Nothing speaks of summer like a warm evening, a backyard full of neighbors and friends, and the smell of grilled food drifting through the air. Barbecue parties in the summer are an excellent way to have fun with family and friends. However, the fuel we use to prepare food in outdoor cooking is a hidden side to grilling that’s seldom considered.
The coal and gas-fired grills in our patios have a significant carbon footprint due to greenhouse gas emissions and dependence on fossil fuel energy. This makes us wonder if there could be a healthier and more environmentally friendly way to host those delicious summer barbecues.
Well, the good news is that fuel-free and producing no emissions, portable solar power stations can provide a clean alternative to conventional grilling, yielding the same delicious results. We at BLUETTI would love to share details about how you can plan the perfect backyard barbecue with portable solar power stations.
What Is a Portable Solar Power Station?
Let’s first take a look at what a portable solar power station actually is.
Portable power stations mainly consist of a large battery with add-ons that warrant the term “station.” Every portable power station features several port options – such as wall or AC outlets, 12V ports, and USB plugins, allowing versatility in what other devices they can charge. They safely store energy and efficiently deliver power, which results in fast charging times. Technology such as digital screens shows output and input, and apps allow for remote energy management and tracking.
Benefits of Using Portable Power Station for Outdoor Cooking
Here are some benefits of using portable power stations for outdoor cooking.
1. They Are Environmentally Friendly
A portable solar power station is the best way to have fun at your barbecue party without destroying the environment. These devices don’t make use of fossil fuels such as diesel fuel or propane; rather, they use renewable energy from the sun. In addition, they don’t produce any dangerous emissions, which means you won’t be harming the environment while hosting your party.
2. They Help You Save Money
Portable solar power stations can help you save plenty of money as they don’t require fuel such as diesel or gas. Thus, if you don’t wish to spend too much on fuel, you should consider this power source for your barbecue parties and events to save money without compromising the quality of the food you’re preparing.
3. They Are Safe to Use
Solar power stations come with safety features that keep you protected at all times. For instance, a lot of models come with overcharge protection systems, so they don’t overheat in direct sunlight. This reduces the risk of fire accidents while using them outdoors during summer when temperatures go high.
4. They Are Noise-Free
Unlike propane or gas, portable solar power stations don’t emit any noise while they’re in use. Thus, you can use them at your barbecue party without bothering your guests as they eat and relax in your backyard.
5. They Are Lightweight and Portable
You can easily take your portable solar generators anywhere you want. You don’t need a power source and an outlet close to you to power your grill; all you have to do is take the solar power station with you wherever you go and plug it in to start cooking.
The best thing is that you can use these power stations even when there’s no electricity as they come with in-built batteries that store energy for later uses. You just have to plug in your barbecue appliances, such as grills, and charge them up, and you’ll be able to use them for as long as you need without any trouble.
6. They Are Multi-Purpose
Portable solar power stations are quite versatile, and you can use them for many other purposes apart from cookouts and barbecues. You can use them to charge your laptop or mobile phone or watch movies on your TV.
What Can You Run on a Power Station?
Even though a solar power station can generate electricity when there’s no sunlight, there are some limitations to what it can do. For example, it cannot power a whole house, but it can make you comfortable during a power outage. Appliances such as televisions, small refrigerators, phone chargers, lights, and laptop chargers can easily work on a 300-watt power station. In addition, a portable solar power station can work for activities such as boondocking, camping, or barbecuing.
Some solar power stations are able to power more than their defined watt capacity. They do this by using charge controllers that are high-tech and allow the device to supply an output greater than 1 kilowatt. Even though your solar power station might die out sooner, it can be useful in situations when you need to use or charge appliances in an emergency.
7. They Are Low Maintenance
Portable solar power stations are also easy to maintain, and there are no maintenance costs involved with these devices compared to traditional generators in which you need to replace oil, air filters, change spark plugs, etc.
How to Choose the Right Portable Power Station for Your Needs?
There are some important factors to keep in mind when choosing the right portable power station for yourself.
The capacity of the solar power station is one of the most important factors you need to pay attention to. The wattage of the station indicates how much power it can produce at once and how long it can run before requiring refueling.
The average gas grill consumes anywhere between 5 to 10 kilowatts per hour. The exact level of energy consumption depends on how much food you’re cooking at once. You also need to pay attention to the number of people who will be using the station at a single time and the time you need to run it. If it’s only a small group of people and you’re planning to prepare small meals over several hours, then you might only need a small power station. However, if you have to barbecue large cuts of meats or whole chickens, make sure you have sufficient power for your needs.
2. Weight and Size
When choosing a portable solar power station for your next outdoor cooking event, make sure to pay attention to the weight and size of the unit as well. You don’t want to invest in something that’s too bulky or heavy as it will make it difficult and unsafe to carry it around. If it’s too small, then it might not be able to meet your needs. This can result in disappointment and frustration while trying to prepare food for guests as there might not be sufficient energy on hand for everything you need for your party.
It even helps if the power station has handles on both sides so that you can easily carry it around without injuring yourself.
3. Number of Outlets
Apart from the capacity, you need to pay attention to the number of outlets in a portable solar power station. The higher number of outlets, the greater flexibility you have when running various appliances. For instance, if you’re planning to use your barbecue station as an outdoor kitchen and wish to use several appliances such as coffee makers or crock pots, having multiple outlets is going to be useful.
An average portable solar power station is going to have between two to four outlets depending on its wattage and size. However, certain models can have eight or more outlets depending on how much power they produce.
The next important thing to consider when shopping for a portable solar power station is durability. When buying a power station, you need to ensure it’s made with long-lasting and high-quality materials so that it lasts longer than other models on the market.
You should also consider how easy it’s to clean as food might get spilled while cooking. This can impact the efficiency of your generator if you fail to clean it properly after use.
A portable power station with a high number of features will be quite easy to use. Nevertheless, it will also be costlier. There are several different models that come with extra features such as solar panels, battery banks, built-in cooling systems, etc. Thus, you need to make sure you pick one that meets all your needs without you having to break the bank.
How to Save Solar Energy in Outdoor Cooking?
Here are some suggestions you can use to save solar energy in outdoor cooking.
1. Cook Several Foods Simultaneously
Stoves consume less power when you prepare multiple dishes at once instead of cooking dishes one after the other. It’s more efficient to cook foods for one long session instead of spreading it over multiple sessions.
2. Clean the Barbecue Grill Right Away
You will save a lot of power by starting the cleaning cycle soon after you cook. Leftover dirt makes the stove consume more solar energy. Thus, the longer you leave dirt in the oven, the more difficult it’ll be to clean and the more power it’s going to use.
3. Invest in an Energy Efficient Stove
We might be stating the obvious here, but it really does make a massive difference. Energy-efficient appliances consume significantly less energy, and for solar energy users, it can make a huge impact.
What Is a Portable Solar Grill?
A lot of people only grill during the summers. The thought of standing outside in the winter takes some of the joy away from the whole cooking experience. The pleasant summer weather, coupled with direct sunlight lasting into the late afternoon, has led a lot of people to experiment with the idea of using the power from the sun to grill out.
Portable solar grills have the unique advantage of boiling, frying, or grilling entire meals, adding a layer of diversity to your outdoor events. The best grills can even work during cloudy afternoons or in those last days of autumn when temperatures start to drop.
Solar grills have vacuum tubes in-built into solar grills to capture the heat and energy from the sun while working as an insulator to prevent heat loss.
Last Few Words
Portable solar power stations are an innovative and healthy way to cook. If you’ve made up your mind to invest in a portable power station, make sure to check out BLUETTI’s power station solutions. They will surely make your life easier and help reduce your carbon footprint.