Any Known Quality Issues
There are very few quality issues with the product. Here are a few things that consumers often complain of:
- The battery used lasts for only 500 cycles, by which time it drops to 80% capacity. This is not very good compared to most deep cycle batteries that RVers are used to working with.
- There is an auto-cutoff function on the battery if the wattage used on the product is very low . This means that Jackery will automatically shut down your devices like CPAP or a mini-fridge if they dont draw enough power. This can be dangerous, especially for patients with sleep apnea.
- Not a technical problem, but Jackery does not give you the 30-day return policy if you buy it from partner channels like Amazon.
Best Portable Power Station For Camping
Typically, going for camping off-grid meant that you leave all your electrical devices behind to escape the hustle and bustle of modern-day life. However, with our newly found technological advancements, you dont have to be without electrical power just because you want the outdoor experience.
Portable power solutions have made it possible to charge various tech devices, lights, appliances such as tent heaters, and more as you chill around the camp. With this, you can check out the latest news, trail maps, weather reports, and enjoy music to get your camping party going.
The best part about this is that you wont have to worry about carrying around large and bulky gear to facilitate this. If you enjoy camping, consider the following best portable power station for camping.
What To Look For In A Power Station
Not all power stations are created equal. For example, some stations have the ability to power a microwave, while others can maybe deal with the power requirements of a desktop gaming computer. When shopping for a power station, there are some important aspects to keep in mind. In the list below, I try not to get too nerdy.
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Westinghouse Igen 160s Portable Power Station
Outdoor enthusiasts and campers will find this versatile and compact power station from Westinghouse perfect. This dependable power center can charge up to 9 different devices at the same time. Keep all of your cellphones, laptops, smart tablets, radios and even a smaller 32-inch TV charged and ready to go at a moments notice. This portable power unit can be used safely outdoors and indoors as well.
Most consumers love the handy compact design, and it is easy to move from campsite to campsite or other location as it only weighs less than 4 lbs. This power center powers up by a 155 W hr Lithium-ion battery or energy-saving solar panel. The unit has a built-in flashlight for easy use at night.
This portable power station offers up to 155 W hours on a single charge. That is enough power to charge up a smartphone about 17 times on average and will charge tablets almost 10 times. The unit can also deliver power enough to operate a Nintendo Switch, GPS Systems and Bluetooth Speakers for many hours. This is the unit to take backpacking, camping, on long drives, for weekend BBQs and everything else in-between all at a decent bargain price range.
-Watt-hours: 155 W hours with running wattage 100 W & surge to 150 W hour.
-Weight: Carry weight of 3.75 lbs.
-Recharge time: Can charge in 6 hours and up depending on the device.
-Available outlets: 120V AC outlets 5V DC USB ports 5V DC USB-C port 5V DC quick charger USB 3.0 port.
Budget Pick: Jackery Explorer 300
If your main priority is portabilityfollowed closely by plentiful power and port optionstheres no better option than the Jackery Explorer 300. Its light enough for the average person to tote around without breaking a sweat. It has a great capacity and maximum output for the price, and nearly as many input/output ports as our larger picks. And, since its essentially a miniature version of the Explorer 1000, it has the same rugged and streamlined design.
In our testing, the Explorer 300 was able to run our tabletop fan for 6 hours, which is as long as any other lightweight contender. The Anker PowerHouse II 400 had the same run time, the Aukey PowerTitan 300 lasted 5 hours, and the Jackery Explorer 160 lasted 2 hours with the same fan. In our max-output test, the Explorer 300 produced an impressive peak of 384 Wwell over its 300 W output rating, and slightly higher than what we measured from the other lightweight options we considered.
Like its bulkier sibling, the Explorer 300 has a hard-plastic shell, four rubber feet on the bottom, and a sturdy handle on top. At the same time, it weighs just 7 pounds, or about as much as a newborn babyour top and runner-up picks weigh 22 and 18 pounds, respectively, or about as much as a 1-year-oldso its much less strenuous to carry around. Plus, it takes up less space in a car trunk or closet.
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Our Pick: Jackery Explorer 1000
*At the time of publishing, the price was $1,000.
The Jackery Explorer 1000 is the best portable power station for emergency backup power or outdoor activities like camping and tailgating. Its one of the most powerful units weve tested, it offers a wide variety of port options, and its lightweight enough for most people to tote around without developing a hernia . We also love its user-friendly interface and sturdy, rugged build quality.
In our testing, the Explorer 1000 was able to power our tabletop fan for an impressive 14 hourslonger than all but the biggest, heaviest units we tested . In our peak-power test, we measured a max output of 1,370 W, which is plenty powerful for most devices.
The Explorer 1000 has a compact, streamlined design that makes it easy to stow in a closet or car trunk. At 22 pounds, it weighs about as much as a large watermelon. And while the two-handled units we tested are generally easier to carry with both hands , we like that the single handle on top of the Explorer 1000 is sturdily built, with an ergonomic shape thats comfortable to grasp. The units exterior is covered in a hard, durable plastic, and it has four rubber feet to protect the bottom from getting scuffed up. Like other portable power stations, it shouldnt be exposed to much dirt or moisture , but its still rugged enough for campfire-side charging.
What Is A Portable Power Supply For Camping
A portable power supply is a device that allows you to stay plugged in and all your battery-powered devices fully charged during outdoor adventures. These devices range from solar-powered to wind-powered gadgets, generators, power inverters and battery packs.
Today, they usually have inbuilt inverters that make it easy for them to charge AC devices and they can be recharged using the cars battery or solar. Whether its a television, heater, premium tent fans, a smartphone or a microwave, you dont have to sacrifice your comfort just because there is no electricity.
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Bluetti Eb55 Portable Power Station
If you cant live without a lot of appliances when you hit the road, consider the Bluetti EB55. Even though its compact and lightweight at only 16.5 pounds, it packs 700W of power and has a lot of outlets for your devices. In fact, it boasts four AC outlets , so you can plug in a TV, blender or CPAP, or all of them at the same time . There are also four USB ports as well as one USB-C for your mobile devices. A mere two hours of charging refuels the battery back to full power, and a display makes it easy to keep an eye on power levels.
Best Portable Power Supply Optionsfor Camping In 2022
In addition to camping, these portable batteries and power banks are great for off-grid Airbnb stays or even extended off-grid living.
So check out my favorite portable power supply options for off-grid camping and boondocking:
- Anker A1229 10000mAh High-Speed Charging Power BankGoal Zero Yeti 200X Portable Power Station
- Jackery Explorer 300 Portable Solar Generator for Outdoors Camping
- EF ECOFLOW RIVER Pro 720Wh Camping Power Station
- Newpowa Portable 280WH Lithium Battery Silent Solar Generator
- Goal Zero Venture 7800mAh Waterproof Power Bank
- Anker A1730 PowerHouse II 400, 300W/388.8Wh Solar Generator
- Yeti 3000X Lithium Battery 2000W Portable AC Inverter Generator
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Best Portable Power Stations Of 2021
Get power whenever you need it with a battery-powered portable generator.
Portable power stations are the smaller, lesser-known cousins of generators. They keep your power tools, phone and other electronics charged and running smoothly. These versatile, lunch-box-size power banks can go with you to construction sites, on camping trips or wherever else you need electricity. They’re also useful backup power sources during a power outage when you need to keep your phone on or an essential appliance running.
I tested seven portable power stations ranging from a few hundred dollars to over a thousand dollars to compile this list. Note: Two of the models I initially reviewed and recommended — the Klein Tools KTB5 and the Rockpals 300W — have been discontinued. I replaced them with newer, similar versions, but these models have not been tested for performance.
Bring your home up to speed with the latest on automation, security, utilities, networking and more.
I focused exclusively on rechargeable battery-powered models, but gas generator models are also available. While each power station provides mobile power in a compact design, each portable generator has a different design and range of features. I put each battery pack device through its portable charger paces and considered factors such as battery life, wattage, power output, type of charging ports the power station offered and more.
That’s it. Let’s find the best portable power station to suit your needs.
Explores The Power For Your Life
Act as a CPAP backup battery, great choice for CPAP users who is addicited to outdoor camping life but limited to the breath.
Used as an emergency power supply for a sudden power outages and charge your mini-fridge up to keep your food fresh for one or two hours.
Different wattage for different demands. It’s near $0.9 per wattage, which is more cost-effective than most power stations on the market.
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Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 240
The Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer is the best portable power station of choice for its ample power, multiple charging options, durability, and several charging ports. Unlike other conventional generators, the unit supplies sufficient power without noise and gas. It features a rechargeable lithium power pack, offering up to 240Wh.
The unit presents with three recharge options. You can either connect it with an ordinary wall outlet, use a car port, or use a 50W solar panel. Regardless of your recharge method, it will take between 7 and 10 hours. It also comes with an LCD screen that makes it easy to monitor battery levels.
What Is The Ideal Weight And Size For A Power Bank
There isnt an ideal size or weight, as it depends on your requirements.
You dont want to carry around more than you need, especially if you are towing a caravan/camper, but you want to make sure you have enough power for your requirements, with a bit spare in case it takes longer to charge your portable battery pack than you expect.
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How Does Portable Power Supply For Camping Work
A lot of things can happen on a camping trip but the most common ones are devices running out of juice forcing you to live off the grid for a while. Portable power supplies come in handy during such moments and they range from rechargeable batteries, power banks, solar cases and back up batteries.
Say, for instance, your phone battery has run out of juice and you cant afford to be offline, you can use these items to recharge it and get back on the grid. They are meant to act as a backup and help you make it on a camping trip or when traveling without being off.
What Should I Look For When Buying A Portable Power Station
Look for a battery-powered generator with enough outlets for all your devices, a large and expandable capacity and multiple charging options, including solar. Fast charging is also a must, as many large portable battery power stations have a long recharge time. EcoFlow has the fastest charging speeds in the industry, topping up a 3.6kWh battery in under 2 hours! EcoFlow’s DELTA Pro is one of the only portable power stations on the market capable of charging at an EV Charging Station.
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How To Choose The Best Portable Power Station For You
The portable power stations are much more than just high-capacity batteries. Although the capacity is all-important, the best portable power stations have a plethora of ins and outs. Do you need a USB-C PD slot that can refuel a laptop? Easy. A mains plug to attach a regular wall plug? No problem. Anderson connectors to cable-up a solar panel? That depends on the product.
However, aside from connections there are other extra features to look for. For example, some portable power stations take their outdoorsy nature to heart and provide campers with a built-in LED light. Others have moulded-in carry handles so you can go easily from car boot to camp. Some can be charged-up with solar panels of varying sizes. Most now have LED screens that tell you exactly how much charge is left and what the current status is. You often now get an app, too.
Exactly how portable your power station is depends on the capacity. Its always a trade-off between weight and portability dont obsess over buying the one with the most watt hours and then expect to be able to easily carry it across a campsite . Just be careful to buy the correct socket version for you, whether that be the UK, US or EU, because the best portable batteries do tend to come in region-specific versions.
How We Picked And Tested
We made a shortlist of what we believe are some of the worlds best solar generators for camping. We looked at specific factors that one needs to consider whenever buying a portable solar generator. Here are the things we checked.
- Inverter Capacity
The inverter is an essential component of any solar generator. It provides you with the electricity needed to run your gadgets and appliances. That is why the surge power capacity of a solar generator is essential. Unfortunately, products come with different inverter capacities. We had to look at the output rating of the inverter. A device with at least an 80 percent inverter rating should be adequate.
- Maximum Power Output
What is the use of having a power generator if it can only supply electricity to a few gadgets at a time? That is why the maximum power output of the device is also a significant consideration. We think that a device that has at least 200-Watt hours of power output is sufficient in most camping activities.
- Battery Bank Capacity
The capacity of the integrated battery bank of the solar generator is also essential. Some batteries can accommodate more DC power than others. We have seen products that have a rating of 60,000mAh, which is equivalent to 60Ah. There are also those that can hold 17.1Ah. Your choice of battery capacity will depend on the different devices that you will plug into the solar generator. We believe that a 15Ah battery should be enough in most situations.
- Solar Panel
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Rockpals 250w Portable Solar Generator
The Rockpals 250w generator is another option that combines portability and power at an affordable price.
Its not quite as powerful as the AIMTom 300, but still offers 250W and a surge capacity of 300W. It has multiple port options and weights only 5.5lbs.
It features a built-in 3.7V 60Ah battery and can be recharged using a wall outlet, car port or compatible solar panels.
Rockpals solar panels are sold separately.
The package does feature an AC power adapter, car charger and cigar lighter plug.
While not quite as powerful as some of the other budget solar power stations available, the Rockpals 250w is a reliable and highly portable option for a good price.
Jackery Explorer 500 Portable Power Station
Level up your convenience game with the Jackery Explorer 500. This portable power station takes the portable part of its description really seriously. For one, its one of the lightest lithium generators on the market right now, and is about the size of a basketball. It has a solid grippy handle that wont put pressure on your palms. The carry-on-focused design makes it perfect for RV camping, especially the kind with hiking involved, and long road trips. It features an AC outlet, three USB-A ports, two DC ports, and a car port that can handle high power appliances. Feel free to bring that minifridge with you everywhere you go.
- Watt-Hours: 518
- Dimensions: 11.8 x 7.6 x 9.2
- Ports: 3 USB-A ports, 2 DC ports, 1 A/C port, 1 car port
- Charge Time: Wall A/C outlet: 7.5 Hours, 12V car outlet: 7.5 hours, generator: 7.5 hours, solar panels: 9.5 hours
- Weight: 13.32 lbs
- Price: $499.99
Key Feature: Combination of pass-through charging capability and built-in maximum power point tracker offers convenience, while ensuring energy-use is maximized.
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Ecoflow R600 Power Stationmy Favorite
This power station is special because unlike any other on this list, R600 is a modular station. It starts at a capacity of 288Wh but you can purchase additional batteries that can be added to the base version very easily. You can get up to 768Wh battery power. Believe me, this feature is extremely helpful. Apart from that, the R600 generator features a 600W power capacity and up to 1200W surge which is amazing.
It has got 3 AC adapters, 3 USB ports, a USB C supporting 100W PD and a DC port. The design is fantastic and the base version only weighs about 11 pounds which makes it supremely portable. The LCD display is just amazing. Moreover, Ecoflow R600 is a smart power station. That means, it comes with a smartphone app and connects to your wifi. You can control it remotely!
R600 supports different charging methods including solar . The best thing is, R600 is the fastest charging power station Iâve come across to date. It goes from 0 to 100% in 1.6 hours, wow.
Unlike others, this battery station has smart features and comes with a mobile app
Since it has a huge power capacity, R600 can power many home appliances including TV, microwave, laptop, ceiling fan, etc.
*Few minutes because of the surge capacity
There is a lot more to talk about R600. If you want to see more, check out my in-depth R600 power station review here