Written by Shannon Flynn
People are considering the benefits of prepping, whether it’s for a natural disaster, government shutdown, future pandemic or some other catastrophic event.
Taking steps to actively prepare for disasters or emergencies is wise. It can sometimes mean the difference between life and death. A key component of prepping is finding viable means to access necessities, such as food, shelter, electricity and water.
Without power, most people would survive for the first 48 hours and possibly even longer, depending on their stockpile. However, trying to make it long term without electricity can be challenging.
It’s no secret that solar technology is taking the world by storm — you’ve likely seen more homeowners in your neighborhood installing panels on their roofs. In fact, 46% have considered it. These can certainly be a good investment, but other solar technologies also benefit preppers.
Solar Power for Prepping
Solar power is growing rapidly and becoming an increasingly affordable energy source for consumers and businesses. Solar tech converts sunlight into electrical energy, which can be used in various ways.
Solar energy is clean, effective and abundant. Harnessing the sun’s power is free and available to the average consumer, making it a great alternative to standard electricity. Additionally, it’s expected that capacity will continue to grow. By 2023, it will surpass a terawatt of global solar power generation.
The power grid can fail during catastrophe events, and widespread blackouts can occur. Therefore, relying on solar energy as a backup to traditional electricity is something preppers should consider. Using solar power as an alternative to conventional energy sources can give you peace of mind and a sense of security as a prepper.
Key Solar-Power Technologies Preppers Can Use
Solar power offers many benefits preppers can reap, but it may feel like investing in these technologies could be too expensive. However, most of these cool solar power gadgets will not break the bank.
Solar Fire Starter
You likely know that fire is critical to survival, but starting one without the right gear can be challenging. Several types of solar-powered fire starters can be used to cook or keep warm when the temperature drops.
Consider the Solar Spark Lighter, a small handheld device made of a stainless steel parabolic mirror. It focuses the sun’s energy to a precise focal point and can create a fire, and it only costs a couple of dollars.
There are many types of solar-powered showers on the market and are typically used by campers, hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. Take the Advanced Elements 5-Gallon Solar Shower, for example. It ranges between $20-$40 and can even warm your shower water to 100 F in only three hours.
Most solar showers come with all the bells and whistles of a regular shower, such as a tap, showerhead and hanging attachment for ease of use.
A solar-powered backpack allows you to access power when you’re running low on your smartphone battery. Solar-powered bags, such as the Solar GoPack or the Energizer PowerKeep PRO, come in handy when spending time outdoors.
Many backpacks with solar technology integration come with plenty of pockets for storage, comfortable straps and anti-theft features to keep your items safe. Consider adding one to your stockpile and packing it with necessities so you can grab it in a hurry.
Solar Refrigerator or Freezer
Keeping perishable items cold is critical for some people. Those with diabetes need to keep their insulin refrigerated — if a disaster occurs, how would they be able to do so? The answer: solar-powered refrigerators. If you’re living off the grid, having a reliable way to keep food, medications and drinks cool is essential.
One budget-friendly solution is the Whynter FM-45G 45 Quart Portable Refrigerator, which has great features at a reasonable price. These fridges tend to be smaller, so they won’t cost you the same as a traditional model would.
Many solar-powered generators come in handy and act as portable power stations. They’ve come down in price and weight since their introduction to the market. They can be taken on the go and won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
Be sure to consider a few factors while picking out a solar generator, such as your electricity needs, weight and size, its capacity and how much you’re willing to pay. One affordable generator is the Jackery Explorer 420, which can power phones, laptops, lights and even a mini cooler.
Portable Solar Panel
There are various types of foldable, emergency solar panels that are portable and serve as a reliable energy source. They can be lightweight, powerful and even resilient to nature’s elements.
One reliable solar panel to take on the go is the Dokio 160W Portable Foldable Solar Panel Kit, which works right out of the box and is perfect if you need power outdoors or during emergencies.
Prepper Portable Solar Power
Preppers spend a lot of time researching what types of tools and gadgets to add to their stockpiles. Hopefully, you feel more confident knowing you can rely on solar power during emergencies. The products above are the latest and greatest technologies on the market, so consider purchasing them to strengthen your preparedness.
About the author
Shannon Flynn is a technology writer who covers lifestyle and IT trends. Shannon is a staff writer at MakeUseOf, Lifehacker, and is the managing editor of ReHack.com.
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Photo by Jeremy Bezanger on Unsplash