doesn’t limit how you park. It is also a great way to test out solar power if you are looking at going off-grid on a larger scale.
Solar generators are nice and compact and don’t have the noise and smell of traditional generators. If you would like to go that route, take a look at the Jackery 1000 review.
Mounted solar takes a slightly different approach to setting up your solar power. In that sort of setup, your panels mount onto your vehicle and are not movable.
This is great if you want to charge batteries on the go or charge without the risk of theft or damage. The downside of this is it lacks the compact mobility of the portable panels.
If you are wanting to move to a cabin in the woods and live off-grid, then this is the setup for you. However, as a “weekend warrior”, portable solar is the perfect option.
Shine Some Light
If you are planning some weekend camping trips, then portable solar power is a great option for you. It is convenient, simple, and great for camping or RV trips.
If you are still unsure, have a look around the rest of our site for more guides and tips.