Last updated: August 19, 2021

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As important as mobile phones have become in everyday life, we know that battery life is never enough on a day-to-day basis, so here are the best solar power banks you can find on the market to keep you connected, even if you're camping away from power sockets and civilisation.

Because a portable battery is not enough when you can have at your disposal all the energy from the sun, for this and more. We will give you not only the technical details, but all the necessary information for you when purchasing this product.




Summary

  • Solar Power Banks are designed to fit in everyday use, hence their compact and handy size.
  • The main power source of these devices is not sunlight, but in fact, external charging. The functionality of the solar panel is recommended to be used in cases of emergency.
  • While it may not seem like a big deal at first glance, a rechargeable battery with solar panels can make the difference between being able to power up your mobile phone to make a call or being stranded and unable to communicate.

The Best Solar Power Banks: Our Picks

Buying guide: What you need to know about solar power banks

Mano sosteniendo power bank solar

Solar power banks are devices that you can use to extend the battery life of your mobile phone even in situations where you don't have a power outlet nearby. (Source: Ponari: 84978751/ 123rf.com)

What are solar power banks and what are their advantages?

Solar power banks are devices that you can use to extend the life of your mobile phone battery even in situations where you don't have a power socket nearby, using solar panels to power the battery, which in turn charges the battery of your mobile phone.

Keep in mind that a solar portable battery is not the same as a solar charger, the main difference is that the first has a power backup, while the second is just a generator of electricity.

A big factor to take into account is that solar energy is not its main source of charge, since this device combines external electricity with the energy generated by photovoltaic panels.

Advantages
  • You have all the solar energy at your disposal to charge your device
  • You can charge more than one device at a time
  • It usually includes LED lamps that can be very useful
  • It is very practical to carry around
Disadvantages
  • Its main source of energy is not sunlight
  • If it has extra tools it would decrease the effectiveness of the battery
  • If you don't have access to sunlight you have to limit yourself to charging the battery.

What other uses can solar power banks be put to?

Generally in these types of devices we find additional features, such as an LED lamp or even AM/FM radio, however this is not a big factor to take into account as this in fact decreases the effectiveness of the power bank and these are tools that can be summed up in a smartphone.

How long does it take to charge a solar power bank?

The charging time of a Solar Power Bank depends on different factors, mainly, if it is being charged with electrical energy, where the current intensity comes into play, while when it comes to solar energy it depends on the surface of the photovoltaic panel, the watts it generates and the intensity of the light it is exposed to.

When do you need a solar power bank and when don't you?

Perhaps you are considering buying one of these products because of innovation and curiosity, but you might first ask yourself the question: When is a solar panel really necessary? It all depends on what you are going to use it for, and you can study it in detail below:

You need it if You don't need it if
You spend many hours away from home You don't usually leave the house
You practice extreme sports You don't use your mobile phone excessively
You go camping You always use a private car (You can use a car charger)
You walk or use public transport You live in an area where you rarely see the sunYou live in an area where you rarely see the sun

Power bank conectada a celular en mesa

Solar Power Banks can be purchased at electronics shops, however, shopping online will give you more options. (Flickr.com)

Buying criteria

Without getting too deep into technical specifications or becoming an expert on the subject, there are a few things to consider when choosing the ideal portable solar battery for your use, so don't be fooled and pay attention to the following details before making your choice:

Battery capacity

The capacity of the battery is essential, since this is what determines how long it will take the power bank to reach maximum charge, how many charges your device will support and how effective it will be using all its functionalities.

Recommended for everyday use would be a Power Bank with a capacity of around 10,000mAh, allowing at least 3 charges for your portable device.

Power bank solar cargando celular en la playa

A Solar Power Bank works with any device that can be connected via USB (Flickr.com)

Quality of solar panels

It is necessary to clear up any doubts about this issue when choosing your portable charging device, as the range of varieties that can be found among the Solar Power Banks include different types of panels that can harness up to 25% of solar energy for useful charges on your device.

To select the ideal photovoltaic panel for your use you should bear in mind that the energy provided by this solar generator is measured in Watts, and the more the better. Likewise with its surface area, the larger it is, the faster the charging time.

Size and weight

Of course the term "portable" covers this section in itself, since this tool will accompany us on a daily basis and must be adapted to our daily use, able to be transported in our bag, backpack, purse or even in our trouser pocket.

Currently a battery of this type usually measures about 5 inches high by 2 inches wide, ideal dimensions for an object that should be easy to carry, so we already know the ideal measures to acquire our device.

Additional features: LED lamp, radio, etc.

Among the abysmal differences that can have a Power Bank model with another we can find a variety of additional features, such as LED lamps, FM/AM radio, compasses and things as simple as a hook to carry it hanging on the backpack.

However, all of these tools would diminish the performance of our battery, plus they can be found on our smart devices, so if you prefer more efficient charging for a lower price, it's best to go for the simplest and most straightforward battery possible.

(Featured image source: Phadventure/ 123rf.com)

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