Portable Power Station Buying Guide
Table of Contents
Portable power sources turned out to be one of the most sought-after pieces of equipment in recent years. Due to various social, geographical, and health situations, the world has realized the necessity of always keeping a portable power source handy. Amidst the many options available in alternate power sources for customers, portable power stations have emerged as one of the most popular choices.
As the name suggests, portable power stations are lightweight and mobile equipment that can be charged completely for later usage. In other words, these are power generators that use rechargeable batteries to collect and store electric power for future use. They are ideal for both emergencies and outdoor activities like camping.
Here are different types of products that you should know before buying a portable power station, solar generator or power generator.
Portable Power Station
Portable power stations are extremely popular amongst the general public. They are the rechargeable version of power generators that store the electric power in cells for later use. They are ideal to be used both inside and outside, unlike many other generators. They contain multiple input options to provide charge with themselves, and multiple output ports for other devices to connect to it to fetch electric power whenever necessary. They are available in the market in various sizes and shapes. Many models have enough power that can even jump-start a car.
Their popularity owes mostly to their high reliability. Being a battery-powered generator, there is no need to run for any fuel during any emergency. If the machine is recharged already, you can use it right away. Also, as they do not require or use any kind of non-renewable fuel, they do not contribute to the horrors of pollution. They don’t produce any noise, nor would they expel any toxic fumes. This quality makes them extremely ideal for indoor and camping activities. Many models offer longer running times for portable power stations than that traditional fuel generators. Maintenance cost is extremely less for portable power stations. Once installed, they do not require professional support or maintenance for a very long time. Check out detailed reviews about portable power stations.
Solar panels are often described as one of the most promising energy solutions for the future. They are the champions of renewable and clean energy. They fetch energy from the sunlight and convert and store them in the solar cells aligned with them. They can be connected to any devices that require power and can be operated uninterruptedly. Having a solar panel installed or set up could help you be independent of the electricity grid and can save you serious money. It possesses many advantages over a regular portable power station.
Although it could cost you some money initially, it could save you a huge sum of money in the long run. Solar panels maintain a great commitment to the environment. The energy produced by them is not harmful to the environment in any way. These times which highlight the atrocities of climate change demand everyone to modify their power sources to adapt to solar power and solar panels. It should also be noted that, due to the positives of solar power, almost all the governments across the world offer incentives and rebates to buy and install solar panels, which relieves the customers of the installation cost.
Before, there was a criticism that the power produced by solar panels is not adequate to operate heavy devices. But times have changed. Latest technological advancements and research have enabled the development of high-efficiency solar panels that can answer the power needs of an entire household. Here are our full reviews of solar panels.
A solar generator is one of the bestselling alternate power sources in the market, both online and offline. They are similar to a traditional generator in most aspects but differ only in the source of power generation. They make use of solar panels to produce electric power and solar cells to store the produced electric energy. Solar generators come in various sizes and shapes. There are different kinds of solar generators like the porta le solar generator, the standby solar generator, and the inverter solar generator. Each type has its fair share of positives and negatives, but still, all of them are recognized and appreciated for the countless positives that they have above their counterparts.
Solar generators are mostly sold for the no-fuel trait of it. They do not require any kind of fuel, and they make use of a renewable fuel like sunlight, which saves the customer fuel money. It makes a huge difference in the maintenance cost in the long term, as fuel prices are rocketing every day. Solar generators also maintain a healthy environment, unlike many of their counterparts. They produce no fumes, noise, or pollution that can harm nature in any way. Here are our reviews of top-rated solar generators.
Portable Home Battery
A home battery is a unit or setup that can store electric energy in multiple ways. A portable home battery can be carried around conveniently as they are lightweight and compact. They collect energy from the power grid or other sources like the sun and wind. They consist of lithium battery packs that can be easily recharged via a power outlet. There are many models of portable home batteries that are sold on the market ad some of them have solar compatibility. Solar compatible battery packs can save both recharging time and money for the user.
It is also ideal for any geographic terrains or climatic zones as the battery packs are made to withstand extreme heat and cold conditions. Unlike many power stations, they are not so huge and heavy. They are compact and sleek in design and store a reasonable amount of electric energy in them, which makes them one of the ideal partners for outdoor activities. They are also ideal to be used for outdoor activities too, as they don’t cause any kind of pollution for the environment or the people. As they do not involve any kind of fossil fuels, they are quite silent too, when compared to their counterparts. Even though they require some kind of professional support and assistance to get installed, it rarely requires any professional help in the maintenance of the system. Check out our top-rated portable home battery.
Portable Inverter Generator
Portable inverter generators are quite similar to the typical models of portable generators but differ in the fact that they are equipped with the inverter feature that makes them ideal for sensitive devices and medical devices. The inverter feature in the generator enables the generator to optimize the current supply according to the demand and build of the devices connected rather than constantly providing a particular amount of current for all the devices. It controls the current flow by controlling the speed of the engine.
It is chosen more for the fuel efficiency that it provides over the other models of generators and portable power stations. It only uses the bare minimum amount of fuel that is required for a particular connected device, and thus, controls the overuse of fuel and saves a significant amount of fuel money. Usually, sensitive devices like cellular phones and laptops are always at the risk of overcharging, whenever connected to a generator. But portable inverter generators come as a permanent solution to this dilemma. Even medical devices can be safely connected to these generators for a stable, clean, and safe energy supply. As they are extremely portable, they can be used anywhere like on camping sites, and other outdoor activity places. Here are our best portable inverter generators based on reviews.
Solar Generator Kit
Solar generator kits or solar kits are quite popular in the market for the convenience and customization opportunities that they offer. It has only been a decade since the solar kits rose to popularity. There are plenty of options available for solar kits for the customers to choose from. Customers can choose according to their requirements and the power that they intend to produce from the kit. Solar kits are a group of equipment that is ideal to produce energy from sunlight. Most of the solar kits include a battery, solar panels, charge controller, etc. Some of the kits even contain inverters along with the other basic devices. The number of solar panels differs in various kits and the customers can choose kits of a various number of solar panels according to their requirements.
The biggest advantage of a solar kit is the fact that the customers need not pay for any devices that they don’t need. Some homes might only need a couple of solar panels to generate electricity, and they could choose solar kits that contain only solar panels. This kind of freedom of choice cannot be seen in most of the other power generation sources and this is what makes them quite popular. Explore the best solar generator kits.
Solar Generator for RV
Recreational Vehicles usually need quite an amount of electricity to power their devices and usually, people opt for fuel-powered generators for them. But the negative impact that the fuel generators cause on the environment made people look for better alternatives and solar generators are hands down the best alternative that any RV owner can ask for. They generate electric power with the help of solar energy and thus avoid the use of any kind of fossil fuels in the process.
It is better than its counterparts like the portable power station in many aspects like the noiseless operation that it offers. It creates zero noise while functioning and thus is the ideal option to use for outdoor activities and in public places. Also, it does not generate and expel any kind of toxic fumes or gases that can cause harm to both people and the environment that they live in. Another reason why a solar generator is considered better than most of their counterparts is in the low to no money spent on fuels. The fuel of a solar generator is the sunlight, which is free. So, the RV owners can let the generator collect as much solar energy as possible in the morning for free, and can simply use the power produced later. Based on our reviews, here are the top solar generators for RVs.
Solar Powered Generator for Camping
Camping and similar outdoor activities need to have a constant supply of power. It is also important to have a portable generator as camping demands all the stuff used in it to be moveable. One of the major criticisms that come against solar generators is the comparatively lesser amount of energy that it produces, but that same flaw is what makes them ideal for camping. Campers only use minimum devices and thus, their power requirement is also a minimum. Thus, solar-powered generators are one of the most suitable generator options for them.
Another positive of the solar generator is that it does not require any fuel and thus, the campers need not go through the difficulty of finding and storing enough quantity of fuel. They can travel lightly as they are relieved of the burden of carrying fuel. They can simply let the solar generator store enough solar power in the morning and can conveniently use it later. Unlike many other generators and portable power stations, solar generators produce clean and safe energy which makes them an ideal partner for camping, as camping is conducted mostly in nature-dense places. The ease of using the solar generators is another advantage as to why they are opted for mostly by the campers. Unlike a power station that requires professional help in installation, a portable solar generator can be used right away, without any prior user experience. Check out our detailed reviews about camping solar-powered generators.
Solar Battery Charger
A solar battery charger, like any other regular charger, feeds off the electricity and stores it in its battery pack for later uses. But unlike a regular battery charger, a solar battery charger does not require a wall power outlet to get charged but instead uses solar power to get recharged and to charge the connected devices. They are small and compact in size and sleek in design. They can be carried in backpacks, wallets, and even cloth pockets. They are made to charge one or more devices for a limited amount of time. It cannot hold enough power to charge heavy devices or for a long time. It has limitations in the devices that can be connected; mostly, mild devices like cellular phones, reading lights, laptops, etc. can be powered using solar battery chargers.
Solar battery chargers or solar power banks are usually equipped with solar panels on one side. It is present with photovoltaic cells that collect ample solar energy for power production. It is better than several other products in the power production market, mostly due to its lightweight build. It is extremely portable than almost all of its counterparts. Unlike portable power stations and other power generators, they can be carried anywhere and everywhere without costing much space and effort. Here is the best solar battery charger list.
Camping Solar Panels
Solar energy is one of the most dependable forms of energy and the reason is its high availability itself. Anything that makes use of solar energy can be recharged during the day and can be used later conveniently. Camping solar panels provide people with the option to buy only the number of solar panels that they require to generate power. They need not buy any extra apparatus or a complete generator, and thus, saves a significant amount of money.
They come in handy in camping and other outdoor activities as they can be used with any devices that are compatible with solar power. This enables the buyer to use a single set of solar panels for many devices that he/she owns. It is positively different from almost all of its counterparts because of the clean and safe energy that it generates. You also need not worry about finding any power outlet or fuel source during the camping to charge your devices. Check out the editor’s pick list of camping solar panels.
Portable generators are the name to which portable gas-powered generators are often referred. They are the portable or mobile version of the traditional gasoline-powered generator. They are not permanently installed or hard to move, but rather can be moved and carried along with much ease. They have all the pros of a typical gas-powered generator, that is, high fuel efficiency, high power production, etc. But it should be made sure that when carried on a road trip, it should be properly grounded before functioning for proper operation.
They can stably produce a huge amount of electricity until and unless fuel is provided consistently. They can power most of the devices that you will require on a road trip or camping. The only flaw of the portable generators would be the storage of enough fuel when you are outdoors. To avoid any fuss related to the storage of fuel, it would be better to use any appropriate fuel stabilizer to maintain its consistency and form. With proper maintenance and periodical change of engine oil, portable generators can operate for a longer time than most of their counterparts like the portable power stations. Read our top-rated portable generators.
Dual Fuel Generator
Dual fuel generators came as the best possible alternative for the flaws of fuel-powered generators that were facing the criticism that it was difficult to find and store the appropriate fuel during emergencies. Dual fuel generators support more than one fuel as the power source and this gives the user enough space and provision to make the best out of two or more fuels at the same time. When one of the fuels runs out of stock, the user can easily switch to the other fuel power just by the flick of a switch.
Most customers choose a dual fuel generator for the sheer convenience that it offers. When compared to other power sources like the portable power station, which uses a single power source to power the equipment, dual fuel generators offer immense possibilities. You can easily choose a version that supports the most efficient and available fuels in your area. If one of the fuels is to be something like Propane, the user can store the fuel for decades without worrying about accidents or expiration, as propane has a longer shelf life than most the other fuels and causes no accidents. Dual fuel generators are observed to be more fuel-efficient than most of their counterparts too. Check out the reviews of dual fuel generators.
Portable Fuel Generator
Portable fuel generators, as the name itself suggests, are machines that generate electric power using fuels like gasoline, propane, etc. They are highlighted by their power, fuel efficiency, high power production, etc. They are one of the most sold models of the generator.
They are different from their counterparts like the portable power station in multiple ways. The basic working principle itself is different for both of them; fuel generators generate electricity from the fuel source that is provided to them whereas a power station only stores the electric energy provided to them for future purposes. Fuel generators are considered the best when it comes to emergencies or outdoor activities. The power station may run out of charge after a while, whereas the fuel generator can supply power as long as they are provided with the appropriate fuel. Read our reviews of the portable fuel generator list.
Dual Fuel Inverter Generator
Dual fuel inverter generators are one of the latest additions to the portable power source section. They outperform regular generators and even regular portable power stations. They can switch between two or more fuels, depending on the model. Major fuels used are gasoline, propane, etc. You do not require any special apparatus for facilitating this switch, rather you can do that with just the flip of a button.
The advantage that is associated with a dual fuel inverter generator is the reliability that it offers. Most of the other power sources like portable power stations become useless once they run out of power. But a dual fuel generator offers the possibility to run the machine on more than one fuel. So, in case one of the fuels runs out of stock during an emergency, you can always depend on another fuel. Also, if you are choosing a model that is compatible with propane, your convenience will be even high, as propane is a fuel that can be stored for years, without causing any damage. It is undoubtedly one of the products that offer the highest running time in the market. Here are detailed reviews about dual fuel inverter generators.
Gas-powered generators are one of the traditional types of alternate power sources. They make use of fuels like gasoline to produce chemical energy that is later converted into electrical energy and is provided to various devices through their output ports. They are one of the initial generator models and they are still sold in places. The biggest advantage of a gas-powered generator is the long-running time that it offers. As long as the fuel is provided, a gas-powered generator continues to operate. It would not run out of power after a particular time, like a portable power station.
Also, unlike its counterparts, the fuel availability of a gas-powered generator is extremely high. Gasoline is a very common fuel and is reasonably priced too. So, in case of any emergencies, gas-powered generators will come in handy for the sheer fuel availability. When judged based on installation cost, a gas-powered generator scores well than a portable power station or any other counterparts. Gras-powered generators can be used right out of the box whereas many of their counterparts require professional assistance to get installed. Also, it is the top player when it comes to the amount of power produced. Even a small-sized gas-powered generator is powerful enough to charge multiple high-power-consuming devices. Check for our top-rated gas-powered generators.
Portable Electric Generator
Electric generators, for several decades, have turned out to be one of the prime sources of power. They are chosen by most customers for their possibility to be used in remote areas, various geographic terrains, during disasters, emergencies, etc. The portable versions are newer additions to the section, but quite popular too. Portable electric generators are an umbrella term under which all kinds of portable generators come. There are fuel-powered portable electric generators solar-powered electric generators electric chargers, etc. in this group.
Portable electric generators are extremely cost-effective. They are an out-of-the-box product and thus, no professional assistance is required for their installation. They are also popular due to their possibilities for outdoor activities like camping. They can be easily brought to the camping or any activity site and can be easily set up for limitless use. Discover top pick portable electric generators.
Portable Propane Generator
A portable propane generator functions exactly similar to a gas-powered generator. It makes use of the fuel propane to generate electricity. Propane generators are often considered superior to gas-powered generators due to the safety that they offer. Propane is a fuel that can be stored easily and safely. It can be stored safely in tanks for a long time as its shelf life is extremely high. The fuel efficiency of propane is also commendable. They can produce a high amount of energy like a gas-powered generator. And the energy that they produce is clean and safe too. Even though they produce fumes and noise, it is far lesser than the gas-powered generators produce. The amount of toxic gases that a propane generator produces is less manageable.
When compared to its counterparts like portable power stations, portable propane generators possess many advantages. The biggest advantage is the running time that it offers. Unlike its counterparts, it can be trusted for a longer running time. It can operate uninterruptedly as long as the fuel is provided to them.
Also, the possibility to store as much propane as possible is considered a game-changer. In times of emergency, if you have sufficient propane backup, a propane generator is the best option to survive. Propane does not get expired if stored properly in cylinders. They can be even stored outside with no worries of being inflammable or causing an accident. Check out the best portable propane generators.
RVs or Recreational Vehicles are those vehicles that are equipped with housing and recreational facilities and are mostly used for camping purposes or traveling. As they are always on the road, they cannot always make use of the electricity grid. Thus, they require an outdoor power source that can power the necessary appliances in them. This is where RV generators come into play. RVs can generally use two types of generators- built-in RV generators and portable generators.
RV generators serve the same purpose as that of a portable power station, but sometimes, in a better way. Unlike portable power stations that run solely on electric power, RV generators can be of any type. They are available in fuel-powered versions, electric-powered versions, and even solar-powered versions. This gives the customers wide options to choose from. Also, many products like the portable power station run out of charge after a while, whereas RV generators can sustain their operation for a very long time as long as they are provided with appropriate fuel. We can also increase the running time of an RV generator by prioritizing the devices that are connected to it. If we only connect emergency devices that are of reasonable power consumption, RV generators can last a lot longer than usual. High-fuel efficiency is something that both types of RV generators offer. Here are top-rated RV generators.
There is no particular type of generator called a camping generator. But rather, there are various models of generators that can be sued for camping purposes and they are together called camping generators. The most common feature that a camping generator should have is portability. As camping involves a lot of movement and displacement, the generator must be mobile enough to move around. So, mobility or being lightweight is of prime importance when it comes to a camping generator.
The most commonly used types of camping generators are the traditional fuel-powered generators and the inverter generators. Both of them have their fair share of advantages and disadvantages. Traditional camping generators are the most powerful ones. They can produce a large amount of power irrespective of their sizes whereas an inverter generator seems to be producing a comparatively lesser amount of power. But when it comes to the environment-friendly nature of the generators, inverter camping generators score well. They produce fewer fumes and noise than a gas-powered generator and are thus, most ideal for compact and closed spaces.
When compared to their other counterparts like the portable power station, they offer both positives and negatives. The high fuel efficiency and longer running time are the significant positives that a camping generator possesses over a portable power station. But at the same time, the environmentally harmful nature of some of the models of camping generators invites serious criticisms too. Read our rated best camping generators.
Portable chargers are those pieces of equipment that cannot generate electric power on their own, but rather store electric power whenever provided. They are quite compact and small and can provide charge for several hours only. Even though they can operate continuously for a particular time, they are extremely convenient to carry around and store. Some of them even fit in wallets and pockets. This lightweight nature and convenience are what make the portable charger a crowd’s favorite.
Being small and compact, it does not require any kind of assembling. It can be used as it is, right out of the box. It may seem too small when compared to its counterparts like the portable power station. Also, it does not have that many output ports like the power station. It mostly contains one or two output ports. Another advantage that the portable charger has is the optimized power that it provides. They are ideal to power up sensitive devices like cellular phones and other smart mobile gadgets. Check out our detailed reviews about portable chargers.
Portable Power Generator
Portable power generators are an umbrella term that is used to refer to various models of power-producing generators. Solar-powered generators, fuel-powered generators, battery-powered generators, etc. are some of the many models that are included under the term portable power generator. The common feature of all these models is that they are all portable. They are ideal to be carried around and to be used in outdoor activities, camping, etc.
They are extremely convenient as they are more compact in size and design than many other traditional generators. It is true that due to the small size, they may not be the best in the quantity of the power produced, but still, they can power multiple devices for a significant time. And another plus point is that many models of portable power generators like the solar-powered ones are extremely environmentally- friendly. Unlike their counterparts like the portable power station, they are very easy to install too. They do not require any professional assistance in installation; rather, they can be used right out of the box. It can power multiple devices at the same time through its numerous output ports. Some of the versions also come with an inverter facility too. Click for the portable power generators list.
Portable Battery Charger
Battery chargers or power banks are one of the smallest members of the alternate power sources section. They are pocket-sized devices that can fit into anything from a wallet to a backpack. They are mostly used to provide electric power for small and sensitive devices like cellular phones, laptops, etc. As they are quite smaller than the traditional generators or chargers, they can only be used for a specific amount of time. They are not made to cover longer hours.
Battery chargers are considered better than many other similar products in the market due to the portability and convenience that they offer. They can be carried anywhere and is an instant source of power. You need not worry about finding a wall outlet or a fuel source to power it up. If recharged, you need not even switch on the device, but rather it starts functioning right when a device is connected to it. Check out our reviews of portable battery chargers.
Solar chargers are extremely popular among people who purchase alternate power sources. It is made up of solar cells that collect and transfer solar energy into electrical energy and store them appropriately for future use. They are available in various models like monocrystalline silicon chargers, polycrystalline silicon chargers, and CIG chargers. They are all mostly noticed for the clean energy that they produce. Unlike many of its counterparts, a solar charger does not produce any toxic waste that can harm the environment or the living beings in it. It does not produce any byproducts or harmful fumes as part of the power production process.
When compared to other options like the portable power station, a solar charger causes extremely low costs to the user as it does not require any professional assistance for installation. It is also quite safer and quiet than its counterparts and is thus, one of the best options for any outdoor activities. Here are our full reviews about solar chargers.
A battery generator or an Uninterrupted Power Supply Unit is one of the most popular products in the energy section as they offer a constant supply of electrical energy once identifies a power loss or power failure. These are one of the latest additions to a lot of alternate power sources. But despite the late initiation, it turned out to be one of the most popular choices of the customers in no time. The major reasons for this immediate popularity are several like the availability of numerous options, which causes no environmental pollution, are easy to use, cause no noise disturbance, portability, etc.
They are also one of the most resorted generators to connect medical devices. As most of its counterparts need to be switched on manually when the power goes off, the battery generators identify the power loss on their own and start functioning immediately after the power failure. This trait is extremely suitable to connect medical devices. Another highlight of this product over others like the portable power station is the easiness with which it can be carried around. They are compact, lightweight, and smaller than many other products that have the same power-producing capability. Read our full reviews about battery generators.
Portable power sources have been in trend for several years for the sheer convenience and possibilities that they can offer. This section contains several generators and power stations and there is no such thing as the most ideal option for them. Each of them possesses a fair share of pros and cons and some of them are better than others. It is the requirement and needs of the customer that should be the first criteria when it comes to buying an alternate power source. Portable power stations are considered a more dependable power source than fuel-powered generators in many instances, but they have their flaws too.
So, when you think of buying an extra power source, identify your purpose and power needs first. Estimate the number of devices that you need to power up with this source and calculate the net quantity of power needed. Then you should check through the numerous options available in the market and find the one that is most suited to your requirement. Consider various aspects like cost, number of outlets, mode of recharging, alternative power source capacity, safety features, fuel efficiency, etc. before making a final choice.