Small solar set up for short term emergencies

For some years I have had a couple of small solar powered set ups. One is a 12V system, the other 5V.

The 12V consists a 25W 12V solar panel, 20W 12VSealed Gel Battery A 200W inverter. It’s a basic set up that provides sufficient power to illuminate the shed where it resides and I can also use it to charge my laptop, travel kettle and a few other small items.

The 5V system is more portable and I use it when I go camping.

This consists 28W 5v folding solar panel, 2,  20,000mAh power banks an assortment of usb friendly leads to charge any number of usb items, including phone, tablet, I run lights and a fan off the power banks. The power banks are really handy for camping and one lasts me a week. 

Neither were particularly expensive to buy and both have proven handy. 

Thinking about the temperature sensitive medication, you could run a small electric cooler or one of those mini fridges from the 12V version.

Any question s, ask away and I’ll do my best to answer them. 🙂


  • Comments (8)

    • 4

      Nice set up. I’m thinking of a 12v set up for our chicken coop and adjoining shed. Are you willing to share links or model numbers of your set up?

    • 5

      I have two Humless solar generators & associated panels for such use.  One is 640 watt hours & the other is 1300 watt hours.


      • 2

        I have major off grid envy!

      • 3

        I’m not smart enough to put together my own system, so I had to go this route.  I wanted a dependable system that could provide some power for basic needs.

    • 4

      Wow, mine is tiny in comparison Redneck. I don’t plan on running anything bigger than a usb gadget, lights and small electricals. 

      the solar panel is 25W mono panel that feeds into a 20W sealed 12V battery through a 200w charge controller. It lights the shed and has a lighter socket and Inverter attached to the output.  



      Charge Controller


      As I mentioned it’s tiny compared to some, but I’m not looking to replace mains electricity, just add a modicom of normality

      I believe you can buy complete kits for chicken coops for a reasonable price.

    • 3

      I think we should be friends! I really enjoy small solar setups like this.

      Right now I have a 5V system similar to yours, minus the lights and fan but that is a good idea and I want to look into adding those to my setup.

      I do want to expand to a small 50-100w panel, charge controller, 12v battery, and inverter so that I can power things like my laptop. Just need to save some money in the prepping budget first though.

      • 2

        Me too. Having a couple of good sized power banks makes the 5V system really versatile.

        It’s also worth having a usb battery charger for AA and AAA batteries as it will work with either system.

      • 2

        I’d love to have a USB AA and AAA battery charger too! There are way too many things I need. haha