Solar energy has become one of the most popular sources of renewable energy. After all, it’s an ideal solution to combat exorbitant energy costs. However, many people wonder if a solar-powered generator is worth the investment.
To answer this question, it’s crucial to find out first what you can run on such devices. If they can address your needs, then you can buy one for your home or camping needs. Is the price of a solar generator worth it to you? Read on to find out.
What Is a Solar Generator?
A solar generator is a machine that provides users with backup power derived from sunlight. They often do not require fuel, making them an environmentally friendly, silent, and low-maintenance power source.
Some pioneers introduced the concept of solar generators in the early 1990s, but the expensive installment costs and other complexities hindered its industry growth. However, they are now just as affordable as other types of generators on the market.
How Do Solar Generators Work?
Solar generators gather energy from the sun through solar panels, which are devices that turn sunlight into electrical currents. The solar panels then produce direct current (DC) electricity and convert the power into AC.
Solar-powered generators are ideal for camping, traveling, and other outdoor activities because of their portability. They’re also a solid source of backup energy for your home during blackouts and extreme weather conditions.
However, because of their charging time and relatively low wattage capacity, they have their limitations. They’re not ideal for extended use across all of the large appliances on your property.
What Can You Run on a Solar Generator?
Portable solar generators and solar backup generators are the two most well-known types of solar generators. They have different capacities, storage systems, and costs.
Solar Backup Generators
You can use solar backup generators when the electrical grid fails. They are an ideal power alternative to installing a complete system and they can store high-wattage output through several batteries. You can use them for small to mid-sized appliances such as TV sets, computers, or microwave ovens.
Depending on the amount of sunlight, you can usually charge these devices to full capacity in less than two days. The best part about them is that you can store them indoors or outdoors.
Portable Solar Generators
As the name suggests, portable solar generators are lightweight devices and ideal for movement. Apart from your home, you can store them in boats, RVs, cars, or campsites. Most of these appliances come with a pull handle for convenient transport.
In most cases, they cannot power large appliances like washing machines, heaters, or dishwashers. Low-wattage solar panels also take some time to recharge these generators. However, because of their affordability, low maintenance, and environmental cleanliness, many people prefer them over their gas-powered counterparts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can You Run a House on a Solar Generator?
In most cases, solar generators can only power about 85% of your home’s appliances, but not for prolonged periods. While the sun is more than powerful enough to power a whole house, it’s challenging to capture enough energy to address your needs.
Can You Use a Solar Generator to Run an Air Conditioner?
Yes, some solar backup generators can run air conditioners, but not their portable counterparts. However, don’t expect your air conditioners to run on generator power alone beyond a few hours. Consider the power requirements of your appliances first before attempting to power them with a solar generator.
What Will a 500, 1,000, 1,500, and 2,000-Watt Solar Generator Run?
Here’s a quick guide on what 500, 1,000, 1,500, and 2,000-watt solar generators can power:
- 500W: This much energy is enough to run televisions, game consoles, laptops, and power tools.
- 1000W: You can use small to midsize appliances with this wattage, including desktop computers, dishwashers, slow cookers, portable fans, and coffee makers.
- 1500W: Using this much power is enough to run small refrigerators, electric stoves, and microwave ovens.
- 2000W: With 2000W on your side, you can power virtually any appliance in your house, but it would be almost impossible to keep everything running simultaneously. However, you can use air conditioners, washing machines, and heat pumps with this wattage.