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10 Best Solar Chargers for Backpacking in 2020

Did you know that solar-charged devices are the future of external battery packs? By charging our devices using solar energy rather than traditional electrical energy, we are providing a greener solution and contributing to the conservation of our planet. The use of solar energy is not a new phenomenon, but many more people have been switching to solar power recently because of environmental concerns.

External chargers that use solar energy to provide power for your devices include solar panels that capture the sunlight. This sunlight is then converted into energy that we can use to power our devices like our iPhones, kindles, or tablets!

As solar panels do not emit any harmful substances or emissions into the environment, it’s worth making the switch and investing in solar panel powered chargers. There are many options on the market today for lightweight, compact and portable solar panel chargers. These are not only a great alternative energy source for campers, hikers, and anyone else that loves being in nature but also anyone who wants to preserve energy and contribute to conversing the earth’s natural resources.

If this is a relatively new concept for you, you may be struggling with where to start in terms of purchasing a solar panel charger. Not to worry! Here we have compiled an extensive list of the Top 10 Best Solar Chargers, followed by a buying guide to ensure you know exactly what to look for when purchasing.

View The Best Solar Charger for Backpacking Below

1. CHOETECH Camping Solar Panel Charger

CHOETECH Camping Solar Panel Charger

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Number one on our list of best solar chargers, and the charger which we have rewarded ‘Best Overall,’ is the CHOETECH Camping Solar Panel Charger. The Choetech has smart charging technology, meaning that it will charge your devices up to 5v or 3a when sitting under direct sunlight. It provides three high-efficiency solar panels, ensuring that it can charge your devices as quickly as possible.

The Choetech charger will convert up to 24% of solar power into energy efficiently and quickly. On average, during a full day, the Choetech will charge your iPhone in about an hour and a half! The Cheotech is made from PET laminated solar panels, providing environmentally friendly and energy-saving charging for your devices. You can charge whatever you need with a USB cable.

The Choetech is covered in durable PVC fabric that is weather resistant. No more worrying about your charging device being damaged when out camping in the cold and the rain! The Choetech is a portable and compact size at 10.3 inches x 0.6 inches. You can fold it up, and it can easily be placed in your backpack or handbag.

This makes the Choetech perfect for traveling or camping trips! The solar panels on the device even have two eye-holes on the side of it so you can easily hook it to your backpack or tent to charge during the day. The Choetech will work with all electronic devices, including phones, tablets, cameras, and speakers.

Pros:
Highly portable
Waterproof
Quick charging

Why We Like It – The Choetech is so portable and compact that it makes the perfect companion for a weekend camping trip!


2. BigBlue Portable Solar Phone Charger

BigBlue Portable Solar Phone Charger

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Number two on our list of best chargers using solar panels is the Big Blue Portable Solar phone charger. This is our premium choice from our compiled list, and you’ll soon find out why! The Big Blue charger includes a Digital Ammeter, which will allow you to see the current flow in amps on a digital display. The Big Blue is incredibly compact and lightweight, sizing 11.1 x 6.3 x 1.3 inches when folded.

The dual USB ports will allow you to charge two devices at once, including all the Andriod devices and some of the DSLRs. An extra cable is needed for other devices, such as an iPhone. The Big Blue phone charger includes SunPower solar panels with a high conversation rate of up to 23.5%. It includes exclusive SmartIC technology, meaning it can detect your device and will be able to deliver the fastest available charging speed depending on this.

It is made from a special PET Polymer material so that it can protect the charger against rain or wet fog. However, the USB ports are not water-resistant, so be careful with these! The Big Blue is perfect for those who want a lightweight charger that will be able to charge your devices quickly when on a camping trip, trekking, or out doing water sports!

Pros:
+ High charging speed
+ Compact and lightweight
+ Includes a Digital Ammeter

Why We Like It – With SmartIC Technology included with the Big Blue, it will effectively recognize how to charge each of your different devices in the fastest way!


3. AMAES Solar Charger

AMAES Solar Charger

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Next up on our list of best solar chargers is the AMAES charger, which comes with a very nice budget price tag! The AMAES solar power bank includes an incredible 24,000mAh Li-Polymer battery pack, rated at 3.7v, and is marketed as strong enough to charge an iPhone 11 for up to 4 times! No more worrying about not having backup power for your devices when on the road!

The AMAES has dual input ports, a micro USB port, and a Type-C port, meaning you don’t have to worry about not having the right connections or cables for your different electronic devices. Your solar charged phone will have enough power to last you throughout your camping trip. The AMAES solar charger has four USB power output ports so that you can charge up to four devices at once.

This is perfect if you are on a trip with your family, and the whole gang needs some power! The solar panel is 1.2w, and under direct sunlight has an input current of 240ma/h. The AMAES battery pack will be able to hold its power for up to 10 hours. As an external battery, the AMAES will not disappoint. The area of the AMAES is made from high quality ABS material. This battery pack is waterproof, dustproof, and shockproof. It also includes an LED flashlight that can be used at night in total darkness.

Pros:
+ Budget price
+ Lightweight and compact
+ Long-lasting battery life

Why We Like It – As it is made from highly durable and weather-resistant material and includes an LED flashlight, the AMAES is a perfect companion on camping trips in the wilderness!


4. ADDTOP Portable Solar Power Bank

ADDTOP Portable Solar Power Bank

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Number 4 on our list of solar chargers for backpacking is the ADDTOP solar power bank. This battery pack comes with a 25000mAh charging capacity. The ADDTOP external battery will be able to charge your iPhone 8 a total of 9 times and will take about one hour to an hour and a half to charge completely. No more worrying about running out of charge while enjoying your time in nature. The solar panels have a power output of 6W.

You can charge two electronic devices simultaneously with two USB ports. The ADDTOP solar camping panels are waterproof, shockproof, and dustproof, making this solar charger a perfect choice if you want to go camping or trekking in tough terrain. The ADDTOP includes four times as many solar panels than usual on other solar chargers, so it will be able to charge your devices (even two at once) at incredible speeds. This battery pack will be able to charge fully in fall day sunlight in about 13 hours!

Pros:
+ Budget Price
+ Includes four solar panels
+ Multiple USB ports

Why We Like It – The ADDTOP battery pack includes four solar panels, meaning it’s the best choice if you need to charge the battery quickly!


5. Nekteck Portable Solar Panel Charger

Nekteck Portable Solar Panel Charger

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Next up on our solar battery packs is the Neckteck solar panel charger. The Nekteck solar charger has three highly efficient solar panels, made from Monocrystalline. The solar panels are based on SunPower Maxeon technology, meaning they have an output power of up to 24% conversion rate. The Nekteck also includes SmartIC Technology, which detects what type of devices are charging within the USB ports and charges them most effectively.

The Nekteck solar charger is compact and lightweight at a size of 6.3 x 11.1. x 1.06 inches. It can easily fit into your backpack and is so lightweight you’ll forget you even have it with you! This battery pack also has hooks to make it easy to attach to your bag during long hikes so it can charge at the same time! The Nekteck solar charger is made from canvas material, so it’s durable while carrying it around on treks or while camping. It also includes a PET polymer cover so if it rains you can protect it!

Pros:
+ Compact and lightweight
+ SmartIC Technology included
+ Multiple USB ports

Why We Like It – The Nekteck has highly efficient solar panels and a conversion rate of up to 24%. No more waiting around for ages waiting for your devices to charge!


6. FEELLE Solar Charger

FEELLE Solar Charger

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Next up on our list of best chargers for backpacking is the FEELLE solar charger. Selling for a budget price and in a variety of different colors, this is a great choice for most on the hunt for a solar charger. The Feelle solar charger has a high charge capacity of 25000 mAh and includes a Lithium polymer battery.

It boasts the ability to charge an iPhone 8 about ten times before the solar charger needs charging itself. The surface area of the solar panels includes four individual panels, providing enough area to absorb a large amount of solar energy.

This means that it will provide you with more hours of power! The Feelle solar charger can charge two electronic devices simultaneously, using two USB ports. An iPhone can be charged fully in approximately 1 – 1 and a half hours. The Feelle charger comes with a waterproof cover, and a built-in LED light. This makes it the perfect choice for camping when the weather is wet, and it gets dark early!

Pros:
+ Budget Price
+ Variety of colors
+ High capacity for charging

Why We Like It – The Feelle is the perfect choice for those that are on a budget and hoping to find a solar charger when backpacking or when camping, as it is waterproof with an LED flashlight.


7. Be-charming Portable Solar Charger

Be-charming Portable Solar Charger

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Next on our list of solar chargers is the Be-Charming portable solar charger. This amazingly compact and portable phone charger includes a Li-polymer battery with a power capacity of 26800mAh! This solar charger has the most power out of the chargers previously mentioned on this list! With this battery pack, you will never have to worry about it running out of charge at the wrong time!

You also have the option to charge this solar charger using a USB cable. The size of the Be-Charming solar charger is 6 x 3.45 x 1.3 inches, making it incredibly small and lightweight. It’s one of the lightest solar chargers for backpacking. It’s perfect if you’re looking for an external battery pack that won’t feel too heavy in your backpack!

What is unique about this particular battery pack, however, is the fact that the four solar panels can be folded down, making it even more compact. The Be-charming power bank hosts dual USB ports that are compatible with most phone models and allows you to charge up to two devices simultaneously. It’s never been simpler to charge the battery of your phone or tablet.

Pros:
+ Lightweight and Compact
+ Large power capacity
+ Foldable solar panels

Why We Like It – The Be-charming solar external battery pack is one of the best solar chargers for backpacking! It’s very compact and lightweight and has a huge power capacity. So you don’t need to worry about running out of charge on your camping trip!


8. Hiluckey Outdoor Portable Power Bank

Hiluckey Outdoor Portable Power Bank

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Number 8 may be recognizable to you if you know a little bit about your high-tech brands. Hilucky is famous for producing products such as solar chargers. The Hiluckey portable power bank boasts a charging capacity of 24000mAh with high-efficiency lithium battery packs. With the Hiluckey battery pack, you will be able to charge your iPhone between 8-10 times without it losing its power. The Hilucky also includes three solar panels that can easily fold down, making the device much more compact. With three solar panels, the Hiluckey will provide a quicker charge time than any other solar charger on the market. This battery pack is also small enough to fit in your pocket! It can be hooked onto your backpack, tent, tree, or any other object while you are out in the wilderness and need it to charge. The Hilucky battery pack features a dual USB port so that you can charge more than one of your devices at once. It also includes an overcurrent, overvoltage, and short circuit protection unit. This is something that not many other solar chargers on the market have!

Pros:
+ Overcurrent, overvoltage and short circuit protection
+ Compact and lightweight
+ High charging ability

Why We Like It – As the Hiluckey includes three solar panels, the charging capacity for your phone or other device is excellent. You do not need to worry about running out of power with this power bank!


9. Anker Solar Charger with Foldable Panel

Anker Solar Charger with Foldable Panel

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The Anker Solar charger has an energy conversion rate of up to 23.5%. With 21 watts SunPower solar energy, and PowerIQ fast charging technology, the Anker power bank will charge your devices effectively and efficiently. It also gives you the option to charge two devices at once. As it includes three foldable solar panels, the Anker battery pack is the perfect companion for weekend trips out in the wilderness.

It’s incredibly durable, as it’s made from Industrial-strength PET polymer faced solar panels, and also as a waterproof canvas cover for when the weather is not too great. You don’t have to worry about the Anker getting damaged when you’re out in different weather environments! It’s highly compact and measures 11.1 x 6.3 inches when folded, and weighs only 14.7 ounces, making it the ideal size for backpacking.

Pros:
+ Compact and lightweight
+ Waterproof and dirtproof
+ Dual USB charging ability

Why We Like It – The Anker battery pack is one of the best solar charger devices to choose from if you are going camping or backpacking. It is very lightweight and compact, so it won’t take up too much room in your backpack!


10. Yelomin Solar Power Bank

Yelomin Solar Power Bank

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The last one on our list of best solar chargers is the Yelomin Solar Power Bank. As an external battery, this is an excellent choice for those who are on a budget but don’t want to give up certain features or specifications of other brands. The Yelomin battery pack is made of highly durable and reliable ABS, PC, and Silicone material.

This means that when you take the Yelomin device out into nature with you, it will be waterproof, dirtproof, and shockproof. The Yelomin also includes overcurrent, overvoltage and short circuit protection, features. This is something many other solar chargers on the market don’t provide! The solar panel on the Yelomin will boast charging of up to 6 or 7 times, depending on your device. It also provides the option to charge using a USB port and cable.

Pros:
+ Compact and lightweight
+ Waterproof and dirtproof
+ Budget price

Why We Like It – The Yelomin is one of the best solar chargers for camping or trekking. Not only is it lightweight and compact, but it’s one of the most durable on the market. So you don’t have to worry about damaging it while on a weekend camping trip!


Solar Charger for Backpacking Buyer’s Guide

If solar chargers are a relatively new concept for you, we know how confusing it can be in terms of what kind of charger to buy and with what features. Some of the solar panel chargers out there can be quite expensive, so this may be a big investment for you, depending on what your needs are. It is, therefore, vital that you understand what features are the best for you and your reasoning behind buying a solar panel charger.

Here we have compiled a detailed list of some of the best features of solar panel charging, with a short explanation of each. After reading this, you will no longer be confused and will know what kind of specifications your new solar panel charging device will need.

Battery Pack

Although a solar charger will gain most of its energy from the sun, the battery pack is also an important element when deciding what type is best for you. Many include internal batteries, which means that even when the sun is up, enough energy will be stored for you to charge your devices.

Charging Capacity

The folding solar panel lies on the surface

The charging capacity will tell you how much the battery pack can charge your device before it needs to be charged itself. This is usually stated in mAh; for example, 2400mAh. Generally, it’s worth paying a little bit extra for more power if you often go on long weekend trips and want the charge to last for longer.

Surface area

The Surface Area refers to the amount of area that is covered by solar panels. The best solar charger for many will be one with a higher area of panels as it means it will be able to collect more sunlight and, in turn, build up power or charge a lot quicker. If the device has a larger number of panels, it means that it has a higher chance of building charges on cloudy or overcast days. If you are a person that doesn’t like to wait too long for your device to charge, then choose a solar panel charger with a higher number of panels included. For instance, a lot of chargers include 3 or 4 panels.

Portability

Mountain Hiker walking with Backpack

Many people who wish to buy a solar panel charger are hoping to use it while backpacking, hiking, or camping. It is, therefore, very important to think of how portable the device will be in terms of weight and dimensions. Many external chargers will provide the ability to fold the panels down, so they become much more portable when they are in your backpack. If you wish to be charging on the go, it’s a good idea to have a hook or a way in which to hang the external battery pack onto your backpack or tent.

The bigger and heavier the charger, the more charging capacity it will have. The smaller and lighter the charger is, the fewer times it will be able to charge your device without power. This is a consideration that depends entirely on your wants and needs. Do you prefer it to be lightweight with less charging ability? Or heavier with longer-lasting battery life?

Type of Battery

With solar panel chargers, many different types of battery can be included. A Nickel Metal Hydride battery could be included, which means they are likely to be replaceable, so they are a good option if you only need them for a short period. Many solar panel chargers will come with Lithium-ion or lithium polymer batteries. These are portable battery packs and are most useful when you are away for long weekend trips and need the extra power.

Durability

The solar panel hangs on a backpack in the background of the mountains.

As most will purchase a solar charger to use while they are hiking, trekking, or camping, the durability of your device will be a very important specification to analyze. Not every solar panel charger will be waterproof or include a waterproof cover, and this is something that you need to think about when buying.

Is it worth paying an extra few dollars to ensure your external charger will not get damaged on that camping trip during wet weather? If you are going to be out in wet weather, the solar panels must be protected against the rain. Many chargers will be not only waterproof but also dirtproof and shockproof. This means that if you are hiking on tough terrain, you don’t have to worry about your new device being damaged.

Number of charging ports

Many of the solar chargers mentioned in our list above have at least two ports for charging at least two devices at once, and a few even include more than two ports. This is an important consideration, especially if you plan to share the charger with other people. For instance, if you take a family camping trip, there will be a time when more than one family member will need to charge at least one of their electronic devices.

There are many options out there for chargers that include up to four ports, and also have different types of ports for charging different electronic devices also. It is important to keep in mind though, that the more devices that are connected at once, the longer it will take to charge each one, and the more power will be drained from the solar panel charging device.

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