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Just like the name suggests, a DIY Solar Generator Kit is one that comes with everything you need to create your own solar generator kit. However, this type of kit gives you the complete freedom to build it yourself - all depending on your individual needs and preferences.
Whether you’ve used DIY solar generator kits before or you’re new and want to try it out for yourself, the DIY approach is especially handy for people who want to customize their kits and add on different types of gear in order to achieve different capabilities that a regular solar generator wouldn’t be able to offer.
Generally, a solar kit will come with solar panels, solar charge controllers and other types of gear. There’s lots of choice out there, though. Some solar kits come with the basics, some don’t have batteries and some come with more items than you might actually need!
Whether you’re on the hunt for a kit that you can take backpacking with you or on the search for a DIY solar kit that you can mount onto your RV or other type of vehicle, we’re going to be running through some of our favorites that are available to purchase on the market today.
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Best DIY Solar Generator Kits - Comparison Table
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Best DIY Solar Generator Kits - Reviews
The first pick on our roundup of the best DIY solar generator kits is this fantastic kit from Grape Solar.
Containing everything you need to be able to easily run lights, pumps or even for charging some of your electronic devices, the Grape Solar 400W Off-Grid Solar Kit is a great choice for anyone looking for an ‘entry’ solar generator kit.
It comes with 3-piece 100W polycrystalline solar panels with anodized aluminum frames, as well as tempered glass which makes them great for outdoor use as well as having maximum cell conversion efficiency. Alongside this, this kit also contains a 40 amp Grape Solar Comet charge controllers, as well as cables and a manual for easy set up and installation.
When you’ve set this kit up and start to use it, this solar generator kit will be able to provide up to 100 amp hours of charge per day! Plus, as it is made with high efficiency crystalline solar cells, this kit will provide excellent performance for many years.
The only downside to this great kit is that the battery is not included, so you will have to purchase one separately.
Why We Love It:
- Ideal for all types of experience level thanks to it coming with a manual and cables for quick and easy set up
- A great choice for charging lights and portable electronic devices
- Power Inverter With Dual AC Sockets And One USB Port.
- You have the option to add 1 more panel with additional cables for more power if so desired
If you’re on a budget, the TP-solar 100W solar panel kit is a great option to consider. Affordable and high quality, TP has made this panel suitable for those who own an RV, a cabin or a caravan. You can even use this kit if you’re just looking for a reliable solar panel kit to provide some clean power to your home!
Though it does not come with a battery, an advantage here is that it is compatible with gel, sealed and flooded battery types so you can easily shop around to find a battery that will complement your kit. It includes a 4 pcs Z mounting brackets, a pair of 16ft power cables (one is red and the other is black) and pre-drilled holes located on the back of the panel in order to make set up easy as can be.
Thanks to the 20A charge controller that features an LCD display for optimum functionality, you can easily check the energy level of the panel as well as being able to prevent the system from overheating, short circuiting or experiencing an over voltage.
As this system is designed for use outdoors, it contains an aluminum frame and strong tempered glass that is able to withstand high winds as well as heavy snowfall, so you can use this kit in all types of off-grid situations.
Why We Love It:
- The impressive LCD display is able to easily provide you with useful information such as the battery voltage, the temperature of the battery, the charging amperage of the solar panel as well as much more
- It is compatible with on-grid and off-grid inverters for versatility
- It consists of a resilient design that will be able to withstand all types of weather
- It is a monocrystalline solar panel which is known for being efficient and high performing (especially its ability to convert light into free energy).
Even if you’re new to the world of solar technology, we’re sure that you’ve heard of WindyNation! Loved by outdoor enthusiasts all over the world for their high quality devices, gadgets and products, it’s safe to say that this powerful 400W Solar Kit is no exception.
Why? Coming with everything you need to be able to start producing clean energy from the sun straight from the jump, this kit is really easy to set up and is suitable for use on an RV, boat, cabin or even a caravan.
Made with convenience in mind, this kit comes with four 100 watt solar panels, a LCD 30-amp solar charge controller with an included battery temperature sensor, a solar cable as well as PV connectors and mounting hardware for easy set up and even easier installation.
One of the main features that really stands out to us in this kit is its premium grade charge controller that comes complete with an easy to ready LCD display. This display is able to provide you with lots of different system information such as the solar panel charging amperage, the battery temperature, the battery voltage as well as other helpful information that will help you ensure the kit stays running at optimum performance.
Additionally, its durable design is able to withstand the outdoors with ease while also being able to provide an average of 135 amp hours of charge everyday, making it ideal for use as a back-up power grid.
Why We Love It:
- The charge controllers contain adjustable settings for the user, as well as ensuring that all important information is provided at all times. It’s LCD display also makes reading it easy in all types of light conditions
- It comes with an installation manual to help you set it up quickly and hassle-free
- It is UL certified
On the lookout for a kit more powerful than the rest? The OG Solar 4000W Power Solar Generator just might be the kit for you.
Unlike the other solar power kits we have selected so far, this is an innovatively designed stand alone solar power system that requires no installation, so it’s a great choice for those who would prefer a self-contained system that requires little to no maintenance.
If you’re wondering, the system is able to provide excellent backup power for just about anything you would like including your RV, a caravan or even your home. Ideal as a back-up power unit, this system has the capacity to be able to power all of your essential appliances and electronic devices in the event of a power outage taking place.
Provides up to 135 amp hours of household electricity. Enough to run almost any electronic product or appliance you might connect to your home wall outlet. The Solar generator unit uses a rugged, well designed housing that is weather Resistant.
One of the most standout features to us is that the system itself runs silently while emitting no fumes as no gas is needed to power it. Due to this, this solar generator is completely low maintenance. All you have to do is place it outside and allow the sunlight to do the rest. The solar panels are also guaranteed to last for a very long time - up to 20 years to be exact!
Additionally, the battery assembly, solar charge controller, power inverter, wiring, AC-powered battery charger, extension cable, and accessories are all housed inside a dustproof and crush-resistant hard case that will keep everything organised and protected when you’re not using it.
Why We Love It:
- It is very powerful and ideal for using as a power back-up system
- It is suitable to be used for your trailer, camper, RV or even your boat
- It is very durable and the solar panels are built to last for many years, making it excellent value for money
- Ideal for those who do not want to set it up or have to carry out an installation process
If you’re open to something a little different, you might like the ECO-WORTHY Wind Solar Power Generator System. Unlike every other system we have covered so far, this system is a hybrid split between a solar power system and a wind turbine system.
For this reason, it comes with a wind and slower power hybrid controller that is able to give you information about the battery voltage, wind generator capacity, wind generator braking voltage and the wind generator recover voltage (including much more) in order to help you regulate and maintain this particularly unique system.
One of our favorite benefits about this wind and solar power generator system is that it can be used all day and night! The solar panel can only be used during sunlight hours while the wind turbine system is able to gather energy as long as there is wind, so it’s great for using for your cabin, boat, RV or even mounting on your home.
As for its performance? This system is able to keep all of your appliances charged with ease thanks to the powerful 400W 3 blade wind turbine, while the monocrystalline solar panels will further add power thanks to their high solar cell efficiency rate.
For quick and easy set-up, the kit comes with the wind turbine and solar panels, as well as a pure sine wave off-grid inverter for quiet performance, the controller and additional accessories such as cables to make the installation process easy.
Why We Love It:
- It is ideal for use on land or on water
- The monocrystalline panels are very high quality and able to convert light into free energy better than other types of panels
- It can be used in the night
Combining efficiency with reliability, the Renogy 100W 12V Off-Grid Premium Solar Kit is our next pick worthy of a place in our top 10.
Not only is this solar panel kit sleek in size (making it ideal for those who want a lighter system that isn’t going to compromise on performance) this DIY solar panel kit from Renogy features monocrystalline panels which have the highest light conversion rate efficiency on the market (21%). One reason they are so good is that they are able to perform well even in the shade, so you’ll be able to put your confidence in this system even in low light situations.
Made for the outdoors, the thick, low-iron tempered glass is able to withstand external factors thanks to it being specifically designed to be extra stiff, while the solar modules are impact-resistant. It also features an aluminum, corrosion resistant frame which is able to withstand all types of weather over an extended period of time with no problems.
Additionally, this kit also comes with an included Rover 20A/40A Li MPPT Solar Charge Controller that features really cool Maximum Power Point Tracking technology which is able to help increase the charging efficiency, while the mounting Z-Brackets and pre-drilled holes in the back of the panel will help to make the installation process easy and stress-free.
This kit is also super versatile! You can use it for your camper, RV, boat or even for use on your home.
Why we love it:
- Its back sheet will ensure consistent and smooth performance over an extended period of time
- It is great for those who are on a budget
- It’s made of resilient materials than are able to withstand different external factors, including the weather
- Its port is compatible with the Renogy BT app via bluetooth in order to monitor the system remotely
If you’re particularly interested in a solar panel kit that is suitable for a vehicle or small boat, the TP 60W Solar Panel Kit is certainly one worth considering.
For starters, it has been specially designed to be one of the most portable solar kits available from TP (so you can be sure that it’s going to be easy to store, transport and use) while its high quality carry case means that you always have a place safe to store it.
Though it doesn’t come with a battery (just like the 100W TP Solar Panel System we reviewed earlier) its DC 19V output is compatible with Suaoki, Rockpals, Webetop and plenty of other competitors batteries, so you can easily find a great one for an attractive price.
For additional compatibility and functionality, there is a dual port and one DC output which will be able to deliver enough power to charge two devices at the same time! As for the solar panel, it is made of high efficiency cell modules that have a light conversion efficiency of up to 22%, while its ETFE material and laminated exterior makes it suitable for the outdoors.
The rest of the kit consists of 6.5ft DC extension cables, a cigarette plug (for added convenience) 10 in 1 connectors for your laptops and generators plus an extension cable that is compatible with an MC4 connector.
Why we love it:
- It is a smaller sized solar generator kit that comes with its own carry case, making it great for those who are always on-the-go
- The two different types of outputs are able to charge a greater selection of devices including phones, power banks, laptops and 12V batteries for a car, boat or other vehicle.
- It is weatherproof and durable and has been specifically made for long term use that will last up to 15 years
If you’re looking to start your solar journey and are in the market for a solar generator kit that is suitable for a beginner, we highly recommend the HQST 200W 12V Solar Panel Kit!
Whether you love camping or just want a back-up power system for your adventures, this 200w solar kit is great for all types of off-grid vehicles and applications including an RV, trailer, boat or even a shed. As well as this, you’ll also be able to enjoy quiet power production, so you won’t even know you’re using it.
Containing all the tools needed to create your own solar generator kit quickly and easily, this kit includes a pair of 100 Watt 12 Volt Polycrystalline Solar Panels, a 20 Amp 12V/24V MPPT Solar Charge Controller (which will help you control your system), a 20Ft 12AWG Solar Panel and Controller Connector Cables, as well as 2 Sets of Mounting Z Brackets to allow you to mount it hassle-free.
The 100W polycrystalline compact solar panels have a relatively high module conversion efficiency. The bypass diodes will help to reduce the power drop which can be caused in low-light conditions (such as the shade) while the junction box helps to provide complete protection against environmental particles to ensure that the system remains performing at its best.
Additionally, the solar charge controller is suitable to be used with Sealed, Gel, Flooded, Lithium, User Defined Batteries.
Why We Love It:
- The manufacturer, HQST, provides great customer service after you’ve purchased. You will get a 25 year power output warranty, 5 year material and workmanship warranty, as well as excellent customer support
- It’s a great entry level kit suitable for those of all levels, particularly beginners!
- It comes with pre-drilled holes in the back of the solar panels and mounting brackets to make the setting up process a breeze
Searching for a solar generator kit that will provide you with reliable power that will help you get off the grid? The SUNER POWER 20W Monocrystalline Solar Panel Kit will do that and more.
To begin, this 20-Watt Off-Grid Solar Panel Kit (which is ideal as a basic power back-up) is suitable to be used for a variety of different applications including RVs, boats and even your tent. Made with high-quality monocrystalline solar cells for years of service, this solar kit is easy to install and low-maintenance, so you can quite literally sit back and let this solar panel kit do the work!
Resilient and durable, it contains an anodized aluminum frame and a sealed junction box which makes this panel weatherproof suitable for outdoor use, while its clever solar charge controller has been made with an optimized algorithm with a three-step charge to help the solar panel run efficiently and smoothly.
The controller will also provide protection to prevent the battery from overcharging, overheating and even short circuiting.
As for what else includes? This kit comes with a 1-Piece 20-Watt mono crystalline solar panel (which has a super high light conversion efficiency), the IP65 waterproof intelligent charge controller and a 3-piece SAE cable kit including battery clamps, battery rings and a bare wire cable. To help get you up and running quicker, this solar generator kit also comes with a helpful and handy instruction manual.
Our favorite part about this solar generator kit is that it has a ‘plug & play’ SAE connector, which will allow for almost zero maintenance after you’ve installed it. It’s really easy to use, making it ideal for all experience levels. SUNER POWER has definitely made this kit with you in mind.
Why We Love It:
- Its high light transmittance tempered solar glass allows the solar cell modules to absorb more sunlight with an increase of 2 to 3% on top of the conversion rate of the monocrystalline panel.
- The tempered glass also increases its ability to withstand water or snow exposure, making it suitable to be used all throughout the year
- The monocrystalline panel is the best type of solar panel you can get as monocrystalline panels are very good at converting light into free energy, regardless of the lighting condition. You can use this solar panel in the shade!
- All of the cables this kit includes have been equipped with a one way SAE connector, which makes them both easy to connect and disconnect. These 3-pieces cable kits are also compatible with more types of devices, including phones and laptops.
Portable, convenient and foldable: the DOKIO 160W is a fantastic middleweight option for those who want a powerful solar panel generator that isn’t going to be difficult to transport or store.
Its folding design can be tucked away inside the included carry bag which makes it great for those who love the outdoors and want an easy way to transport it. The solar panel itself is very powerful and has a capacity of 160 watts (which means you’ll easily be able to keep all of your appliances charged) however, it is very lightweight which makes it easy to install.
Just like the other solar panel kits we have reviewed, this one from DOKIO also comes with a solar controller! Equipped with a PWM controller, this solar charger operates with a 18V capacity and will be able to help you regulate and maintain your system with ease.
Made for outdoor use, this solar panel is waterproof as it is made of durable and resilient material that can easily withstand the rain and other types of external factors.
Why We Love It
- This solar panel kit is lightweight and bendable, which makes it super easy to install and mount to your RV, tent, cabin, tree or just about anywhere else you would like.
- Ideal for transporting or those who love to camp or hike, this solar panel kit comes with an easy-to-carry case with a soft handle.
- It weighs just 9lbs, which is one of the most lightweight solar panels we have reviewed
- It has a high conversion efficiency, which makes it great value for money
Best DIY Solar Generator Kits - Buyers Guide
Why DIY Solar Generator Kits?
If you’ve reached the end of our roundup and would like some more information on why you should pick a DIY Solar Generator Kit over a different kind, you’ll find some different benefits of choosing a DIY Kit below. We’ll also run through how to set-up and use your brand new solar kit, as well as some of the most common items you’ll find within them:
The Benefits of Choosing a DIY Solar Generator Kit
Easy to set-up and expandable:
One of the biggest benefits of a DIY solar kit is that they are usually very easy to set-up, so you can get your off-grid power system up and running in almost no time at all. In fact, after you’ve finished unboxing, you have the freedom to put the items together to begin your solar journey or add to the off-grid power system that you already have.
Though you can definitely purchase each part of the solar generator kit separately, it can be quite tedious to cross-check and ensure that each part is compatible with each other. This is why DIY solar kits are so popular! Not only are they great for beginners looking to get into the world of solar technology, they’re hassle-free and allow you to purchase a whole system in one go, which usually makes them a cheaper option to go for, too.
Another advantage is that these types of solar kits are usually designed in order to be expanded, so you have the opportunity to build and grow your kit to increase its power or features.
Another advantage of choosing a DIY solar generator is that they are very low maintenance. Due to their nature of being used primarily in the outdoors, you don’t need to worry about removing them and bringing them inside if it begins to rain because every solar generator kit you’ll come across will have some level of water and weather-resistance. The very best solar generator kits will come with a solar panel that features a sturdy, rugged aluminum structure that will add an additional level of resilience to the outdoors.
Plus, thanks to the controller, you’ll be able to regulate, maintain and monitor the performance of your solar panel kit all from one gadget.
Plenty of Choice
No matter your budget or preference, there’s plenty of different kits with a range of different power output options that means you’ll easily be able to find a kit that best suits you! From basic 20V DIY solar kits for a beginner to more heavy-duty solar power systems for using on your RV, there’s plenty of choice to choose from.
An Environmentally Friendly, Green Power Alternative
Though we’re sure you already know this one, it’s an important benefit to highlight nonetheless. By choosing solar for your off-grid power system, you will be considerably reducing your carbon emissions as it is a much more environmentally conscious option that will contribute to reducing the world’s carbon footprint as a whole.
What do DIY Solar Generator Kits contain?
Solar Charge Controllers
One cool piece of equipment that a DIY Solar Generator Kit contains is a solar charge controller. This is a gadget that is able to help you maintain and regulate your solar panel system to ensure that it doesn’t overheat or malfunction. They are also able to provide you with useful information such as the battery amperage, as well as other helpful technical info.
Mount and Rack Accessories
Another important part of any solar panel kit is the mounting and rack accessories that will help you to easily secure and attach your solar panel to an RV, tent or just about any other kind of compatible surface. An advantage of this is that it will be safely fastened, which will raise its ability to withstand different environmental factors.
Whether you’ve begun to research DIY Solar Panels are not, an important part of every solar panel kit is the wiring that it includes. This will allow you to link your system to the utility grid, as well as being able to link the individual parts altogether.
How do I pick a Solar Generator Kit?
Here are some thinking points to help you with the decision-making process:
One feature you might want to consider here is just how much it weighs. With plenty of different kinds of solar panel kits out there, it’s hard to say how much one weighs! They can vary anywhere from as little as 10 pounds to as many as 200 hundred pounds, with the weight mainly coming from the panels themselves and the battery used.
Generally speaking, it is possible to lower the weight if you decide to opt for a lightweight frame. However, this may mean compromising the durability and quality of the solar panel, especially as you’ll find that the most long lasting are made with a thick and sturdy aluminum structure that helps it to withstand external factors and different types of weather.
In our opinion, the secret to portability more often lies in the way the solar kits are designed to be stored and transported. If the kit comes in a box with wheels or is housed within a carry-case, you’ll find them a lot easier to handle, regardless of how heavy it is.This is a factor worth considering if you plan to travel with it a lot or you love to camp.
On the other hand, if you want a system for your home or some other place where it will be remaining stationery, the weight is going to be less of an issue. However, If you’ll be moving it daily, lightweight systems will take the strain off of your back and shoulders and be at less risk of being damaged during moves, so you might find better use from a smaller solar panel kit.
How convenient it is
The last thing you want is a solar panel kit that is cumbersome or unhelpful to use, so one of the most important aspects to consider before making a purchase is how convenient it is going to be! A good indicator of this are the additional features it comes along with. For example, multiple AC outlets, 12V outputs and integrated USB ports will ensure that you can charge a variety of different devices, usually at the same time. Like we touched upon in our previous point, carry-cases and other kinds of storage will help to keep your solar panel kit protected when you’re not using it, while also making it less of a struggle to move and transport.
The Type of Solar Panel
The two most common types of solar panels used in these DIY kits are monocrystalline panels and polycrystalline solar panels. Each come with their own individual benefits, so it is definitely worth considering which one is going to work best for you, your budget and your personal preferences:
Monocrystalline panels are the most common and popular type. They are made from single-crystal silicon wafers (they are cut into a wafer shape for a more efficient, cost-effective design). Though they are the most expensive type of panel, it is for good reason because they have the highest light-conversion efficiency rate than other types, including polycrystalline solar panels. They also work best in low-light conditions.
On the other hand, polycrystalline solar cells are made of melted fragments of silicon (which are a little less cost effective than the wafer design you find in monocrystalline panels). For this reason, the electrons are able to move less freely between the modules, which lowers their light conversion efficiency rate slightly. However, it is worth noting that these are a more affordable option (so they’re great for adventurers who are on a budget or homeowners who would like a spare power system in case of an emergency). It is also worth being aware that though they perform slightly worse than monocrystalline panels, the difference between the two when compared are almost insignificant.