The Best Solar Generators of 2024

The Best Solar Generators of 2024

Top-Rated & Best-Selling Solar Generators

Jared, the Generator Expert
By 
Generator Expert

In some parts of the country, relying on gas to run your generator can be costly or even prohibited. Fortunately, battery backup solar generators, sometimes called portable power stations, are becoming an increasingly viable alternative. They offer silent operation, minimal maintenance, and zero emissions, so they can safely be run indoors. Plus, they are becoming more powerful every year, with some now able to provide home backup power during an outage.


Take a moment to read through my picks and criteria for the best solar generators. Be sure to click on the generators to view the product page filled with more features, specs, reviews, and other great resources.

 

The Best Solar Generators 

Best Solar Generator Best Solar Generator for Camping Best Solar Generator for RV Best Whole House Solar Generator

EcoFlow DELTA Max 2000 

EcoFlow DELTA Max 2000  

Goal Zero YETI® 1500X

Goal Zero YETI® 1500X

EcoFlow DELTA Pro Bundle

EcoFlow DELTA Pro Bundle

Generac Guardian 7209

Generac Guardian 7209


 

How We Picked the Best Solar Generators 

When recommending solar generators, we take four features into account. 

 

Power

It used to be that solar generators and portable battery packs could only power a couple small items. Maybe you would use it to charge a smartphone on a road trip. Today, solar generators can power much more. As with traditional generators, we measure their power in wattage. It’s important to note that, despite their name, solar generators do not “generate” power in the traditional sense. Instead, they deliver stored power. That said, we will continue to refer to them as generators because that is the commonly accepted term.


Another measure of power specific to solar generators is called a watt hour. Watt hours refer to how many watts a generator can power for one hour. For example, a generator rated for 2,000-watt hours will power an item or combination of items that draw 2,000 watts for one hour before needing to recharge. 

 

Useability

When evaluating a solar generator’s useability, we’re mostly looking at battery life, recharge time, and other indicators related to performance. Although battery life will vary based on how much you’re powering, we look for fast recharge speeds that minimize downtime. Battery shelf life, or how long the battery stays charged without being used is another indicator. Finally, as with any generator, we consider physical dimensions (i.e. how heavy it is to move), wireless connectivity, and possible applications.

 

Versatility

For solar generators, versatility primarily measures the number of outputs and inputs. Output receptacles are used to power electrical items, and the more variety a generator has, the more items you can potentially back up. Input receptacles are used to recharge the generator. Common input receptacles allow you to recharge the battery using solar panels, wall outlets, or car chargers. 

 

Overall Value

We prioritize performance over price, so you won’t necessarily find the cheapest solar generators on our list. That's why, instead of evaluating a generator on price alone, we look at what you're getting for the price to arrive at an overall value rating. 

 


 

Best Solar Generator: EcoFlow DELTA Max 2000 

The EcoFlow DELTA Max 2000 is a perfect example of how solar generators are becoming a viable alternative to gas-powered units. With a 2,016-watt-hour lithium battery pack that can provide 2,400 running watts and 5,000 starting watts, the DELTA Max 2000 can handle everything from camping to basic home backup. You can even parallel multiple units for extra power. Plus, DELTA Max has a unique technology called “X-Boost,” which can provide a 3,400-watt surge of power if you need it (although this will quickly drain the battery).


Charging is a cinch with the ability to use solar panels, a wall outlet, or a car charger. Using a wall outlet, the DELTA will fully charge in under two hours, which is among the fastest charging times I’ve seen. For solar charging, you can connect up to two 400-watt EcoFlow solar panels or use the MC4 connector if you have other panel brands. Charging speed will vary depending on the solar panels you use.


Once charged, its battery has a one-year shelf-life, so it’ll be ready to go when the next power outage hits. Thirteen outlet receptacles let you plug in standard wall plugs and USB cables. At only 48 pounds, this generator is easy to take where you need it, and you can even control and monitor everything remotely using the wireless EcoFlow app. Overall, the DELTA Max 2000 is a powerhouse without the noise, fumes, or maintenance that comes with gas-powered generators. The relatively low price makes this an even better catch.
 

Spec Details Rating
Power 2,016 watt-hour lithium battery pack; 2,400 running watts; 5,000 starting watts; X-Boost allows continuous surge of 3,400 watts 4 Stars
Usability Fully charges in under 2-hrs via wall outlet; 1-year shelf life at full charge; Compact design & weighs 48 pounds for easy storage & transport; Works with EcoFlow app for control/monitoring 5 Stars
Versatility Charges on AC, DC, or solar power; Multiple output receptacles including NEMA 5-15R, USB-A, USB-C & car power output; Can be paralleled with additional units 5 Stars
Overall Value Hassle-free power source with a relatively inexpensive price tag. 5 Stars

 

Who It's For:

  • Homeowners and renters looking for a power source they can safely run indoors.
  • Campers, tailgaters, and other outdoor hobbyists

 

Who It's Not For:

  • Homeowners looking for significant home backup power

 

Shop Now

 


 

Best Solar Generator for Camping: Goal Zero YETI® 1500X

Campers will be thrilled with the Goal Zero YETI 1500X. Putting out 2,000 running watts and 3,500 starting watts, the YETI will easily power basic creature comforts like lanterns, portable fans, computers, and more on your next outing. I love the huge variety of output receptacles that let me charge almost any small appliance or lighting I’d bring on a camping trip. Among these are USB-A, USB-C, a power pole port, standard 120V outlets, and much more.


The YETI’s 1500X lithium battery pack provides 1,516 watt hours before needing to recharge, which can be done via a wall outlet, car charger, or solar panels. Using solar will be the fastest option, with recharge times as low as 2.5 hours. You can conveniently monitor charging levels, power usage, and more with the informative LCD display or by using the Goal Zero YETI app. Worth mentioning is that the app allows for historical power tracking, which is a cool way to view your usage over time. Once fully charged, you can store the YETI for up to 18 months without losing power.

 

Weighing just under 46 pounds, the YETI is no heavier to bring on your next camping trip than a cooler or portable stove, but it will make a massive difference in your overall experience. I highly recommend it for camping for its unmatched versatility and convenient power.

 

Specs Details Rating
Power 1,516 watt-hour lithium battery pack; 2,000 running watts; 3,500 starting watts 4 Stars
Usability Can be charged in 2.5 hours using solar panels; 18-month shelf life at full charge; Compact design & weighs 45.64 pounds for easy storage & transport; Works with Goal Zero Yeti app for control/monitoring 5 Stars
Versatility Charges on AC, DC, or solar power; Multiple output receptacles including NEMA 5-15R, USB-A, USB-C, 6 mm port; power pole port & car power output; Can be paralleled with additional units 5 Stars
Overall Value Fantastic versatility with its receptacles and priced fairly for its power and features. 5 Stars

 

Who It's For:

  • Campers
  • Tailgaters
  • Off-grid events

 

Who It's Not For:

  • Homeowners looking for significant home backup power

 

Shop Now

 


 

Best Solar Generator for RV: EcoFlow DELTA Pro Bundle

There are many backup power options for RVs, and the EcoFlow DELTA Pro power station bundle is one of the better ones. It includes two DELTA Pro units for double the power. Specifically, that's 7,200 watt-hours, 7,200 running watts, and 14,400 starting watts--enough to power two 15K BTU air conditioners for your RV. 

 

What makes this bundle even more geared toward RVs is the TT-30R receptacle, which lets you plug your vehicle in directly without needing to purchase a separate adaptor. You can recharge the Delta Pro using a wall outlet, which will charge it in under two hours, solar panels, or a car charger. If you opt for the solar option, you can connect up to four 400-watt EcoFlow solar panels (sold separately) or use an MC4 connector with other panel brands.

 

There are a whopping 14 output receptacles on the DELTA Pro that will accept everything from smartphones to pressure cookers to portable radios--anything you might want while on the road. If your battery needs extra power, then X-Boost technology can provide a surge of wattage (up to 4,500 watts per individual DELTA Pro unit). Just keep in mind that using the X-Boost feature will drain your battery faster.

 

Each DELTA Pro unit weighs less than 100 pounds, and the EcoFlow app makes it easy to control and monitor your power stations once they're running. Overall, this is a simple, clean, and powerful solution for your RV, but it does come with a steeper price tag.

 

Specs Details Rating
Power (2) 3,600 watt-hour lithium battery packs; Combined 7,200 running watts; 14,400 starting watts; X-Boost allows continuous surge of 4,500 watts 5 Stars
Usability Fully charges in under 2-hrs via wall outlet; 1-year shelf life at full charge; Compact design & each unit weighs 99 pounds; Works with EcoFlow app for control/monitoring 5 Stars
Versatility Charges on AC, DC, or solar power; Multiple output receptacles including NEMA 5-15R, USB-A, USB-C, TT-30R, DC5521, Anderson & car power outputs; Can be paralleled with additional units 5 Stars
Overall Value Expensive, but you're getting significant power without noise or emissions. 4 Stars

 

Who It's For:

  • RV owners
  • Homeowners with emergency backup needs
  • Construction workers with light power needs

 

Who It's Not For:

  • Budget-conscious shoppers with only light backup power needs

 

Shop Now

 


 

Best Whole House Solar Generator: Generac PWRcell

 

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the future of backup power. The Generac PWRcell battery backup system captures and stores electricity either from solar panels or the electrical grid to power your entire home without noise, fumes, or significant maintenance. You don’t have to wait until a power outage, either. The PWRcell lets you use stored energy during peak demand times when electricity costs are high, thereby reducing your electric bill and saving money. You can even sell some of your stored energy back to your electric company. 


Before moving on, let’s get real. The cost to purchase and install the PWRcell is in the tens of thousands. If you decide to install solar panels on your home, you can add thousands more to the cost. Buying the PWRcell is a significant lifestyle change, but it’s one that’ll pay you back for years to come.


The PWRcell consists of batteries that store energy, a cabinet that holds the batteries, a solar power inverter that converts energy from your solar panels into a usable form, an automatic transfer switch, and smart management modules used to prioritize which circuits you back up. Altogether, the batteries provide 18-kilowatt hours of power for your entire home. Plus, you can double that by adding a second cabinet of batteries, making this a scalable system. Everything can be monitored by using the PWRview mobile app.

 

Learn more about this technology before taking the leap by visiting our home energy storage buyer's guide.

 

Specs Details Rating
Power 18kWh per battery cabinet; Scalable to 2 cabinets @ 36kWh; 8,000-watts of backup power; 10,000 starting watts; 5 Stars
Usability Powers entire home without noise or emissions; Minimal maintenance required; PWRview app allows wireless monitoring; Smart management modules can prioritize critical cicuits 5 Stars
Versatility Capture & store energy from solar panels or electrical grid; Great flexibility for power usage (backup, self-supply, grid sell) 5 Stars
Overall Value Heavy upfront investment; Significant long-term payoffs. 4 Stars

 

Who It's For:

  • Future-looking homeowners open to transforming their energy usage
  • Homeowners looking for whole-home backup without emissions or noise

 

Who It's Not For:

  • Homeowners on a budget
  • Homeowners with structural or geographical constraints on solar panel installation

 

Shop Now

 


Solar Generator FAQs

How does a solar generator work?

Solar generators have batteries that store energy collected from solar panels or utility power. Despite their commonly-used name, solar generators do not "generate" electricity. In this context, the term generator is used only in a colloquial sense since they are often an alternative to traditional gas-powered generators that do generate their own electricity.

 

Unlike gas-powered generators, solar generators do not have an internal combustion engine and therefore do not require the use of fossil fuels. The lack of combustion noise also means solar generators are extremely quiet, if not silent. Also, unlike gasoline engines, solar generators can store power for later use. Although solar generators still lack the raw power of gas-powered generators, they are quickly catching up.

 

What is a watt-hour?

A watt-hour is a unit of measurement that represents one watt of energy being used in one hour. In other words, you can think of it as one watt per hour. Solar generators are rated in watt-hours, or how many watts they can power per hour.

 

Suppose a particular solar generator is rated at 1,000 watts per hour. That generator will be able to power any combination of items that draw 1,000 watts for one hour. If you have an item that draws 500 watts, the generator will be able to power it for two hours (500 x 2 = 1,000). If you have an item that draws 2,000 watts, the generator will only power it for a half hour (2,000 x 1/2 = 1,000).

 


 

About Jared 

Jared has decades of technical experience working on generators, cars, and even helicopters. His interest began during childhood, as he watched his mechanical engineer father work on and design machines. These experiences inspired Jared to follow a related course.

 

He began his career attending the Universal Technical Institute, where he earned a degree in Automotive Technology. He also graduated with honors from the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence as a helicopter technician.


Fusing his love of aircraft and generators, Jared spent time working with towable AGPU generators that are powered by jet engines. He is a certified Generac and Kohler installer and has been the electric generator expert at Power Equipment Direct for more than nine years.


When not around wires and alternators, Jared enjoys working on cars and 3D printing.

Jared, the Generator Expert
By 
Generator Expert
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