Switching to solar can seem like a complicated and expensive process, but it doesn’t have to be. Instead of jumping into a huge home system all at once, you can start small and work your way up. Investing in a quality 100-watt solar kit is a good place to start.

A good solar kit usually comes with one or more solar panels along with the wiring or adaptors that your need to get started. The only trouble is deciding what kit to purchase. Since solar power is more popular now than ever before, there are hundreds of options to choose from. To help make your foray into solar a little easier, we have put together a list of quality solar kits for you to look over.

Top 5 Best 100-Watt Solar Kits of 2020


Reviews of the Best 100-Watt Solar Kits

Renogy 100W Solar Kit

Renogy 100W Solar Kit

Quick Look: 100w Foldable Monocrystalline Solar Panel. Comes with 20A PWM charge controller. Compatible with seven different types of battery. Durable and portable.Check Price at Amazon

One of the best things about these 100W solar kits is that many of them are very portable, like this model from Renogy. This panel is foldable and comes with a convenient carrying case so you can have solar power on the go.

Not only is the case convenient, but it’s durable too, just like the rest of this solar kit. The panel itself is waterproof and the frame is made out of corrosion-resistant aluminum, making this a great choice for your boat, RV, cabin, or caravan.

The included PWM charge controller comes with an easy to read LCD screen and is designed to protect your solar battery from overcharging, short-circuiting, or back charging. This system is compatible with seven different types of batteries including lithium, flooded, and gel batteries.

Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
TP-Solar 100W Solar Kit

TP-Solar 100W Solar Kit

Quick Look: 100W monocrystalline solar panel. Durable design. Compatible with multiple battery types. Comes with 20A charge controller, 16 feet of solar cable, and mounting brackets.Check Price at Amazon

If you’re ready to try solar, but need to stay within a tight budget, check out this kit from TP-Solar. This kit comes with a solar panel, charge controller, and 16’ of solar cable. Just add a battery and you can start using free solar energy right away.

The included PWM charge controller is capable of handling up to 20A of power. It can process up to 400W on a 12V system or 800W on a 24V system. This means that you can easily add more solar panels later on as your budget allows.

This panel’s sturdy and durable design makes it a good choice for extended outdoor use. It is waterproof as well as wind and snow-resistant. It also comes with a pre-drilled frame and four Z mounting brackets for easy installation.

Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
Renogy 100W Flexible Solar Panel Kit

Renogy 100W Flexible Solar Panel Kit

Quick Look: 100W Thin-film flexible solar panel. Flexible up to 248 degrees. Comes with 10A PWM charge controller and necessary wiring.Check Price at Amazon

For those situations where a large rigid solar panel won’t do, here is a more flexible option from Renogy. This solar panel can flex up to 248 degrees, making it a great choice for nontraditional mounting, such as placement on the front of your boat or on the curved roof of a small camper or RV.

To help you get the most out of this flexible panel, it comes with a 10V PWM charge controller and all the wiring needed to quickly connect it to your battery bank. The controller comes with the built-in battery protection you need to ensure that your batteries do not short-circuit or overcharge.

This panel also has built-in bypass diodes which help your panel to continue functioning in low-light conditions such as cloudy days or when placed in shady areas. The panel and the controller are also waterproof, offering even more mounting versatility.

Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
Rockpals 100W Solar Kit

Rockpals 100W Solar Kit

Quick Look: 100W Foldable monocrystalline solar panel. Lightweight and ultra-portable. Comes with 10 adaptors for charging solar generators or power stations.Check Price at Amazon

Solar power can be a camper’s best friend! Not only is it free, but you can access it from anywhere. Because of this, many avid campers like using solar battery banks or power stations to keep their campsite powered up. If this sounds ideal for your situation, then we have the perfect 100W solar kit for you.

This foldable solar panel from Rockpal comes with ten different adaptors, specifically for charging solar generators. It also has three built-in smart USB ports for 5V charging, meaning you can charge your phone or tablet directly from the solar panel without having to worry about overcharging.

This panel is lightweight, only 5lb, and folds up to be the size of a thin briefcase. It is waterproof and weather-resistant as well as very durable. It also comes with built-in heavy-duty grommets so you can easily hang it on your tent or camper.

Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
TP-Solar 100W Solar Kit

TP-Solar 100W Solar Kit

Quick Look: 100W monocrystalline solar panel. Durable and weather-resistant. Comes with 20V PWM charge controller, solar cables, and mounting brackets.Check Price at Amazon

Solar power is also great for those who like to spend a lot of time traveling in their RV, but don’t like wasting time looking for a campsite with a power hookup. If you want your RV to be grid-free, then take a look at this solar panel kit from TP-Solar.

This kit comes with a highly-durable solar panel that is specifically designed with multiple mounting options, perfect for RV installation. Another benefit to this panel is that it is lightweight, only 15lb, meaning that you won’t have to hire a bodybuilder to help you get it on to the roof of your RV or caravan.

The included PWM charge controller is capable of handling 20V of power. It comes with an easy to read LCD display that shows your battery’s stats including charge level, temperature, voltage, and more. This controller has built-in protection against battery discharge, overcharging, and reverse polarity. This kit is also compatible with expansion, making it easy to add more panels later on.

Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon

How We Chose The Best 100 Watt Solar Panel Kits

In our search for the best 100W solar panel kits, we found many great options. We found so many in fact, that it was hard to choose which ones to feature. We ended up basing our decision on a few simple factors including efficiency, durability, versatility, and ease of use.

Efficiency

All 100W solar panels are designed to produce 100W of power under optimum conditions. Unfortunately, optimum conditions are not always available. That is why we looked for high-efficiency panels that could still collect a fair amount of power even when the weather is less than perfect.

Durability and Versatility

Many people choose 100W solar panels because they are smaller and more portable than the larger panels designed for roof-top installation. This portability makes them particularly popular amongst campers, RVers, and van lifers. With this in mind, we sought out 100W kits that were durable and versatile enough to meet the needs of all of our solar loving adventurers.

Ease of Use

There are a number of things about switching to solar that can be complicated, but it doesn’t have to be scary, especially if you start with a small solar kit like those on our list. We chose these kits because they are good for both beginners and solar pros. With easy installation and operation as well as including most of the necessary accessories, these kits offer easy access to solar energy at a price that is much more affordable than a full home system.

What You Need To Know About 100-Watt Solar Kits

If you are new to the solar scene, here is a quick summary of some useful things that you should know before you purchase your first solar kit.

Monocrystalline Vs. PolyCrystalline Vs. Flexible

If you’ve been researching solar power for any amount of time, you probably already know that solar panels come in a few different varieties. The three most common types are monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and flexible, or thin film.

Monocrystalline and Polycrystalline are very similar. They are both made out of silicon crystal wafers. The wafers used in monocrystalline panels are cut from a single lab-created silicon crystal. The wafers for polycrystalline panels are cut from silicon crystals that have been melted down and pressed together to form a large block.

So what does that mean exactly? Basically, monocrystalline panels are slightly more efficient, but they can also be more expensive. When it comes to smaller panels, like the more portable options on our list, monocrystalline is better because it can generate more power per square inch. In terms of large home solar kits, the difference in efficiency is sometimes negligible, but that’s a discussion for another day.

Flexible solar panels are relatively new when compared to monocrystalline or polycrystalline panels. Flexible panels can be made out of a number of different materials which could explain why they vary so much in their levels of efficiency. The technology behind these panels has improved quite a bit over the last few years, but in general, they are not as long-lasting or as efficient as traditional panels.

Charge Controllers

Charge controllers are an extremely important element in any solar system because they regulate the electrical charge going into your battery bank. The amount of energy being generated by your solar panel will fluctuate all throughout the day based on the amount of sunlight. This is not good when it comes to your battery bank because without regulation that fluctuating power can cause overcharging, short-circuiting, and other battery-damaging conditions.

There are two main types of charge controller, PWM and MPPT.

PWM or Pulse Width Modulated, charge controllers are commonly thought of as basic charge controllers. These are the simplest and least expensive of the two options. PWM controllers work by monitoring the battery’s charge and allowing power through to the battery as it is needed. Although these controllers work just fine for small solar arrays, they are not a good choice if you plan on building a large solar system.

MPPT or Maximum Power Point Tracking, controllers work in a similar way, but they are more advanced. These controllers don’t just track the amount of power that your battery needs, they also track things like temperature and voltage. They are designed to electronically track and accommodate changes in voltage as well as charge your batteries as efficiently as possible. MPPT controllers are a good choice for every type of solar system, but they can be quite a bit more expensive than PWM, so if you have a smaller system, it might not be worth the extra money to purchase an MPPT controller.

Expert Tip: Keep in mind that charge controllers come in different sizes and that you have to have a charge controller that is powerful enough to handle the amount of electricity coming out of your solar array. All controllers come with a list of specifications showing what they can handle, but if you’re not sure, ask a professional before making your purchase so you don’t end up buying something you can’t use.

Battery Power

Solar panels generate power but they don’t store it. Because of this, most people choose to combine their solar panel with a solar battery or power station so that they can store up the power and use it later on. When it comes to portable solar panels, most people prefer using power stations because they are also very portable and user-friendly. The best choice for you will depend on your situation, just be sure to choose a power storage option before taking your solar panel on any adventures.

How to Choose The Best 100 Watt Solar Panel Kit For You

Since all of these kits are designed to produce the same amount of power and you now know what to look for in a quality solar panel, the only thing you have to worry about when choosing your kit is the style. There are several styles to choose from and each has its own benefits. The way you plan on using your solar panel will dictate the style you need.

If you’re planning on using your solar panel for camping trips, then you will want to choose a lightweight durable model like the Rockpals Foldable Panel on our list. If you’re looking for a way to add a little free electricity to your RV or camper, then a more permanent option like the TP-Power kit would be a better choice. For those of you who want a multi-purpose solar panel kit to use at home and on the go, our overall pick from Renogy is the one for you.

Bottom Line

Solar energy is a power source that we have really just begun tapping into. Thanks to companies like Renogy and TP-Power, solar power is becoming more accessible every day. With kits like those on our list, even solar novices with no previous solar experience can begin using solar power right away. If you are one of those people, welcome to the solar scene! We’re glad you’re here. Now that you know all about 100W solar kits, we hope that knowledge will give you the confidence you need to begin investing in solar today.

Top 5 Best 100-Watt Solar Kits of 2020


More Recommended Articles and Guides