A solar power generator is just one of those van life essentials you can’t go without—especially if you are deciding to live full-time in your RV or camper van—which is why having our Jackery Solar Generator Explorer 1500 paired with SolarSaga portable solar panels has been a complete game-changer.
Trust me, we’ve done van life for six months without a solar rechargeable battery and it was an unbelievable hassle to charge our laptops and gear (not to mention power our microwave) without depleting our house batteries, blowing fuses on our outlets, or having to turn on our pollutive diesel back-up generator.
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Paul and I try to travel slowly and that means traveling responsibly too; so using diesel fuel to make popcorn was doomed from the start. 🍿
Being able to recharge all our appliances and tech gear sustainably has, as I mentioned above, changed the way travel by van, camp off-grid, and explore the outdoors. It’s even given us back our popcorn-loaded movie nights.
If you’re curious to see what the Jackery 1500 solar generator can do, keep reading!
In this post, I’m giving you my honest review of the Jackery 1500 portable power station bundle which includes four SolarSaga 100W panels.
Disclosure: This article was written in partnership with Jackery®, but all opinions are my own and I genuinely use and recommend this brand and its products. If you have any questions, please drop them in the comments below!
Jackery Solar Generator 1500 Review
Before we get into the nitty-gritty, you might be unfamiliar with Jackery.
Who Is Jackery?
Jackery was founded in California in 2012 by a group of engineers who sought to bring clean energy to the outdoors. Today, they are the world’s biggest manufacturer of outdoor solar utilities, including power stations, generators, solar panels, and more.
In 2015, they launched their Explorer Series to combine solar power with maximum portability for outdoor living, camping, and traveling.
Then, in 2020, Jackery combined their portable power stations with their Solarpeak technology of the SolarSaga foldable solar panels “to suit the various needs of travelers, outdoor enthusiasts, mobile families, and other people actively on the go.”
Do You Need a Jackery Solar Generator Explorer 1500?
Before you decide you want a Jackery solar generator, you should first decide what you need it for.
Jackery has nine different Explorer power stations to choose from; each with varying capacity. The higher the number equals more capacity, meaning you can power larger appliances such as a microwave or mini cooler, while also getting in more charges for phones, computers, and other gear.
The Jackery 1500 features 1534Wh (watt-hour) capacity and 1800 running wattage (3600 surge power). It includes:
- 3x AC outlets
- 1x 60W USB-C Port
- 1x Quick Charge 3.0 Port
- 1x USB-A Port
- 1x 12V car port
- Built-in flashlight (button on the side)
- Accessory storage box for cables and chargers
- 4x SolarSaga 100W solar panels (Jackery Solar Generator combo package, otherwise sold separately)
The 4x SolarSaga panels are lightweight, foldable, and easy to carry with an integrated handle (ours sit behind the driver’s seat!). The 1500 Power Station is portable, too, but is quite hefty at 30+ pounds.
To connect the solar panels to the Jackery is super straightforward as well. You can just unzip the cord behind the solar panel and insert it into Jackery’s input plug.
On the smart LCD screen, you will be able to see how many watts the sun is feeding Jackery! Likewise, whenever you charge your devices or plug in an appliance for power, you will be able to see the consumption right on the screen.
With all this in mind, the Jackery 1500 can power:
- Mini Cooler
- Coffee Maker
- Pressure Cooker
- Electric Grill
- And more!
Is Jackery Explorer 1500 Good for RV’ing & Traveling?
Even if you are a weekend warrior adventuring or camping after 9–5 and on weekends, then you could do with a Jackery to make sure you stay charged on the go.
Below are ways you can use Jackery based on your lifestyle.
Tent campers, RV’ers/overlanders, weekend warriors, nomadic families:
- Power coffee makers, mini stoves, mini grills, blenders, lights, mini-fridges, TVs, and more!
- Charge all your gear off-grid — phones, laptops, cameras, plus all your adventure gear.
FAQ of the Jackery Solar Generator 150
- How many phone charges can you get from the Jackery 1500?
Although I have yet to charge my own phone this many times, you can supposedly charge your phone up to 130 times and your laptop over twenty times. In other words, if you’re camping for multiple days off-grid, the Jackery 1500 will keep you charged and connected.
- Is Jackery 1500 waterproof?
Splash-proof yes, left-out-in-the-rain-proof? No.
- How many hours does it take to charge the Jackery Explorer 1500?
There are three ways you can charge your Jackery Power Station.
- 4 hours by Solar Input (4x SolarSaga 100 panels)
- 4 hours by AC Outlet (wall outlet in your home or plug at a serviced campsite)
- 13 hours by car outlet
Jackery 1500 Pros & Cons
As a full-time van lifer, I can say the number one pro of Jackery is I can charge my phone, laptop, and camera — the three things I need on a daily basis so I can do my job and keep this life of travel going.
The second most important benefit of having Jackery is that it takes the stress away from not having power and having to find a public place where we can charge our gadgets.
As I mentioned before, we have done six months of traveling in our campervan without this clean source of energy, and it was always a delicate dance to try and find a Starbucks (and/or a Tim Horton’s, since we were in Canada). We rarely could plug directly into our van’s outlets because we needed to spare the battery power for our van’s water pump, lights, and exhaust fan. So having a Jackery is just a huge relief.
Now for the cons…
Jackery is pretty compact but the Power Station is quite heavy to lug around so setting it up can take time. The 4x SolarSaga 100 panels take up a bit of space, too, but they fold up nicely and can be stored together behind our driver’s seat for easy access.
The device itself I can hardly complain about, though. Right now, Jackery is holding up quite well. The only thing we noticed is that the battery will slowly deplete if you leave any of the charge ports in “on” mode even if nothing is charging.
Overall Thoughts & Takeaways
Overall, Jackery will spoil you as a camper or RV’er. It will remove any worry about not being able to stay charged and connected, or powered while on the go and exploring outdoors.
The cost of the Jackery 1500 can hurt a bit, but the investment is well worth it. Plus, if you purchase directly from their website, the free 2-year warranty gets a bonus 1-year extension.
And if the price tag is a bit steep to pay it all in one go, you can enroll in monthly payments with Affirm (for purchases above $500).
There’s never a better time to invest in clean energy to power your adventurous outdoor lifestyle. ☀️ 🌿 Visit Jackery.com to learn more!
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