Jackery has been cranking out portable solar generator systems for the masses for years and continues to level up their game with the new Solar Generator 1500 kit.
They sent me the new Solar Generator 1500 which pairs their Explorer 1500 battery and its 1,534 watt-hours of storage capacity with four of their 100 watt Solar Saga folding solar panels. The result is a kit that not only stores a ton of juice for when you need it, but that can recharge rapidly with an impressive 400 watts of solar panels.
Disclaimer: Jackery provided the Solar Generator 1500 to the author free of charge for the purposes of this review.
The Solar Generator 1500 is an ideal kit to power a full camp setup or even as a complete power system for a recreational vehicle. It packs far more than just a battery in, with a solar charge manager, AC inverter, and all the DC to DC goodness that allows you to run a high power AC toaster off the same unit that’s pushing out 5 volts of DC to charge your smartphone.
At the center of the device is a screen that provides insights into everything the unit is doing, displaying in real time exactly how much power is being generated by the solar panels, consumed by any attached devices, and stored by the battery. This is extremely helpful for a wide range of applications.
When setting the system up to charge from the four 100 watt folding solar panels included in the Jackery Solar Generator kit, it is extremely useful to see exactly how much power they are putting out. Seeing real time power output from the panels makes it easy to quickly and easily adjust the layout and angle of the panels to maximize solar output with just a quick glance at the screen. Charging up the system on a late Southern California afternoon, I saw power outputs from the four 100 watt panels ranging from 140 watts total all the way up to 329 watts after a few simple adjustments of panel position.
Adjusting panel position and the amount of power they generate also updates the amount of time needed to recharge the battery on the display. With the four solar panels connected, the 1,534 watt-hour battery will recharge from zero to 80 percent in around four hours. As with all lithium-ion batteries, adding the last 20% takes a bit longer, which we consistently saw to be just over an hour of solar-powered charging.
That makes the new Jackery Solar Generator 1500 a fantastic option for folks looking to use the full capacity of the battery (or more) every single day as the solar panels can fully recharge the battery on almost any day of the year. Granted, solar production varies greatly based on geography and time of the year, but it is a very capable kit.
Back at home, the Jackery Solar Generator 1500 can still fill a clutch role as a backup power supply when the grid goes down. Our own Jennifer Sensiba put the Jackery Explorer 1500 to the test during a recent power outage in New Mexico and it performed admirably. Here in Southern California, utilities are increasingly quick to cut grid power when high winds or any other even surfaces that could spark yet another wildfire.
The result is a massively unpredictable grid that has resulted in a renewed demand for home energy storage systems like Tesla’s Powerwall, the sonnen EcoLinx, and the like as well as more traditional natural gas-fired generators. For context, we have had 13 grid Southern California Edison grid outages at my home in Ventura, California so far this year ranging from a few seconds to more than 24 hours.
Not everyone is able to install a Tesla Powerwall. They are brutally expensive and necessitate installations that simply are not available to renters. This creates a real sweet spot for the Jackery Solar Generator 1500 kit to step into the gap to provide not only temporary power in a pinch to keep the fridge running and the lights on, but to recharge from the sun to power through prolonged outages.
The Jackery Explorer 1500 battery again steps up to shine here, with an impressive 1,800 watts of continuous power output and the ability to surge up to 3,600 watts for short periods. That’s far more power than is needed for most mundane tasks like powering lights, recharging phones and keeping the wifi running. With that much power, it’s possible to run microwaves, hot water kettles and even a small space heater for a short amount of time.
I took the kit on a car camping trip and found the Explorer 1500 to be a perfect fit to keep me eating warm food, all my devices charged, and even as a backup power supply for my Tesla Model 3. On a long weekend camping trip, the Jackery Explorer 1500 was perfect for keeping a pair of ebikes recharged after our adventures wandering around the area. Thankfully, I never had to use it to charge my Tesla, but it’s nice to know that it could at least give me a few more miles of range if I really needed it.
Overall, the new Jackery Solar Generator 1500 is a robust solar generator kit that packs an impressive amount of storage capacity and solar generation capacity. Combined, they’re enough to power just about any adventure you might throw at ’em, opening up a completely new range of zero emission possibilities in life.
At $2,699, it feels like a nice value considering how much you can do with it in the recreational space. As a home power backup solution, it’s far more affordable than just about any other home backup solution out there and is perhaps the best solution for anyone renting that wants a bit of extra energy security.
Check out Jackery’s site for more information about the Jackery Solar Generator 1500 or to purchase one today.
Jackery Explorer 1500 Battery
- Capacity: 1534Wh (25.2V, 60.9Ah)
- Cell Chemistry: Lithium-ion Battery
- Lifecycle: 500 cycles to 80%+ capacity
- Weight: 35.2 lbs (15.5 kg)
- Dimensions (LxWxD): 14 x 10.4 x 12.7 in (35.6 x 26.4 x 32.3 cm)
- Operating Usage Temperature: 14-104F (-10-40℃)
- Warranty: 24 Months
- AC Output: 110VAC, 60Hz, 1800W (3600W Peak)
- USB-A Output: 5V, 2.4A
- Quick Charge 3.0 Output: 18W, 5-6.5V, 3A / 6.5-9V, 3A / 9-12V, 1.5A
- USB-C Output: PD60W, (5V, 9V, 12V, 15V, 20V up to 3A)
- Car Output: 12V,10A
- DC Input: 24V, 10.5A
- 1x AC Adapter: 6 Hours
- 2x SolarSaga 100W Solar Panels: 9.5 Hours
- 4x SolarSaga 100W Solar Panels: 5 Hours
- 12V Car Adapter: 13 Hours
SolarSaga 100 Solar Panel Specs
- Peak Power: 100W
- Cell Efficiency: 23%
- Weight: 10.33 lbs (4.69 kg)
- Dimensions (folded): 24 x 21 x 1.4 in (610 x 535 x 35 mm)
- Dimensions (unfolded): 48 x 21 x 0.2 in (1220 x 535 x 5 mm)
- Operating Usage Temperature: 14-149F (-10-65℃)
- Warranty: 24 Months
Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica Member, Supporter, Technician, or Ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.