If you’re looking for a portable solar power generator for your next off-grid adventure, I’ve got you covered.
Introducing the Jackery Solar Generator 500 and Jackery SolarSaga 100 solar panels. Combine these two clever gadgets to power all your electronics with solar power when you’re off-grid. Yes, it’s possible, even if you’re traveling with kids who have a billion devices!
Travel Hack Tip: Jackery products are currently 15% off in celebration of our 9th anniversary. This offer ends on October 20th, so be quick!
Jackery Solar Generator 500
The Jackery Solar Generator 500 is a portable outdoor power station. This is a sturdy small generator that can be used to power everything from refrigerators and TVs to laptops, phones, tablets, LED lamps, and air pumps.
- 1 x AC plug socket
- 3 x USB ports
- 1 x carport plug
- 2 x DC output
This would be a great generator perfect for large group camping trips or off-grid vanlife adventures!
The generator can be charged via mains power or solar panels (see below for details). When fully charged, it will power your usual gadgets as you go on your off-grid adventures, including:
- Phone – 53 charges
- Laptop – 7 charges
- LED light (5 watts) – 45 hours
- Mini fridge – 37 hours
- TV – 7.5 hours
- Blender – 6 hours
Jackery Explorer 500
Explorer 500 can be used for electronic devices that use up to 500 watts of power. So you can use it for most things you need outdoors, but not for high-wattage electrical devices like a standard hair dryer.
If you want to use this solar generator for high wattage electronics, there is a larger version called the Explorer 1000. This can be used with devices up to 1,000 watts, so you can use it with things like electric grills and slow cookers.
Solar Saga 100 Solar Panel
The Jackery Explorer can be used in conjunction with Jackery Solar Panels, another wonderfully simple and effective piece of kit. Solar panels come with cables to connect directly to your generator.
This portable, foldable solar panel is a highly efficient panel that can be connected to a generator and charged in approximately 14 hours. Alternatively, you can skip the generator altogether and connect the USB to a solar panel to quickly charge small devices.
It comes with a kickstand so you can adjust it to work efficiently facing the sun.
Can you use a solar panel through a window?
You can, but it doesn’t seem to be very effective. It works best outdoors in direct sunlight and tilted slightly toward the sun.
That being said, you can leave it in the window of your camper while the sun is out and it will charge, so no problem!
The solar panels cannot get wet
One thing you should definitely keep in mind is that Jackery solar panels should not get wet. Depending on where you are in the world this may not be an issue, but we Brits definitely need to be aware of the weather. If there is a chance of rain, you cannot leave your solar panels outside or on the roof of your van.
I have not yet used the Jackery generator or panel during an extended off-grid trip, but I will update this review as soon as I do to let you know how I get through a few days relying solely on it. But there are some other things I really like…
The generator and solar panels seem really good. It’s durable, well-made, and incredibly easy to use.
The generator also has a handy light on the side, making it perfect for camping trips.
It is quite heavy, weighing 13.3 pounds. It’s easy to carry, especially in a carry-on bag, but I wouldn’t carry it with me on a hiking trip or if I had to walk long distances.
I think this is a valuable kit for campers!
Jackery Portable Power Station 500
Jackery carry case