Our Editors independently research, test, and rate what we feel are the best products. We use affiliate links and may receive a small commission on purchases.
Going on a camping trip with your friends and family can be enlightening and adventurous. It gives you the chance to unplug from the hustle and bustle of the urban lifestyle and enjoy what nature has to offer.
However, loving the outdoors doesn’t necessarily mean you have to leave every luxury behind and live like a nomad. While it’s ideal that you try to adopt the natural life as much as possible, it’s perfectly ok if you don’t prefer taking a bath in the cold water of a lake.
Unfortunately, though there are camping sites that provide power, they are a lot more expensive as those that don’t offer these amenities.
So, the crucial question is, what do you do if you don’t want to go without any power but don’t wish to pay a hefty price as well? You invest in solar energy of course!
Though solar panels are most widely known for their function as an energy source for homes and offices, a number of gadgets have been invented which provide power for smaller purposes as well.
Even though there are several benefits to using rechargeable solar batteries, we aim to see how solar energy can be used when you’re camping out.
However, remember that the uses aren’t limited to these because there are a lot of other innovative ways you can use this technology as well.
So, here are a few valuable ways you can use solar energy during your outdoor adventure.
Use it to light up the dark
Though there are plenty of battery or fuel-powered lanterns available, imagine what you’ll do if you run out of charge and don’t have something as a backup. Don’t want to end up scared of what might come into your tent while you’re asleep?
Buy a solar-powered lantern which will light up the dark. There is a range of small and mid-sized options which you can choose from, and they can give you up to two hours of use for only one hour of charge.
One particularly fascinating water bottle-cum-lantern is the Lightcap 200 which charges during the day and gives light at night.
Use it to charge your devices
Sometimes, you may not be able to completely shut off your gadgets because you’re expecting some urgent work or have left family members behind.
In such a case, it will be crucial for you to keep your devices like laptop and smartphone charged and this can be hard when you’re outdoors. This problem is solved with solar-powered backpacks and portable solar panels because they provide you with a charging option.
To charge your gadgets through the backup, you’ll need to plug in the USB outlet which is attached to the panels inside the case. If you prefer bringing along the portable mats, you can conveniently place it at a high point such as a rover, and it will get enough solar energy to last a long time.
Use it to cool things
Did you know that it takes the sun less than 9 minutes to reach the earth? This is why solar energy is also a good choice when you don’t want to spend time cooling your drinks in a lake nearby or drink it lukewarm.
You can find small solar panel charged coolers in the market and use them to store sodas, juices, water bottles and even some packaged food. Alternatively, you can also decide to invest in a medium-sized fridge that doesn’t require a lot of power and connect it to a portable solar power map.
However, remember that you’ll first need to calculate and then decide on the products you require.
Use it to find your way
While lanterns are exclusively used for your camping tent, it is also good to invest in flashlights that are powered by the sun.
If you want something reliable to light your way when you’re out roaming the woods at night, products such as the Wakawaka Solar Lamp can keep you safe for up to 16 hours after you charge it for less than a day.
However, one thing you should remember when opting for these is that the product you’re buying should be not only light yet sturdy but also waterproof, so you don’t get into trouble if it starts to pour suddenly.
Use it to enjoy a hot shower
For some people, it is challenging to take a shower with cold water even when its hot outside. Regardless of the weather conditions outside, solar-powered camping showers will be one of the best products you can hope to invest in.
If you’ve had an unusually long day, this gadget can provide a relaxing time for you to unwind. All you’ll need to do is to fill the pouch with water and leave it out at a sunny spot, so the panels are charged, and the water inside becomes hot.
Don’t worry if the sun has stopped shining because the black color of the pouch will keep the water warm for a long time.
Tips for best performance
Want the solar-panel to provide their optimal functioning? Follow these tips.
- Mount the solar-panels and mats on top of the roof of your camping trailer or caravan so they can charge while you’re on the move.
- Remember that panels which are placed perpendicular to the sun’s position will capture the most power so you should be careful when aligning them.
- The solar panels and gadgets you use to draw power are susceptible to dust, especially if you’ve mounted them on top of a car. This can pose a hindrance in the amount of energy that the panel absorbs and so, you should carefully wipe the surface down with a microfiber cloth for maximum performance.
So, what are you waiting for? If you’d like to make your camping trip memorable yet luxurious, check out great solar-powered gadgets available in the market.
Andrea Bell is a blogger by choice. She loves to discover the world around her. She likes to share her discoveries, experiences and express herself through her blogs.
Find her on Twitter:@IM_AndreaBell