Which Solar Panels Are Compatible With The Jackery Explorer?

Charge Your Jackery Explorer Power Station With Compatible Solar Panels

The Jackery Explorer power station lineup currently consists of the Explorer 160, 240, 500, and 1000.

All of them can be charged in three ways, with the included wall or car charger, and solar panels.

Even though portable power stations like these are often called solar generators, they don’t include solar panels unless you purchase a kit.

Related Post: How To Connect Third-Party Solar Panels To The Jackery Explorer

So which solar panels are compatible with the Explorers? In this post, I will guide you through the solar, cable and adapter jungle and recommend compatible panels.

Jackery sells its own SolarSaga 60 and SolarSaga 100 that come with 8mm connectors, directly compatible with every Explorer model.

Let’s start by listing my solar panel recommendations and the limits of the Explorer power stations, then talk about what you need to know and think about, how to combine panels, and what extension cables you can use.

Solar Panel Recommendations

PAXCESS Foldable 50W Solar Panel Charger for Suaoki Portable Generator/8mm Goal Zero Yeti 100/150/400 Power Station Battery Pack/USB Devices, with 3 USB Ports
Renogy 50W 12V Eclipse Monocrystalline Portable Solar Panel Built-in Kickstand
ROCKPALS 80W Portable Solar Panel Charger, Parallel Foldable Solar Panel for ROCKPALS 250W/300W Portable Power Station, 8mm for Goal Zero Yeti Power Station/Jackery Explorer 160/240
Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel (New Edition), Design
Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Extremely Flexible Monocrystalline Solar Panel
Renogy 100W 12V Monocrystalline Off Grid Portable Foldable 2pcs 50W Solar Panel Suitcase Built-In Kickstand
Watts
50W
50W
80W
100W
100W
100W
Open Circuit Voltage
16-18V
22.4V
18V
21.5V
22.5V
21.6V
Connectors
DC, USB
MC4
DC, USB
MC4
MC4
MC4
Requires Additional Adapter
Foldable
Built-in Stand
Weight
4.9 lbs
3.6 lbs
5.3 lbs
14.3 lbs
4.2 lbs
12.8 lbs
Size
6 x 13.8 x 1.8 in (folded)
24 x 22 x 2 in
16.9 x 2.8 x 11.8 in
41.6 x 20.7 x 1.4 in
47.9 x 21 x 0.1 in
69.1 x 6.1 x 50.5 in

PAXCESS Foldable 50W Solar Panel Charger for Suaoki Portable Generator/8mm Goal Zero Yeti 100/150/400 Power Station Battery Pack/USB Devices, with 3 USB Ports
Watts
50W
Open Circuit Voltage
16-18V
Connectors
DC, USB
Requires Additional Adapter
Foldable
Built-in Stand
Weight
4.9 lbs
Size
6 x 13.8 x 1.8 in (folded)
Renogy 50W 12V Eclipse Monocrystalline Portable Solar Panel Built-in Kickstand
Watts
50W
Open Circuit Voltage
22.4V
Connectors
MC4
Requires Additional Adapter
Foldable
Built-in Stand
Weight
3.6 lbs
Size
24 x 22 x 2 in
ROCKPALS 80W Portable Solar Panel Charger, Parallel Foldable Solar Panel for ROCKPALS 250W/300W Portable Power Station, 8mm for Goal Zero Yeti Power Station/Jackery Explorer 160/240
Watts
80W
Open Circuit Voltage
18V
Connectors
DC, USB
Requires Additional Adapter
Foldable
Built-in Stand
Weight
5.3 lbs
Size
16.9 x 2.8 x 11.8 in
Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel (New Edition), Design
Watts
100W
Open Circuit Voltage
21.5V
Connectors
MC4
Requires Additional Adapter
Foldable
Built-in Stand
Weight
14.3 lbs
Size
41.6 x 20.7 x 1.4 in
Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Extremely Flexible Monocrystalline Solar Panel
Watts
100W
Open Circuit Voltage
22.5V
Connectors
MC4
Requires Additional Adapter
Foldable
Built-in Stand
Weight
4.2 lbs
Size
47.9 x 21 x 0.1 in
Renogy 100W 12V Monocrystalline Off Grid Portable Foldable 2pcs 50W Solar Panel Suitcase Built-In Kickstand
Watts
100W
Open Circuit Voltage
21.6V
Connectors
MC4
Requires Additional Adapter
Foldable
Built-in Stand
Weight
12.8 lbs
Size
69.1 x 6.1 x 50.5 in

Note: Scroll left/right on small screens to view all products in the table.

There are a lot more solar panels on the market that are compatible, but I can’t fit them all in one table.

Here are more compatible panels, clicking on any link below will take you to the product page on Amazon.com

Solar panels that require the adapter: Renogy 50W / Renogy 100W / HQST 100W / Newpowa 100W / Eco-Worthy 100W / Allpowers 100W Flexible

Adapter: MC4 to 8mm with positive female

Solar panels that don’t require the adapter: Paxcess 50W / Jackery SolarSaga 60 / Rockpals 60WRockpals 80W / Jackery SolarSaga 100 / Rockpals 100W

The Additional Adapter You Need

To connect the solar panels with a checkmark next to “Requires Additional Adapter” to the Jackery power stations, you need to use an adapter like this (click to view on Amazon).

GRAYBULL Solar Panel Kits to 8mm Adapter Cable Compatible with MC4, DC 8mm Converter Connect for Jackery and GZ yeti Portable Backup Power Station Solar Generator 14AWG Heavy Duty Wire

Check Price at Amazon

Note that it has a positive female connector and a negative male connector. This makes it compatible with solar panels from companies like Renogy, HQST, Newpowa, Eco-Worthy, and WindyNation.

If you have the Jackery Explorer 1000 which has an Anderson Power Pole input next to the 8mm input, you can use an adapter like this (click to view on Amazon).

Unfortunately, the Explorer 1000 only accepts a charge through one port at the time, so you can’t use both the 8mm and the Anderson Power Pole at the same time.

Jackery Explorer Power Station Limitations And Max Watt Inputs

Since the specifications of the Explorers differ depending on the model, I set up this table so you can see what your specific power station can handle.

Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 160, 167Wh Lithium Battery Solar Generator (Solar Panel Optional) Backup Power Supply with 110V/100W(Peak 150W) AC Outlet for Outdoors Camping Fishing Emergency
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 240, 240Wh Backup Lithium Battery, 110V/200W Pure Sine Wave AC Outlet, Solar Generator (Solar Panel Optional) for Outdoors Camping Travel Hunting Emergency
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 500, 518Wh Outdoor Solar Generator Mobile Lithium Battery Pack with 110V/500W AC Outlet (Solar Panel Optional) for Road Trip Camping, Outdoor Adventure
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 1000, 1002Wh Solar Generator (Solar Panel Optional) with 3x110V/1000W AC Outlets, Solar Mobile Lithium Battery Pack for Outdoor RV/Van Camping, Emergency
Watt-hours
167Wh
240Wh
518Wh
1002Wh
Inverter Rating
100W/150W peak
200W/400W peak
500W/1000W peak
1000W/2000W peak
Input Port
8mm
8mm
8mm
8mm, Anderson Power Pole
Max Solar Input
42W
42W
65W (Jackery advertises 100W)
175W (Jackery advertises 100W)
Input Voltage Limits
12V~30V
12V~30V
12V~30V
12V~30V
Solar Charge Controller Type
PWM
PWM
PWM
MPPT
Charging Time At Max Solar Input
4 hours
6 hours
8 hours
6 hours
Weight
4 lbs
6.6 lbs
13.3 lbs
22 lbs
Size
7.4 x 4.6 x 6.7 in
5.2 x 9.1 x 7.7 in
11.8 x 7.6 x 9.2 in
13.1 x 9.2 x 11.1 in

Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 160, 167Wh Lithium Battery Solar Generator (Solar Panel Optional) Backup Power Supply with 110V/100W(Peak 150W) AC Outlet for Outdoors Camping Fishing Emergency
Watt-hours
167Wh
Inverter Rating
100W/150W peak
Input Port
8mm
Max Solar Input
42W
Input Voltage Limits
12V~30V
Solar Charge Controller Type
PWM
Charging Time At Max Solar Input
4 hours
Weight
4 lbs
Size
7.4 x 4.6 x 6.7 in
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 240, 240Wh Backup Lithium Battery, 110V/200W Pure Sine Wave AC Outlet, Solar Generator (Solar Panel Optional) for Outdoors Camping Travel Hunting Emergency
Watt-hours
240Wh
Inverter Rating
200W/400W peak
Input Port
8mm
Max Solar Input
42W
Input Voltage Limits
12V~30V
Solar Charge Controller Type
PWM
Charging Time At Max Solar Input
6 hours
Weight
6.6 lbs
Size
5.2 x 9.1 x 7.7 in
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 500, 518Wh Outdoor Solar Generator Mobile Lithium Battery Pack with 110V/500W AC Outlet (Solar Panel Optional) for Road Trip Camping, Outdoor Adventure
Watt-hours
518Wh
Inverter Rating
500W/1000W peak
Input Port
8mm
Max Solar Input
65W (Jackery advertises 100W)
Input Voltage Limits
12V~30V
Solar Charge Controller Type
PWM
Charging Time At Max Solar Input
8 hours
Weight
13.3 lbs
Size
11.8 x 7.6 x 9.2 in
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 1000, 1002Wh Solar Generator (Solar Panel Optional) with 3x110V/1000W AC Outlets, Solar Mobile Lithium Battery Pack for Outdoor RV/Van Camping, Emergency
Watt-hours
1002Wh
Inverter Rating
1000W/2000W peak
Input Port
8mm, Anderson Power Pole
Max Solar Input
175W (Jackery advertises 100W)
Input Voltage Limits
12V~30V
Solar Charge Controller Type
MPPT
Charging Time At Max Solar Input
6 hours
Weight
22 lbs
Size
13.1 x 9.2 x 11.1 in

Note: Scroll left/right on small screens to view all products in the table.

What To Think About When Choosing Third-Party Solar Panels

Even though the power station might have a 42W max input, it’s safe to connect a 100W solar panel. What matters the most is the voltage of the panel.

A 100W panel outputs about 18V, and have a VOC rating around 22V. This is within the 12V~30V limit of the Explorer power stations.

Every panel I have linked to above is safe to use with every Jackery Explorer on the market right now.

How To Connect Two Panels

To connect two panels with MC4 connectors to one input, you need to use an MC4 Y branch. This will wire the panels together in parallel, which will double the amperage but not the volts. It’s safe to do with Jackery power stations.

Signstek Y Branch MC4 Parallel Connector Adapter M/FF and F/MM (1)

Check Price at Amazon

After connecting the solar panels to the MC4 Y branch, you’ll connect the branch to the MC4 to 8mm adapter cable and plug the adapter into the Explorer.

There are portable foldable panels that support a parallel connection as well. Like the Rockpals 80W. This panel comes with a parallel cable and output, so if you buy two you can wire them together. They also include an 8mm adapter, so you don’t need to buy anything else to connect one or two to a Jackery Explorer.

ROCKPALS 80W Portable Solar Panel Charger, Parallel Foldable Solar Panel for ROCKPALS 250W/300W Portable Power Station, 8mm for Goal Zero Yeti Power Station/Jackery Explorer 160/240

Check Price at Amazon

It’s not safe to connect two panels in series since that will double the voltage and most likely exceed the 30V maximum.

Extension Cables

You can use either MC4 extension cables or an 8mm.

For MC4, I recommend the WindyNation 12AWG extension cables.

For 8mm, I recommend the Graybull 20ft 8mm extension cable.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Will It Take To Charge The Battery?

It depends on the battery capacity of the power station and the power output of the solar panel.

A 100W solar panel generates about 60-80W, but power stations have a max input wattage.

Here is how long it takes to charge each Jackery Explorer if you max its input:

Explorer 160 – 4 hours

Explorer 240 – 6 hours

Explorer 500 – 8 hours

Explorer 1000 – 6 hours

How Can I Improve The Charging Speed?

The easiest way to increase the charging speed (up to the maximum input) is to tilt the solar panel. Angle it so it faces the sun directly. Unless it’s noon on a summer day, the sun won’t be straight above you.

Tilting the panel to face the sun directly when the sun is low on the horizon, like in the morning and evening, will improve the wattage significantly. It will also help when it’s cloudy.

Please leave a comment down below if you have any questions or corrections.

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