Camping with your family or living in a recreational vehicle can be more worthwhile with the best solar refrigerator.
It is an innovative fridge that runs through a solar system. Typically, it’s compact and small to fit tight corners and spaces, making it suitable for off the grid living and cabins, too.
You will find many of these on the market, so you might feel overwhelmed just looking of what products are offered.
So in order to make an informed choice, you might want to refer to our buying guide with the top picks and factors to check when comparing your options. Let’s begin with the following reviews.
|Top 1||Top 2||Top 3|
|Preview||Alpicool C15||ICECO JP40||Whynter FM-45G|
|Weight||18.92 pounds||35.3 pounds||45 pounds|
|Capacity||15 Liters||40 Liters||42.5 Liters|
|Temp Range||-4°F～ 50°F||-7°F～ 50°F||-8°F～ 50°F|
- List of Top-Tier Solar Refrigerator Reviews
- 1. Alpicool C15 Portable Refrigerator
- 2. ICECO JP40 Portable Refrigerator
- 3. Whynter FM-45G Portable Fridge/Freezers
- 4. Avanti Energy Star Apartment Refrigerator
- 5. Smad 12V Compact mini Fridge
- 6. Sundanzer Solar Powered Refrigerator
- 7. Dometic CDF11 CDF11-DC-A
- 8. Sundanzer Solar-Powered Refrigerator
- 9. Ecosolar Cool Solar Refrigerator
- 10. ACOPOWER 4°F True Freezing Refrigerator
- Why You Should Trust Us
- What Is A Solar Refrigerator And Who This Is For
- How Does It Work
- What Are The Different Types Of Solar Refrigerators
- Advantages And Disadvantages Of Solar Refrigerators
- How We Picked And Tested
- Frequently Asked Questions
List of Top-Tier Solar Refrigerator Reviews
1. Alpicool C15 Portable Refrigerator
- Easy to carry
- Lightweight durability
- Easy charging
- Adaptable charging
- Extended cooling
- Somewhat unclear instructions
When one says FREEZER, what comes to mind is a giant, rectangle shaped container that is always a smaller compartment above a refrigerator or on its own. It can be found either in the kitchen, or in the basement, stuffed with various foods that need to be preserved for future meals, along with the occasional ice cream.
This new product, however, isn’t a behemoth container made of steel and plastic that requires a delivery by truck or 2-3 people to lift it as it needs only two hands to carry it when you go camping, hiking, on a road trip or a picnic. I liked this portable feature of the fridge.
If you just simply decide to stay home, you can still carry it around and place it wherever you want, even if it’s just beside you while you’re enjoying a movie, or while you’re reading to save yourself the trouble of constantly having to get up and go to the fridge to get a drink.
With a size of 22.4” x 12.6” x 10.2 “, it can carry up 20 cans of Cola, or any canned drink of your choice and has a capacity that can accommodate 15 liters without breaking. It is something I would like my solar ref to have. Thanks to its thick and high-density foam simulation and durable lightweight material that locks its temperature of -4°F (-20°C) within its four corners.
It is enough to keep whatever you put inside it cool, and easily beats having to carry a large cooler with the additional weight of ice to keep the contents cold and fresh; if, however, ice happens to be included in the contents for future use, then you can still do so!
If you decide to bring it along while driving, you don’t have to stop every now and then to check if your food and drinks are still fresh in this portable mini freezer. It is doing the work for you especially as it is specially constructed to stay sealed until you open it, regardless of how fast you’re going, or how many sudden, sharp turns you take.
Charging won’t be a problem either because the freezer also comes with two power cables to connect the power inputs of 110V to 240V AC, and 12/24V DC. It can even work with a mini solar system if you have one available, so you can recharge it anytime, anywhere.
2. ICECO JP40 Portable Refrigerator
- Adjustable temperature compressor
- Manageable weight
- Easy to use
- Won’t overcharge
- Spare parts included
- Some longevity issues
Back in the old days – and even now – refrigerators were (and still are) among the heaviest items that you can bring into your home, especially when they’re the ones that reach all the way up to the ceiling.
The gray ICECO JP40 Portable Refrigerator, however, with a weight of 35.3 pounds that complement its quaint size is 23” x 14” x 18” with a capacity of 40 liters, and a freezer capacity of 42 quarts is a different story since it was designed and built to help save up on space and temperature.
I liked that it has interesting details. One of those is that in order to save on energy, the compressor will stop operating has reached the set temperature, and will start re-operating when the temperature in the box has risen between 6℉-9℉. The said compressor is also a Germany SECOP Compressor with an ETL Certificate and Global Product Insurance.
Equipped with a MAX & ECO MODE function, its compressor speed can be adjusted – whether by slowing the cooling time down, or hasten it, depending on your preference. It doesn’t need any ice either to help with the cooling since one can adjust the temperature from -7℉～50℉ (-22℃～+10℃).
When opening the said refrigerator, the hinges allow the lid to be lifted upward rather than be pulled to the side. I liked this feature, too.
3. Whynter FM-45G Portable Fridge/Freezers
- More affordable than other options
- Heavy-duty construction and nice design
- Two pieces of removable wire baskets included
- Easy to operate
- Setting temperature can be a challenge
Do not miss this 45-Quart refrigerator and freezer if you’re looking for a reliable and efficient cooler for your picnics and camping adventures. For one, Whynter is a trusted brand for a solar powered refrigerator freezer known for its compact footprint and design and solid construction.
It is with the commitment to quality and durability as well, so it a good pick to consider when shopping around for a good solar fridge. One of the superior offerings of this brand is the top-rated freezer, which is also a favorite among consumers that want a dependable fridge and freezer aboard their recreational vehicle.
The refrigerator is a good pick because it is also more affordable than the others in the same category are. Even so, the manufacturer has made sure that it is a quality product. It has the heavy-duty components especially that many who use it are into off the grid living and RV camping.
I also liked the great design and color of this model. The platinum color is classy and looks perfectly well on any decoration. With it, there is no need about the fridge not matching your interior design. And speaking of interiors, it is also suitable for household use like in the bedroom or kitchen.
I would like to recommend this ref for those who have a cabin or a vacation home for rent. This fridge is ideal for the homes that might just be used occasionally. Plus, you can transport the ref easier than bulkier model are because it is smaller in size.
This item has a capacity of 45 Quarts just enough to accommodate camping food and drinks. You might also want to take a look at it if you want to store only up to 60 cans of drinks during gatherings and picnics.
It is also dual function, offering you the option to use it as a refrigerator or as a freezer without any hassles. This model also includes two pieces of wire baskets, which add to the functionality and organization feature of the fridge. It also comes with a 5-feet DC cord or an 8-feet AC power cord.
4. Avanti Energy Star Apartment Refrigerator
The Avanti 7.4 cubic feet two-door apartment refrigerator should not be missed when weighing your options for a new refrigerator.
It has a pleasing aesthetic design that matches any decoration. No matter the theme of your decoration, you do not need to worry because this refrigerator has an elegant design to match classic and modern home decorations.
This Avanti 7.4 Cu. Ft. refrigerator is ideal for those living in an apartment because it is not bulky, not taking up much space while not compromising the storage.
You can store much food and drinks into this fridge but not worry about it looking bulky.
The RA7316PST is also energy efficient. In fact, it is Energy Star rated. It is low in energy consumption versus other items in the same category do.
Choosing it, you can save on your energy bills while also having the ability to store much inside a fridge that does not take up much space.
In addition, this fridge features reversible door increasing placement options.
I would like to recommend this refrigerator because its shelving is made from high quality glass. The shelving is also adjustable, offering flexible storage.
This model also features two crisper drawers that you can use in storing fruits and vegetables. They’re clear so that you can easily see what is inside without having to open the crisper drawers.
More so, I would like to note that the Avanti ref also has a full range thermostat for selection of the ideal temperature.
- Large storage space
- Crisper drawers
- Reversible doors
- See-Through Crisper Drawers
- Ideal for small spaces
5. Smad 12V Compact mini Fridge
- Portable Size
- With adjustable shelf
- It has a Temperature Thermostat Control
- With reversible door on left or right depend on the preference of user
- With security lock
- Limited space for items
Are you looking for a perfect fit refrigerator for your apartment or studio type condominium or RV? Smad got something for you that will totally win your heart. Read here the strong and weak features of Smad 12V Compact mini Fridge.
At Smad, you can rest your worries because they are known as one of the legendary producer of top-quality appliances since 1999. Hence, I recommend going at their shop straightly because for sure, usually, no time and money is wasted if you choose a high-reputed one.
I think the primary asset of Smad 12V Compact mini Fridge is its portable size. Based on its description, it stands 1.4 cubic feet. while its exterior size is 15.8’W x 18”Dx21.7”H. Cute refrigerator like this one is appropriate for small space areas or on vehicles.
Now, once you take a view inside this fridge, you’ll be impressed as I am when you see how organize its adjustable shelf. It made this way so you can have space for taller or bulky items to preserve their form.
Not just this fridge is expected to keep your food fresh; it also looks good and fashionable. This fridge’s matte black shade will compliment in other home appliances and furniture.
Another detail that is worth mentioning about this product is that it is made silent and efficient. That’s why shoppers want it for establishments, bedrooms and cars. Probably no one will even notice that it is placed somewhere in the corner as it is soundproof.
What I like more is that Smad Fridge can adapt based on the users’ needs in terms of preserving food. This appliance has Temperature Thermostat Control so you can select the right temperature prescription for your drinks or meals.
As I said earlier, this fridge is good for apartments or dormitory. Not just because it is small in size but also because it has a security lock that can keep your food safe from intruders. It is also hassle-free to bring on a trip inside an RV because no food is going to be spilled due to its lock.
I should mention also that the door of Smad Fridge can be reversed on left or right depend on the preference of user for convenient opening.
6. Sundanzer Solar Powered Refrigerator
- Solar powered, hence, it is Eco-friendly and cost saving in long term
- Small size so it is space saving and portable
- With 12V charging capacity
- Made of strong materials, hence, durable
- Can perform for a long time
- Charging capacity depends on the weather
If you are looking for a type of solar powered freezer that can serve it purpose just like the other usual freezer but is far cost-effective, it is highly recommended to go and try the Sundanzer Solar Powered Refrigerator. Presented below are its advantages as well at its little disadvantage.
We know that refrigerator is one of the favorite appliances at home even though it usually consumes the highest percentage of the electricity bill next to air con. The Sundanzer Solar Powered Refrigerator is the solution to sustain thrift household expenses.
Due to advance technology, Sundanzer was able to create a very useful appliance where you can store and keep your food fresh without worrying about paying more for power consumption.
I really appreciate that this is a no ordinary refrigerator because it has an incorporated solar panels. That simply means it is powered by sunlight and no electricity is needed to make it function.
Said appliance also have a built in cells which is 12V Group 27 sealed AGM batteries in which the solar power is being stored. It has the charging capacity for up 20 89 AM-hours or equivalent to 20 hour rate watt.
Just leave it on a sunny place to allow it to harvest abundant daylight and generate it to power supply. Imagine the amount of money that you can save in a long term by using Sundanzer Solar Powered Refrigerator. It gives you a chance to spend your wealth to other important things.
I think nature lovers will also welcome this Sundanzer Solar Powered Refrigerator at their homes. Its solar panel produces 100% clean and renewable energy that is Eco-friendly.
Rest assured also that this fridge is miniature in size but competitive like the other refrigerators. Its size is 1.8 Cubic Feet and dimensions of 24.5 x 27.5 x 36.5 inches. Hence, it is suitable for limited space rooms and recreational vans. It also weighs 50 pounds, hence, really light weighted.
The Sundanzer also boasting that this Solar Powered Refrigerator is durable as it is made of Polypropylene Watering System and usually lasts for up to 10 years of service.
7. Dometic CDF11 CDF11-DC-A
- Adjustable shoulder strap
- Can work as a refrigerator or as a freezer
- Ideal for camping and picnics
- Good for off grid living
- Smaller size
Dometic has been a staple name in the business for its reliability and quality commitment. That is why I have included one of its top-tier offerings on the market in this buying guide. Check out the Dometic CDF11 CDF11-DC-A.
One of the things I liked with the solar refrigerator is its portability and compact size. As someone who loves camping and outdoor activities with my friends, I want a portable cooler for our food and drinks. This ref is just perfect. It has a compact size, which makes it easy to carry around without any hassles. Plus, it has an adjustable strap that makes it easier.
In addition, I don’t need ice to keep things cool inside it because it cools efficiently without any problems.
The portable cooler also has just an enough size for a small group. It has a 10-quart capacity, which makes it ideal for traveling and going outdoors. I also recommend it to those who are living off the grid and in their mobile homes.
Choosing this refrigerator, you also don’t need to worry about high power consumption. It is efficient to run on low power consumption either AC or DC.
This kind of set up is good for a solar system, which many of us have. So if you’re looking to become more energy efficient, you must also look into the specifications of the solar fridge, and see if it does not consume much power.
Another thing I liked about the fridge is that it is flexible to accommodate different needs. For example, if you just need cooling, you can use its refrigeration function. But if you want to prevent food from spoilage and need it frozen, you can choose the freezing function.
As you see, being portable does not lack power. This refrigerator is small but big in features. The good thing is that Dometic has considered this kind of flexibility in designing this portable fridge.
In terms of the protection, you can have that peace of mind because it is designed with a three-stage battery protection. With that said, you can worry not that it can stay functional without damage.
The portable fridge can be stored in a small space, so it can also be useful for apartments or cabins. It is also good for other places like offices and anywhere that you need a cooler or freezer. The single zone and 10.5 liter capacity refrigerator is definitely worth taking a look at because it is not just portable but also has an enough capacity for small gatherings and spaces.
8. Sundanzer Solar-Powered Refrigerator
- Efficient and cools quickly
- Perfect for road use
- Easy to operate
- Can store more than others can
- Lower operating costs
- High price can deter some people
- A bit bulky
If you love camping and outdoor adventures, you might want to check out the Sundanzer Solar-Powered Refrigerator. It is a high-end model that has the features and functions of an efficient and reliable refrigerator.
One of the things I liked about this refrigerator is that it can store more food and drinks than other models in the same category can for its large size. You might also like to see it for yourself if you have a larger family.
I’d also like to note that it could offer a lower operating cost for its power efficiency. And as you can store more with it, this more affordable operation can be of good value.
If you are living off the grid, you will also like this function because you will not have to worry about spending more to power it, as it is also solar powered.
Choosing a clean energy product like it, you can also be certain of making this world less polluted while also having the convenience of using a fridge while on the road aboard a mobile home or a yacht.
Speaking of using outdoors, you don’t need an outlet to get it running, as it is solar-powered. So with that, you can enjoy your camping and picnics with family and friends with better ease. Using a solar power refrigerator, you can also camp in style and ease. It will make you feel as if you’re not really away from home.
Providing you with a lower operating cost and a less expensive power system function, the Sundanzer refrigerator can provide you with more ways to enjoy a refrigerator without adding to your utility bills.
The refrigerator that can also be used in residential spaces like a small cabin or vacation home can offer you with much efficiency, too, because it can operate on a battery, solar panel and charge controller – not included though.
When it comes to food organization, I admire that this model also has a top basket, offering that function. More so, it has this heavy-duty motor in an insulated cabinet.
And in terms of saving the environment, this refrigerator is operating with a CFC-free refrigerant. However, you must take note that this model needs at least 80 watts in a solar panel, 15-ampere charge controller and 110Ah battery.
So as you want an eco-friendly way of cooling and freezing food, you should not think twice but have the Sundanzer solar refrigerator.
9. Ecosolar Cool Solar Refrigerator
- Energy-efficient and reliable
- Plenty of room for storage
- Modern design
- Excellent customer service
- Amount of sunlight affects the run time of the fridge
If you are looking for a solar powered mini fridge for residential use to store your foods and drinks or to replace your old refrigerators that completely runs on electricity, the Ecosolar Cool Solar Refrigerator is the perfect product for you. This solar refrigerator reduces your energy consumption without sacrificing its quality performance.
The Ecosolar Cool solar refrigerator can be powered with just the energy from the sun. It doesn’t cause any harm to the environment.
You can have a working refrigerator even on events of a power outage. This is also ideal for places without direct access to electricity. You can save money on your electricity bills with this product.
Aside from being energy saving, I also liked the Ecosolar Cool solar refrigerator because it has plenty of room for storage. But even though it is small, its interior is very spacious for you to store your foods and beverages.
It has four drawers to store your food. The door also has four shelves to place your soda cans and bottles. Although the freezer may be on the smaller side, it can still store and cool your products.
The Ecosolar Cool solar refrigerator is also just the perfect size. It is well made and lightweight. You can move and place it in any area you please. This refrigerator is perfect for installation in your RV’s, camper or cabin. This is good if you decide to live off the grid. This fridge is also a lot quieter as compared to your conventional refrigerators and will not disturb you especially at night.
This product is very easy to set up and install. I also like the design of the Ecosolar Cool solar refrigerator. The metallic color of the refrigerator gives it a modern and sophisticated look. It also looks sturdy and compact.
If you encounter any issues or have questions with your refrigerator, the customer service of the Ecosolar Cool has got you covered. They have excellent customer service to give you any assistance you need.
10. ACOPOWER 4°F True Freezing Refrigerator
- Portable and lightweight
- Ideal for cars, mobile homes and cabins
- 15 L capacity
- Space saving
- Keeps food and drinks chilled
- Does not cool fast
- Small for large families
ACOPOWER is a trusted name by consumers looking for a small solar refrigerator. It has been around for a while and since then has been consistent in offering portable refs for mobile homes, cabins and vacation homes, to name some.
One of their top-rated offerings on the market so far is the True Freezing Refrigerator, which is lightweight and portable for use in many places.
The Portable Compressor Fridge Freezer can offer s with real freezing temperature down to -4 degrees Fahrenheit. It can deliver as promised because it can keep food and drinks chilled without the need for ice bags. You can store your camping food on it without having to worry about them spoiling! Now you can feel as if you’re not really away from home with this freezer refrigerator.
There is also no worry about defrosting because there will be no ice ever! It means no need to spend time on the task but more time for your loved ones. This model can also be used for freezing or as a standard ref.
Especially if you’re using a solar system, you can also choose this model that work well on it. Just do note that it works on a110V to 240 V AC or 12/24V DC. Choosing it, you don’t have to think about adding up to your utility bills.
If you’re living in a recreational vehicle and always on the road, you should shop around for a ref that has a vibration-resistant design, making it suitable for use in vehicles. It is one of the protection and safety features of this device, which proves it useful for many who just love the outdoors and camping as well as mobile home living.
Speaking of road safety, it is also tested and proven to run on angles reaching up to 45 degrees from a horizontal position. In addition, the green ref also offers us with a quiet operation that we can depend on all the time.
I would like to note that it has a digital control panel along with an electronic temperature control as well as settings control, allowing you to take full control of its operation. More so, this fridge can offer us with a space saving design, making it ideal for tight corners and spaces.
Why You Should Trust Us
CleanEnergySummit.org is composed of people passionate about living off grid and recreational vehicle. For this reason, we’re always on the lookout for clean energy products that can be used even without a power outlet.
One of those is a solar refrigerator, which can offer us the convenience of like not being far from home when camping, having a picnic or doing an outdoor adventure. We recognize that it’s not easy to find one on the market even if there are plenty of choices. The reason is that it is confusing if without awareness of what makes a solar refrigerator special.
Our team is here to help you search for your ideal match. We have experience using these solar products ourselves, so we have figured out the qualities that make a solar ref better than the others are.
To make a better decision, we have included the things to look for in the how we picked and tested section as well as reviews of the top products.
We do hope that you will be able to choose your solar refrigerator using this information. Buy a solar fridge today!
What Is A Solar Refrigerator And Who This Is For
Due to the rising popularity of solar products, more and more household products have gone solar. Joining the list of solar devices are your solar refrigerators.
As in its name, a solar refrigerator runs on solar energy. Here, solar energy can either be transferred into electricity or thermal energy.
They are basically like your typical refrigerators wherein they keep and store perishable goods to avoid spoilage.
They were first used in military operations and emergency medical centers. However, due to the heightening need to become sustainable and save the environment, more and more solar refrigerators have been released for public use.
In line with this, solar refrigerators are ideal for those wanting to do their part in saving the environment. As it only relies on the sun’s energy, the solar refrigerator also reduces electricity costs and overall, household costs.
Aside from this, solar refrigerators are commonly used by people living off the grid as it only relies on solar power. Solar refrigerators are also popular in remote areas and other places where there are frequent blackouts and power failures. With this, their food and other goods remain fresh.
Other than food, solar refrigerators are also used to store medical supplies in remote areas and also used to store game in hunting camps temporarily.
How Does It Work
Like the typical electricity-driven refrigerators, the solar refrigerator also has similar parts such as the compressor, expansion valve, condenser and freezer or the evaporator. How the solar refrigerator exactly works depends on the type it is. But, generally, they work on the same principles.
The solar refrigerators are equipped with solar panels for the collection of solar power. The photovoltaic cells then convert the solar energy into electricity, which is later, stored in a battery. This is useful especially at nighttime or during power failures as there is assured continuous energy supply.
However, there are also solar refrigerator units that do not rely on a battery. Instead, the conversion of the refrigerants from gas to liquid form produces thermal energy that serves as the energy supply.
The energy used in the solar refrigerator is typically supplied by the solar panel. However, if the power from the solar panel is not enough, the energy is supplied by the battery. this charge is then replenished by the excess power produced from the solar panels.
Typically, the solar panels generally generate DC power. This power is then converted into AC power to power up the compressor. However, there are also some compressor that can run on DC supply.
The solar energy collected from the panels is also used to convert the refrigerant solution into a liquid in order to cool the fridge’s contents.
To maintain the coolness, solar refrigerators are lined with heavy insulators. These substances are usually metals or foams and are used to shield the fridge from outside heat. With this, you wouldn’t have to worry about the contents of your fridge from spoiling.
What Are The Different Types Of Solar Refrigerators
There are three different types of solar refrigerators that will be discussed in this article.
The first one is the solar photovoltaic operated (PV) refrigerator. This type is equipped with solar panels that contain photovoltaic cells.
These cells then convert the solar energy it gathered into DC power. Generally, DC power is converted into AC power before it can be used to run the compressor.
However, if the compressor can run on DC power, then there is no need. This power is then used to power up the compressor which in turns, circulate the refrigerant solution into the system. This then removes the heat inside the fridge and thus, keep its contents cool and fresh.
This type is usually the most common and popular since it is easy to understand and use.
Next is the solar mechanical refrigerator that involves the Rankine engine. Here, the solar energy is collected through solar panels. This solar power is then used to heat the liquid, which in this case, is the refrigerant solution.
This then runs the Rankine engine that in turn, runs the compressor. The compressor then produces the cooling effect within the refrigerator unit.
However, this type is generally not recommended, as it is not really efficient when compared to the other two types. This is because this system generally relies on high temperatures in order to run the Rankine engine. However, the solar collectors attached to the unit usually decreases in performance as the temperatures increase.
Last is the solar absorption refrigerator that uses the absorption cycle to produce the cooling effect in the interior. Here, solar energy is used to heat the generator that replaces the compressor. The refrigerant is then converted into liquid in the condenser. In this system, the transfer of heat is used as an input for the chilling effect.
There you have what to know about the types of solar refs. By now, you will have an idea on how each of them works basically. We do hope that you will be able to choose what it right for you with this information.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of Solar Refrigerators
A solar refrigerator is basically the same as the electricity-driven ones. The only difference between them is that the former runs on solar power. How long the fridge will last depends on the charge you got, or in some models, depends on the energy stored in the battery.
However, while solar fridges are useful, it also has its own fair share of pros and cons, like all devices.
Knowing exactly what these advantages and disadvantages are is essential for buyer so they will know what to expect from their device.
Hence, there will be an increase in satisfaction. Aside from that, with this, buyers can weigh and decide on whether the product will work for them and suit their needs.
Like all solar products, the first and foremost benefit given by solar refrigerators is that they are environmental-friendliness. Here, you only rely on the sun’s energy. Thus, it eliminates the consumption of electricity and other harmful substances to the environment.
Using the solar refrigerator can definitely help one’s household expenses. For one, it runs on solar energy that is essentially, a free and abundant source. With this, you reduce your electricity consumption and thus, save.
Moreover, solar refrigerators are also efficient. Most solar refrigerators can run on DC power that eliminates the need to convert it into AC power. As such, it only needs fewer panels compared to an AC-powered fridge.
Like all solar devices, solar fridges are also safe since it runs on low voltages. Because of this, you wouldn’t have to worry about overheating, explosions and the like.
Aside from this, the low voltage also allows you to connect the solar fridge into an existing solar system safely and easily.
Great for remote areas and during emergencies
Solar refrigerators are great for those living in remote areas where there is a limited supply to electricity and power. With this, you wouldn’t have to worry about spoilage and the like. As long as there is the sun, the refrigerator will always work.
The solar refrigerator is also handy during emergencies, especially during blackouts. With this, you are ensured that you will have a fresh supply of food and drinks.
Portable and lightweight
The solar fridge is not just useful for emergencies and remote areas but also for its lightweight and portability. This appliance is not our bulky type of home refrigerator. It is a smaller version that we can carry anywhere.
For example, there are types that even come with shoulder straps, which allow for better portability. Using it, you can be sure that you have a cooler whenever you need it in your outings.
This fridge is also lightweight that you don’t have to worry about two or three people carrying it for moving from one place to another. Refer to our reviews earlier for a few choices on portable refrigerators.
Efficient and low power consumption
Solar refrigerators are low in power consumption and efficient. They are not our home refrigerators that consume high power. That is why they are perfect for off grid living and camping. And if you are living in a recreational vehicle, you can also count on these refrigerators.
They can work efficiently through AC or DC power but not as demanding in power as those bulky and larger refs we got back home. For this reason, a solar model is good for solar panel systems.
If you’re trying to go solar for many of your appliances and do not need a large ref, you might want to get yourself a solar fridge.
Versatile and functional
Most of these solar refrigerators can work as a cooler or as a freezer. In this case, you have the choice on how you want to use them based on your demands and needs. If you would like to ensure that you’re picking a functional ref like it, you must compare your choices by checking the specifications. You need to find out if the ref can work as a cooler and as a freezer.
Useful for cabins, off the grid living and mobile homes
Are you living in a mobile home or a cabin? Are you thinking of off the grid living? If so, you might want to include a solar fridge on your list of appliances to set up in your cabin.
With it, you don’t have to feel you are away from home because it can keep your food and drinks cool or frozen, as you desire. There is no need to worry about bringing ice, too, because most innovative models do not require it.
So if you’re thinking of living off the grid or become self-sustainable with solar products, start weighing your options on the refrigerators that suit your needs and requirements.
Ideal for solar systems
These refrigerators are ideal for solar systems because they consume low power. You can have one and set it up for your solar system.
However, you should check on its compatibility with your current solar system, or you might have to add some solar panels to meet the energy requirements of the ref. Nevertheless, you can compare and figure out when shopping around.
There you have some advantages of having a solar refrigerator that you might want to consider for yourself.
But in addition to the pros, you also have to know the downsides of having a solar cooler or freezer. In the following, let us discuss what you need to learn about the downsides of having a solar refrigerator.
Reliance on the sun
Solar refrigerators need an ample amount of sunlight to function. Otherwise, it might not work properly. As such, it is not really useful during winters, unless the unit comes with its own battery.
It’s also not useful during overcast days and for those living in colder climates. Even if there might still be a bit of sunlight, it might not be enough to power up and sustain the refrigerator.
High initial costs
As a fairly new technology, the solar refrigerators are quite expensive. As such, some people are discouraged from purchasing it.
How We Picked And Tested
Solar refrigerators are a great way to help conserve the environment as well as save on electrical and other household expenses.
Aside from that, solar refrigerators have also recently gained popularity due to the number of advantages it gives. Because of this, there are a lot of styles and types available in the market. This makes the task of choosing one a bit daunting and overwhelming.
Of course, the best solar refrigerator depends on how well it can cater to your needs. Thus, this decision mostly depends on you. However, there are a few key elements you need to remember when you’re shopping for one.
The most important element is the type of fridge you are buying. There are essentially three types of solar refrigerators that operate on different modes.
First are the solar PV models that converts solar energy into DC power. This power is then used to run the device to produce the cooling effect.
Next is the solar mechanical model that uses the solar energy to heat the refrigerant and thus, create the cooling effect.
Last is the solar absorption model that uses the solar energy to heat the generator. The heat produced is then used to create the cooling effect.
Usually, the first type is the easiest and generally recommended by manufacturers. The second type is generally not very efficient, as it requires high temperatures to run it. However, high temperatures might affect the performance of the solar collectors.
Size and Capacity
Another factor to remember is the size and capacity of the refrigerator.
Before purchasing one, consider the location of your refrigerator and measure it. Remember to put in extra space for the unit’s airflow as well as the allowance to open its doors. Also, take note if the refrigerator can fit through your doors.
Aside from that, you should also take note of the capacity of your refrigerator. If you tend to purchase more fruits, vegetables and other fresh products, it’s better to purchase a fridge that offers plenty of storage space.
If you tend to purchase more frozen food and items, then you need a fridge with a big freezer.
If you are the type who tends to eat out often, then consider purchasing a small unit.
Another thing that you should also look for in the fridge is the way it is organized inside. With this, you can easily find the food or drink you are looking for and thus, easy to grab and obtain.
It is usually recommended to purchase a unit that has plenty of shelves as it offers much more space. With this, you can fit more items.
Also, consider a unit that has large door bins to store your drinks efficiently.
A big chiller that is humidity-controlled is also ideal since it can neatly keep your fruits and vegetables while keeping it fresh.
Charge and Operating Time
Since it is solar-powered, you should also look on how long the solar refrigerator takes to charge and how long it’ll last. A good rule of thumb is to look for one that can last long while requiring only a short charge.
There are some models of refrigerators that come with batteries. This is generally recommended since it allows you to have a continuous energy supply. With this, you can still use your refrigerator even during storms, blackouts, power failures and other similar emergencies.
Solar refrigerators are definitely purchased with the intention of using it for a long time. As such, look for a model that is both durable and sturdy. You can check the durability of the model by taking a look of the materials used in making it.
Check the unit for the logos as well as certificates awarded to solar refrigerators.
Like its electrical counterparts, solar refrigerators also come in different styles. Taking note of the refrigerator’s style is important so that you’ll be able to blend with your home’s interior. Moreover, the style is also important especially when you’re trying to conserve space.
If you live alone or have a small place, then consider purchasing a mini refrigerator. However, if you have sufficient space, then you choose among French door refrigerators, side-by-side refrigerators or top-freezer and bottom-freezer designs.
Refer to these tips when choosing a solar refrigerator so that you can make an informed choice. Buy a solar ref today!
Frequently Asked Questions
How many solar panels do I need to run my AC and refrigerator?
It’ll depend on your power consumption. On average, 1 ton of AC requires 1,200 to 1,500W, whereas a typical RV 12-volt solar refrigerator needs 200W at minimum.
Suppose you need to power a 0.5-ton 600W AC and a 200W refrigerator with solar panel technologies. In that case, the combined power required for these two appliances is 800W. To learn how many panels are necessary to run the solar powered cooler and AC, divide the electric consumption by the panel power output rating.
Let’s say that you use 100W solar panels. This means 8 is the minimum number of panels to run the 0.5-ton AC and the 12V solar fridge freezer. Those using 200W panels, on the other hand, will only require four.
Which is better, solar panels or generators?
Choosing between a solar panel and a generator depends on your needs or intended applications. A generator is more suitable for lower-use needs, such as powering a sole portable solar fridge. Plus, a generator is more portable, making it a better pick for outdoor enthusiasts who only carry a solar mini fridge.
On the other hand, solar panel systems are expandable, allowing you to add batteries and other panels to generate higher output for running high-wattage solar powered fridges and other devices. They’re more reliable for powering a unique solar refrigerator, which may have high electricity demand.
In short, solar generators are more suitable for short-term power applications. You can run a solar powered camping fridge without any problems with these devices. Meanwhile, solar panels are better for long-term energy use, such as off-grid living and full-time RVing.
In addition, solar panels have a longer lifespan than generators, making them more cost-effective in the long run.
How long does a solar refrigerator last?
A solar powered fridge for camping can last about three to five years, but only with a strict maintenance regimen. It is worth noting that a portable solar fridge has a shorter longevity than traditional household appliances because of the abuse they typically get from bumpy road trips and constant exposure to the elements.
Unsurprisingly, many solar fridge camping suppliers and manufacturers provide a two- to three-year warranty for their products. We recommend checking a solar refrigerator’s warranty information to get a rough estimate of its longevity.
Do all solar refrigerators have built-in solar panels?
No, not all refrigerators have built-in panels. Most solar portable refrigerator products connect to 12V battery banks that draw and store power from separate photovoltaic panels. Some products have dual power options, allowing users to plug the appliance into 110 to 120-volt electrical outlets or link to a 12-volt battery.
We recommend checking the technical details of the refrigerator or freezer for solar power compatibility. Most solar refrigerators can run on a 100- to 150-watt solar panel.
What are the most trusted solar refrigerator brands?
Today, there are many options for a solar fridge, but not all of them are the same in terms of efficiency.
In some cases, you might end up frustrated for not finding the best one that suits your needs. For this reason, it pays off to look for a good fridge like those from trusted brands.
A few of these include ACOPOWER, Sundanzer, Whynter and EcoSolarCool, and the rest of those we feature here.
What is the warranty?
There is not the same warranty across brands and models, so you should also pay attention on it when comparing your options. A warranty can offer you peace of mind that there is help for a defective workmanship and quality issues.
Some manufacturers can offer one year while others longer. That is why it pays off to compare your options well when shopping around for a solar electric refrigerator or a solar fridge.
What are the most trusted places to buy?
You can buy top-tier appliances for solar power in clean energy stores online or offline. But if you want to search in one place that has the most trusted brands and models on display, you should go to Amazon.
It is the largest online marketplace for sure value and quality solar refrigerator or freezer. You can choose among reputable brands and a wide range of refrigerators and freezers that they offer.
How to install and use?
You install and use these appliances in the same manner you would with a traditional refrigerator. But for specific instructions, you might want to check the manual of the item you ended up buying.
How to care & maintain?
Use specific power requirements for the ref to function correctly. You must also not use sharp objects inside it. In addition, you should position the ref securely if using in a recreational vehicle.
Nevertheless, you take care and maintain it in the same manner you would for an ordinary fridge only that some of these portable refs are no frost – not requiring a defrosting.
A solar refrigerator is rewarding. It is portable, compact and energy-efficient. It is also ready for use in our travels, camping and outdoor activities.
Depending on what you have ended up buying, you can also get one that works as a refrigerator or as a freezer. It can also come with organization features including wire baskets and have a capacity of storing at least 60 cans.
Nevertheless, there are many benefits of having the best solar refrigerator on board when traveling or for home use. However, you must take some time to research and compare your options to find the right one for your needs. Use our buying guide and reviews for an informed decision today!
Hi, I am Eddie, Cleanenergysummit’s content editor. It’s so much joy to work alongside Justin, as the idea of providing knowledge about using clean energy excites us.
I’ve been working to address any concerns or questions you may have as you transition to using solar electricity to power your home. Tune in to hear our advice and suggestions on anything clean energy. Welcome!