Using Third-Party Renogy Panels With Jackery Portable Power Stations 160/240/500
If you own or plan on purchasing a Jackery 160, 240, or 500, a great way to charge it is with solar panels. Solar panels are amazing if you’re away from electrical outlets and need to use electronics. Today I am going to tell you how you can use third-party solar panels from companies like Renogy and HQST with the 160, 240, and 500 power station models.
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I live in my travel trailer and travel full time, and my solar panels let me live life just like I would be connected to outlets. I charge my laptop all day and watch TV all night, which wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for my solar panels. So I understand why you would like to connect solar panels to your Jackery Power Station.
So How Do You Connect Solar Panels To A Jackery Power Station?
Jackery sells its own solar panels, which comes with the 8mm connector that plugs straight into the power station. You can purchase other solar panels from companies like Renogy, Richsolar, HQST, and Newpowa that will also connect to the Jackery box. All you’ll need is an adapter.
The adapter you’re going to need is the SolarEnz MC4 to 8mm adapter cable. This is compatible with the Renogy, Richsolar, HQST, and Newpowa panels.
Does Jackery 160, 240, and 500 support a 100 Watt solar panel?
Jackery advertises that the maximum input wattage of the 160 and 240 power stations is 42 watts. Explorer 500 has a 100W max input rating.
For this reason, I don’t recommend using a 100 watt panel with the 160 or 240 because it would be a waste. I would, however, recommend using one with the Explorer 500 to charge it faster. I would even recommend a larger solar panel like the HQST 150W so you could max out the input.
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You can also use a 100W panel like the Renogy 100W with the Explorer 500. This panel would generate about 50-70 watts.
Most solar panels out there are compatible, you just need to make sure that the VOC rating of the solar panel is under 30V.
A compatible smaller portable solar panel to pair with the 160 or 240 would be the Renogy 50W solar panel. Make sure the panel you’re buying doesn’t include a solar charge controller since the Jackery has one built-in.
To conclude, to connect a third-party solar panel to a Jackery power station, you’ll need the SolarEnz MC4 to 8mm adapter cable and a compatible panel.
How Long Will It Take To Charge The Jackery Power Stations With A 100 Watt Solar Panel?
A 100 watt solar panel doesn’t generate exactly 100 watts as soon as there is sun on it, but usually between 40 and 80 depending on the time of the year, what solar charge controller it’s plugged into, and other factors. The Jackery power stations use the less efficient PWM solar charge controllers, which will make the input lower.
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I recommend using a 60W solar panel with the 160 and 240. In peak hours it should generate the 42W that the 160 and 240 can handle. It would then take about four hours to charge the 160 from empty to full, and less than six hours to do the same with the 240.
The Explorer 500 supports up to 100W, so you could even use a 150W panel like the HQST 150W. During peak sun hours of the day, it should max out the Explorer 500 at 100W input and charge it from empty to full in less than 5.5 hours.
Let me know if you have any questions by leaving a comment down below.