• Vincent Vanlife

Checking Out The Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station!

Hello everyone, and welcome to another Vincent Vanlife Blog Post! We've been thinking a lot about power on the road at the minute; being in sunny climates throughout both Europe and America has further cemented the idea that renewable energy is on the rise, and we couldn't be happier. We haven't paid an electricity bill in over two years since our van life journey began, but more importantly, using power off the grid is a much more sustainable way of living and it's a lot easier than you might think. We recently came across this Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station, a neat little power bank that can be charged up via an included solar panel and used on all of your adventures. It's the perfect size for BBQ's in the summer sun or Autumnal camping trips with all of the family in tow. Let's check it out!

Take A Look At The Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station!

No, it's not an extra from the film Wall-E, but it does have as much power and probably the same amount of intelligence too! This little device holds the key to all of your off grid living needs, and it does it all while looking funky fresh at the same time. It's lightweight and 100% portable thanks to the included carry handle, making it a great bit of kit for taking with you on hikes, climbing trips, to the beach, to the mountains; if you can physically carry it there, then the sky is the limit! It's not often that you see a portable generator this small with as many features, so we were pretty impressed when we got to look at the specs of this thing.

Let's start by talking about how much power this thing can hold and give out. The Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station can store up to 518watt hours - that's a mighty number for such a tiny box! If you're planning on working on the road and want to get out of your camper van from time to time to work on a mountain top or in the middle of a forest, then the Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station is the ultimate travel companion, giving you power wherever you go! Think of the places that you could use remote power other than a camper van though; we're talking BBQ's in the garden for either your cooking platform or for your guests to charge their phones and power speakers, we're talking camping trips with family and powering the lights in your tent, and I'm also thinking that this would be pretty useful in an off-grid tiny home setting, perhaps in a log cabin that you use through the winter!

But won't something this powerful and full of surprises weigh a tonne to carry around? You might think that would be the case, but the Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station is lighter than most people's suitcases or backpacks. It weighs an incredible 12.57lbs and is super portable. You don't need to lift weights or book yourself on a cross-fit course before taking this beauty into the wild; all you need is a sturdy grip, and you're good to go. On a serious note though, this portable power station is so easy to move around that people use it to power emergency medical equipment in remote areas. If they can rely on it to help keep people alive, then I'm pretty sure it will be able to charge your phone up and let you read your emails in the woods!

Tell Us More About What The Jackery Explorer 500 Can Do!

I know that you only came here to read the stats, so here goes. The Jackery Explorer 500 is a one-stop-shop for all of your off-grid power needs, and it has multiple outlets available depending on which devices you need to charge at any given time. It's strong enough to power your TV and charge up your drone batteries too, so you never have to worry about not being able to show other travellers or party goers the footage of your holidays in the Maldives.

The unit itself has three USB ports, two DC outlets, and one AC outlet, which should be more than enough for your Summer BBQ party or fancy forest fête. You can charge the Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station from your normal wall plug in your house before you head out on the trail, or any other 12V charging source if you're on the move. If the sun is shining down on your BBQ while out in the garden, then you can also keep the Jackery Explorer 500 topped up with the optional 100W solar panel. There is nothing better in life than free electricity, and the Jackery Explorer 500 lets you harness it whenever, wherever.

Inside the funky looking casing is a small factory of electrical brilliance. A lithium battery produces 500W rated power and incorporates a 1000W surge power setting from the AC port. Surge power might sound like a character from Street Fighter, but its an essential part of an electrical system that's needed for powering larger items such as food processors or jigsaws. Devices use double their wattage for a second or two when starting up; think of it like a cup of coffee in the morning to get you kick started before the day. If something has a wattage of 360W, then it will require a surge power of 720W to start up. The Jackery Explorer 500 can cope with pretty much any device that you'll need to use on the go or outside in your garden, so leave the calculations to the wonder-box and get on with enjoying your day!

How Can I Keep Tabs On How Much Electricity I'm Using?

The Jackery Explorer 500 makes keeping up to speed with how much energy you're using super simple to understand. Jackery have built an easy-to-read LCD screen into the device itself that gives you all of the important readings that you need to keep a track on how much energy you're currently using and, more importantly, how much is left for you to use before the battery goes flat. Having all of this information will help you to keep the battery in good condition (batteries don't like being left to go flat, so keep them topped up and happy!) and will save you from losing power to your devices when you need them the most. Imagine being on a boat in the ocean and not having enough power to check what the forecast is going to be like! It doesn't bear thinking about, does it!

One final trick that the Jackery has up its sleeve is the ability to turn into a solar generator when combined with multiple compatible solar panels. That's like taking a small portable power bank and watching it turn into the Hulk right before your very eyes. Not only does this set the Jackery Explorer 500 apart from other products in the range, but it also makes it the most useful portable power station on the market!

I Want One! How Much Does This Cost?

The Jackery Explorer 500 Power Station costs $499.99, which is around £400/€455, making it an affordable solution for anyone who simply wants to plug things in while out in remote areas or away from sockets, and doesn't want to faff around with extensions or carrying portable wind turbines around with them. If like me, you prefer to be outdoors a much as possible, then this little box will prove invaluable to you on your future adventures, and everyone knows that you can't have a BBQ without a 'chef's tunes' playlist on the go at the same time. It's cheaper than digging up your lawn and putting weather-proof electrical points around your garden, and it's certainly a lot less stressful than having to worry about turning your camper into an off-grid power station. Head over to the Jackery website to find out more about the Jackery Explorer 500 and to check out more of their products!

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