Everyday we are using some sort of electronic device. Whether it’s your cell phone, bluetooth speaker, or even an iPod. In order to use these awesome devices we have internal batteries to keep them charged.
The problem is that these batteries always die at some point and often times in the moments when you need them the most. Since you’re not always going to be near a wall outlet you need some other avenue to charge these devices.
This is where portable solar chargers come in hand. These handy chargers can power most electronic devices. The solar panels on these chargers have become so advanced that they can power your devices in the same amount of time as a traditional wall outlet.
Since our whole website is dedicated to all things solar then we had to make a review of the best solar chargers on the market. All of the below devices have been tested and reviewed. Just read the below information and decipher which one is best suited for you.
.Solar Charger Comparison Guide
|Solar Conversion Efficiency:
|Anker 21W Solar Charger
- 1 Pound
- 11.1 × 6.3 × 1.1 Inches
|Nekteck 20W Solar Charger
- 1 Pound
- 12.9 x 6.7 x 1.7 Inches
|Anker Solar Lite 15W Solar Charger
- 1 Pound
- 11.1 × 6.3 × 0.7 Inches
|RAVPower 16W Solar Charger
- 1.6 Pounds
- 10.1 x 1 x 7.6 Inches
|ALLPOWERS 60W Solar Charger
- 3.6 Pounds
- 12.6 x 8.4 x 3.9 Inches
The Best Solar Chargers
1. Anker 21W Solar Charger
First on the review is the Anker 21W Solar Charger. This solar charger is by far the best charger because of it great quality and amazing value. For this reason it’s our favorite solar charger and the number one recommended for you.
When opened the charger displays three separate panels. Each of which is 7W totaling 21W all together. One great thing about these solar panels is that they have a conversion rate of 21.5-23.5%. This high conversion rate allows the panels to charge your devices in around the same time as a traditional wall outlet.
Another great aspect about the Anker 21W Solar Charger is that it’s extremely durable. The panels are coated with industrial-strength PET plastic and are sewn into high-wear polyester canvas. Together this ensures that the charger is able to withstand the wear and tear of the outdoors.
Along with being durable this charger is also very portable. When folded the charger is only 11.1 × 6.3 Inches. This allows you to store it easily in any backpack. There are also stainless-steel eye-holes on each corner of the charger. Allowing you to attach it to your backpack, trees, or rope.
Other cool features the Anker 21W Solar Charger has is 2 USB ports and fast charging capabilities. Overall we enjoyed this device a lot and believe its the best solar charger on the market. You just can’t beat its amazing design and great value.
Product Dimensions: 11.1 × 6.3 × 1.1 Inches
Weight: 1 Pound
Conversion Rate: 21.5-23.5%
2. Nekteck 20W Solar Charger
When opened the charger contains 3 separate panels. In total the panel’s output 20W. These panels also has a high-efficiency rate of 21%-24%. This high conversion rate allows you to charge all of your devices extremely fast.
The Nekteck is very portable device. When closed it’s dimensions are only 11.8 x 6.5 Inches. This compact design allows you to easily store away the charger and carry it anywhere you like.
To charge your devices are 2 USB ports. These ports are specifically designed with “SmartIC Technology”. This technology is simply a microchip that detects the device plugged into the USB port. The charger then gives the proper output so that the device charges as efficiently as possible.
This charger also has multiple bungee loops too attach it to your backpack, trees, and etc. These bungee loops definitely come in handy, but aren’t as durable as the Anker’s steel eye holes. With that being said this is still a quality solar charger. It gets the job done and that’s really what matters.
Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 6.7 x 1.7 Inches
Weight: 1 Pound
Conversion Rate: 21%-24%
3. Anker Solar Lite 15W Solar Charger
Third on the review is the Anker 15W Solar Charger. Yes, this is another Anker product, but its worth being on the list. This particular charger is the most portable on the review, which is why it landed in third.
When opened the device has 2 separate panels. Together they produce an output of 15W. Even though this wattage is much lower than the above models, the device is still efficient at charging your devices (just expect slower charging speeds). This charger also has a conversion rate of 21.5-23.5%.
Though the wattage of this device is much lower than the above models, where the Anker 15W truly shines is in portability. This extremely compact charger is only 11 × 6.3 Inches when folded and can be literally be taken anywhere. It’s slim and compact design allows you to easily slip it into your backpack or carry it in your hands.
Along with being portable this solar charger is also very durable. The solar panels are coated with industrial-strength PET plastic. These panels are then sewn into high-wear polyester canvas to ensure that the charger can handle the wear and tear of the outdoors.
Along with the first Anker, this solar charger has 2 USB ports. These ports contain “PowerIQ” technology. This allows the Anker to charge your device as efficient as possible. Overall this is a great little solar charger. If you want something that is extremely portable, but also powerful then the Anker 15W solar charger is best suited for you.
Product Dimensions: 11.1 × 6.3 × 0.7 Inches
Weight: 1 Pound
Conversion Rate: 21.5-23.5%
4. RAVPower 16W Solar Charger
Fourth on the list is the RAVPower 16W Solar Charger. This is another small solar charger that is extremely portable. With that being said it’s much larger than the Anker 15W charger so it landed 4th on the review.
When opened this solar charger has 3 panels. Combined they output 16W and 3.2A. The panels are highly efficient and have a max conversion rate of 23.5%.
The foldable design of the charger makes it very portable. You can pack this charger into most bags or backpacks without any issues. Which makes this charger ideal for camping and hiking.
Other features this charger contains include multiple eye holes, water-resistant design, 2 USB charging ports, and iSmart technology. In the end this is a very good charger, just not our top choice.
Product Dimensions: 10.1 x 1 x 7.6 Inches
Weight: 1.6 Pounds
Conversion Rate: Unknown
5. ALLPOWERS 60W Solar Charger
Last on the review is the ALLPOWERS 60W Solar Charger. As you can see this solar charger is the most powerful on the list. But, with this power comes a much larger device that is simply not practical. For this reason it landed last on the review.
When opened this charger has 10 panels. In combination they produce an output of 60W. With this much power the solar charger is even able to charge some laptops. Along with high wattage this panel also has a high conversion rate of 22%-25%.
When folded the ALLPOWERS is still a portable device. It may not be as small and thin as the 15W Anker, but is relatively small and can be transported in most backpacks.
As for features this solar panel has multiple eye holes. You can use these to attach the panel to a rope or a tree. To charge your devices this panel has 1 USB port and 1 DC port. The DC is what is used for when charging larger devices like laptops.
Overall this is a great solar charger. It has a lot of power and can even charge large devices such as laptops. The only negative things is that this charger is much more expensive and is simply not practical. Most people don’t need a portable solar charger this size. They simply need something small so they can charge their phones and portable speakers. For the lack of practicality this solar charger landed last on our review.
Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 8.4 x 3.9 Inches
Weight: 3.6 Pounds
Conversion Rate: 22%-25%
Solar Chargers: What To Look For
Solar chargers come in many different shapes, sizes, and styles. Most portable solar chargers are built with 2-4 small panels. The more panels he charger has the more powerful it tends to be. Within the panels themselves there are multible different energy conversion rates. On average these panels are in the 20% range. With that being said you can find the best solar charger for you by considering each of the fallowing aspects:
Through testing multible chargers we found the most important thing to contemplate is the power from the charger. More specifically the wattage of the solar charger is very important. This is because the more wattage a solar charger has, the more powerful the charger is going to be. This usually tends to make the charger faster at powering you electronic devices.
This is also important is you’re looking into charging larger devices like iPads and laptops. Most 15W solar chargers do not have enough wattage to power these device. While chargers that have 20W or more usually can charge these devices in ease. So if you need to power an iPad then its best to get a larger solar charger.
Energy Conversion Rate
The energy conversion rate is another factor that you should look out for. This conversion rate is simply the amount of energy the panel can transfer from sunlight. So the higher the conversion rate, the more efficient the panel is. This is important for two reasons.
First, higher efficiency rates usually mean the panels are utilizing more modern technology. You don’t want to purchase a solar charger that is using old or outdated technology. Second, this higher conversion rate means you can have less panel surface for a given wattage. This allows you to have smaller solar panels, that produce a lot more energy.
Since solar chargers are meant to be used outdoors, it’s important to find one with quality and durable materials. Quality solar panel materials usually mean the charger will have more power, higher conversion rates, and a long lifespan. Quality materials also have an impact on how durable the charger is. You don’t want to be using a cheap product that can break easily outdoors. Instead you want durable materials that can handle the wear and tear of the outdoors.
Portability is another major factor as you’re going to be carrying this solar charging around with you. If you’re backpacking or hiking you don’t want a super large/heavy device. Instead, you wan’t something that is light and relatively small. One of the best products that has a portable design is the Anker 15W solar charger. It’s slim/compact design makes it easy to cary and store away.
Most people who buy solar chargers don’t realize how important charging ports can be. To get the most out of your charging experience you want to be able to hook up multible devices at once. On average most portable solar chargers come with 2 USB charging ports. This is perfect as it allows you to power 2 devices at once. If you only have 1 port then charging can be a long and painful process.
If you do plan on purchasing a SUPER large solar panel then it is important for the device to have a built-in DC port. This DC port allows you to charge your laptop and other bigger devices. A perfect example of this is the ALLPOWERS 60W solar charger.
Smart charge or quick charge is another important factor to look for when choosing a solar device. This feature usually has different names for each device, but has the same exact purpose. Most phones or electronic devices have different charging speeds and power needs. Smart charge allows the panel to charge your electronic device at its most optimal speed and wattage.
This can be very important as you don’t want to overload a device with too much power. It also gives you the best charging times possible if you have a device that has a lot of power. The best example of this is the Anker 21W solar charger.
Overall solar chargers are amazing devices that every outdoor person should purchase. They can charge almost all of your electronic devices at around the same time as a traditional wall outlet. We hope this guide helps you with you buying decision and hopefully leads you to the right decision. So have fun and start charging with solar!
Solar Charger Benefits
As we mentioned above everyday we are using electronic devices. They bring us so much happiness and joy… when they are charged. The problem is whenever you’re not near an outlet you need some avenue to charge them. Solar chargers have now become a solution to this problem and are becoming more advanced than ever before.
Solar panels are no longer the expensive and inefficient technology that we once thought of them as. They now have high conversion rates up to 25%. This conversion rate is much higher than what it used to be and is increasing as the years pass. Not only have these panels gotten more efficient, but they have also become a lot cheaper.
Since this technology has advanced so much, more and more people are buying solar chargers. Reason for is because they provide a clean, efficient, and free way to charge your electronic devices. People who do activities such as hiking, backpacking, camping, or anything in the outdoors can be greatly impacted by these awesome devices.
Please note that these chargers power your devices directly from the sun. Unlike solar battery chargers, they do not have internal batteries. Thus, can only be used during the day unless you buy an external battery.
With that being said we recommend buying your own solar charger. They are very useful and are now very inexpensive.