What to know about solar accessories & portable solar products in 2023

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Solar accessories

Solar panel installations generally stay put. Whether you install a rooftop or ground-mounted solar system, your panels remain in their racking equipment, generating energy for your home and larger electric-powered items like electric vehicles (EVs). 

Solar accessories such as portable solar panels allow you to use solar energy in various ways, including powering devices on the go. They enable you to do everything from charging a cell phone to lighting your backyard to providing backup power to an RV.

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Key takeaways

  • Solar accessories can provide reliable, renewable energy at home or on the go and range in size and functionality based on your needs.

  • If you need to power something that requires a lot of energy, like an RV, you'll need to pair your portable panels with a small generator or battery.

  • You can shop for clean energy solutions, including home solar systems, on the EnergySage Marketplace.

Solar accessories can be an excellent option for generating power. Whether you're an avid camper, want to power your outdoor lights, are taking a cross-country road trip, or want to make sure your phone has enough charge to last the whole day, there's likely a solar gadget for you.

By investing some money upfront in a solar setup, you can generate free electricity from the sun to power your devices wherever your travels take you.

The solar accessory you need will vary based on what you are trying to power. Here are some different types of solar accessories to choose from:

Portable solar panels

If you're looking to spend extended periods off-grid, perhaps on a camping or road trip, portable solar panels can help you stay powered reliably. Portable solar panels are usually not standalone devices. While you can purchase smaller mobile solar products that plug into your devices, you'll need larger solar panels and a portable power station to use solar for significant backup power on the go.

A portable solar panel kit will generally include the panels, adapter cables, solar connectors, a solar generator or battery, an inverter, a PWM or MPPT solar charge controller, and mounting brackets. You may even be able to connect to an app via wifi or Bluetooth to track the performance of your portable solar panels. Compared to rooftop systems, portable solar panel systems generally have much shorter warranties, include lower-watt solar panels, and are often designed to be DIY. They don't connect to the circuit breaker panel in your home and typically don't connect to a combiner box.

Instead of bringing around a noisy generator that runs on gasoline, you can hook up a solar panel or two with a lithium battery. Whenever the sun shines, you'll generate solar power to store in your battery. Portable panels also generate electricity for you to use without polluting the environment.

Learn more about different portable solar panel setups:

Solar lights

Sick of running a long extension cable to your outdoor lighting setup? Solar lights are a great solution, capturing, storing, and using the sun's energy to light your property. There are a wide variety of outdoor solar lighting options that fit most needs–learn more:

Solar phone chargers

If you only need a little extra power, affordable portable solar products like solar phone chargers are hassle-free and convenient. The sun's energy acts as a battery charger, ensuring you can access power throughout the day. Many solar phone chargers are waterproof and are easily hung from a backpack, making them perfect for a day trip or hike.

Solar pool heaters

If you keep your pool open as long as possible, you probably spend a lot on water heating costs. With a solar pool heater, you can save on these costs by using thermal energy from the sun to heat your pool. Like traditional solar panel mounts, you typically install solar pool heaters on your roof, making them less portable than most other solar accessories.

What do solar kits typically include?

All solar panel kits include solar panels, a solar charger controller, and installation equipment like brackets, racking, and branch connectors. They may also come with an inverter and a solar battery or generator. 

What companies make portable solar panels?

Some popular portable solar panel companies include Grape Solar, Renogy, and Eco-Worthy

What's the best solar panel angle and orientation?

Whether installing solar panels on your roof or adjusting the tilt mount of panels on your campsite, you'll want them oriented south at an angle between 30-45 degrees.

If you want to power your life with solar energy on the go and at home, the perfect place to start is EnergySage. You can shop for solar and chat with one of our Energy Advisors to help you understand your options and make the best decision for you and your wallet. On the EnergySage Marketplace, you'll receive custom quotes from vetted solar installers, allowing you to compare your options and go solar with confidence.

Find out what solar panels cost in your area in 2024
Please enter a five-digit zip code.
  • 100% free to use, 100% online
  • Access the lowest prices from installers near you
  • Unbiased Energy Advisors ready to help
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