Best USB Solar Charger of 2020

  Comparison

Product Size Weight Price range
NexTrend Portable Solar Charger NexTrend Portable Solar Charger 12.1 x 7.3 x 3.1 inches 4.16 pounds $$
Kingsolar Solar Charger 40W Kingsolar Solar Charger 40W 13 x 7.1 x 2.3 inches 2.2 pounds $
ENKEEO 50W Solar Charger ENKEEO 50W Solar Charger 22.3 x 17.4 x 2.8 inches 6.6 pounds $$
Flexible solar panel For 12V battery Flexible solar panel For 12V battery 12 x 7.1 x 2.3 inches 2.4 pounds $$
Big Blue 28W Solar Charger Big Blue 28W Solar Charger 11.1 x 6.3 x 1.3 inches 1.29 pounds $
Renogy Portable E.Flex Monocrystalline 10W Solar Panel with USB Port Renogy Portable E.Flex Monocrystalline 10W Solar Panel with USB Port 10 x 7 x 1 inches 2.1 pounds $

Whether you like hiking, enjoying a bike ride in the park or just want to camp in the middle of nature somewhere, you always have your gadgets with you - and yes, the most important of all is probably your smartphone. So, if you don’t have access to a wall socket, but you want to make sure your battery is always full of juice, then you need to turn your attention to solar-powered chargers, as the sun can work miracles if you find the right charger for you.

 Most of them work with small devices, like phones and tablets, but there are some options if you want to power your laptop too. Big, small, portable or water-resistant or why not all in one? Before buying, we need to assess the options and the purpose they serve, so, let’s dive in and look at some of the best USB solar-powered chargers that we gathered for charging up your devices while enjoying the outdoors.

This one is on the more expensive side, but NexTrend Portable Solar Charger allows you to charge not only your phone but also your tablet or even laptop, due to the high wattage (60W), the 9 solar panels and the 10-in-1 connector included, which fits most laptops on the market. So, this is very suitable for those who bring multiple devices when camping or hiking, or just want to make sure they always have enough power at hand. This solar charger also has three USB ports, it can charge two devices at the same time and has an IC built-in technology that detects the current flow of your device and can speed up the charging if needed.

Although a little bulky due to those 9 panels, NexTrend is fairly portable, meaning that you can lay it out in the sun just like that, or hang it on a tent, but keep in mind that if you want to hang it to your travel backpack, it may be a little longer than others. Otherwise, it is foldable and doesn’t take too much space (it looks just like a briefcase, maybe a little smaller).


PROS:


•    It has enough power to charge large-sized devices, such as laptops.

•    It is foldable and easy to carry around.

•    You can choose the connector that suits your device.

•    It has three USB ports and can charge two devices simultaneously.

•    It has a smart built-in technology that can speed up the charge.


CONS:


•    It cannot connect to a power station if needed.

•    It is a bit heavy, and that adds up when you are on the go and already have some weight to carry in your backpack (for example, when hiking).


So, after you’ve read all the pros and cons, should you buy this particular USB solar charger? What other qualities should matter when it comes to solar-charging devices?

First of all, let’s leave the specs behind and focus on the activities that you are interested in doing when going out and enjoying the wild nature. The point is, whether you install a tent on a beach or venture into the wilderness, most probably it isn’t a one day trip, so while you’re outdoors, and especially if you need your laptop for work or even watching a movie, you need to make sure you have enough power to get by without having to worry about battery life. 

There are several other solar-powered charging panels on the market, but (depending on the wattage) most of them can only charge smaller devices like phones, so this is the perfect fit if you carry larger devices with you. 


Even if you don’t have to carry a laptop with you, the more power, the faster the charging time, so this one would be a great addition to your travel kit if you want to cut the charging time on a phone a little bit. Also, with this one, you can charge pretty much any device: phone, tablet, GPS, external battery or your camera.


Another important aspect is to keep in mind that the charging times may vary and are certainly longer than if you would charge your devices through a wall socket, but in the end, if you want to go on a camping or hiking trip, all that matters is having enough power to keep the batteries full with juice.  


The best part is that you don’t need to be an electrician or to start making complex calculus and conversions to make sure that the wattage, the voltage and the amperage are exact. This powerful solar charger does it all for you, as it is like your phone – smart enough.


Overall, the NexTrend Portable Solar Charger is the perfect fit for anyone who enjoys the outdoors and doesn’t want to worry about carrying external batteries, stressing over power outlets or finding a wall socket A.S.A.P.


Reasonably priced and packing a good amount of power, the Kingsolar Solar Charger 40W is a very good choice when it comes to the outdoor toys. If you’re looking for an outdoor companion that can charge up most devices, then this is one of the top choices, and here’s why:

It comes in a lighter and smaller package than most solar chargers, at just 2.8 lb, but it is capable to charge a phone, a tablet, a GPS or even a Power Station. When it comes to laptops, you can charge only the ones that fit in the specifications. This one is not necessarily a solar charger dedicated to charging large devices, but rather small to medium ones and its purpose being a small package itself is to deliver power efficiently.

Kingsolar has one smart function that can bring an advantage to those who worry about battery drainage during cloudy conditions: it automatically stops when the sunlight is blocked, and it restarts when it has enough light to function.


This solar-powered panel is packed with a USB port and a DC port and it can charge two devices simultaneously. Also, it was created for outdoor use, so it’s made out of strong materials to withstand the harsh environments and the outer layer is water-resistant.


PROS:


•    It charges two devices simultaneously

•    It’s made of strong materials

•    It’s water-resistant

•    It has the automatic-start function


CONS:


•    It has only two ports

•    Cannot charge most laptops


At the end of the day, it all comes down to preferences, lifestyle, your needs, your budget and the benefits that outweigh the cons. In this case, Kingsolar checks a few marks, given its price point versus its capability.


Here are some good points we gathered and some reasons why we think you should give it a try:


We know that such solar-powered devices are dependent on the weather conditions and they need a good amount of sunlight in order to deliver, so you may wonder if its power is affected by the clouds or even by the sun not hitting the right spot. Well, yes, they all are a little bit, but Kingsolar has this smart system that automatically shuts down when you’re passing through a shaded area and restarts when the light is strong enough, so you don’t have to worry about diminished charging or battery drainage, as it will start again at full speed once it catches the light.


The greater the power, the heavier the weight and the more inconvenient to carry around in most cases, so keep this in mind if you like to go on hikes and already have to carry some weight. In this case, the power-weight ratio is very good, as when it is folded, it is ultra-compact. Speaking of power, the truth is that you probably won’t need as much wattage to charge a laptop in most situations, so 40W is a good amount of power for charging even two phones at once. It also has two holes at the top so you can hang it on your backpack or tent.


All in all, for the quality and the price point, this solar-powered device is a good choice for most long or short-term outdoor activities, so before planning your next adventure, take a look at Kingsolar Solar Charger.


Another really good option if you want high power and efficiency is ENKEEO 50W Solar Charger. At just above the $100 mark, this device is a powerful source of energy, being able to charge two devices via two USB ports, and the best part is that it comes with the capability of connecting to a variety of Power Stations.

It is not the lightest, thinnest or easiest to carry product on the market, but at the same time, it is not very heavy and has a fairly compact form when folded. So, keep this in mind, because this is relevant for the purpose that you want to use it for.


The 50 watts are enough to charge just about any device, from phones, tablets, cameras, and even a laptop. One of the two USB ports is a USB QC 3.0, which means it has fast-charging, and you can use both ports at the same time. 


Besides a variety of adaptors and cables, in the box, you will also find two clamps, which can be used to kickstart and charge even your car battery. Handy, right?


Another really handy accessory is the kickstand on the back of the panel, which helps you to angle it at 45 degrees and get the maximum energy possible.


PROS:


•    It can charge a variety of Power Stations

•    It has multiple connectors and adapters that suit most devices 

•    Two USB ports, one of them supports fast charging (QC 3.0)

•    The kickstand allows efficient energy capturing

•    Can charge multiple devices simultaneously

•    It is foldable, easy to pack (like a larger suitcase)


CONS:


•    Cannot fit into a backpack, due to its size when folded

•     it is relatively heavy


The bottom line is: if you like to camp in the woods or on the beach, or if you go on a boat trip, this USB solar-powered charger is a great companion. You can either lay it flat on the ground or put the kickstand and angle it towards the sun, plug in just about any device and watch it charge. It has an LED light that indicates if the device is charging.


On the other hand, it is not the most compact, lightweight or thin product (though, at this capacity it’s not necessarily expected to be), so take this into consideration if you have a weight limit when packing. For example, if you like hiking, you could take it with you, just keep in mind that it cannot fit into the backpack, so you have to carry it like a suitcase. It is doable, just not the most comfortable for some people.


The feature that we appreciate the most is the compatibility with various Power Stations, which is a plus when camping somewhere or just want to have a backup in case of emergency. Even if you don’t currently own such a portable Power Station, it’s good to have the option to use one someday: for example, when camping, you can use one to power your mini-fridge or even a source of lighting during the dark hours.


Overall, this is a good investment that comes with lots of benefits. If you like vacations and trips into the heart of nature, you should consider an alternative source of energy, and the sun is the best one you can choose. Now, it all depends on how much power and usage you choose. For 50W worth of power, you can bring multiple devices with you and make sure that they all have some juice left at the end of the day. Plus, you always have the option of buying a portable Power Station and make the best use out of all the energy that your solar charger is capable to deliver.


If you are looking for a good product that sells for an affordable price and provides great performances, then you can’t go wrong with the USB solar charger from Epsolar. This company has cemented its brand as a household name in the industry by producing premium products and the 100W USB solar charger is the perfect example of that. With a maximum power of 100W, you can be sure that the charger can fill up the battery of any device that you want, not only your smartphone. This is why this product is a great choice if you are planning to spend a couple of nights outdoors and you don’t want to run out of battery on your GPS tracker, smartphone or any other gadget.

The biggest problem that you will encounter with USB solar chargers is that they don’t do a great job of converting solar energy. Fortunately, this is not something that you need to worry about with this product. The manufacturers have equipped the product with industry-leading processing techniques that provide maximum efficiency of 20.97% steady power output. You can say goodbye to running out of battery whenever you go camping.

Another issue that no one tells you about when buying USB solar chargers is that cleaning them can be quite difficult. You can never predict the weather and if it rains, then you are going to have a hard time getting out the water and dirt from the glass surface. The folks at Epsolar want to provide their customers with premium products and this is why the USB solar charger is equipped with anti-reflective coating that doesn’t only make it easier to clean the surface, but it also improves the power output.

Pros:

Maximum power of 100W

Great solar power to energy conversion

Easy to clean

Compact design (easy to carry)


Cons:

It is not compatible with all laptop models


From the looks of it, the Epsolar 100W USB solar charger is a great choice with the only downside being the fact that your laptop might not be compatible with it. This is why you are advised to first check the specifications list of the product. Talking about specifications, let’s go over some other highlight features that this product has to offer so that you can find it easier to determine if it suits your needs or not.

While you might not be able to charge your laptop, truth be told, you won’t really have to. Laptop batteries are designed to last for hours on end and let’s be honest here, who spends their camping time on their laptop? You will more than likely to spend all your time tracking and exploring. Therefore, keeping the battery of your GPS and smartphone charged is more important than anything else.

We also want to mention that the compact design is a more important feature that most people think so. The solar panel can be folded to fit a backpack and this means that you can carry the product anywhere you want. To top it all off, the manufacturers have also equipped the solar panel with holes on each side so that you have an easier time mounting it to your tent, a tree or in other spots where the sun is shining.

Our conclusion for the Epson 100W is that it is a “must-have” accessory during camping trips. Safety is the most important priority and there’s nothing that campers dread more than when their smartphone or GPS battery runs out. Luckily, this is not going to be a problem for anyone who uses USB solar chargers.


This solar-powered charger is one of Amazon’s Choice products, and for what it does and especially the price point (which is a very attractive one), all we can say is that the Big Blue 28W Solar Charger is probably what you need. Why? Well, let’s see what it does for the price point and what expectations should you have if you’re thinking of buying it.

First, the Big Blue is so small and compact when folded, that you could easily carry it around in your backpack without worrying that it would take too much space or add extra weight. This is a plus, especially when you already must carefully plan every inch of your backpack when going on a hiking trip. 

It has 4 relatively small solar panels that are easily foldable and 28W power, so with this one you can charge smartphones, cameras or external batteries. Keep in mind that It doesn’t charge large devices such as laptops, but the Big Blue doesn’t aim to do that, it’s just trying to juice your daily and most needed devices, and it’s doing a good job. 

It also has a smart technology that provides optimal charging or even speeds up the charging when in optimal light conditions, and, if you’re not a fan of the automatic-restart function, this one will keep charging your devices even in cloudy weather conditions, just slower. In such situations, it would be a good idea to check your devices and connectivity once in a while, just to make sure everything is working properly. In the package, you will also find 4 carabiners and a micro USB cable.


Despite its small form factor, it is made out of durable materials, so it feels very sturdy. Also, while in the woods or hiking, don’t worry about the occasional rain or fog because it is water and dust resistant and perfectly capable of handling these weather conditions. However, be aware that it is not completely waterproof, so try not to keep it in the pouring rain if you can, as it can get damaged at one point.


PROS:


•    It is small and lightweight (fits in a backpack)

•    Durable materials, sturdy feeling

•    three USB ports

•    Speeds up charging when in optimal sunlight conditions and can charge during cloudy weather


CONS:


•    Cannot charge laptops or other larger devices


So, does this product fit your needs? And how or under what circumstances should you use it to get the full benefits? Is it enough?


Generally, most solar-powered chargers manage to deliver the power needed to at least charge one device – usually your phone – and, depending on the wattage, you can rest assure that you won’t be ending the day without at least one fully charged battery. 


The Big Blue is, objectively, a very good deal from this point of view. Given its low price versus the fair wattage power and the small and lightweight form factor, this is something you should consider if you like exploring the outdoors or backpack camping. It is more than enough if you consider the fact that, at 28W and four panels, it still manages to fold down to the size of a magazine, so it can fit inside the backpack without taking too much space. You can even fit it into any emergency kit.


Even if you cannot charge a laptop, most of the time you won’t even need one, so consider this when looking for a way to power your devices through solar energy only. Otherwise, it does exactly what it says it would do: it has a fair amount of power to get you through the day and make sure that your phone, camera or even tablet is ready to be used.


Where should you use it? In any environment, as it is sturdy enough to withstand dust and scratches, fog or light rain. If you find yourself in a clouded area, or a forest, don’t worry – it will keep charging your devices, just at a slower rate, depending on the weather conditions. Once you are out of the clouded area, make sure you place the panels so that it can catch as much sunlight as possible.


That said, the Big Blue can be a great addition to your travel kit, especially if you’re on a budget, but still want to get as many benefits as possible for the price. The four buckles that come inside the package are useful to make sure that you can safely hang it on a tent, backpack or even a tree. 



Looking for a really small, thin, lightweight and ultra-portable USB solar charger? Then Renogy Portable E.Flex Monocrystalline 10W Solar Charger is a product to pay attention to.

If you are new to solar-powered panels that can charge up your devices, but we’ve caught your attention, this is where you should start your research. Pricewise, it is very budget friendly. So, if you are on a budget, or just don’t want to jump into the more expensive category until you’ve tried the technology first, here are some good reasons why this solar panel is worth your attention.


Yes, it has just one USB port, but this doesn’t mean that you can charge only one device. If you have multiple small devices, here’s a trick: just plug in an external battery bank (preferably with more than one USB port), and from there you can charge multiple devices if needed. On the other hand, if you’re going on a trip and you just need your phone, you won’t need a sophisticated solar-powered charger, just one that is good enough to get you through the day.


Did we mention how thin and small it is? Most solar-powered chargers have multiple panels and are foldable to try to occupy less space, but this one, to give you an idea, is just a bit taller than a video game case. It has two 5W panels and it folds just like a book, so you can fit it anywhere; not to mention that it has only 8.7 ounces. It also comes with two carabiners and four suction cups for easy installation.


PROS:


•    Thin, lightweight and takes very little space

•    Water-resistant panels

•    Auto-optimization charging (recovers lost power from shaded areas)

•    Easy attachment


CONS:


•    The USB port is not protected from rain


What should you take from this? 


For someone that is concerned with space and weight when it comes to backpacking, this is a very good alternative to large, foldable and heavy solar-powered systems. Although you don’t have multiple options when it comes to charging, the one USB port is enough to charge one device at a time. So, if you don’t go on work trips or don’t need several devices charged at the same time, you can easily rely on Renogy Solar-Powered panel 10W. 


For this price point and this category, this is a great deal - You will find that, in this case, less is more. Anyway, if you take more than one device with you, you can always do the trick that we talked about: just charge a power bank instead.


Although you cannot compare charging times when it comes to solar power versus wall socket energy, this one seems to do just fine, some say that it charges an iPhone 6s from 20% to 70% in about two hours on a cloudy day. So, a pretty good result given the fact that it can perform a lot better in proper sunlight conditions.


The suction cups are a great addition to this package, as you can easily mount the panel on a window if you don’t want to hang it somewhere else while camping.


The Auto-Optimization feature comes in handy when you come out of the shaded area, as it recovers the lost energy once you return to a sunny spot. 


Overall, for what it is and what it does, you should consider trying it, especially because it is super affordable, given its low price point. So, no regrets if you choose this solar-powered charger, as it can be a great way to introduce you to the world of USB solar-powered devices or who knows? Maybe it would fit your needs so good, that you won’t think about buying another one for a few years.


1. What is the best solar charger for camping?

A: You can choose any portable solar-powered charger. It depends on the amount of power you want (wattage), how many devices you need to charge, your available space when packing or in the tent and your budget. If you don’t plan to move around much, or don’t mind the extra weight, you can invest in a higher wattage, larger solar charger to make sure you can power multiple and larger devices. In that case, a 60/100W solar charger that also connects to a Power Station may suit your needs. 

2. What is the best time of the day to charge my devices through solar-powered panels?

A: Whenever there is enough light and as long as you keep the panel facing the sunlight. The panels are capturing the light from the sun, not the heat, so, even if the charger lays flat on the ground, hangs on a tent or backpack, make sure the sunlight is hitting the panel/s directly.


3.  Do solar panels need maintenance?

A: It is generally advised to check on them periodically and remove the dust or dirt that has accumulated over time. Also, you can check the electrical connections to make sure everything is working properly before connecting devices, in order to prevent incidents.


4.  Is a solar panel capable of working in cloudy conditions?

A: Yes, it is possible to work on partly cloudy or foggy conditions, but keep in mind that the charging times may vary and slow down, as the best way to use a solar panel is in direct sunlight.


5. Can I use the solar charger in the rain?

A: Most solar panels can withstand humid conditions, such as light raining or fog, but they are water-resistant, not completely waterproof, so, it is advised not to keep them in the pouring rain or underwater for long periods.


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1NexTrend Portable Solar Charger
NexTrend Portable Solar Charger
2Kingsolar Solar Charger 40W
Kingsolar Solar Charger 40W
3ENKEEO 50W Solar Charger
ENKEEO 50W Solar Charger