Our search for the best portable solar panels came out of a camping necessity this past summer.
Our teenage daughter refused to go anywhere without a charger and we had a three-state trip planned, so portable solar panels came to the rescue.
If you want to be able to get power on the move, then you need to consider solar power and that means portable solar panels.
One of the easiest ways to get enough power to run a phone or a laptop for a short period is to use a foldable portable solar panel. These are lightweight solar panels that you can take with you anywhere.
Alternatively, you can use solar panels in conjunction with a solar power generator to get even more power on demand when you really need it.
The upside to this is, of course, the fact that solar energy is completely free. So, your outlay is only for portable solar panels, there's no energy fee or taxes to pay on top.
So, check out our top picks for the best portable solar panels today and start saving money on your energy needs by generating your own solar power.
KINGSOLAR Portable Solar Panel
Perfect for a quick charge for your phone while on the go, but be warned these rugged and lightweight foldable solar panels are very much dependent on the weather.
If you don’t get much sun, you won’t get much in the way of a charge either.
These polycrystalline solar panels are excellent portable solar panels and you can easily slip this into a backpack.
This portable solar panel is affordable and extremely efficient, and very much worth the price.
You can find the KINGSOLAR Portable Solar Panel online.
ROCKPALS Foldable Solar Panel
We really like the power conversion rating of this portable solar panel and it’s very durable and completely waterproof too.
You won’t have any trouble carrying this around to charge your phone using solar power at all. Portable solar chargers are rarely as easy to use as this portable solar panel kit.
However, when we called their customer care hotline, we found it very hard to get someone to pick up.
You can find the ROCKPALS Foldable Solar Panel online.
SUAOKI Foldable Solar Panel
In contrast, SUAOKI’s customer care was absolutely excellent and we have real confidence in their warranty – they back their portable solar panel, no matter what.
It was also supremely easy to set up this portable solar panel when we were out in the world and in need of power.
The big downside for us was that it’s not fully waterproof. That means no portable solar power in the pouring rain.
You can find the SUAOKI Foldable Solar Panel online.
Renogy Foldable Solar Panel
These solar panels have a built-in charge controller which can help prevent your devices from being damaged through overcharging.
We also really like the LCD panel which makes controlling these solar panels very easy, indeed.
Our only real concern with this product is that the warranty is not very impressive compared to other solar panels.
We’re not sure that matters as it’s well made, but you never know.
You can find the Renogy Foldable Solar Panel online.
Jackery Foldable Solar Panel
This is a great product completely let down by terrible instructions.
They are not clear and in the end, we had to guess our way to getting things set up.
That’s a shame because power conversion is excellent and it’s very well made.
You can find the Jackery Foldable Solar Panel online.
Bigblue Foldable Solar Panel
Another outstanding contender for “best customer service” is the Bigblue model but just like our last contender – it’s not completely waterproof! (Note: panel companies there is an opportunity here).
It’s very well made, easy to carry, has a built in ammeter and the “smart technology” incorporated is truly unique.
You can find the Bigblue Foldable Solar Panel online.
ECO-WORTHY Foldable Solar Panel
A light, cheap panel but one that comes at the price of a complete lack of weather resistance.
If you don’t expect it to rain because, say, you’re visiting Saudi Arabia – this might be just the thing, otherwise despite the quality build of this product, you might want to look elsewhere.
You can find the ECO-WORTHY Foldable Solar Panel online.
MOOLSUN Solar Charger
This is a really cheap solar panel but as you might expect that is reflected in the production quality.
We note that we had no issues while testing this product and we love the design aesthetic, we just wouldn’t expect it to last very long if you use it regularly.
You can find the MOOLSUN Solar Charger online.
TWELSEAVAN 100W Solar Panel Portable
One of our favorite panels and yet, somehow, they decided to cover this in denim which means if it rains, you need to move it inside or risk the fabric getting moldy.
Yet, it’s very light, super compact, converts power like a champion and has a built in USB port.
Nearly perfect but not quite.
You can find the TWELSEAVAN 100W Solar Panel Portable online.
RAV Power Solar Charger 16W Solar Panel
This is a great solar panel which charges very quickly indeed, it’s fully weatherproof and has “iSmart technology” which tailors the charge to the device it is working with.
However, iPhones seem to disconnect themselves if the panel stops charging and need reattaching to get them to charge again – which is annoying.
You can find the RAV Power Solar Charger 16W Solar Panel online.
Zamp Solar 120 P Charge Kit
This is a fast charging kit that is built with RV users in mind, it’s very reliable and can generate a lot of power in a very short time.
It’s not quite as portable as some kits but power vs portability is always something of a compromise.
You can find the Zamp Solar 120 P Charge Kit online.
Go Power! GP-PSK 130 130W Portable Folding Solar Kit
Another larger portable panel that you can run most things in an RV from.
We really like the Go! Power but it’s not as portable as the others in our round up and at nearly 30 lbs. in weight – you don’t want to be walking around with it all day.
You can find the Go Power! GP-PSK 130 130W Portable Folding Solar Kit online.
Last Word on Portable Solar Panels
Hopefully you now have a solid overview of the solar panel options that are available.
Of course, you may need to invest in a solar powerbank to go with your portable solar panels.
You may also want to consider a mobile generator as backup, just in case you can’t get the sun and we’ve got a guide to portable generators here too.
If you're a DIY type then Mobile Solar Power Made Easy! is a great resource for buidling your own solar panels and generator.