Are you the one who is fond of camping or hiking?
No doubt, one of the big issues you often face during long camping is the energy crisis. You lack the power sources to charge and run your small electronic gear which is a great worry.
In such a situation, a portable power station can serve you best. It is an ideal alternative to portable generators that require no fuel for their powering. You can simply charge it with grid electricity or a solar PV system and juice up your appliances.
Besides camping, it can be a great choice for your home requirements and road trips. However, here is a detailed guide on portable power stations. You will be informed about the best portable power station manufacturers, which you should prefer and how to choose the best.
Therefore, let’s delve into it!
What Is a Portable Power Station?
A portable power station is a smaller version of a backup generator. The battery is packed in a protective shell, yet comprises AC outlets, DC ports, and many other ports for connecting a wide range of your electrical devices.
When compared with a power bank, portable power stations are way heavier, bigger, and more powerful. Normally, you can easily run the lights, fans, and other small appliances. Hence, they are considered a perfect choice for small houses during power outages.
However, a portable solar power station benefits you more as you can charge it with the solar system and cut your electricity bill.
How Do Portable Power Stations Work?
Regarding the working principle of a portable power station, it works similarly to a backup generator. Typically, it consists of an inverter, responsible for absorbing the AC from the battery and converting it into DC. This allows you to power the appliances without any fear of fuse blowing.
Moreover, it offers you simple and easy use. You just need to press the button to power it and plug in the respective device for charging or operating.
How to Choose the Best Portable Power Station?
When it comes to selecting a single portable power station among numerous manufacturers, it becomes a pretty tricky task. You might also be facing a similar situation. In this section, you’ll come to know how to make a better decision while choosing the best portable power station.
Although all power stations are portable, still the extent of portability differs in every product. The one which is larger is also heavier. Thus, it is less portable. Whereas, the smaller ones are lightweight, so they are highly portable.
If your energy demands are not much higher, you must prefer the most portable energy source. It will allow you easy carrying, especially on your hiking journey.
Determining the capacity of the portable power station is one of the most important considerations. Typically, it refers to the amount of stored electricity that is measured in watt-hours. Let’s say, you are using 25W light for 10 hours, which means you have consumed 250 Wh of energy.
Hence, the power stations featuring higher capacity run more devices for an extended period. The ideal way is to calculate the wattage your appliances need to operate. For example, if you only want to power one to two LED bulbs and mobile phones, 150Wh is enough for you.
In contrast, if you are planning to run fans, lights, kitchen appliances, laptops, etc on your portable power station for more than a day; you definitely need a higher capacity of 4000 to 5000 Wh.
Before getting a portable power station, you must compare its life cycles. More the number of life cycles longer will be its lifespan. One life cycle indicates, one complete charge and discharge. Therefore, one life cycle may last for 3 to 4 days or depends upon your usage.
Once the life cycle of a portable power station ends, its performance drops up to 80% rather than 100%. So, ‘you’re suggested to choose it wisely.
The type of battery varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. Some use lithium-ion batteries that are considered a perfect choice for their higher efficiency. While others use lithium-iron phosphate batteries that are known for their safety and longer lifespan.
On the other hand, certain manufacturers feature replaceable batteries in their portable power stations, which allows you to replace the battery in case of any fault.
You can charge almost all portable power stations with an electricity grid. But, what if a blackout occurs? To tackle such conditions you should look for a power station with multiple charging options.
Some portable power stations can be charged with a solar PV system. Undoubtedly, it is the most efficient and cost-saving means of charging. Furthermore, portable power stations charged by cars are also a great benefit for travellers.
Every portable station possesses a different number of ports. Typically, they all have a USB port, AC outlet, and DC outlet. It is better to have one with more than one AC outlet so that you can power more devices at a time.
Additionally, having more USB-A ports ensure less consumption of energy by your small devices, such as mobiles or tablets. Further, the portable power station that you choose must have at least one USB-C port, a DC port, and a car power socket to ensure better use.
The time a portable power battery takes to refill is known as recharge time. The portable power station taking less recharge time is perfect as you can power it in no time. The minimum estimated recharge time is 1 hour.
As we know the warranty indicates the reliability of the product. Therefore, you should go for the manufacturer that offers more warranty. Generally, portable power station manufacturers provide a warranty of 2 to 5 years.
Buying a portable power station also depends upon your budget. The more you have money, the more advanced and best power station you can get. Generally, they range from $150 to $ 2000. Now, it’s up to you which range you can afford.
How to Use a Portable Power Station?
Here is the detailed guide for you to use a portable power station.
Before you start powering your devices with your portable power station, make sure you first charge it completely. You can either charge it with a regular wall outlet using grid electricity, or by a solar system.
Once your power station is fully charged, plug in the different devices to the available ports. If you are using it in your home, you need to carry it to the places where your appliances are placed. For instance, if you want to run a blender or microwave in the kitchen you must place the portable power station there.
Moreover, despite power outages, you can use them full-time. How? Keep your portable power station always plucked into a wall outlet and connect the device that needs to be powered. Even if the outage occurs, the appliance keeps working by using the stored power.
Portable Power Station Manufacturers: Top 5
Here are some top manufacturers of portable power stations throughout the world;
Jackery is the top manufacturer based in California. It is a solar generator industry that supplies portable solar-powered products on the market. They have designed many portable power stations to keep you going off the grid.
All the portable power stations of Jackery possess the following characteristics;
● They are safe and secure to use.
● The batteries are rechargeable.
● You can operate them easily.
● No maintenance cost is required.
However, the following is the most popular Jackery Portable Power station;
● Jackery Explorer 2000 Pro Portable Power Station
It is the best product of Jackery Explorer as it offers a massive charging capacity, i.e, 2160Wh. With such a large capacity you can power the maximum appliances of your home including the air conditioner.
It only takes 2 hours to charge through an AC wall outlet, while it takes 2.5 hours when charged by solar plates. Plus, it provides under 53DB of quiet and peaceful charging.
ETEKWARE is a Chinese company that manufactures portable power stations in addition to small solar generators. The small size of their products makes them highly portable for your outdoor trips. Moreover, ETEKWARE offers custom portable power stations that can meet your specific needs on UI design, voltage, energy density and more.
The below-described portable power station is the most powerful model of ETEKWARE.
● ETEKWARE PA-1200 Power Station
It is a lightweight power station only weighing about 15 pounds. It has a variety of outlet options in addition to a USB-C port. Furthermore, the Suaoki Portable power station can be charged with solar plates, an AC wall outlet, and a DC car port. Hence, if you’re looking for multiple charging options you may consider Suaoki manufacturers.
Typically, it can charge almost 40 smartphones and run a room cooler for nine hours during a blackout.
Ecoflow is also one of the manufacturers of rechargeable portable power stations, situated in Europe. They design solar generators, portable power stations, and solar panels.
Moreover, EcoFlow’s portable power stations are famous for their recharging times, iconic design, and high output. The variety of outlets having different shapes and sizes allows the users to connect various appliances.
The best portable power station of EcoFlow is described below;
● EcoFlow Delta Max Portable Power Station
It offers you a high capacity of 2016Wh making it ideal for camping and running multiple home appliances. You can use the power of this product for hours or even days.
On top of that, it features 6 AC outlets which means you can connect 6 appliances at a time during a power outage. Plus, it offers more than 800 life cycles, so it can last for several years.
DeWalt Industrial Tool Company is an American manufacturer of devices and hand equipment. These are used for the development, of carpentry businesses and home craftspeople. From 1922 DEWALT moves forward to plan basic arrangements and fundamental administration.
● DeWalt 1800-Watt Portable Power Station
The 1800-Watt Portable Power Station considers AC power in distant areas as a profitable power system. It is ready to run most corded devices. Plus, it gives 1800 Watts (15 amps) power and 3600 Watts top power.
● 1800-Watt Portable Power Station
● Batteries sold independently
● Runs most speeded power devices
Goal Zero Portable Power Station
Starting around 2009, Goal Zero has been a forerunner in the development and plan for the division of sustainable power. It is situated in the USA and mainly manufactures portable power stations, solar panels, solar generators, and home backup systems. They design highly durable metal bodies that withstand several tests over time.
● YETI 6000X Portable Power Station
It has 6,071-Watt Hours and seven flexible ports for appliances and equipment. Open Box things might look and feel pristine, even though bundling at this point does not depend on Goal Zero guidelines to sell as shiny new.
Charge the Yeti 6000X from the sun with the sunlight-based chargers. Remain powered from a wall power source when you’re home. The Incorporated MPPT charge regulator assures that you’re getting the absolute sun-based charge.
An adjustable, flexible energy framework moves up four fundamental and basic circuits in your home and scales to meet your particular power needs.
Portable Power Station FAQs
Is a portable power station worth it?
A portable power station serves best as backup power in emergency outages. Also, it helps your small appliances work for a longer period even if you are away from home AC outlets. Having a higher-watt portable power station allows you to connect and run more electric devices.
You may use it to light up in an emergency or charge your laptop and mobile when the electricity is gone. Hence, a portable power station is worth it.
How many watts do I need for a portable power station?
The number of watts required for a portable power station entirely depends upon your demand. If you want to run air conditioners and refrigerators, you should prefer one having more than 2000Wh.
Whereas, if you’re looking for a power source to just charge your small electrical devices and light up your room, 300 to 400Wh would be enough.
How to charge a portable power station?
Let’s see how to charge your portable power station by using different resources.
1. The simplest way is to plug your PPS into a regular wall socket and charge it using grid electricity. Usually, it takes 8 hours to charge fully.
2. You are not always available with grid electricity. Right? So, what to do in such a situation? Well, we have the solution. You can simply use solar plates for charging your power station.
● A single 100 Watt panel can generally charge the battery in 15 to 16 hours.
● Two 100 Watt panels take 9 to 10 hours.
● Four 100 Watt panels just take 5 hours to fully charge the portable power station.
3. Fortunately, you can also charge your power station while traveling in your car. All you need is to plug the wire into the cigarette socket lighter in the car and start charging.
How many hours does a portable power station last?
The timings of a portable power station depend upon which product you are using. The power stations featuring higher power capacity mainly last longer.
Also, the longevity depends upon the number of devices you are powering with it. The more the devices are connected, soon the charging of portable power stations declines.
Generally, higher wattage units offer you power for days, whereas, lower wattage units only last for 10 hours.
Where to buy a portable power station?
You may buy a portable power station from various online stores, such as amazon. There are many manufacturers on the market who are designing the best portable power stations, so you may choose the suitable one. However, you may consider ETEKWARE a reliable source to get an ideal and high-performing portable power station.
Finally, you are there with enough knowledge about portable power stations. In a nutshell, it is a better power alternative to traditional generators for your home appliances. You are suggested to consider the above-mentioned manufacturers for a better experience.
Yet, make sure you seek help from the buyer’s guide and select the one according to your needs. Whether you’re planning a camping or road trip, a portable power station should be your first companion. It will help you in making your journey smooth and convenient.