The Best Solar Chargers

Modern problems require modern solutions, and a solar charger will solve all of your outdoor charging needs. It wasn’t long ago when campgrounds were void of personal electronic doodads and the only way to power a camp light was with a six-pack of massive D batteries. Campgrounds and backcountry trails are now riddled with electronic devices wherever people roam, and they all need to be powered somehow. Thus enters the portable solar charger. Now, we can harness electricity anywhere.

We reviewed dozens of solar chargers and have identified the best for your camping and adventuring needs. As we looked over the best compact solar chargers and camping solar chargers we considered factors such as solar panel efficiency, variety of input and output ports, and outdoor durability in choosing our top picks, then we put together a detailed rundown of many more great options for you to consider.

Best Solar Charger Overall
Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger
Efficient solar panels, bright lighting, and durable construction make the Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger a solid option for outdoor enthusiasts.

After weighing all the features and statistics of each solar charger against each different model, we have chosen the Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger as our overall top pick. It’s a highly-efficient and adaptable compact solar charger that has been designed to withstand the rigors of outdoor use.

The 5 Top-Rated Solar Chargers

Editor's PicksBrandRating
Best Solar Charger OverallUplayteck Solar Phone Charger4.9
Best Camping Solar ChargerAIMTOM Foldable 18v Solar Charger4.7
Best Budget Solar ChargerGRDE Portable Solar Bank5.0
Best Solar Charger with LED LightPanergy Solar Charger4.8
Best Wireless Solar Charger2BConnect Solar Power Bank4.8

*Ratings are from Amazon at the time of publication and can change

Best Solar Charger Overall: Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger

The Uplaytech Solar Phone Charger takes our number one spot because it is a versatile, compact solar charger that is small enough to travel anywhere. It’s portable enough to tag along on a backcountry backpacking trip or a globetrotting adventure, and it is capable of powering a plethora of devices during a weekend camping trip with the family. This solar charger has four efficient solar panels that fill a whopping 26800mAh power bank, yet it weighs less than 1.5 pounds and is only seven inches long.

The 1.5W solar panels can be unfolded and placed in direct sunlight to load the power bank with up to a 300mAh input current, or the USB C port can be connected to a wall outlet to fully charge the power bank in a quick 10 hours. There are three output ports in total, two USB A ports, and one USB C port, that allow for up to three devices to charge simultaneously at a maximum rate of 3A per hour. An integrated PD 3.0 chip automatically adjusts the output current to deliver optimal charging power to your devices.

With an aluminum alloy shell, protective charging port seal, and sealed solar panels, this device has been designed to survive in an outdoor environment. It has an IPX5 waterproof rating that ensures it is rainproof and dustproof. The solar charger will fair well no matter the weather, and its sturdy frame can sustain sudden impacts and moderate abrasions. A lanyard is included with purchase, and there are two loops on either side of the power bank so that you can hang this solar charger from your backpack while you hike.

Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger Key Features:

  • 2 USB A and 1 USB C output ports
  • Four foldable solar panels
  • 26800mAh power bank
  • 12-month warranty

Best Camping Solar Charger: AIMTOM Foldable 18v Solar Charger

Best Camping Solar Charger
AIMTOM Foldable 18V Solar Charger
The AIMTOM Foldable 18V Solar Charger is a portable and powerful device that can charge all of your camp electronics.

We like the AIMTOM Foldable 18V Solar Charger because it is a highly-refined product that stands out for its quality materials and overall design. This solar charger uses SUNPOWER solar cells which have a copper foundation that is efficient and reliable, and the solar panels have been wrapped in a durable, stitched nylon cover. The entire unit unfolds effortlessly to present the suite of solar panels to the sun, and when bundled up it carries easily like a small, rugged briefcase with a fabric carry handle.

This solar charger has been designed to power nearly any electronic device you would have at camp. There is a single 2.4A USB A output port for all of your small electronic devices and a single 12-18V DC port for larger equipment such as laptops and portable electric stoves. Five different cables have been included to accommodate multiple attachments, including an SAE to clamp cable for large vehicle and boat batteries, as well as a 10-in-1 DC adapter kit. This charger has an adapter for everything!

Overall, this is a great solar charger for camping, overlanding, fishing, hunting, and all sorts of outdoor recreation. It weighs three pounds and takes up about as much flat space as a sheet of printer paper when folded. Another great bonus is that this solar charger pairs well with other AIMTOM products like the company’s line of portable power stations and generators. This solar charger is a great first step in building a power plan around your growing outdoor power needs. It’ll do well on its own to charge your devices during the day, and can be supplemented for the night and long durations with other AIMTOM products.

AIMTOM Foldable 18V Solar Charger Key Features:

  • 1 USB A and 1 DC output ports
  • 60W foldable solar panel
  • 10-in-1 DC adapter kit included
  • 12-month warranty

Best Budget Solar Charger: GRDE Portable Solar Bank

Best Budget Solar Charger
GRDE Portable Solar Bank
The GRDE Portable Solar Bank is a well-rounded and capable solar charger and battery at a budget-friendly price.

The GRDE Portable Solar Bank is similar in many ways to our top overall pick. The sacrifices are relatively minor for how affordable this solar charger is, and those sacrifices may actually be a boon for weight-conscious backpackers who want to travel light because this unit weighs less and is smaller than our top choice. It weighs in at a lightweight 12.5 ounces and measures 6.7 inches long. This solar bank uses a single monocrystalline solar panel which keeps its material weight low, though it is an absurdly efficient panel that is nearly as light-absorbing as all the combined strength of four panels on our top pick.

There are two 2.1A USB A output ports and a single 2A USB C input port on this device. The 16000mAh capacity of the battery bank is large enough to recharge a smartphone from 0% to 100% multiple times over and still have energy to spare. A built-in 15 LED light panel provides ample illumination in dark spaces, including an outdoor campsite, and has been programmed with four different light modes.

A durable outer casing made of ABS material protects the panel and battery from dust, drops, and water. The device has an IP65 rainproof rating, and it can withstand extreme temperatures and remain operational in cold weather down to 14 degrees Fahrenheit and heat up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. There’s no doubt that you’ll get your money’s worth out of this solar charger. It is an incredible value at this price point and its capabilities are on par with many top contenders in the compact solar charger segment.

GRDE Portable Solar Bank Key Features:

  • 2 USB A output ports
  • 15 LED light panel
  • IP65 rainproof rating
  • 16000mAh power bank

Best Solar Charger with LED Light: Panergy Solar Charger

Best Solar Charger with LED Light
Panergy Solar Charger
With a 60 LED light panel and two bright LED flashlights, the Panergy Solar Charger is the most brilliant solar charger of them all.

One look at the Panergy Solar Charger is all it takes to see that this is a solar charger that can light up the night like the Fourth of July. There are two bright LED flashlights on the top end of the solar charger that project powerful beams of light. That’s not all the luminosity that this solar charger can produce, however, as it also features a dazzling 60 LED light panel on its backside that can be used to emit a 30 LED white light and a 30 LED orange light.

That orange light reduces nighttime insect accumulation as it is a less attractive color of light to bugs because they cannot easily see the warmer wavelengths of the spectrum. Panergy markets this as a mosquito repellent light, but it’s actually more of an insect stealth light or one that they simply aren’t drawn to. The 30 LED white light produces 160 lumens of illumination and has three different light modes to choose from. Likewise, the dual-beam flashlight is also quite bright. Activating all of this device’s LED and cranking them to maximum brightness will be like turning on floodlights over your camp.

Aside from the amazing lighting capabilities, this is also a fantastic compact solar charger with an impressively large power bank. There are two USB A and 1 USB C output ports that enable you to charge three devices at once and there is a watertight rubber buckle cover to protect the ports from moisture and dust. A lanyard is included with the purchase of this solar charger. Two strap holds have been designed into the casing on either side of the solar charger so that you can strap it anywhere you’d like.

Panergy Solar Charger Key Features:

  • 2 USB A and 1 USB C output ports
  • 60 LED light panel and 2 LED flashlights
  • Mosquito repellent light mode
  • 26800mAh power bank

Best Wireless Solar Charger: 2BConnect Solar Power Bank

Best Wireless Solar Charger
2BConnect Solar Power Bank
Multiple input and output ports and a Qi wireless charging pad ensure that the 2BConnect Solar Power Bank is ready to charge anything.

Be prepared to charge any Qi wireless device, and anything that can be plugged into a USB port, with the 2BConnect Solar Power Bank. Not only does this solar charger feature a fast-charging Qi wireless charging pad on its backside, but it also houses two USB A ports and 1 USB C port. When everything is plugged in and ready to charge, you can simultaneously power up to four devices at once with this capable charger.

A well though-out and very handy polyurethane leather carrying case is included with the purchase of this solar charger. There are mesh pockets inside this zippered case that can hold the solar charger, your phone, and other objects. The great part is that the mesh pockets have been designed large enough to fit the charger and your phone in one compartment so that you can keep your phone pressed against the Qi pad for wireless charging on the go. And thus, the greatest downside to wireless charging has been worked around. With this package, you can wirelessly charge while you travel!

The 20000mAh power bank provides ample battery storage, and the tri-LED flashlight is potent. The durable shell has an IP66 waterproof rating and it features a built-in hook to help you hang the solar charger off your backpack to catch the sun’s rays while you walk. Like our other top picks, this is another well-rounded solar charger that ticks all of the right boxes. The 2BConnect Solar Power Bank is certainly the best option for those who want Qi wireless charging from their solar charger.

2BConnect Solar Power Bank Key Features:

  • 2 USB A and 1 USB C output ports
  • Micro USB and USB inputs
  • Qi wireless charging pad
  • 20000mAh power bank

Who Should Buy A Solar Charger

Camping solar chargers are a highly beneficial piece of gear for weekend warriors who enjoy heading to the campground every now and then, especially for those who have families that love their electronic gadgets. Everyone is attached to their smartphones these days, even when they journey into the great outdoors, but those batteries never last as long as you would hope.

A quality camping solar charger can keep those phones fully charged, and it can also power a host of other common camping devices like electric stoves, portable refrigerators, and even your car or boat battery. It’s an essential camping tool for the modern world and should certainly be at the top of your outdoor gear must-have list along with other essentials like a pair of hiking boots and a quality camping tent.

Compact solar chargers are the right choice for backpackers, frequent travelers, college students, or anyone who will be out and about for long stretches of the day. These compact chargers often feature large power banks that have enough juice to keep your personal electronics charged throughout the day. They can clip to your backpack and charge via the sun’s rays while you walk, and they also feature nifty extras like LED flashlights, carabiners, and compasses that could come in handy when you least expect it.

Best Solar Charger Overall
Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger
Efficient solar panels, bright lighting, and durable construction make the Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger a solid option for outdoor enthusiasts.

Important Features to Consider

There are a few important considerations to think through before purchasing a solar charger.

  • Compact vs camping. These are the two primary types of solar chargers we have featured in this article. Compact solar chargers are go-anywhere chargers that have limited solar charging capabilities due to their small size, but they often have large power banks that can store energy for later use. Larger camping solar chargers are much more efficient, though they are much less portable due to their bigger solar panels.
  • Portability. For either style of solar battery charger, you must consider how and where it will be used most often. Large fold-out solar chargers are best transported in a vehicle to a campground, while smaller chargers can be great tools for daily use, light travel, or even extended backpacking trips.
  • Ports and plugs. USB A and USB C are common ports on compact power banks that have universal application. Larger solar chargers that are better fit for camping also feature DC ports that do not have a universal size, but they do provide the power needed for more substantial devices such as camp stoves, large camp lights, laptops, and heaters. Solar chargers that feature DC ports may come packaged with a number of adapters to fit different laptop connections or other such ports.
  • Weatherproof. There are varying degrees of “weatherproof” when it comes to solar battery chargers. While many products may be rainproof, not many are fully waterproof. You’ll have to decide just how weatherproof you need your solar charger to be before you make a purchasing decision, and then check the device’s Ingress Protection Code, or IP rating, to see just how weatherproof the device is. Backpackers and car campers alike are bound to face foul weather. Dust, fall, and shockproof features are also something to look out for.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a solar charger and how does it work?

Solar chargers utilize photovoltaic solar panels to convert the sun’s energy into electricity which is then transferred to a battery or a charging device. Solar power battery chargers with power banks store this electricity for later use, often through USB A, USB C, and DC ports. These power banks are available in different storage capacities that are measured in milliampere-hours (mAh) where the higher the number means more electricity can be stored.

How long do solar chargers last?

In terms of reliability, solar chargers have the potential to last indefinitely. Many come with warranties that are several years long, but most should last well beyond when those warranties would expire.

As far as how long their charge will last, that depends on if the solar charger is equipped with a power bank and how large that power bank is. Solar chargers without power banks will only charge a device while the charger is receiving powerful enough solar energy. Those with power banks will be able to charge smartphones many times over before depleting. The more mAh in the power bank, the longer the battery charge will last.

Do solar chargers need direct sunlight?

Yes, in order to operate most efficiently. Solar chargers should be placed in direct sunlight whenever possible. Depending on the quality of the solar panels, solar chargers may still work in indirect sunlight or when there is some light overcast, but it will be inefficient and slow charging.

How much does a solar charger cost?

There are two primary types of solar chargers that we’ve featured in our article.

Compact solar chargers that can be easily carried in a pocket or strapped to a backpack often have power banks that store the energy they collect. These can be charged via sunlight or through a traditional wall outlet. These compact solar chargers can range in price from approximately $15 to $60 depending upon many factors, some of which include the number and types of output charging ports, the mAh size of the power bank, the number of solar panels, and whether or not the device has wireless Qi charging. The average price of a compact solar charger is about $40.

The other type of solar charger we have featured are larger camping solar chargers. These have much larger and more powerful solar panels as well as 18V DC output ports in addition to USB ports. These camping 18V solar chargers can range in price from $50 to $200 depending upon the size and number of solar panels and solar panel efficiency. The average price of a camping solar charger is about $120.

Other Solar Chargers We Reviewed

Best Solar Charger Overall
Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger
Efficient solar panels, bright lighting, and durable construction make the Uplayteck Solar Phone Charger a solid option for outdoor enthusiasts.

We looked at 20 other solar chargers. Even though they didn’t make our five best solar charger list, they’re the best of the rest and each is still a great option for charging your electronic gadgets. The information you’ll need to compare each one is included with the listing.

Camping Solar Chargers

GIARDE Foldable Solar Charger

GIARDE Foldable Solar Charger

The GIARDE Foldable Solar Charger is a highly-efficient foldable solar panel charger that has a stellar 25% solar conversion rate. It features one 5V 2A USB port and one 18V 1A DC port. A suite of compatible connectors and cables is included so that you can charge nearly any device.

Key Features:

  • 1 USB port, 1 DC port
  • Durable PVC fabric exterior
  • Compact folding design

Cost: $50

KingSolar Portable Solar Panel Charger

KingSolar Portable Solar Panel Charger

A 100W solar charger with two pieces of foldable monocrystalline solar panel, the KingSolar Portable Solar Panel Charger is a powerhouse that can charge devices through its USB and DC ports. It is covered in waterproof fabric and features convenient carry handles for when the panel is neatly folded away for storage and transportation.

Key Features:

  • 1 USB port, 1 DC port
  • 100W two-piece solar panel
  • 18-month warranty

Cost: $185

Sunkingdom Solar Panel Charger

Sunkingdom Solar Panel Charger

The Sunkingdom Solar Panel Charger is comprised of eight solar panels that can be folded down to an easy to carry package that’s about as small and lightweight as a small purse. This unit features USB and DC charging ports and comes packaged with DC adapters and a set of crocodile clips.

Key Features:

  • 1 USB port, 1 DC port
  • 60W eight-piece solar panel
  • Eyeholes in fabric for easy attachment

Cost: $145

TOPDC High Efficiency Solar Charger

TOPDC High Efficiency Solar Charger

The TOPDC High Efficiency Solar Charger has been designed to power any laptop on the market. It comes packaged with 10 different laptop adapters so that you’re sure to have one to meet your needs. There are 38W and 60W versions of this solar charger to choose between.

Key Features:

  • 1 USB port, 1 DC port
  • 39W and 60W versions available
  • 10 different laptop connectors included

Cost: $90

VITCOCO Solar Charger

VITCOCO Solar Charger

As one of the smallest solar chargers with a DC charging port, the VITCOCO Solar Charger is an excellent option for those who like to pack light but need a campsite-ready solar charger for all of their USB and 18V devices.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB ports, 1 DC port
  • 29W across 4 solar panels
  • Compact foldable design

Cost: $70

X Dragon Solar Charger

X Dragon Solar Charger

The X Dragon Solar Charger folds down to a small package and it is packaged with multiple cables, connectors, and adapters to make sure you can charge whatever you need. The fabric exterior has many bungee loops to help you attach the panels to any surface, and a carabiner clip is included as well.

Key Features:

  • 1 USB port, 1 DC port
  • 40W across eight solar panels
  • 18-month warranty

Cost: $120

Compact Solar Chargers

ADDTOP Solar Charger

ADDTOP Solar Charger

With dual USB A ports, the ADDTOP Solar Charger can charge two devices simultaneously. It has a 25000mAh storage capacity that can be powered by the four solar panels or through the USB C charging port when connected to a wall outlet or USB charging device.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • USB C charging port with cable
  • 25000mAh storage

Cost: $45

CHOETECH Solar iPhone Charger

CHOETECH Solar iPhone Charger

The CHOTECH Solar iPhone Charger is a lightweight, extremely compact solar charger with 2 USB ports. This device has a waterproof nylon cover that features multiple hoops and a secure eyehole that can be used to easily attach the charger to a backpack or other surface.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • Waterproof nylon cover
  • 24-month warranty

Cost: $50

Nekteck Portable Solar Panel Charger

Nekteck Portable Solar Panel Charger

A lightweight solar charger with a handy charging pocket, the Nekteck Portable Solar Panel Charger is a convenient option for those who need to charge on the go. The fabric cover has multiple eyeholes, which makes it easy to attach the device to a backpack, and its zippered charging pocket is the perfect place to keep your phone while it charges.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • 21W 3 panel solar charger
  • Zippered charging pocket

Cost: $55

TACAMO Solar Power Bank

TACAMO Solar Power Bank

The TACAMO Solar Power Bank is an excellent option for backpackers. This solar charger acts as a 10000mAh power bank that can store up electricity when the sun is shining, and it features useful extras like an in-built compass and a dual-LED flashlight.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • Built-in compass and dual LED lights
  • 10000mAh storage bank

Cost: $40

Verano Detachable Panel Charger

Verano Detachable Panel Charger

A robust power bank that was built to last, the Verano Detachable Panel Charger has a 24000mAh storage capacity and comes backed by a three-year warranty. In a unique twist, this five-panel solar charger has four panels that can be removed if you want to save weight and primarily use it as an electric storage bank.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • Three-year warranty
  • 24000mAh storage bank

Cost: $40

Ziyihoo Solar Charger

Ziyihoo Solar Charger

The Ziyihoo Solar Charger is a high-capacity storage bank first, a powerful 18 LED flashlight second, and a solar charger third. This charger has two USB A output ports like most other devices in its class, but it also features an efficient USB C output port as well.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports and 1 USB C port
  • 18 LED flashlight
  • 26800mAh storage bank

Cost: $40

Wireless Solar Chargers

FKANT Wireless Solar Charger

FKANT Wireless Solar Charger

A well-rounded device in every aspect, the FKANT Wireless Solar Charger should be near the top of your shopping list if you’re in need of a wireless solar charger. It has three output ports as well as the Qi wireless charging pad which means that it can charge four devices simultaneously.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports and 1 USB C port
  • 18 LED flashlight
  • 26800mAh storage bank

Cost: $45

Panergy Wireless Power Bank

Panergy Wireless Power Bank

Designed for the outdoors, the Panergy Wireless Power Bank is encased in a durable ABS material and features a waterproof cover over the charging ports. It has an LED flashlight, 10000mAh of battery storage, two USB output ports, and it comes with a carabiner.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • ABS waterproof cover
  • 10000mAh power bank

Cost: $30

ShoppingLand Solar Power Bank

ShoppingLand Solar Power Bank

A rugged power bank with anti-slip grips and a shatter-resistant design, the ShoppingLand Solar Power Bank is one of the more durable solar chargers on our list. This device has a large battery power bank and a powerful 18 LED flashlight with multiple lighting modes.

Key Features:

  • 3 USB A ports
  • 18 LED flashlight
  • 26800mAh power bank

Cost: $65

Tranmix Solar Charger

Tranmix Solar Charger

The Tranmix Solar Charger has a rugged design with a water-resistant cover that protects the charging ports. There are two USB A output ports, a mini-USB input, and a USB C input/output port. This is a versatile solar charger with a large power bank and a powerful LED flashlight.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports and 1 USB C port
  • LED flashlight
  • 24000mAh power bank

Cost: $40

Budget Solar Chargers

IXNINE Portable Charger

IXNINE Portable Charger

A basic solar charger with common features that won’t break the bank, the IXNINE Portable Charger is a solid choice for those who simply want an inexpensive solar charger and power bank. This device has a good flashlight and an adequate power bank that can recharge a phone multiple times before the battery is depleted.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • Dual LED flashlights
  • 15000mAh power bank

Cost: $17

Sizaul Solar Charger

Sizaul Solar Charger

The slimmest power bank featured on our list, the Sizaul Solar Charger is a lightweight charger that can be discreetly attached to a backpack or elsewhere with the included carabiner. The backside features a textured non-slip surface, and the front has a four-LED battery level indicator.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • Slim design
  • 5000mAh power bank

Cost: $20

Titita Solar Power Bank

Titita Solar Power Bank

The Titita Solar Power Bank is a great budget0-friendly option for campers and backpackers because it features a fantastic dual-LED flashlight, a built-in compass, and a carabiner clip. The 10000mAh power bank is large enough to charge a smartphone several times over.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • Dual LED flashlights
  • 10000mAh power bank

Cost: $25

YOESOID Portable Solar Bank

YOESOID Portable Solar Bank

The YOESOID Portable Solar Bank is more capable and versatile than many other power banks on our list, yet it is priced quite affordably. It’s a waterproof solar charger with a compass, dual LED flashlights, an impressively large power bank, and comes with a carabiner clip.

Key Features:

  • 2 USB A ports
  • IP65 waterproof and dustproof
  • 20000mAh power bank

Cost: $25

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