Renewable Backup Power For Home Use
This video we're going to take a look at Jackery's new thousand watt hour solar generator they just brought to the market. This is a product that has just come out in the last few weeks and I'll be honest with you, it feels kind of odd doing a product review at the beginning of a pandemic. But I have had a lot of private emails sent to me. I've had phone calls with friends asking me my advice as far as what they are, what I would recommend. Uh, some of them, my friends, you know, have to have CPAP machines. Uh, I know individuals that have diabetes so they have to keep small refrigerators cold who keep their insulin cold. So I've been getting a lot of questions that Hey, if the grid were to go down, what options do I have? And I think solar generators are awesome and we'll talk about how these really stack up against the traditional gas generators. We'll look at the specifics.
We'll talk about the price starting out. We'll talk about the advantages of solar generators just in general. And at the end, I'll give you my final thoughts. How this stacks up against, uh, the energy apex. There's a lot of solar generators I've reviewed. I think this is a fit one, but I think the apex is pretty close in a lot of the specs and we'll, we'll look at how these two compare to each other. So let's go ahead and jump in.
So before we jump into the specs, let's talk about the price. That's usually the first question people ask. So this particular unit, retail is $1,000, but I'll put a coupon code below and you can knock 200 off, bring it down to $800 before taxes. A solar generators, I've been reviewing them for a few years. Something like this, a couple of years ago would have cost probably easily $1,000 more around $1,800. So the price point I, in my opinion, is a really excellent price point. I'm not saying it's cheap, but it's a good price point for what you're getting. So let's run through the specs here and let's talk about this. First of all, it is by Jackery. Uh, it's a brand name that's been around for a good amount of time. They're here in California. So let's go ahead and run to the specs on the front. Uh, starting to talk, we've got our input, our display AC and DC.
By the way, you can operate these independently of one another, which is a pretty nice feature. So as far as the DC goes, we'll go ahead and switch that on here. We've got our 12 volt 10 amp plug in here. We've got two USBC plugins, we've got a five volt, 2.4 amp, and then we've got a quick charger, three volts here at the very bottom as far as on the AC side. We'll go ahead and flip that on. Turn this off. We've got three pure sine ways, one 10 volt with a thousand watt continuous that you can output on this. And you've got a surge capability up to 2000 Watts. So it can go up to 2000 Watts for a very brief period of time, but you can run again a thousand Watts continuous with pure sine wave. So on the top we've got our input charge options here.
We've got our eight millimeter plug in here and then we have our Anderson power pole input for solar plugin and we'll talk about this solar panels a little more in just a second. Now this does have a built in NPP charge controller, which essentially allows you to charge faster with solar. Uh, just again, it's a more efficient charging approach. If you do want to charge this with your car, you can plug this into your cigarette lighter and just simply plug in the eight millimeter plug in here to your input. If do of course, plug it into the wall socket. You've got the big brick here as far as the display goes, we've got our input, our output, and then you've got the battery life. So it's a very, very simple and easy to use display screen. Now one particular feature on this device I think is kind of funny, but it is what it is.
They put a small flashlight on the side, so you effectively have a 22 pound flashlight. Again on the internals, you've got a thousand watt hour battery on this. You've got an NMC lithium ion battery. You effectively get 500 charge cycles out of this. This is pretty standard for these types of batteries. At this weight, again, that's 500 charges. After 500 you dropped down to about 80% capacity, so if you were to do 500 charges, you would then drop it down to 800 watt hours instead of a thousand Watts hours. Now, if you don't let the battery go below 50% whenever you're using it, you can extend sometimes up to double or triple the battery life. The solar panels that they sell for this particular unit, there are a hundred watt solar panels that fold up and come back really easily. They're pretty nice and easy to use. Uh, at the moment, they only have the ability to hook up to one 100 watt solar panel.
They are coming out with a connector at the end of the month that will allow you to connect to 100 watt solar panels effectively. Again, give you two under Watts of solar input. What I'd like to do now in this particular part of the video is discuss how this stacks up against something like a traditional gas generator. Think of something like a Honda EDU, a 2000 or other models on the market that are comparable. Uh, why would you prefer a solar generator over a traditional gas generator? Well, there's several different things that you have to consider. Um, first of all, I live where we have a lot of sun here in Southern California and the idea that if the power grid were to go down for an extended period of time and you can't get ahold of gasoline, the ability to hook up solar panels to this and continuously charge you a is a huge advantage to me.
You essentially have a renewable source of power around the clock. The thing with obvious gas generators, it depends on how much fuel you can store and how much you can obtain. Once the fuels out it's out. Unless you can store a lot of gasoline, which is not always safe to do. Um, you know, these things, these particular devices really stand out in that, in that regard. The second thing that I like about these over a traditional gas generator is op sec. Op sec simply stands for operational security. When you begin to consider a potential long power grid down scenario and neighbors begin to get a little restless and you've got a generator running in your backyard, people are going to either hear it or they're going to smell it. And the ability to run power, you know, without making any noise and without anybody really knowing what's going on, it really gives you an advantage because again, you're not having to give up information about what you have when you want to keep that information private.
The other item that I really enjoy is the fact that you don't have to maintain these, uh, it is good to plug them in from time to time. Just make sure the batteries got proper inside. Obviously with the gas generator, you've got to see on top of maintenance, you've got to, uh, you know, make sure everything's running smoothly on it. You've got to change the oil. Uh, obviously the cost over time to provide fuel for a gas generator adds up. And with this, again, you've got solar panels, you hook it up and that's done. It's, it's pretty straightforward when it comes to that. One of the other things I really like is the fact that it's very lightweight and it's portable. This comes in at 22 pounds and a traditional gas generator, say something like, again, like a Honda eu2000 is going to come in closer to 50 pounds.
So if you had to move and you've got to be mobile when you have to go somewhere quickly, just being able to grab this toss in the back of your car, it makes it a practical option. Now I do realize that these are not nearly as powerful as a traditional gas generator. What I mean by that, a gas generator, you know, it can crank out maybe a continuous 1800 Watts. Uh, I think the generator that I have, the Honda downstairs, it's continuous 1800, but I think a surge of 23 or 2,400 Watts. So yeah, you're not gonna be able to push as much power and not nearly as long as you would with a gas generator. But again, if you're in a longterm grid down scenario and you're able to ration your power needs, again just maybe powering a small refrigerator or against other smaller devices like you know, uh, radios, uh, you know, your cell phones or other devices that you need to keep information going.
Um, something like this would be great. Again, you're not having to worry about cycling up a gas generator running out of gasoline over time. So let's go ahead and do a quick side by side comparison. Now, on the left we have the energy apex and obviously we have the Jackery. Why did I choose the energy apex in particular? The apex is very comparable as far as weight and, um, the actual watt hours, I believe this one's 1100 watt hours. This one's a thousand watt hours, this one's 25 pounds, and this is 22 pounds. So there's a lot of similarities as far as their size and weight. So let's just run through the specs and compare them side by side. So again, we're 25 pounds on the apex and 22 on the Jackery. So a negligible difference. Very close. Now the AC charged time on the apex is three hours and the Jackery is seven hours.
So this one charges, uh, nearly twice as fast. The maximum solar input when you hook them up to solar panels, this one can actually go to 500 Watts of solar panels. This one's at 200 Watts. So the apex, you can definitely, uh, you know, power a lot more or rather put more solar panels on it. The next thing that I always look at is the ability to expand them out. And what do I mean by that? Hooking up additional batteries. Um, the apex actually has some plugins on the side, some terminal, some post here that you can hook into batteries. They're coming out with an actual battery lithium expansion pack here pretty soon, so you can't expand this one out. But with the Jacker you can't, it's just pretty much you hook it up to the solar panels or your wall out? And that's it.
Now as far as continuous and max output at the inverter for the, you can do 1500 Watts continuous with a 3000 surge. And with the Jackery, you can do a thousand Watts continuous and 2000 surge. So again, apex is definitely better there. Now the price is really where things stand out. This is 1,250 and this is $800 with a coupon code that I'll post below. So head to head. The apex definitely is a more powerful, a lot more feature rich unit. The Jack Curry, again, the, the primary advantage is obviously the price point and a lot of people are obviously price conscious at this time. It's about, you know, a significant about $450 cheaper for this. So it really comes down to what do you need. If you're not needing, you know, expandability, you're not needing a lot of power, you're just needing to power small, simple devices like maybe a small refrigerator or you know, different, um, you know, devices like, you know, two way radios or your phone or other small electronic devices.
If that's all you need, then I think the Jackery is going to be your go to option. The apex is really when you're getting into more, uh, power demanding knees. And you need to build expanded out add battery packs. So again, it just comes down to your needs. I'm not saying the apex is, you know, way better than the Jackery. It, you know, I think it's a lot more powerful and more feature rich. But again, the Jackery meets a specific target and I think that has specific needs. What are my final thoughts on this particular unit? I've reviewed a lot of these over the years and um, I have to say this at the price point. I think this is an excellent option if you do not have a lot of power demands and you're not needing to power it with a lot of solar input. Again, this is only 200 Watts solar input in this particular size.
Typically they allow it to four or 500 Watts. So this one's definitely on the lighter side of equation, but that's not a bad thing because not everybody needs a lot of power. If you're just looking to power some simple devices. Again, you know, a C-PAP, a small refrigerator, uh, other, you know, odds and ends, your electronics, your cell phones, radios, uh, I think this is going to be perfect. Uh, you know, again, jumping up to that $1,200 price range for all the other power and options and solar input, then that may not be something you really are necessarily interested in. Now, as far as availability goes on these units, I know they're low in stock with everything happening with the current pandemic, uh, I have no idea by the time I released this video how many of have, but if you are interested, I'll post a link in the description section below to Amazon with the coupon code, both for American and Canadian Amazon websites. If you have any questions, any feedback, please post those in the comment section below. If you enjoyed the video, click on like button, share on social media and as always, be safe out there.