We all know how nerve-wracking it can be to try to use your phone only to find that the battery is running low. This is especially stressful when you are away from home and do not have easy access to an outlet. You could carry a traditional power bank with you, but if that battery runs low you’re left in the same unfortunate situation. Why not carry a charger that you can charge anywhere? That’s right, we’re talking about solar USB chargers.
With a solar USB charger, you can charge your phone anywhere where you have access to sunlight. These chargers are very popular among campers and hikers, but you do not have to be an outdoorsy person to take advantage of solar-powered chargers. We have done some research and compiled a list of quality solar chargers that anyone can use. Go ahead and take a look at our picks and then we’ll give you some tips about you how you can find the best solar USB charger for you.
Top 4 Best Solar USB Chargers of 2021
- Hiluckey Solar Power Bank: Best Overall Solar USB Charger
- BigBlue 3 Solar USB Charger: Best Battery-Free Solar USB Charger
- AddAcc Solar Power Bank: Best Solar USB Charger for Fast Charging
- Feeke Solar Power Bank: Best Solar USB Charger For Charging Multiple Devices
Reviews of the Best Solar USB Chargers
When you’re compiling a list of travel necessities, make sure you add the Hiluckey Solar Power Bank to your list. This 25000mAh power bank can hold enough power to charge your smartphone 8-10 times on a single charge, making it an essential accessory for long trips.
This power bank has a sleek compact design that won’t take up much space in your already packed luggage. You can even use a carabiner clip to hook it to the outside of your bag. When you are ready to recharge your battery bank, simply fold out the four high-powered solar panels and allow the sun to do the rest.
You can easily use this charger at home or on the go. If you are planning a long hike or camping trip, you can rest assured that this charger is ready for the challenge. It is waterproof, dustproof, and shockproof. It also has a handy built-in LED flashlight that has three settings: normal, SOS, and strobe, just in case.Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
For the days when all of your devices seem to run out of juice at the same time, there is the BigBlue 3. The BigBlue 3 comes with three USB ports that can simultaneously charge up to 5W/2.4A each. This is not a power bank, it is a direct charger, so no waiting for the power bank to charge before you can charge your phone. Simply face the solar panels toward the sun and this charger will begin charging your phone immediately.
With its foldable lightweight design, this unit is great for backpacking. It weighs only 20.6oz and measures 11.1” x 6.3” x 1.3” when folded. It comes with four carabiner clips and can easily be attached to your backpack or tent for solar power wherever you are.
This model is ultra-durable and weather resistant. The high-efficiency solar panels are designed to be water and dust-proof and the ports are protected by a waterproof cover. This charger is also designed to protect your electronics from overcharging, overheating, and short-circuiting, providing a worry-free charging experience.Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
If you require a solar power bank that will charge up quickly as well as recharge your phone quickly, then the AddAcc 25000mAh Solar Power Bank is the one for you. This power bank comes with two USB ports and it is compatible with Qi wireless charging. It is designed to automatically charge at different rates for different devices offering optimum quick-charging.
With five 1.5W high-powered solar panels, this model from AddAcc can quickly convert the power of the sun into battery power. You can fold the solar panels up for easy portability or, for the days when you don’t need quite so much solar power, you can detach four of the solar panels, making the power bank even easier to carry.
This model is also ultra-durable. It is waterproof, shockproof, and dustproof, so it can go anywhere you go. It is also designed to provide stable charging, so no need to worry about over-voltage, short circuits, or overcharging.Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
If you have multiple devices that you need to recharge or you’re sharing your power bank with a friend, it is important to know that your power bank is capable of keeping up. With the Feeke 30000mAh Solar Power Bank you never have to wonder if you will have enough charging power.
The 30000mAh lithium-ion battery can hold enough power to charge your phone up to eight times on a single charge. It also has a built-in battery level indicator, so you always know how much power is left. Need multiple charging options? No problem. This unit comes with two USB ports, one Type-C port, and it is compatible with Qi wireless charging. No matter what device you need to charge, your Feeke power bank can handle it.
Its rugged design makes this a great choice for everyday use. It is water, dust, and shockproof and has a durable hard plastic housing that can withstand just about whatever life throws at you. It is also designed to protect your devices from overcharging, overheating, or short-circuiting, protecting you and your devices from any charging mishaps.Learn More and Buy Now at Amazon
How We Chose The Best Solar USB Chargers
In our search for the best solar USB chargers, we looked for models that were powerful, versatile, and user-friendly.
As we mentioned in the beginning, no one wants to be left with a dead phone battery. That is why we looked for solar chargers that were powerful enough to keep all your devices charged up. Although some are more powerful than others, each of our picks is capable of charging more than one device at a time. For the power banks, we looked for quality lithium-ion and lithium-polymer batteries that could hold enough power to charge your devices multiple times on a single charge.
Why spend money on a device that can only be used one way when you can choose a device with versatility? That’s why we chose chargers that you would be able to use every day. Each of these chargers is heavy-duty and built to last. You can take them on long hiking trips or simply use them at home to take advantage of free solar power, whatever works for you.
We also looked for models that had a variety of charging options so that there would be something for everyone. With options like extra USB ports, Type-C ports, and Qi wireless charging, there are charging options for every device.
Ease of Use
Solar USB chargers are pretty straightforward and simple to use, but there are a few extra features that can make your solar experience even easier. For our picks, we looked for features like overcharge and short circuit protection so you can use your solar charger every day without fear of it damaging your phone.
We also looked for models that were built to withstand extreme conditions so you can climb any mountain in any weather without ever having to worry about your charger being damaged by the elements.
What You Need To Know About Solar USB Chargers
Here is a little information that you should know that will help you to better determine the type of solar charger that will be best for you.
Solar Power Bank Vs. Solar Chargers
You may have noticed that there are two different types of solar-powered phone chargers: solar power banks and solar chargers.
Solar Power Banks are just like a regular power bank. They contain a rechargeable battery, usually lithium-ion or lithium-polymer, that you use to store electricity until you need it for your phone. In the case of solar power banks, you can charge the battery using an AC adaptor or solar power. The great thing about solar power banks is that you can charge the power bank throughout the day and then use that to charge your phone at night or on rainy days when there isn’t enough sun. The only downside is that the electricity from the solar panels has to go through the battery before going to your phone. This means that if you let the battery run out completely, you will not be able to charge your phone until you have given the battery time to recharge.
Solar Chargers skip the battery and use solar power to directly charge your devices. The great thing about solar chargers is that they are lightweight, making them more convenient for long backpacking trips where every ounce counts. The downside is that they do not store power so you have to remember to charge all your devices while the sun is shining.
Mini Solar Panels
Like all solar panels, the panels on solar USB chargers come in different sizes and have different charging capabilities. The solar power banks that only have one solar panel are meant to be charged with an AC adaptor and only have a solar panel as a means to charge it during an emergency. This type of charger is perfectly adequate for short trips where you can charge the battery before leaving, then use solar power to maintain the charge. The bigger models that have multiple mini solar panels are a much better choice for prolonged solar charging because they can absorb more light and produce more electricity.
How to Choose The Best Solar USB Charger For You
Now that you know all about solar USB chargers, it’s time to discuss the criteria you should consider before making your purchase.
This may seem a bit obvious, but the first thing you need to consider is the amount of power you’re going to need on average. If you plan on exclusively using solar power and you are carrying more than one rechargeable device, you will need some serious power. Choose a solar charger or power bank that has multiple solar panels that can produce enough power to charge all of your devices.
On the other hand, if you plan on using your charger at home as a way to take advantage of free solar power, then you could choose one of the smaller devices. It may charge a bit slower, but it will still get the job done.
Since these chargers are often used for outdoors, they are usually designed to withstand a lot. That being said, before making your purchase you should make sure that the charger you’re looking at will fit your specific outdoor activity. For example, if you are going white water rafting, you will want a charger that is waterproof, not water-resistant. If you are traveling in extreme temperatures, you will want to look for a charger that can withstand large temperature fluctuations.
The most common extra features that you will find on solar USB chargers include things like:
- Multiple types of charging ports.
- Wireless charging capabilities.
- Built-in LED flashlight or emergency signal.
- Detachable extra solar panels.
The great thing is that the average solar charger comes with at least a few, if not all, of these features. Extras like the LED flashlight can be real lifesavers, so don’t be too quick to choose a plain jane model because you want to save money. More often than not, the extra features won’t increase the cost very much, if at all. Take the time to look through a few model options because the chances are pretty good that you will find a model that has both the power you need and the features you want without having to break the bank.
Solar power is always a good choice! No matter which of your devices you are recharging, choosing solar power is better for the environment and better for your budget. Solar chargers come in a variety of sizes and styles and are designed to hold up to even the craziest of your adventures.
Finding the best solar USB charger for you is a fairly simple process, but it does require a bit of forethought. Before beginning your search, you should determine the amount of power you will need based on the number of devices you will be charging. Once you know how much power you need, you will want to look for a charger in that range that has the durability you need. After that, it’s all about the extras. Most of these chargers come with several helpful extras, it’s just a matter of determining which ones will be the most beneficial to you.
Remember, you don’t have to be out in the woods to take advantage of solar-powered chargers, these chargers will work just as well at home as they do on the go, so why not help to protect the environment and lower your energy cost at the same time? You can’t go wrong with any of our top picks, but we recommend the Hiluckey Solar Power Bank.