Several months and an entire career ago, I was approached by a good supplier about a new product that he thought I might be interested in buying.( I won’t mention his company as I still have a good relationship with him)
He had a portable solar panel array that would produce upwards of 24 watts of power, had a rechargeable lithium battery, a mini power inverter and a few other odds and ends that just sounded cool. It seemed a bit pricey at $165.00 but I figured I would go for it and give it a try. What a mistake…
-It only takes 8 – 10 hours to fully charge lithium battery with just solar power (3-4 with a DC power supply).
-Battery has a 12V DC output port as well as a 5V USB output port for cell phones and other small USB powered devices
-A 110V DC to AC Inverter and a Universal Adaptor.
-Jumper cable style clamps that attach directly to a DC battery for a quick charge when sun isn’t available.
-A 12v Cigarette lighter adaptor for additional charging source while you’re on the move.
-The whole kit folds up to the size of an iPad and can be stored just about anywhere
This all sounds good right?
The damn thing just didn’t work. Not only did it not work, but the charge controller actually caught on fire.
Also when trying to charge the lithium battery from the cigarette lighter adapter, it started to smoke. I threw the whole thing out of the window thinking it was about to blow up.
I called my buddy and he quickly sent me a second one to try. This one didn’t catch on fire or blow up, but the lithium battery failed to charge and one of the panels came to me with a crack in it.
Oh and another thing to mention, the packaging lists it as a 24w kit but the inner paperwork shows it as being 18w
After receiving a second curse laden phone call from my supplier, he quickly refunded my money and even pulled all of the items off of his shelf and sent them back to the manufacturer as defective. I have seen this exact kit for sale with different packaging across multiple sites.
As a warning, do not I repeat do not purchase This one. I am still looking for a small scale solar kit that I can use to power small electronics, charge a cell phone, or even trickle charge a vehicle with. Do you guys have any suggestions?