How To Speed Up The Charging Of Your Goal Zero Yeti Power Station
Do you have a Goal Zero Yeti and are looking for ways to charge it faster? Today’s post is about five different ways you can do this.
I travel fulltime in my travel trailer and do a lot of camping off-grid. This means that to use my laptop and all the other electronics in my camper, I need some portable power. So I bought a Goal Zero Yeti 1000. It has been great so far, and it can run everything in my camper except for the AC. It even runs the microwave!
I have 400 watts of solar so on a sunny day, my Yeti can go from 0% in the morning to 100% in the afternoon. It used to take longer, but I have learned a couple of things you can do to speed up the charging time, and that’s what I am going to share with you today.
Related Post: How To Use Third-Party Panels With Goal Zero Yeti
Five Ways To Speed Up The Goal Zero Yeti Charging
The first thing everybody should do (unless you have the Yeti 3000 which comes with the MPPT controller) is to invest in the Goal Zero MPPT Charge Controller. It’s compatible with the Yeti 1000, and Yeti 1400. It’s a big improvement over the built-in PWM solar charge controller and will speed up the charging time. Goal Zero advertises up to 40% more charging efficiency with the MPPT charger vs the PWM. You’ll even see an improvement when using the wall charger.
When used with solar panels, it will improve the charging efficiency the most, especially in the morning, late afternoon, and on cloudy days. It’s easy to install and definitely the easiest way to improve the charging speed.
It took a couple of years, but Goal Zero has finally released a 12V cigarette lighter charger for the Yeti power stations.
If you’re traveling in an RV, or van, and have the Yeti nearby when you’re driving, you’re going to like this. It has two settings, 5A and 10A, meaning that you can choose to input 60W or 120W into the Yeti when you’re driving. Pair it with solar panels on top of your vehicle, and the Yeti will charge much quicker than by solar on its own.
Another way to charge your Goal Zero Yeti in a vehicle without buying the car charger would be to get an inverter like the BESTEK 500W Power Inverter and plug your regular wall charger into this while driving. This inverter is not compatible with the Yeti Fast charger (25A) though unless it’s clamped directly to the vehicle battery. It can only output up to 150W when connected to a 12V cigarette lighter port.
When wired to your vehicle’s alternator, the Yeti will be able to charge extremely fast as you’re going down the road. It’s compatible with the Yeti 1000, 1400, and 3000 and can do from a minimum of 454W with the Yeti 1000, up to 750W with the Yeti 3000.
Goal Zero has made a video about how the Yeti link is wired to a vehicle like a van that you can watch below.
Another accessory that people have been asking for is a faster wall charger. The charger included with the Yeti power stations can’t even output 100W out of an AC wall outlet. Goal Zero finally released the 25A Fast Charger which can do much more than 100W, it can output 250W!
It’s compatible with the Yeti 1000 and larger power stations and reduces the charging time by up to five times. Charge the Yeti 1000 in 4 hours, the Yeti 1400 in 4.5 hours, or the Yeti 3000 in only 10 hours from the wall, or a gas generator if you’re camping.
I plan on buying one of these soon and will do more extensive tests to see how it performs, but paired with an AC outlet or a gas generator it’s one of the easiest and fastest ways you can charge a Yeti.
You could also get a car inverter like the BESTEK 500W Power Inverter and use it with a 12V battery as long as you clamp it directly to a battery. It doesn’t support the fast charger via a 12V cigarette port in a vehicle.
4. More solar panels/chargers
The most obvious way to charge a Yeti faster is to add more solar panels, but did you know you could also buy an additional 5A wall charger to double or triple the charging speed?
The YouTuber Todd Parker went even further (before the 25A fast charger was released) and combined four wall chargers.
If your van or RV roof is already filled with solar panels so mounting a couple more isn’t an option, I recommend considering a portable solar panel like the Renogy 100W Suitcase solar panel.
I own two of those and move them around during the day as needed. Sometimes I don’t have to move them at all for a week, it depends on how my camper is parked and if something is blocking the sun from reaching the panels during the day.
Goal Zero sells its own briefcase solar panels that comes with the 8mm cable (except for the Boulder 200 which has an APP connection) which plugs straight into the Yeti power stations of all sizes. The Renogy panels require an adapter in between to turn the mc4 into either Anderson Power Pole, or mc4 to 8mm.
If you have the Goal Zero MPPT Charge Controller, you can connect up to 360W of solar to the Anderson Power Pole input. The 8mm input port can handle 150W per port, so if you max them both out you would be at 660 watts of solar panels. Since no 100W panel is capable of outputting 100W, it would be okay to have a total of 700 watts without exceeding the 660 watt rating.
5. Angle your solar panels towards the sun
Now that you have a bunch of solar panels, what can you do to make them as efficient as possible? One great way is to angle them towards the sun.
During the winter months, the sun won’t ever be right above you, so if your solar panels are mounted laying down on your roof, you’ll be losing out on a lot of watts. Use tilting kits, or angle your portable panels towards the sun, and you will see a huge difference.
Part of this is also planning how you park your vehicle. If you park so your tilted panels are facing the south, you will gain the most during the peak hours of the day.
Now that I have shared my five ways to charge a Goal Zero Yeti faster, what are your ways? Let me know by leaving a comment, or if something is unclear, feel free to leave a question.