Want to save on electric bills? Why not start with the home appliances you use daily? Quite naturally, the refrigerator is one of the first appliances that might cross your mind. Apart from keeping the fridge door closed, it would’ve been great if there was a way to lower the bills.
You’re in luck, as solar refrigerators are the perfect solution! These are battery-powered devices that are recharged by sunlight and can preserve your stored food efficiently. They are also portable so that you can take them with you on your outdoor trips.
To help you pick the right one, we’ve handpicked the best solar refrigerators here, along with their reviews. Let’s dive into the details!
Read on for our expert reviews of the best solar refrigerators available. Check the latest prices to ensure you get a great deal!
- 1 Our Picks of the 7 Best Solar Refrigerators
- 2 Best Solar Refrigerators
- 2.1 1. ACOPOWER LiONCooler X50A Solar Refrigerator
- 2.2 2. Alpicool C15 Portable Freezer
- 2.3 3. GOSUN Chill Solar Refrigerator
- 2.4 4. Whynter FM-45CAM Solar Fridge
- 2.5 5. Cooluli Mini Solar Refrigerator
- 2.6 6. ICECO VL60 Dual Zone Portable Solar Refrigerator
- 2.7 7. Kalamera Portable Solar Refrigerator
- 3 Solar Refrigerator Buying Guide
- 3.1 How Does a Solar Refrigerator Work?
- 3.2 Benefits of Using a Solar Refrigerator
- 3.3 How Long Do Solar Refrigerators Run?
- 3.4 Features to Look for in Solar Refrigerators
- 3.5 Summing Up
Our Picks of the 7 Best Solar Refrigerators
ACOPOWER LiONCooler X50A Solar Refrigerator
Alpicool C15 Portable Freezer
GOSUN Chill Solar Refrigerator
Whynter FM-45CAM Solar Fridge
Cooluli Mini Solar Refrigerator
ICECO VL60 Dual Zone Portable Solar Refrigerator
Kalamera Portable Solar Refrigerator
Best Solar Refrigerators
1. ACOPOWER LiONCooler X50A Solar Refrigerator
Our first selection is from a well-known brand called ACOPOWER, which brings you their LiONCooler – a portable and powerful solar refrigerator. Offering efficient energy conservation due to its power-packed lithium-ion battery, it comes with sufficient capacity to store all your food items.
The product comes with a fully rechargeable lithium-ion battery offering 173 Wh. It takes 4 to 6 hours to charge itself fully and then offers a battery life of around 10 hours. Plus, there are LG compressors pet help in power conservation and maintaining the charge efficiently.
Multiple Charging Options
This solar refrigerator can be charged in three ways – a solar panel, a DC outlet, or by using your car battery. Also, the brand offers a power-efficient 90 W solar panel to use with this unit. So, you no longer have to worry about running out of power when outdoors.
The solar fridge has a very portable design which allows you to carry it like a travel bag. Thanks to its trolley-like handles and 6-inch durable wheels, it offers comfortable transportation. You can easily move this around across all types of surfaces.
Apart from all these amazing features above, you can also control this fridge using its smartphone app. Available for Android and iOS, you can use this application to adjust the device’s temperature according to the external temperature.
- Ideal for camping, hiking, fishing, or BBQ trips
- Portable and medium weight design for better mobility
- Can stay at 32 F for almost 15 hours at full charge
- Comes with a USB charging port for charging smartphones
- High-quality LG compressors maintain cooling and freezing
- The price is slightly on the higher side
2. Alpicool C15 Portable Freezer
Our next entry is a combination of high-quality features and functionality. For those searching for an affordable solar refrigerator, this might get your attention. Having a very compact design, this will easily charge up under the sun and keep all your foods fresh when you’re out camping.
Simple Control Panel
As no one likes a fridge with complicated controls, this product offers a simple LED control panel to handle all functionalities. Use this to increase or decrease the temperature, monitor its performance, and adjust the battery charging modes.
You can also change the charging options of ECO and MAX.
The refrigerator has a very robust design for offering you maximum longevity. It is made of a sturdy material which allows you to carry it easily on your car’s back, without damaging it.
Thanks to its anti-shake structure, all the contents inside it will remain in their best shape, even on bumpy terrain.
High-density insulation is provided inside the fridge made of excellent quality foam. This foam and the double-walled design keep all foods fresh and tasty while locking the temperature inside.
It doesn’t leak any cool air; the bottom half stays cold to preserve all food items. So, even if it’s kept outside, the snacks and beverages will stay fresh.
No more worries about noisy fridges, as this one’s a silent worker! The Alpicool C15 works quietly in less than 45 dB, so you won’t even feel that it’s there. So, no awkward noises or disturbances while you’re laying back inside your car.
Also, this will be a great option if you’re kids are sleeping peacefully.
- Sufficient 15 liters of capacity for storing all foods and beverages
- Compatible with an external solar panel
- Durable and long-lasting plastic construction
- Reliable insulation for preserving food items
- Easy to adjust controls
- No solar panel is embedded here
3. GOSUN Chill Solar Refrigerator
This one is one of the most popular solar coolers for its unique design and array of exciting features. You can quickly charge it using the solar panel which comes with it or use the included power bank. It’s compact, non-messy, and extremely convenient for outdoor use.
The fridge enables you to keep your food cool by offering you dual cooing zones. It can work as a freezer (-4°F) and a regular refrigerator at 40°F. Moreover, the device also has lots of space, 45 liters to be specific, where you can store all the foods you’ll need.
A touch-screen control panel lets you control the temperature easily, adding to the convenience.
You can recharge this machine using multiple options such as an AC adapter, solar panels, the power bank coming with it, and a solar table. With such flexibility, you can always keep it charged by using the sources available near you.
In addition, the power bank can keep the device cool for almost 14 hours, even on a scorching hot day.
Sufficient Storage Space
This 45 L solar fridge has loads of space to store all your snacks and drinks while you’re on the move. For your convenience, the brand has minimized the space required for ice and maximized the storage space.
So, you can use the complete volume of the device, which is almost two times more space than a device having ice.
It is not very heavy and comes with a super portable design. With sturdy wheels and a handle to carry it like a suitcase, you’ll have no problems moving it around.
- Two convenient pockets by the side for additional storage
- Sufficient volume inside the device
- Included solar panel and power bank can charge other devices
- Portable handle for better mobility
- It’s a bit expensive
4. Whynter FM-45CAM Solar Fridge
For those of you who are fans of stylish appliances, this camouflage-designed solar refrigerator will surely impress you. With such style, it also offers an excellent capacity of 45 quarts, which lets you store a week’s food easily.
Dual Voltage Functionality
To charge it up, you’ll need just a regular 110 V power outlet or a 12 V source, like your car’s battery. However, you can easily plug it into a solar power system. All this makes it ideal for RVs, campsites or boats, and even fishing trips.
Plus, it can switch between AC and DC while charging if ones fails.
Powerful Compressor System
This device’s compressor system offers you three modes – Auto, Max, and Eco. It allows you to control the amount of power your refrigerator uses without overloading the battery. Further, it also offers efficient cooling.
Quick Freeze Functionality
This solar fridge offers a first freeze feature which allows you to freeze the foods up to -8°F effortlessly. So, all your sodas and beverages will be chilled in no time. The functionality makes this device perfect for outdoor parties or BBQ hangouts.
- Ample space for storing foods and drinks
- Fast freeze quickly chills beverages
- Can be charged using a solar panel, car battery, all household power outlet
- Stylish and sturdy design
- The price tag will suit most customers
- Doesn’t come with a handle to move it
5. Cooluli Mini Solar Refrigerator
If you are looking for a combination of functionality and portability, then you just can’t go wrong with this refrigerator. The Cooluli mini-fridge is as possible as they come, high-quality cooling features, compact structure, and much more – at an extremely affordable price.
As you can easily charge it using solar energy, it is one of the best products in the market.
Equipped with EcoMax technology, this product is extremely energy efficient and helps you save a lot of money. Being perfectly compatible with a solar panel, you can charge it under the sun while playing a game of catch!
Besides, you can also power it using a 12 V outlet in your RV or car.
As the name suggests, it’s a mini-fridge which you can carry almost anywhere with you. Having a very lightweight design, just pick it up using the handle on your next camping trip.
Due to its size, it can easily fit into any truck, RV, or car. Or, it can just sit beside you! Judging by its size, the 4-liter capacity is a fantastic deal.
Another very unique feature of this fridge is its ability to offer you cooling and warming. Its integrated technology cools food within a temperature of 40° to 45°F. For warming, the temperature is adjusted between 122° to 144°F.
The best part about this fridge is it’s very silent and runs quietly in the background. It will efficiently cool your foods without making any strange noises. So, if your relaxing inside the car or have a child napping, this solar refrigerator won’t disturb you at all.
- It can be charged using solar panels, car outputs, or an AC outlet
- Offers cooling and warming
- Lightweight and portable
- Quiet cooling at only 28 dB
- Affordable price
- The storage capacity could have been more
6. ICECO VL60 Dual Zone Portable Solar Refrigerator
It is one of the most top-rated solar refrigerators, which offers you all the best features you’ll need. Suitable for off-grid residences and people who love traveling, it has sufficient capacity to store all your foods and drinks for any trip.
This high-quality refrigerator comes with an AC cable and DC cord to charge it using a power source. Alternatively, you can connect to solar panels or systems harnessing solar energy to run it.
Being extremely energy-efficient, the refrigerator can run for a long time on solar energy.
The device comes with a cooling range of 0° to 50° Fahrenheit to fulfill all your refrigeration requirements. Its SECOP compressor works at the core of the device to preserve items and keep the machine running even if it’s set at 40°.
The modern design of the refrigerator consists of a high-quality ventilation system, proper heat dissipation, and water resistance. A latch, iron sealing, and insulated inner walls don’t allow hot air to get in, preserving the temperature inside the machine.
So, you’ll have no worries about your food getting stale even if the fridge is left out in the sun.
As the refrigerator has two compartments, the dual-zone technology allows you to maintain the same temperature inside them. Or, you can set one compartment’s temperature higher than the other.
Thus, you get to choose between refrigeration and freezing and use them as you wish.
- The iron handle enhances the device’s bearing capacity
- LED lights help in locating it in poorly lit conditions
- Durable metal body and insulated walls for proper food preservation
- Ideal for home use or traveling
- Removable baskets for restocking or emptying
- Refrigeration is not as efficient as freezing
7. Kalamera Portable Solar Refrigerator
The final entry on our list is a highly rated solar fridge that offers you a capacity of 37 quarts. It is very energy efficient and has adjustable temperature controls for cooling your food items.
So, feel free to keep your snacks, drinks, fruits, and meat in it, and have an outstanding trip!
Even though it offers a capacity of 37 quarts, the refrigerator is extremely portable due to its compact design. It will comfortably fit between your car seats and in your trunk.
The best part? It has an advanced design that allows it to function even when it’s tilted at an angle of 45 degrees.
Advanced Memory Function
This refrigerator can memorize the last temperature you set before you turn it off. So, you don’t have to reset the temperature the next time you want to cool some food when you turn it on. As it cools the contents inside it to print fast, using it is extremely convenient.
Wind Cooling Range
The device offers you a temperature range of -4° to 50° Fahrenheit, so it works as a standard freezer and a fridge. Cooling from 78°F to 32°F takes only 15 minutes, while freezing from 32°F to 0°F takes 23 minutes.
Such quick cooling features make it ideal for camping and hiking trips.
This 12-volt solar fridge consists of a digital thermostat for modifying the temperature easily. In addition, it has three protection levels for the battery – low, medium, and high. Both these features conserve energy and also keeps the device charged for a long time.
- No noise while refrigeration
- Excellent insulation to keep drinks and food fresh
- USB port to charge mobiles and other devices
- Safety handle for movement and transportation
- Digital thermostat for temperature adjustment and energy conservation
- A longer handle would have enhanced its mobility
Solar Refrigerator Buying Guide
Are you all set to go camping with your new solar refrigerator? Before you go out shopping for the device, it’s advised that you know a thing or two about solar fridges. There are many factors such as capacity, portability, and cooling which separate one device from another.
Knowing the details beforehand will help you make the right purchase, and you might end up saving some bucks. That’s why you must have a look at these details we’ve listed below.
How Does a Solar Refrigerator Work?
Solar fridges aren’t like the other solar-powered devices you might have come across, which have a solar cell embedded. These refrigerators can use sunlight and turn it into energy, which allows them to chill the contents inside them.
Basically, a solar panel is connected to the fridge’s battery. Then, this battery stores the energy required to perform the refrigeration or freezing the foods and beverages. So, the fridge can run on direct current (solar power).
With a power-efficient battery, solar fridges can run for hours even if there’s not much sunlight.
As these devices are absorptive in nature, they use the heat from the sun in the form of thermal energy. This heat is used to convert the refrigerant into liquid, which helps cool the fridge’s interior.
In addition, these solar refrigerators are manufactured with insulating materials such as foams and metals. These materials protect your snacks and beverages from the heat outside the fridge. So, even if it’s very hot outside, that hot air won’t seep in, allowing the foods to stay cool.
Benefits of Using a Solar Refrigerator
Apart from keeping your foods chilled, there are plenty of advantages solar refrigerators offer, including the following.
As you already know, solar fridges consume a lot less energy than regular refrigerators. And, they also need less power to run. 2 deep cycle batteries and a 250 W external solar panel to get it going.
Also, you won’t need any inverters, but if you have one, you can use it without any issues.
Plus, the solar panel requirement is also low, as only one panel will do. When it comes to your standard electric refrigerator, it might need up to six solar panels to work, which will be very expensive. So, these solar fridges save you lots of bucks.
These devices are also easy to install with no complicated electrical wiring or sockets. If you have a solar panel system at home, just plug the batteries of the fridge to it, and you’re all set. This simple plug-and-play feature allows you to not worry about turning it on or off.
The best part? You can set it up all by yourself and won’t require additional assistance.
You also don’t need to worry about its fuel consumption, functioning, or maintenance, as it’s a pretty hassle-free machine.
Uninterrupted Power Supply
No more worries of food going stale during power cuts or lack of a power source! As solar refrigerators utilize solar energy to chill your foods, they will run even without electricity. These devices are able to store energy efficiently, so your snacks and drinks will be maintained during cloudy days with less sunlight.
You also become blackout-proof as these fridges don’t depend upon any power grid. Harnessing the power of the sun, they can non-stop day and night.
A Clean and Safe Energy Source
As they on solar power completely, it’s an eco-friendly and green source of energy. So, you won’t be responsible for any sort of environmental pollution while using these fridges. Moreover, there are fewer chances of electrical accidents while using solar fridges.
In addition, these fridges work only at 12 or 24V, unlike high voltages like many electrical devices. So, you are freed from the headaches of high voltage fluctuations, electric shocks, leaks, or short circuits. It also makes these fridges safe for all members of your family, including your kids.
How Long Do Solar Refrigerators Run?
Solar refrigerators are popular for their longevity and come with a lifespan of 3 to 5 years. They are extremely durable and can withstand heavy usage when you’re on the move. With proper maintenance, you can expect it to run more than 5 years too.
So, always try to look for devices that come with a 2 to 3 years warranty to get the best out of them. If you don’t expose the device to heavy usage and keep it well-maintained, it can last up to 7 years. Always make sure that a good quality solar panel is connected to it.
Features to Look for in Solar Refrigerators
It is one of the most important factors to focus on while buying any regular fridge, especially a solar refrigerator.
The perfect size will depend upon the amount of food you want to store in the fridge and where you want to take it. As you can understand, you have to check the capacity too.
If you want a fridge for casual hiking or fishing trips, a small one will be perfect. A capacity of 3 to 5 liters will be enough for storing a few beer cans and snacks.
On the other hand, if you want to go on slightly longer trips and store food for your entire family, then a medium-sized solar fridge will suffice. You can go for 10 to 20 liters of capacity.
Those looking for a fridge to place in a large boat or an RV have to opt for something with a bigger capacity, such as 30 liters. Ensure that you never buy something too big, as you’ll just end up cooling the unused space inside the refrigerator.
As you don’t want to end up with a device that you can’t move easily, you need to check the solar fridge’s portability. You can’t buy a device just because it has exciting features; it needs to be easy to carry around too.
Firstly, you need to figure out the capacity you require. After that, pick a fridge being the most lightweight with that capacity. After sorting these out, you can look for features that allow you or anyone to move the fridge easily.
These will include wheels and carry handles. You can also check for handles by the side of the refrigerator to open the lid comfortably. And if you get a fridge with a trolley-like handle, then just grab it as soon as you can!
You need to find a product fitting your budget and storage requirements while being movable.
When you’re buying a solar fridge, you can’t miss out on the solar panel which will power the device. While most refrigerators don’t come with an embedded solar panel, some brands do offer one.
In general, a solar panel with a power output of 100 to 150 W will be enough to power up most portable solar fridges.
If a brand offers you a solar panel with a refrigerator, it will be super easy to set up. You just have to make sure that the battery and the charge controller are working properly. The batteries will store solar energy and keep the refrigerator running even without sunlight.
If you don’t get a solar panel with your refrigerator, you need to buy them yourself. Do your homework and check the compatibility of the panel and your refrigerator properly. Further, you can also run these fridges via a DC or AC power source.
Solar fridges can work as a standard refrigerator, a freezer, or both. Most mid-sized and large solar fridges come with both functionalities refrigerating and freezing. However, super small and portable fridges may not freeze food properly.
Some products offer you excellent temperature control, where you can reduce the fridge’s temperature to -4°F or can let it operate at 40°F. Such control also lets you save a lot of energy and cut down on your bills.
But at the end of the day, you need to select a fridge as per your storage requirements.
So, if you just want to store some drinks or snacks, go for a regular solar fridge. Alternatively, if you want to store meat or other perishable foods, which required freezing, a dual-zone refrigerator will be the best option.
For efficient performance, the product needs to have proper insulation inside it. It will maintain the temperature inside the fridge while keeping the heat out. It will also help the foods to get cold quickly, and the temperatures will remain low, even if it’s scorching outside.
Therefore, select a fridge with an insulation thickness of 6 to 10 cm. It will be enough to keep your drinks for snacks cold, even if the fridge runs out of power.
Another benefit of good insulation is the reduction of compressor usage, which saves a lot of energy. So, always check the insulation information from the product manual or by contacting the retailer.
Note: Try to pick a refrigerator that uses insulation materials free from fluoride. It will prevent any harmful reactions with chlorine and the stored food items.
Apart from being eco-friendly, solar refrigerators are also popular for being energy-efficient devices. Decent energy efficiency means less power consumption and wastage, which leads to better performance.
So, it’s important that you check the energy efficiency rating of the bridge you are about to buy.
Energy efficiency e ratings are usually mentioned on a yellow sticker pasted on the device. If you check it out, you’ll see that the measurement is given in kilowatt-hours.
So, look for a fridge with an efficiency of 360 kWh or less, which means less than 1 kWh per day. It will also offer efficient cooling. However, if you’re buying a device with 250 kWh or less, understand that it will have a low cooling capacity and might not be worth your money.
That’s why it’s best to check for product reviews, especially when you’re focusing on energy efficiency.
USB Charging Functionality
What if you could enjoy your chill beer and charge your smartphone using the same device? Sounds unbelievable, right? Well, with a solar fridge by your side, it’s absolutely possible. It’s because solar refrigerators often come with a USB port and be used as a portable solar charger.
You can plug in your smartphones or laptops in this port to charge them conveniently while sipping cola! As the batteries of these refrigerators store energy to keep the device running for hours, you can utilize this power to charge your gadgets if their battery dies.
So, solar refrigerators also worked as emergency power apart from keeping your food and drinks fresh.
Don’t you feel good while opening the refrigerator door and seeing the foods light up? If you want to feel the same way with your solar refrigerator, consider a product having LED lighting.
This feature will help you look for your last slice of chocolate cake or any frozen dessert, even when it’s dark outside. It will also allow your kids to get some ice cream when your cotton inside your tent.
Therefore, you can call it a necessary feature if you like traveling a lot with your solar fridge. Just remember that LED lighting can increase the price of a solar fridge, as cheaper ones might not have it.
As most of you would like to take your solar refrigerator with you on a camping or fishing trip, it has to be sturdy. It’s because a durable fridge can survive sudden jerks and vibrations when you are traveling with it.
Therefore, always check the durability of the solar fridge apart from its features. Tough plastic bodies can be great for these devices, but nothing can beat metal or steel. Also, look for the quality of materials used in the handles used to move the fridge around.
In addition, ensure whether the fridge is capable of working even if it’s tilted, say at an angle of 45°. If the fridge is manufactured using heavy-duty materials, it won’t get damaged easily. Carrying such durable devices will be easy, whether you are moving on a car or an RV.
This is another important factor that you might overlook, so we decided to include it here. Nobody likes noisy machines, especially when they’re chilling out with your family or buddies.
If you are one of them and want to avoid noisy fridges, you have to check the dB rating of the device before buying it.
To enjoy silent operation, get a solar fridge that works under 45 dB. So, even if it’s inside your RV or truck where someone is taking a power nap, the fridge won’t startle them with a sudden electronic shriek!
This will also be excellent for any sleeping children inside your camping vehicles. You can call it an added luxury along with the important ones.
As most solar fridges are a little pricey, you have to select one that fits your budget and needs. But you need to remember that you are paying for all the amazing features discussed so far.
You can look at it as a long-term investment. If you feel that it will make your outdoor journeys better, then buying a slightly expensive but high-quality device is better than getting a cheaper one, any day of the week.
Also, remember that solar refrigerators consume a lot less power than standard fridges, so it’s going to save you lots of money in the long run. Moreover, these devices are built to last few years and require much less maintenance than regular refrigerators.
So, if you spend a little time on these points, you’ll see that solar freezers aren’t as expensive as they seem!
If you want to make the best use of a solar fridge, you can check for additional features such as a drain plug. This feature lets to drain out the dirty water from the bottom of the fridge effortlessly. No more water clogging inside your freezer!
Some portable fridges have fixed food shelves which can limit the number of foods you can store in them. So, an interesting feature to look for is a removable shelve or divider. It will enable you to divide your foods and keep your fridge well-organized.
And as they’re removable, cleaning them is also hassle-free. Moreover, it will prevent overstuffing your fridge with snacks or drinks, allowing it to consume less power.
Solar fridges allow you to carry your foods and drinks wherever you go and keep them super chill! With excellent energy efficiency and portability, these devices will be perfect for outdoor and indoor use.
Picking a quality solar refrigerator isn’t an easy task, as you have to count on many factors like power consumption and insulation. But with a little research and going through our buying guide, you’ll be on your way to grab the best solar refrigerator ever.