How To Buy A Solar Charger (A SUPER Easy Guide and Review)

Leading 12v solar charger for 2019: Top 10 Sellers & Best Manufacturers

When my Car, Boat, Tractor, ATV or RV temporary unused for weeks at a time or longer, how the battery will topped off? Yeas! The best money saving way to get out of discharging is 12v solar battery charger. Solar battery charger kit can make longer your battery life even save your battery to prevent harmful overcharging.

# The Best part, once you will depend on a 12 volt solar battery charger kit, these will serve and save you next 5 to 10 years without any Hassle.

What is the best 12 volt solar battery charger?

  1. ECO-WORTHY 12v Portable Solar Panel Battery Charger 10 watts
  2. Photonic Universe Waterproof 12v solar battery charger 20 watt
  3. Photonic Universe Portable Folding 12V  solar charger 40 watt
  4. ECO-WORTHY Portable Folding 12v Solar Panel Battery Charger 50 Watt
  5. Photonic Universe High efficiency 12v Solar Battery Charger (Great for all off-grid) 100w
  6. ECO-WORTHY 12 Volts Portable, Folding, charge controller Solar Panel Charger 120 Watts
  7. Renogy Excellent in low light, High conversion efficiency 12v Solar Battery Charger 150 Watts
  8. ECO-WORTHY Waterproof, Excellent in Harsh Weather 12v Solar Battery Charger 200 Watts
  9. Photonic Universe dual battery, waterproof, 12 volt solar battery charger kit 250 Watts
  10. Giosolar 12v Solar PV Panel, High Efficiency with MPPT Charge Controller 300Watts

 

#1 – ECO-WORTHY 12v/10 Watts Portable Solar Battery Charger: £29.99

solar battery charger

* 88% Five Star Satisfaction.
* Faster Service
* Free Shipping, Get it now
Solar Battery Charger

 

 

Here’s The 5 Best Part: We Learned About

  1. Instant Power Supply,  Easy to Install, Light weight and completely maintenance-free.
  2. Perfect trickle charger, Environmental protection and energy saving which can increase the battery lifetime.
  3. Easy to carry and setup, Shockproof, rust-proof and dust proof.
  4. In emergency, it can charge 12V rechargeable batteries.
  5. Unique design of clips to prevent short circuit.

 

Package Includes:
1*Alligator clip adapter with 19inch(0.5meter) cord
1*12V 10W Solar trickle Charger with 59inch (1.5meter) cord
1*cigarette lighter adapter with 19inch(0.5meter) cord
4pcs PVC suckers

 

#2 – Photonic Universe Waterproof 12v solar battery charger with 5A charge controller and battery cables 20 watt: £59.99

20W 12V Photonic Universe solar power kit

12v solar battery charger

 

12v Solar Battery Charger: Best for Phones, Cars, Boats, RV’s and More

A 12v solar battery charger can come in a variety of configurations and be used for many different applications. For example, a 12v solar battery charger can come in a 15w capability, an 18w capability or other wattages.

It simply depends upon what you are attempting to achieve with your 12v solar battery device.

12 volt solar battery charger

The benefit of using a 12v solar battery charger is that it can eliminate all of these specialty chargers that are designed for individual devices such as cell phones, cars, laptops, iPods, and other consumer devices.

You may well want to consider a charge controller to prevent the solar battery charger rv from overcharging.

Charge controllers are based upon amperage of already current devices (such as 7 watt) and solar electricity of up to 100w.

Charge controllers usually have light indicators, one indicating a fully charged battery and one indicating the amount of the currently charged battery

12v  Solar Battery Types

Many specialized types of 12v solar battery charger exist.

12v marine solar battery chargers are now widely used and can work for many years without problems.

They provide an alternative to wall power and are used by both off gridders, outdoors people, and environmentally conscious consumers.

Another specialized 12v solar battery is designed for your car.

The 12v solar battery car charger is placed on the dashboard and is plugged into the cigarette lighter to provide electricity for battery charging.

One of the cool things about this charger is that it prevents the battery from discharging over time if you do not drive your car much.

12v Solar Battery Charger: Specialized Uses

Another specialized application for a 12v solar battery charger is to charge digital cameras and camcorders, provided of course they are 12 Volt devices.

The battery must of course be rechargeable and there must be a method of connecting the charger to the camera or camcorder provided you want to recharge the battery while it is in the device.

To figure out how long it will take to charge your camera battery take the amperage hours of your camera battery and divide them by the amperage of the charger (Watts divided volts) and add 10%.

You will want to choose the charger that takes no more than 20 hours of direct sunlight to fully charge your camera’s battery.

Another use for 12 Volt solar battery chargers is charging up your iPhone (3G, 3GS, or 4G).

You have two options which are to buy products manufactured specifically for the iPhone or buying Universal products that have an iPhone adapter.

The advantage of the products manufactured specifically for the iPhone is that the charging amperage is set up specifically for the iPhone.

If you use a universal product you will have to make sure that it will not charge your iPhone too fast or overcharge it.

Any 12 volt solar battery charger can get the job done so it really depends upon how many amps you need it to provide, the device you are attempting to charge, and whether or not adapters are available connecting the charger to your device.

12 Volt solar Battery Charger: Top 5 Solar Battery Chargers

What size solar panel to charge 12v battery?

What size solar panel to charge 12 volt battery? A simple answer to the question is, what type of solar panel you have or going to use and the amount of direct sunlight? Also it’s depending on weather condition. Typically we know that Solar charger’s efficiency is around 85%. So a 41.6 X 20.7 inch size and 100 watt solar panel takes minimum of 12-14 hours to charge a 12 volt battery (100A-hr).

How to figure out the size of a solar panel for 12 volt solar battery charger?

Renogy 100 Watts 12 Volts Monocrystalline Solar Panel

Its the all the magic of numbers. The power you need vs. the energy the solar panel can provide. Before going to shop, you need to know how many watts or amp you need to produce in the fixed period. This can be measured in days or hours.

You suggest your take 24 hours in this figure measurement since one day count in this 24 hours. So, at first, think about the total electrical consumption in this period. Then, think about the amount of sunlight the panel could receive in a day and convert into it power per hours.

Here is a trick, you should overestimate your power need while calculating the power of your panel. Which means if a panel can charge 5 volts of battery then you should take it for a 3 or 4 V battery.

Usually, we see 4 hours of sunlight in winter days and 6 hours of daylight in summer. Yes, there could be the difference in this time more or less, but most of the solar unit comes to work in 4-6 or 8 hours basis of full sunlight.

Moreover, don’t forget to count things like shade, panel angle, cloud, etc. to compensate the variables and average time/power performance of a unit. Once you are done with these, we suggest you go to “The Calculation” part.

How to calculate the voltage?

The battery you are going to charge either wholly discharged or remain 10% of charge inside determine how long it will take finished charging. The voltage of a battery represents the State of charge which also known as SOS. Here is a Chart to show what this battery state and charge would be for a solar panel or absorbent glass mat (AGM).

Battery State of Charge
No Level Voltage
1. 100% 13.00 V
2. 90% 12.75 V
3. 80% 12.50 V
4. 70% 12.30 V
5. 60% 12.15 V
6. 50% 12.05 V
7. 40% 11.95 V
8. 30% 11.81 V
9. 20% 11.66 V
10. 10% 11.51V
11. 0% 10.50 V

 

The calculation

How much power you need to charge your battery you can determine through a simple calculation. The 12-volt battery or 12V 200Ah is also written as 12V X 200 Ah. So,

12V X 200 Ah= 2400 WHr or 2400 Whr.

If you have a 30% level of the battery than you have to charge it for 2400WHr X 70%= 1680 WHr

For 20%, 2400WHr X 80%= 1920 WHr.

For 10%, 2400WHr X 90%= 2160 WHr.

And so on. You have 6 hours of peak sunlight available for charging. And the energy need from the solar panel is 2.16 KWHr.

The peak sunlight hour should be more or less from particular 6 hours, but we can take it constantly for calculation purpose. So, to charge a 12v battery, we will need to divide the hours with charging power or the panel we need for. Which will show,

1680 WHr/ 6 hr= 280W solar panels

1920 WHr/ 6 hr= 320W solar panels

2160 WHr/ 6 hr= 360W solar panels

But there are some losses that we must count for better calculation. It could be for temp, conversion, and irradiance including battery losses.

We should count all these factors, so we get the required power to charge this particular batter after all the losses. So, for the 12V battery with 30/20/10% charger remaining the necessary power need for completely charge within 6 hours is,

Solar Panels/ TotalPower= ((Battery/Voltage)(Battery/Ah) (1− State of Charge) / (Charge Duration in hours)) (1 + Losses)

For 0% battery charge state, it becomes

SolarPanels/ TotalPower= ((12V)∗(200Ah)∗ (1−10 SolarPanels/ TotalPower)= ((12V) ∗ (200Ah) ∗ (1−10

SolarPanels/TotalPower= 450W

Thus, a 450W solar panels would charge a 12V fully drained) battery in 6 sunlight hours.

What more you need to charge with a solar panel?

The solar panel is a great way to charge your devices. But it can’t replaces the entire typical electricity system that we get from different power sources currently.

Nowadays, people are trying to charge batteries for the boat, RV’s, trolling motor, scooter, cabin, laptop, phone and so on. But the main problem is they want in a short time.

Means, they want to finish charging these big batteries within half a day. Like, if you have 100 A hour battery and load it with 30 W solar panel well summer daylights, then it will take a week to complete.

To get the work done here, you need a 100W of solar panel which will complete the charging within 20-24 hrs max.

Here we sorted some essential factors that you should know while getting a solar panel to charge a 12V or any size of the battery. Have a look below.

Power rating watts & amps

The manufacturers of the solar panel rate the solar output in Watts. A 15 watts of the panel provides 3600 coulombs (1 AH) per hour in direct sunlight. So check the power ratting well to match it with your battery charging.

A controller

Whether your solar panel is super safe or not you should use a controller if it’s over 5 Watts. A controller can prevent overcharging, improve charge quality, etc. also it prevent battery discharge in case of low or no power situations.

Some high-quality solar panels are previously installed a blocking diode which does the same work as a controller. But in most cases solar panel with 6 watts or higher, it’s highly recomanded to install a charger controller.

To summarise the fact, a solar charger controller act as an on-off switch of charging. It allows power to pass when the battery is empty or low loaded and turn off the charging once it’s full.

Consider output conditions

The calculation number or measurement you see in production description on a solar panel is calculated in direct bright sunlight. So, if you suddenly found your solar panels seems slow to produce the power you might consider checking stuff like indirect sunlight, partial shade, overcast, etc.

Yes, it sounds frustrating to maintain the same amount of light in home or cabin where buildings, mountains, trees, etc. are near. So, it’s better to have an oversize solar array thus the panel get the maximum amount of light by its vast body. Remember that, the length of daylight in summer vs. winter makes a huge difference.

The common mistake happened when a solar unit made for summer daylight hours counting but also use in winter. So, a user can not get what he imagined before buying it.

Other common problem or complaint is the battery does not hold the charge that it used to before. It happens the daylight hours become less. So the panel produces less power and cannot fill the charge.

As a result, it loses charge or starts to charge at least 50% of its charging. The batter begins to sulfate at a quicker rate and begins to discharge faster. Even if the panel gets the same amount of time for charging it could not perform as it offered before.

The solution is, change the battery or increase some panels consulting by your sale or an expert. If you need the service for all year round find something that able to charge in shades or winter days.

Operating the device directly from the solar panel

If you are familiar with portable or foldable solar panels, you might know it comes with a cigarette lighter adapter. With this adapter, you can power a 12v device that has a 12v DC plug. However, your device cannot be sensitive to voltage variation. Unless it either stopped charging or shut down immediately. To avoid such these problems, use a small battery as a storage vessel for energy. It will provide a continuous source of stable power and charge in time.

Do I need to maintain my solar panel often?

You don’t have to take care of a solar panel all day and night. It’s better to check the panel once in a week or 3-4 days gap. Inspect the electrical connections, remove dirt and debris. Also, keep the panel clear form sand and snow after any natural disasters.

For the portable solar panel, bring in the panel in the home or anywhere you store. Leaving portable charger for day to day is not healthy. Portable solar panels are a little weak in construction. So it’s better as much as you keep them safe from rain, snow, and sand or overheating.

Use of an Inverter

Inverters are power changing source- like DC to Ac or Ac to DC. Many people use an inverter to convert 12 V DC into 110 V Ac. You can avoid it if not necessary for your work. Afterall, inverters are power changing demons which waste power during converting. If you need to have one for a 12 V Dc power battery or 110 V AC device take the same volt Dc device. There are some devices in the market available to work for either step-down or step up DC power, and these use a lot of energy during the changes.

The durability of a solar panel

Despite portable solar panels, usual solar panels are very durable. You will see the warranty duration of solar panels 5 to 20 years of the period. Depending on quality and use, a solar panel could last for minimum 3 to 25 years without giving too much fuss. If you get a well brand and the good quality solar panel then chances are it will meet 80% of durability promise at least. The longevity and performance, of course, vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, but the golden rules apply in here too, “you get what you pay for.”

We suggest rather than having a cheap, ‘made in China’ type get a good one even it cost you a little high.

Final words

Therefore, if you were in dilemma why your old solar panel is not working your new 12V battery, you might clear more what is lack of, by all these discussions. Besides, a low size of solar panel some conditions like an overcast sky, shadow, odd mounting angle, short winter days, etc. also matters for low output. So, before purchasing the panel for a 12v battery remember these facts we discuss earlier, talk with your seller about your requirements, condition of charging area, etc. then decide which one you should take for.