Campers and other outdoor enthusiasts require a power supply more than you can imagine. They spend days in the wilderness to unwind, away from the electrical connection. It makes powering their gadgets and lighting camps difficult, which might risk their well-being.
However, this shouldn’t be the case. Portable power stations make camping easier by powering devices, appliances, and lighting camps. But not all portable power stations serve better. For this reason, it’s vital for anyone purchasing a power station to determine their needs to avoid making huge mistakes along the way.
Suppose you plan to buy a portable power station for your outdoor activities. In that case, keep reading to learn things you should consider to ensure you pay for the best.
The battery capacity is the first thing you should consider when buying a portable power station. It’s determined by the appliances and gadgets you want to power when outdoors or during a power outage. A bigger battery capacity powers more extensive devices per charge and vice versa.
If you’ll need more energy during your outdoor activities, settle for a portable power station with a big battery capacity over a small one. Nevertheless, experts advise buying the highest battery capacity, if possible, for efficiency.
But how do you know a power station’s battery capacity? It might be easy and complicated at the same time because different manufacturers use different metrics when measuring battery capacity. However, the most common metrics used to determine the same include:
- Amp hour
Most electronic gadgets indicate power usage in Watt-hours, customarily printed on power supplies. Suppose the power supply indicates power ratings in Watts. In that case, a single watt equals one-Watt-hour.
The second vital thing to consider when choosing a portable power station is its battery. The type of battery a portable power station uses determines its size, charging speed, cost, weight, and how long it can last per charge.
It will come with lead-acid, lithium-ion (Li-Ion), or lithium-polymer batteries:
- Lithium-Ion Battery: It charges faster than lead-acid and is more energetic than the other alternatives.
- Lithium-Polymer Battery: It has low energy density than lithium-ion and charges faster. It is also safer than the other two.
- Lead-Acid Battery: It’s budget-friendly compared to lithium-ion and lithium-polymer. However, they’re heavy, have less energy density, and charge slowly.
If you’re planning a camping trip and want to invest in smaller, lighter batteries that you can use frequently, you should settle for lithium-ion batteries. However, lithium-polymer batteries could be your best shot if you’re more concerned about the safety and fast charging ability.
Settle for lead-acid batteries if you’re on a tight budget. However, most experts don’t recommend using lead-acid batteries due to their slow charging capacity.
Power Input And Output Ports
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all regarding portable power station input and output ports. It’s therefore advisable to do window shopping until you land one with as many ports as possible. A direct current-powered power station can have extra ports since you can connect an extension cord for more alternating current (AC) outlets.
It’s recommended for anyone purchasing a portable power station to settle for one with several USB and USB-C outlet ports for handheld devices. It should also have a 12-V power outlet for the internet router and not less than two AC outlets. You might also need a power pole if you store it in your car.
After determining enough charging ports, you should check the ports used to recharge the power station. These ports include direct current (DC), AC, and solar charging ports.
Size And Weight
A portable power station should be limited in size and light to carry but large enough to produce the required power. It’s vital to settle on the right size and weight to avoid inconvenience when in use. However, as earlier stated, the type of battery you choose plays a huge role in how heavy your portable power station will be. Nevertheless, if you must buy an extensive portable power station, settle for one with wheels for easy movement.
Buying a portable power station with a suitable inverter is vital, depending on the device you want to power. It will prevent your gadgets from damage and ensure they work efficiently while saving battery charge.
Power inverters convert the battery’s direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC). Direct current charges battery-powered handheld gadgets like phones and tablets. On the other hand, alternating current powers devices requiring more energy, like TVs, laptops, and computers.
Generally, power inverters come in pure sine and modified sine waves. Pure sine wave inverters provide a clean producing AC. Modified sine wave inverters require pulse width modulation to make electronic signals that imitate pure sine wave signals.
Suppose you’ll be powering delicate and susceptible devices. A pure sine wave inverter is what you need this time. However, a modified sine wave inverter will be perfect if you use a portable power station to power your computer, TV, and monitor.
The time a portable power station takes to be charged entirely is also essential to consider when purchasing. While you want a power station that will last longer per charge, you don’t want it to take an eternity to recharge. That said, pop this concern to the dealer to ensure you go home with the right portable power station.
Many outdoor enthusiasts love traveling in remote areas. Such areas will likely have a limited power supply, while some are off-grid. Outdoor lovers need to find ways to generate power while away from home.
There are many ways to light up a camp or power gadgets without depending on electricity. Among these include investing in a portable power station, keeping appliances running, and charging handheld devices.
However, you must purchase the correct power station to reap these benefits. If you’re looking forward to buying a portable power station, anchor your considerations on the above information, and you won’t go wrong with your outdoor activities.