☀️ Solar powered generators are generally small, quiet and ideal for camping or boating trips.

☀️ Solar powered generators are usually easier to maintain than fossil fuel-powered generators.

☀️ Solar powered generators can be expensive, and don’t always have a high power output.

Solar energy is essential for a greener future. And portable solar powered generators are the best way to get power on the go – whether you want to explore the great outdoors, go camping or your enjoy time on the water on a boating trip or even cut down your energy dependence on the National Grid in the UK.

This guide explains how solar powered generators work and how valuable they are. You will learn all the important facts about these little green power sources.

What is a solar powered generator?

Solar powered generators turn solar energy from the sun into electricity using portable solar photovoltaic (PV) panels.

Solar generators are different from fossil fuel generators that use oil or diesel. They make green, renewable energy and do not release any greenhouse gases. They are good for many power uses, like emergency power for houses or power for remote places like when you’re camping or boating.

How does a solar powered generator work?

Solar powered generators normally have four parts:

  • Solar PV panels
  • Charge controller
  • Storage batteries
  • Solar inverter

The solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are like home solar PV systems. They can be separate (or folding) parts that connect to the generator using cables. They take sunlight and turn that into electricity. You can use the electricity right away or save it in the storage batteries. You can plug in many things, from lights to appliances, to the solar generator using the sockets on the front.

The batteries store the solar energy for later use. You can use the solar generator at night too. The solar generator will supply electricity for as long as the battery has enough charge., so you can charge the battery in the daytime via the solar panels and use the power at night from the battery storage.

The pros and cons of solar powered generators

Pros of solar powered generators

  • No harmful gases from burning fuels
  • Sunlight does not cost anything, so no money for fuel
  • No noisy engines or wheels
  • Some types are not heavy and are easy to move
  • Less parts that can break or wear out

Cons of solar powered generators

  • High initial cost, they are expensive
  • Not as good when it is cloudy or raining
  • Solar panels require space to work well
  • Fuel-based generators make more power faster
  • Batteries wear out and need new ones regularly

If you need power when you’re camping or boating and you care about the environment, you need a solar powered generator. It makes clean energy and does not pollute like gas or diesel generators.

They are cheap to run once you set them up. You do not have to pay for fuel, and they last longer because they have less parts that can break. They are also quiet, unlike the noisy conventional fossil-fuel generators.

But they do have some drawbacks too. They are expensive to buy at first, and the batteries do not last forever. You might need to buy more panels to get more solar power than the ones that come with your solar powered generator.

They are also dependant on the weather. They work slower on cloudy or overcast days, and they cannot make energy as fast as traditional fossil-fuel generators.

How much do solar powered generators cost?

Solar powered generators have different prices based on their size, kind, and how good their solar panels are. Here are some typical costs for different sizes:

Solar Generator SizePower RatingAverage Price Range
Small0.2 – 0.5 kWh£300 – £1,000
Medium1.0 – 1.8 kWh£700 – £1,500
Large2.0 – 2.5 kWh£1,400 – £3,000

How much capacity do solar powered generators have?

Solar generators make different power levels depending on how they are made and what they are for. To choose the best solar generator, consider what you want to charge, work out how much energy you’ll need and pick one with the power output that gives you slightly more than the energy you require.

Their size is normally stated in watt-hours (Wh) or kilowatt-hours (kWh) (1kilowatt = 1,000 watts):

  • For charging your smartphone or using small devices, you can get solar generators as little as 200 Wh.
  • Medium models are from 500 Wh to 2.0 kWh, so you can run them longer or with bigger devices.
  • Bigger, better models can go over 2.5–3.0 kWh and power energy hungry devices or many things at once.

How long do solar powered generators take to charge?

How long solar-powered generators take to charge depends on their battery size, how many solar panels they have, what power rating they are, and the amount of sunshine available.

Small portable ones with some sun on a typical day in the UK can charge in about 2 to 12 hours. Big ones with more solar panels may take days to charge the battery fully, especially with less sun on cloudy or overcast days.

Some power users get faster charging by using wall or car plugs, or by adding more solar PV panels to their solar generator.

Do solar powered generators need maintenance?

Solar powered generators need less maintenance than fossil fuel-powered ones. Solar panels do not move and they have no gears or wheels, so they last longer.

But here are some ways to make your solar generator better:

  • Panel cleaning: Clean your panels to make them work well – things like dust, dirt, and bird poop can lower their efficiency.
  • Battery care: Some batteries need more care or new ones after some years.
  • Component inspection: Check the wires and connections sometimes for any damage.
  • Inverter inspection: Inverters live long, but they may need to be changed before the panels. Some care and regular tests can help your solar generator stay in good shape.

Do solar powered generators make much noise?

If you want less noise, solar-powered generators are a great idea. They are much quieter than fossil fuel powered generators because they do not have an engine or gears.

The only things that makes noise on a solar-powered generator are the solar inverter and sometimes the cooling fans. The noise from these things is very low, just a quiet sound that you can easily ignore.

Are solar powered generators worth it?

Solar generators are good or not depending on your needs and your situation. They are green and make clean energy without producing harmful pollution. They are good for places without power or when power is gone like in a power cut or blackout.

You will save money on fuel and electricity later. But they are expensive at first and need good weather to work well.

They are great for people who care about the environment, and saving money in the long run. But people who want a lot of power fast and cheap may prefer traditional fossil fuel generators.


Solar powered generators combine green values with modern technology. They are a better option than traditional power sources because they are clean, almost silent, and effective at generating power from sunlight.

Feeling ready to invest in solar panels and solar battery storage? Want to learn more? Your best option is to talk to one of our friendly solar energy experts on 01268 928 690 or click on the ‘Enquire Now’ button below and we will help you find the right fit for your home and budget. Remember we are both an MCS Certified PV (Panels) Installer and an MCS Certified Battery Storage Installer. MCS Certification is a mark of quality. Our membership of MCS demonstrates our strict adherence to these recognised industry standards; highlighting quality, competency and compliance.

FAQs about Solar Powered Generators

Can you power a house with a solar generator?

Solar generators could, in theory power your house, but they need to be big enough for your energy use. Big solar generators with lots of batteries can run many things at once. But if you need steady power for everything, a full solar panel system is better.

Is it worth getting a solar generator?

Your needs and goals decide if a solar generator is good for you. It is a good choice for green living, remote places, or emergency power. But some people may not like the high upfront costs, even though it saves money and reduces pollution later.

Is there a generator that runs on solar power?

Solar power makes some generators work. They are green and better than fossil fuel generators. They have photovoltaic (PV) panels that take sunlight and make electricity. You can use the electricity now or save it in a battery.

Are solar powered generators any good?

Solar generators can charge things and run small devices well. They are good for backup power on boats or caravans because they are easy to move, and they are green and do not need much fuel.

What can I run off a solar generator?

Home appliances: A 2000 watt solar generator can power important home devices like fridges, microwaves, TVs, lights, fans, and small AC units. But it may not be enough for big AC systems or strong heating devices.

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