Solar Power Information

Frequently Asked Questions

Solar Power Information

What exactly is a Solar Generator?

The Survival Solar Backup is an electric generator which will provide up to 1800 watts of household electricity (3600 watts peak); enough to run almost any electronic product or appliance you might connect to your wall outlet at home. No diesel or regular gas is needed! It consists of a battery pack that stores electrical energy, state-of-the-art electronics that convert 12 volts from the battery pack to household power, an AC power panel that contains four standard outlets, and two USB ports. The Survival Solar Backup is packaged in an almost “indestructible housing” and is easy to move around as needed.

Solar Power Batteries

Is it a generator?

With the included solar panel, yes. The Survival Solar Backup is an electric production and storage unit. Generators are self-contained power units which generate their own electricity by use of a solar panel or other fuel source. It generates its own electricity, and stores the electricity for use when you need it.

Is it noisy?

No, the Survival Solar Backup runs silently, no noise whatsoever. It emits no fumes and no gas is needed.

What can I run with it?

The Survival Solar Backup provides for 1800 watts of household electricity (3600 watts peak). That's enough to run almost any electronic product or appliance you might connect to your wall outlet at home. But appliances that require exceptional amounts of power are best to avoid, if possible, as they are very expensive to run from batteries or a generator. Examples include central air conditioners, heat pumps, electric hot water heaters, electric clothes dryers, electric ranges and electric space heaters.

Run Times on typical products if you unplug the Solar Panel and use battery power only:

Product
Watts*
Run Time**
Cordless Phone 5 90 h
Cell Phone 5 95 h
Inkjet Printer 8 60 h
Laptop Computer 65 7.5 h
20" LCD Monitor 40 13 h
Table Lamp 40 12 h
8.8 Cubic Foot Freezer 80 4.5 h
18 Foot Refrigerator 120 3.5 h
Sump Pump 1/4 HP 300 65 min
Microwave 1000 20 min

* Average power consumption as measured on loads tested under regular operating conditions.
Rated power may differ from average power consumption.

** Run time as measured on tested loads.

Run time for combinations of products if you unplug the Solar Panel and use battery power only:
Product
Run Time **
Laptop, Inkjet Printer, Cordless Phone, Internet Modem Up To 10 h
Cordless Phone, 13" TV, Clock Radio, Table Lamp Up To 3.3 h
18 Cubic Foot Refrigerator, Home Alarm System Up To 3 h

** Run time as measured on tested loads.

On average, how long does it take the solar panel to fully re-charge the unit?  That would be assuming the regular power source is out and you could not plug it in to your regular A/C outlet to re-charge it.

That really depends on the sun. For example, here in Northern Illinois, in full sun during the winter, it takes about 21 hours to fully charge the system.

What types of plugs can be used with this unit?

The Survival Solar Backup has 4 plug options: 1 AC, 2 USB, and 1 DC (the cigarette lighter kind).

Can you get 50' of cord?

Yes. It comes with 50' of cord.

What are the dimensions of the panel?

47" long X 21" wide X 2" deep
weighs 17 pounds

Is it "portable" and easy to move around?

Yes, very. It weighs only 86 pounds, has "lifting handles" at both ends as well as hidden wheels which make moving the unit around a snap.

If power goes out for several days, will the act of plugging the refrigerator into the unit for just a few hours each day, combined with the act of having the solar panel constantly re-charging the unit, allow for effective frozen/cold food preservation for several days?

Yes. This is the strategy we highly recommend in an emergency.  As you know, your refrigerator doesn't run all the time anyway. Simply run your refrigerator for two hours plugged in to the solar generator and then unplug it for two hours. This works great!

Does it include a battery?

Yes, the Survival Solar Backup includes a massive 60Ah battery. The battery is a sealed, maintenance free battery and is securely housed inside the housing.

Can I charge it and use it at the same time?

Yes. The Solar Panel connects to the Solar Powered Generator with the included DC socket, so your household AC appliances can be run from it at the same time. Use the Survival Solar Backup permanently and watch your electric bill drop!

Is the System easy to install?

Yes, the system is very easy to install since no actual installation is really needed. No electrician is needed either. This is a stand-alone system that does not need to be connected to your household wiring whatsoever. Just position the solar panel cart outside, and then plug everything into the power plant. That's it!

How often should I change the battery?

Just like the battery in your car, it should be charged up now and then, and actually used. The expected life span of the battery will be around 6 years or more, but the more you use it, the longer it will last! :)

Can I use it indoors?

Yes. The Survival Solar Backup does not emit any fumes since it is completely sealed. Place it into your kitchen or office, and plug in your appliances! Use it as a permanent source of power!
Solar Residential Panels

Does weather affect my power system?

The Survival Solar Backup itself can be used outdoors, however, it should be kept out of direct exposure to rain, direct sunlight and snow. Keep the Survival Solar Backup in a cool dry place if you can, it will radically increase the lifespan and capabilities of the unit. The solar panel of course, should be put into direct sunlight, or even mounted right on your roof with southern (preferably) or southwestern exposure. The Solar Panel will operate efficiently at temperatures from -40 to 185 degrees Fahrenheit.

Can I hook several of these together?

No. The units are self-contained and are designed to operate independently.

Is the battery a lead acid/battery?

Yes. The battery is sealed, non-spillable, lead/acid gel battery.

Do you carry a 240 volt system for other countries?

Not at this time.

Will I be able to operate my air conditioner or electric heater with this unit?

No. These appliances consume more energy than the Survival Solar Backup can supply.

Will my solar panels be able to work if I place them on my porch or “sun room”?

The solar panels need to have direct sunlight. Windows act as filters and will not allow the  solar panels to absorb the solar energy that they need. Solar panels should be placed outdoors in direct sunlight.

Can the Survival Solar Backup power my entire home?

No. This is a self-contained, backup power unit. It is designed to power only a few of the most critical loads (a refrigerator and a few lights or a small office).

What is your return policy?

All sales are final. We will honor all of the warranties on the equipment (20 years on the solar panels, 90 days on batteries and the electronics, 2 Year Extended Warranty can be purchased). Any unauthorized repairs will void the warranty.

Will the solar generator power time travel equipment?

We get this question quite frequently from “Coast to Coast” listeners. Unfortunately the Survival Solar Backup cannot power most time travel machines on the market today.
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