ExpertPower Alpha 1500/1800/2400 Compatible Solar Panels

How To Use Compatible Solar Panels With ExpertPower Alpha 1500, 1800, and 2400

ExpertPower is a company that sells a lot of batteries, and have recently started selling portable power stations, also known as solar generators. These portable batteries are used by people that don’t have access to the power grid.

They’re excellent for camping, boondocking, emergencies, power outages, and even used as by some as a UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply) since some power stations support pass-through charging.

Related Post: This Solar Panel Charges Both 12V RV Batteries And Power Stations

In this post, we’re going to take a look at how you can connect solar panels to the ExpertPower Alpha 1500, 1800, and 2400 power stations. ExpertPower uses very powerful MPPT charge controllers in these power stations, so they can handle a lot of solar power and quickly charge the lithium batteries.

Let’s start by listing my solar panel recommendations, then we’ll talk about the limitations of the ExpertPower batteries, how to connect any panel, and how many you can connect at once.

Solar Panel Recommendations

Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel, Compact Design 42.2 X 19.6 X 1.38 in, High Efficiency Module PV Power for Battery Charging Boat, Caravan, RV and Any Other Off Grid Applications
Rockpals SP003 100W Foldable Solar Panel Charger for Suaoki Portable Generator / 8mm Goal Zero Yeti Power Station/Jackery Explorer 240, Webetop Battery Pack/USB Devices, with 3 USB Ports
SUAOKI 100W Foldable Solar Panel Charger for SUAOKI Portable Power Station/Jackery Explorer/Goal Zero Yeti/Webetop/ROCKPALS Generator, Quick Charge 3.0, 60W Type C for Cell Phone Macbook Laptop
Renogy Solar Panel 160 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline, 160W Compact Design
Renogy 160 Watt 12 Volt Extremely Flexible Monocrystalline Solar Panel - Ultra Lightweight, Ultra Thin, Up to 248 Degree Arc, for RV, Boats, Roofs, Uneven Surfaces
RICH SOLAR 190 Watt 12V Solar Panel High Efficiency Moncrystalline Module RV Marine Boat Off Grid
Watts
100W
100W
100W
160W
160W
190W
VOC (Open Circuit Voltage)
21.6V
18V
No info
22.9V
23V
24.3V
Optimum Operating Current (Amps)
5.72A
5.4A
No info
7.92A
8.88A
9.31A
Connectors
MC4
MC4, USB (DC adapters included)
USB, Anderson, Alligator clamps, DC (DC adapters included)
MC4
MC4
MC4
Requires MC4 Adapter
Foldable
Stand built-in
Weight
14.3 lbs
5.1 lbs
11.2 lbs
25.9 lbs
2.8 lbs
9.7 lbs
Size
42.2 x 19.6 x 1.4 in
64.5 x 20.5 x 1.2 in
22 x 17 x 3 in
51.3 x 25.9 x 1.4 in
58.1 x 26 x 0.1 in
58.7 x 26.8 x 1.4 in
Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel, Compact Design 42.2 X 19.6 X 1.38 in, High Efficiency Module PV Power for Battery Charging Boat, Caravan, RV and Any Other Off Grid Applications
Watts
100W
VOC (Open Circuit Voltage)
21.6V
Optimum Operating Current (Amps)
5.72A
Connectors
MC4
Requires MC4 Adapter
Foldable
Stand built-in
Weight
14.3 lbs
Size
42.2 x 19.6 x 1.4 in
Rockpals SP003 100W Foldable Solar Panel Charger for Suaoki Portable Generator / 8mm Goal Zero Yeti Power Station/Jackery Explorer 240, Webetop Battery Pack/USB Devices, with 3 USB Ports
Watts
100W
VOC (Open Circuit Voltage)
18V
Optimum Operating Current (Amps)
5.4A
Connectors
MC4, USB (DC adapters included)
Requires MC4 Adapter
Foldable
Stand built-in
Weight
5.1 lbs
Size
64.5 x 20.5 x 1.2 in
SUAOKI 100W Foldable Solar Panel Charger for SUAOKI Portable Power Station/Jackery Explorer/Goal Zero Yeti/Webetop/ROCKPALS Generator, Quick Charge 3.0, 60W Type C for Cell Phone Macbook Laptop
Watts
100W
VOC (Open Circuit Voltage)
No info
Optimum Operating Current (Amps)
No info
Connectors
USB, Anderson, Alligator clamps, DC (DC adapters included)
Requires MC4 Adapter
Foldable
Stand built-in
Weight
11.2 lbs
Size
22 x 17 x 3 in
Renogy Solar Panel 160 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline, 160W Compact Design
Watts
160W
VOC (Open Circuit Voltage)
22.9V
Optimum Operating Current (Amps)
7.92A
Connectors
MC4
Requires MC4 Adapter
Foldable
Stand built-in
Weight
25.9 lbs
Size
51.3 x 25.9 x 1.4 in
Renogy 160 Watt 12 Volt Extremely Flexible Monocrystalline Solar Panel - Ultra Lightweight, Ultra Thin, Up to 248 Degree Arc, for RV, Boats, Roofs, Uneven Surfaces
Watts
160W
VOC (Open Circuit Voltage)
23V
Optimum Operating Current (Amps)
8.88A
Connectors
MC4
Requires MC4 Adapter
Foldable
Stand built-in
Weight
2.8 lbs
Size
58.1 x 26 x 0.1 in
RICH SOLAR 190 Watt 12V Solar Panel High Efficiency Moncrystalline Module RV Marine Boat Off Grid
Product Link
Watts
190W
VOC (Open Circuit Voltage)
24.3V
Optimum Operating Current (Amps)
9.31A
Connectors
MC4
Requires MC4 Adapter
Foldable
Stand built-in
Weight
9.7 lbs
Size
58.7 x 26.8 x 1.4 in

Note: Scroll left/right on small screens to view all products in the table.

The solar panels that don’t have a green checkmark next to “Requires MC4 Adapter” can be plugged into the ExpertPower Alpha power stations without the use of any additional adapters. These panels come with different DC connectors, including the 8mm which you need for the ExpertPower Alphas.

If you choose a panel with MC4 connectors, you’re going to use the MC4 adapter included with the power station.

If you have lost the MC4 adapter, here is a similar adapter (click to view on Amazon).

ExpertPower Alpha 1500, 1800, 2400 Specifications, Limits, And Ports

The ExpertPower Alpha power stations are very similar to one another, but I wanted to do a quick comparison so I made this table to give you a quick overview of how they differ.

ExpertPower Alpha 1500 Lithium Portable Power Station| 1500Wh Solar Generator with 1000W AC Inverter (2000W Peak), USB, Type-C, 12V DC Output for Emergency, Camping and Power Supply
ExpertPower Alpha1800 Rechargeable Solar Powered Station Combo| 1800Wh Portable Generator and One FREE 100Watt Glass Monocrystalline Solar panel
ExpertPower Alpha2400 Rechargeable Solar Powered Station Combo| 2400Wh Portable Generator and ONE FREE 100Watt Glass Monocrystalline Solar Panel
Watt-hours
1500Wh
1800Wh
2400Wh
Inverter Rating
1000W/2000W peak
1000W/2000W peak
1000W/2000W peak
Includes MC4 Adapter
Input Port
8mm
8mm
8mm
Max Input Watts
500W
500W
500W
Input Voltage Rating
16-60V
16-60V
16-60V
Solar Charge Controller Type
MPPT
MPPT
MPPT
Weight
37.9 lbs
37.5 lbs
48.5 lbs
Size
14.6 x 6.5 x 14.4 in
15.5 x 6.5 x 14.4 in
19.4 x 6.5 x 14.4 in
ExpertPower Alpha 1500 Lithium Portable Power Station| 1500Wh Solar Generator with 1000W AC Inverter (2000W Peak), USB, Type-C, 12V DC Output for Emergency, Camping and Power Supply
Product Link
Watt-hours
1500Wh
Inverter Rating
1000W/2000W peak
Includes MC4 Adapter
Input Port
8mm
Max Input Watts
500W
Input Voltage Rating
16-60V
Solar Charge Controller Type
MPPT
Weight
37.9 lbs
Size
14.6 x 6.5 x 14.4 in
ExpertPower Alpha1800 Rechargeable Solar Powered Station Combo| 1800Wh Portable Generator and One FREE 100Watt Glass Monocrystalline Solar panel
Product Link
Watt-hours
1800Wh
Inverter Rating
1000W/2000W peak
Includes MC4 Adapter
Input Port
8mm
Max Input Watts
500W
Input Voltage Rating
16-60V
Solar Charge Controller Type
MPPT
Weight
37.5 lbs
Size
15.5 x 6.5 x 14.4 in
ExpertPower Alpha2400 Rechargeable Solar Powered Station Combo| 2400Wh Portable Generator and ONE FREE 100Watt Glass Monocrystalline Solar Panel
Product Link
Watt-hours
2400Wh
Inverter Rating
1000W/2000W peak
Includes MC4 Adapter
Input Port
8mm
Max Input Watts
500W
Input Voltage Rating
16-60V
Solar Charge Controller Type
MPPT
Weight
48.5 lbs
Size
19.4 x 6.5 x 14.4 in

Note: Scroll left/right on small screens to view all products in the table.

How To Connect Solar Panels To The ExpertPower Alpha

Before you connect any solar panels, read the product manual, and make sure that the specifications above are correct. They’re what ExpertPower advertises, but the actual specifications might be different, so read the manual to be sure. I am not responsible for any damage.

You also need to make sure that the wires and connectors used can handle the amperages that your panels are going to output.

The Charge Controller

What’s impressive about these power stations is the MPPT charge controller that can handle a voltage range between 16-60V. That means that we’re not limited to wiring solar panels in parallel (like in most cases).

It also means that you can connect two panels together without the use of an MC4 Y branch.

Connect panels in series

Connecting two solar panels in series will double the voltage, but not the amperage, and with a 16-60V/10A limit, a series connection is more appropriate and useful.

I recommend going by the VOC rating when calculating how many solar panels you can connect. So for example, the Renogy 100W panel that has a 21.6V rating, connecting two panels would equal 43.2V.

To connect two panels in series, you take the positive MC4 wire from one panel and connect it to the negative MC4 wire on the second panel. Then you’re going to have a positive MC4 wire left from the second panel, and negative MC4 wire from the first panel. These will now be connected to the MC4 adapter included by ExpertPower.

When that’s done, you’re ready to connect the adapter to the Alpha power station.

Connect panels in series-parallel

To add additional panels, what you can do is add another pair of 100W panels wired in series, but in parallel. This way you’ll create a series-parallel setup and increase the input amperage as well as the voltage.

To do a series-parallel connection, set up the four panels in two pairs, in series as I explained above. When you have two pairs of solar panels connected in series, you’ll use a Signstek MC4 Y Branch (click to view on Amazon) to connect the two series pair in parallel.

Connect panels in parallel

Another way to go is to only connect panels in parallel, this will double the amperage but keep the voltage the same. It’s done with a Signstek MC4 Y Branch (click to view on Amazon).

Signstek Y Branch Parallel Solar Panel Cable Connectors Connector Adapter M/FF and F/MM (1)

Check Price at Amazon

Take the positive MC4 wire from both panels and connect them to the adapter that has two MC4 female connectors. Then do the same with the negative MC4 wires from the panel. Finally, connect the two MC4 Y Branch adapters to the adapter included by ExpertPower and connect it to the Alpha power station.

Extension Cables

It’s very likely that you’re going to need extension cables to make the connections work no matter how you connect the panels. Here you need to make sure that the wire is thick enough to handle the total amperage of your solar panels.

I recommend these MC4 extension cables by WindyNation (click to view on Amazon). They come in different lengths and gauges. Use as low of a gauge as possible to limit power loss.

You can also use an 8mm extension cable like this by Graybull between the ExpertPower MC4 adapter and solar generator.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Will It Take To Charge The Batteries?

That depends on which model you have and how many solar panels you have connected.

Here is estimates on how long it would take to charge each model with two 100W solar panels generating 140W:

Alpha 1500 – 11 hours

Alpha 1800 – 13 hours

Alpha 2400 – 18 hours

As you can see, it takes a while when only using two 100W panels. Therefore, I recommend doing a series-parallel connection with four panels, which will double the charging speed and split the hours above in half.

What Is The Difference Between The Different ExpertPower Alpha Power Stations?

The biggest difference is the battery size, the watt-hours. This is how many watt-hours the battery holds and decides how long you’ll be able to power your devices.

To give you an example, here is how long each power station would power a 100W device. These are estimates and do not count in inverter efficiencies.

Alpha 1500 – 15 hours

Alpha 1800 – 18 hours

Alpha 2400 – 24 hours

You should expect an 80-90% inverter efficiency, so multiplying the numbers above with 0.8 (80%) will give you a more accurate estimate.

Please leave a comment down below if you have any questions or have experience with these power stations and believe there is something that needs to be corrected.

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