Camping is the time that we reconnect to nature. We travel all the way to explore the beaches, the forests, the fields and the mountains that we’ve never been to. These trips do help us find calm between the sorrows and hustle of daily life, but they also bring us far away from the convenience, and one of them is electricity. How to get electricity while camping becomes a big question for those who want to relax in the most convenient way. If you are one of them, this article is for you.
- THE WAY TO GET ELECTRICITY WHILE CAMPING
- FACTORS TO CONSIDER BEFORE BUYING A SOURCE OF ELECTRICITY
- THINGS YOU NEED TO REMEMBER WHEN USING ELECTRICITY WHILE CAMPING
THE WAY TO GET ELECTRICITY WHILE CAMPING
There are many ways to get electricity while camping. You can use the devices that store power and can be recharged, or try sources that charge/recharge from natural energy such as sunlight, gas, wind, and thermoelectric power. You can also buy the devices that provide one (or several) emergency charges when all other sources are depleted.
Below is the list of devices that can help you to get electricity while camping.
1. Pedal generator
This can be one of the cheapest ways to get electricity while camping, as all you need to do is to jump on this people-powered bike and start pedaling. However, you cannot save energy for next time usage unless it is connected to a battery.
2. Gas generators
It will be very convenient if you choose gas generators as the way to get electricity while camping, except the fact that it also comes with fumes and noises, and many campsites ban you from using it as your contemporary neighbors might find it annoying. If you camp at the site in the middle of nowhere and there are no other campers than your group, it would be a good choice as it supplies with the power for any functions you need.
3. Tents with electric access
One of the best choices is Coleman Sundome Tent
If you are the one that is interested in things with multifunction and hates to spend more for a separate electricity source, you should buy a tent with an electrical port. The tent then will come with a port to run the AC power, and you are now able to charge your phone, laptop, watch the movies during the relaxing time in the wilderness.
Or else, you might consider buying the tent with electrical hook-ups that are waterproof to get the electricity while camping. You then are able to adjust the number of plugins and the length of cables up to your needs and wants.
4. Portable battery packs
Using portable battery packages is one of the latest and modern ways to get electricity while camping. You will know exactly how much power you will have during the camping hours, and the packs are also easy to carry away due to its size and weight. You don’t need to worry about carrying heavy generators from your parking spot to the campsite, as you can even put them in your pocket. It also takes a small amount of time to fully charge before the trip, and it doesn’t cost a lot.
5. Car batteries
Another way to get electricity while camping is by using car batteries. Then, you don’t need to bring anything else as it’s already there in your car, but the cons are it only lasts for some hours, and in the worst-case scenario that you used up the power, your car can’t even start.
6. Solar power generators
In case you are OK with the gas generators but find it inconvenient when bringing all along with the fuel/gasoline, solar power generators will be the ideal choice at different size and capacity. It also surmounts the cons of a gas generator as the solar power help you to get electricity while camping without making big noises. It takes advantage of a clean and free source of nature: the sunlight in the camping area. No added fee for gasoline.
However, it can’t be of usage during winter or the time that the sun doesn’t shine a lot. The battery storage might be of assistance as you can store energy from the sunny days to use later.
7. Thermoelectric generators
Aside from gas generators and solar power generators, the thermoelectric generator is also a good choice for those who need a big amount of electricity/power when going on a trip. It will produce the power for your need by converting the temperature difference between 02 points into energy. For example, you can make it run by having a fire built from woods as the heat source. The generator then will detect the temperature difference and converts it into electricity.
The only thing that gets on your nerve about a thermoelectric generator is its price. It even costs more than the gas generators.
8. Wind/water turbines
Last but not least, there is another cheap and environment-friendly way to get electricity while camping that we highly recommend: the wind or water turbines. It is easy to set up and can be run at any time. If you choose water turbines, a campsite locates near the river/stream will allow it to run 24/4. In case you go for wind option which is not consistent, hang it on the nearest tree. The wind then propels it to generate power for your usage.
In general, a wind/water turbines could generate pretty much power, enough for one-time charging for the generator, or recharging the portable battery packed with it for later usage.
When using the turbines, you need to maintain it well and watch out for things that can destroy the turbines such as a floating object or a fallen branch. Extreme wind/water could be harm as well, and believe me you don’t want to risk using an expensive device like this one carelessly.
FACTORS TO CONSIDER BEFORE BUYING A SOURCE OF ELECTRICITY
If you’ve read through the option and want to buy a source of electricity, consider the below points before making any decision for your upcoming camping trips. It’s important to know exactly what you need so we could buy one that meets them all.
1. Determine the power you will need for the trip
You will need to check the appliances and gadgets you are about to bring all along to know how much power these things need and for how long. Then, estimate the power you might need to recharge them during the trip to ensure things going well.
For example, if you bring with you a mini-fridge that consumes 100 watts, you will need to buy the electricity source at that wattage. Also, if you camp for a week, you will need more power than just staying out for two nights.
2. The group size
The more, the merrier and more power will be consumed when you go in a group of 5 to 7 people than going by yourself. The power source which can serve you well in a week will only last 02 days if you go with your whole family.
3. Factors of the power bank
You also need to count some factors about the power source such as the durability, the size/weight, and the features.
+ The durability: We always want to purchase things that can last long. Hence, check the material and things that affect the source’s durability. The generators will have better resilience than smaller power packs, but it also costs you more. However, you’ll get what you pay for; if you spend more once to avoid spend less many times, it does worth the buy.
+ The size/weight: Bigger and heavier power banks often supply with more wattage, and it depends on how long you stay outside and how many people with join the trip with you. If your small group (2-3 people) just stay for 2 nights, don’t need a big generator, which might result in a big issue when traveling to the campsite.
+ Features of the power bank: It depends on the device’s portability and the way you use the power. If you buy a power bank to charge the electrical gadgets, look for the power bank with USB ports. In case you bring the electricity source to run bigger appliances, you might need to buy ones that come with socket plugins.
Also, to carry the source from the car to the campsite, a lifting handle will help you a lot.
4. Your budget
After considering all options, there is only one more step to the dream electricity source: how much you are willing to pay for it? If money doesn’t matter, it’s easy as you can choose whatever meets your needs. However, if you are on a tight budget, you will need to check the factors carefully before giving out the decision.
In case you camp at a public site (club or commercial campsites) which enables you to use the hook-up power at a small fee, you don’t need to buy any electricity source. It is only necessary when you camp off-grid. Sometimes, buying a secondhand/renewable power can be an option, but you need to check the features and the way it works before deciding.
THINGS YOU NEED TO REMEMBER WHEN USING ELECTRICITY WHILE CAMPING
The above ways to get electricity while camping are the most convenient ways of its kind, but they can be dangerous if you use them in the wrong way. There definitely are notes from the manufactures (if you buy a power source) but you still can go over below notes which are irrespective of the source of electricity.
- Make sure that all the devices are in good condition before the trip. For power batteries/things that store energy, remember to charge it fully. In case you use the device the first time, try running it once before the trip and check about its warranty.
- Make sure that all plug-ins/electrical wires are set up in dry places.
- Do not overload your socket box with multiple plug-ins. Use single appliances instead.
- If there is any complex issue with the electricity source/system, don’t try resolving it yourself. Get an emergency electrician through the management if you are at a campsite. In case there fumes/smokes from the devices are the sign of overloading/overheating, disconnect it immediately.
- If you happen to use the hook-up from the campsite, make sure it is in good condition/dry area.
- Switch off all electrical devices/sources when they are not in use, or when you sleep at night in the tent.
- Make sure the devices are set up at an easy-to-see place. If not, put a signboard so that other campers do not pump into them.
- After use, let the devices/wire cool down before rolling it tidily to avoid damaging them and packing up. When arriving at home, store it carefully and if possible, a monthly check is the best.
There are many ways to get electricity while camping with its own pros and cons. I hope that after reading this article you will find one that suits you the best and have a great and safe camping time with your loved ones.