Is a Solar Generator Worth the Investment? A Buyer's Guide

jackery solar generator 500 in RV life

Solar power is a clean and cost-effective way to power your home. But what many people don’t realize is that there are multiple types of solar solutions to choose from. For example, instead of adding a full set of residential solar panels to your house, you might be interested in picking up a solar generator.

Solar generators consists of solar panels and portable power stations to capture energy from the sun and store it for later use. You can use one as a source of on-the-go power, as a backup source of energy for your home, or as both.

The efficiency and versatility of solar generators, but with this comes an initial investment. So, you might be wondering, are solar generators worth the money?

After the up-front cost of the equipment, solar generators have no additional running expenses compared to gasoline-powered generators. They provide an unlimited energy source from direct sunlight, so there is no need to buy fuel. They also have no moving parts, meaning less maintenance costs.

If you’re thinking long-term and are interested in finding out more about solar generators, you’ve come to the right place. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know to determine whether buying one of these is a smart decision for you.

Understanding Jackery solar generators: The core components

Jackery Solar generators are made up of two distinct parts:

1. Solar panel component

These aren’t quite the same as the solar panels that you put on your home. But they also capture solar energy from the sun’s rays and transform it into direct current electricity.

2. Portable power station

Jackery solar generators also have a portable power station. This is where the energy that you pull from the solar panel gets stored.

  • Solar charge controller

The Jackery power station typically have a solar charge controller. This regulates the flow of energy into the battery so that nothing gets damaged as power moves throughout the system.

  • Inverter

A portable power station also has an inverter, which is the core component of a power station. This is the part that transforms the power that the panels collect from the sun into a usable form of energy.

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Putting it all together: How solar generators provide power in 5 steps

Here’s a step-by-step look at how all of the parts of a solar generator system work together to provide us with power:

Step 1:

The solar panels collect energy from the sun.

Step 2:

That energy gets passed through the charge controller to be regulated.

Step 3:

The energy gets sent to the battery for later use.

Step 4:

When you want to pull energy from the battery, it passes through the inverter to make sure that it’s in a usable form.

Step 5:

You can now use the power for whatever you want.

jackery solar generator 500

Tip: How to optimize solar panels to work with power stations

Another thing that’s worth mentioning is that the solar panels you use with a power station are typically portable. This is what makes Jackery solar generators such a versatile tool. You can move around the solar panels they use to create energy so that they’re optimally positioned to capture as much of the sun’s power as possible no matter where you are.

7 Factors to consider before buying a Jackery solar generator

There are lots of good reasons to own a solar generator and a few factors that may make another solar product a better fit for you.

Let’s explore these:

1. Jackery solar generators are extremely quiet

One of the biggest selling points of solar generators over gas-powered ones is how quiet they are. Jackery’s generators, in particular, make almost no noise while running. So you can use one without even noticing it’s on, which would be virtually impossible if running a gas-powered generator.

2. Jackery solar generators are easier to use

Unlike gas generators, the component of Jackery solar generator - portable power stations don’t have any moving parts. This reduces the chances of something going wrong with the generator since there are fewer parts that could malfunction.

3. Your support clean energy by using one

Jackery solar generators are also a much cleaner energy solution than traditional gas-powered models. For example, Using Jackery Solar Generator 1500 Pro can help reduce CO2 emissions by almost 250 pounds - the equivalent of planting five trees per year.

Additionally, if you’re someone who constantly uses a generator, then you know how quickly fuel prices can add up. However, that’s not a problem for solar generators.

These devices create usable energy from the sun. That means you get a steady supply of energy that you don’t have to pay for. That could save you a ton of money over the lifespan of your system.

4. Jackery solar generators are safe for use

Another important factor to keep in mind is that solar generators are completely safe to use. They don’t present any of the safety issues associated with gas-powered generators, such as flammability. So you can use one without having to worry about something dangerous happening to it.

5. Solar generators require a significant upfront investment

One thing that you do need to keep in mind while shopping for solar generators is that they require a significant upfront investment. The average price for a solar generator is about £2,000 in the United Kingdom.

That being said, although this is a significant sum of money, it isn’t more than what you would pay for a gas generator. In fact, you may even save some money by opting for a solar power station over a gas-powered one.

That’s because the average cost of a natural gas generator is between £1,900 and £5,000, while the average cost for a solar generator is between £300 and £5,000.

6. They can only generate power when the sun is out

This is one of the limitations of solar energy in general. Solar panels are only able to collect energy when the sun is shining. But that may not actually end up impacting how often you’re able to use your solar generator.

Remember, solar generators use portable solar panels to collect energy from the sun. You can move these around as often as you need to in order to find the sun. That means you don’t usually have to worry about shade impacting your generator’s capabilities.

7. Battery sizes are typically relatively small

It’s also important to note that battery sizes for solar generators are often much smaller than what you’d find on a residential solar system. That’s why it’s usually not a good idea to rely on one of these to power your entire home.

However, there are lots of different solar generator options to choose from, which gives you the flexibility to find one with a battery size that meets your needs.

For example, Jackery sells solar generators that scale up in the amount of power that they’re able to provide with a single battery charge. They range from as low as 18 hours of mini cooler usage to as many as 66.

Who should buy a Jackery solar generator?

Portable solar generators can be a smart purchase for a range of people with various needs. That said, there are a few scenarios in which buying one makes the most sense.

Such as:

You use a lot of outdoor gear that requires power

Jackery portable solar generators are at their best when you’re using them while on the go. They make it possible to charge up your outdoor gear and use appliances while camping or enjoying a multi-day outdoor adventure.

Jackery’s devices are even powerful enough to support RV, van, and cabin life. With one of our solar generators, you can bring a touch of comfort to any outdoor experience.

The best part is, you don’t ever have to worry about running out of fuel since your generator’s portable solar panels will always be able to create more energy for you to use as long as the sun is shining.

jackery solar generator 2000 pro

You want a backup source of power for your home

Some people also choose to buy solar generators to back up their home’s energy system. This is also a great use-case for a solar power station, as it gives you some protection in the event that your house loses power.

Just keep in mind, solar generator batteries aren’t meant to power a full home for long periods of time. If you get one, only expect to use it as a stop-gap solution until your power gets turned back on.

jackery solar generator 500

You want to contribute to creating a cleaner planet

Solar generators are also a great tool to buy if you’re someone who cares deeply about the planet. They offer a much cleaner alternative to traditional methods of energy generation, which means using one can be a way for you to do your part to combat climate change.

How do I pick the best solar generator for my needs?

Finding the best solar generator for your needs is about identifying what you hope to get out of one. A good place to start is by figuring out how much energy you need for your solar generator to be able to produce in a given amount of time.

For example, maybe you want to buy a solar generator that will serve as a backup to your home’s existing power supply. If so, you could calculate how long you want it to be able to provide power for you by calculating how much energy your devices use over a certain amount of time.

Click to figure out how long does a Jackery solar generator support when charging your devices.

There might also be other factors that are important to you while shopping for a solar generator. For example, you might live in an area where excess noise is a concern. If so, you might want to look for solar generators that operate at a low decibel level.

Find your ideal solar generator through Jackery

No matter what type of solar generator is right for you, Jackery has you covered. We offer a wide selection of solar generators with different power generation capabilities, storage amounts, and solar panel sizes. This makes it super easy to find a solar generator that’s right for your needs.

Check out our page on solar generators to learn more about our solar generators and for help with picking the best one for your needs.