The best solar electric fence charger will provide a strong enough charge to keep animals contained with a reliable voltage spread out over miles of fencing. Other important aspects of a good solar fence charger involve what kind of animals it is designed to keep in or out, how it mounts to the fencing, what wires it can support. Long-lasting warranties intended for such a hard-working product.
Best Solar Electric Fence Chargers at a Glance
- Parmak Magnum Solar-Pak Fence Charger – Best for Large Pastures & Big Animals
- Silver Streak 12V Lightning Diverter Solar Fence Charger – Cheaper Alternative To Parmak
- Zareba ESP10M-X Solar Fence Charger – Best for Small Livestock
- Gallagher S12 Solar Fence Charger – Can Support any Fencing Types
- Premier Solar IntelliShock 60 Fence Energizer
- Gallagher S40 Solar Fence Charger – Custom Power Settings
- Zareba ESP5M-Z Solar Fence Charger
- Gallagher S6 Solar Fence Charger – Best Solar Electric Fence Charger for Pets
Because the core function of a solar electric fence charger is to either keep pets in or keep predators and pests out, it needs a reliable joule output. The joule output determines how much charge is flowing through the fencing to shock the animals.
A higher joule output is also needed for longer fences to ensure the charge doesn’t dissipate along the line. It can also offset the charge lost by weeds and plant life coming into contact with the wires, causing loading.
These devices will see a lot of use over the years. Animals will occasionally bump into the fencing, and predators will continually seek ways inside. It also fluctuates based on the weather conditions, lightning strikes, loading from plants, and various other factors. A strong warranty for this wear and tear is a major consideration when getting the best solar fence charger.
The way these devices are installed can also make solar fence chargers a breeze or a nightmare to use. Some will attach right to the fenceposts, others require t-posts, and others simply sit on the ground or a flat surface.
Even more complicating is that not all wire types are supported with certain devices. Then as with any new product, the price will play a role in which should be chosen.
Top 8 Solar Fence Chargers Reviewed
1. Parmak Magnum Solar-Pak Fence Charger
Arguably the best solar electric fence charger is the Parmak Magnum Solar-Pak. It has the highest joule output allowing the owner to cover a much larger section of fencing while keeping large animals inside. It is the most expensive option on the list, but it’s worth the price for large projects and large animals.
The 3.1-joule output of the Parmak Magnum makes it the best solar electric fence charger out there when it comes to raw power. Only the Silver Streak even comes close. It may not be essential for smaller areas, but when it comes to providing reliable power across a large expanse, this higher output is the better choice. Estimates suggest the total reliable length of fencing it can support is about 30 miles, well beyond the Silver Streak’s estimated max of 10 miles.
This joule output can handle loading from weeds and other garbage tangled in the lines, which some products like the ESPM10-Z would struggle with. For long lines of the fence in rough terrain, a strong product like the Parmak Magnum is the only one that cuts in terms of raw power.
Animals Being Contained
The 8,800-volt capacity will ensure just about any animal, from horses to cows and even bulls, will stay inside the designated area. Admittedly this isn’t unique as others like the Silver Streak, and perhaps even the Zareba ESP10M-Z on a single strand can achieve this as well.
Even against predators and pests like bears and deer, it’s nothing special. Once again, the primary advantage of the Parmak Magnum would be in how large of an area it can keep animals in and pests out, rather than what kind of animals it can be used with.
In terms of warranties, the Parmak Magnum comes with a two-year warranty on the device itself. The Silver Streak and Premier Solar IntelliShock also come with this warranty. It differs because, unlike Premier Solar IntelliShock, it only has a one-year warranty on the battery.
For a device that’s going to see intensive use, it’s strange that it doesn’t have a longer warranty on both the battery and devices like the Gallagher S12, Gallagher S40, or Gallagher S6 with their three-year warranty warranties. Of course, it’s better than nothing, but some users may prefer something with a better guarantee.
With two simple screw holes, it can be stuck on the fencepost like the Zareba ESP5M-Z. This simplistic mounting system makes it more convenient than the Gallagher S12, Gallagher S40, or Gallagher S6, which require a separate steel rod.
Other Product Notes
The Parmak Magnum is easily the heaviest fence charger out of those reviewed at 22 pounds. This can be bad as it could be too bulky for certain fencing types that other solar chargers could be mounted on, like the very lightweight Gallagher S6.
However, two unique perks to the Parmak Magnum further justify its number one spot on this review. For starters, the product has a sloping solar panel that causes snow to slide off. The only other electric fence chargers that can achieve this are the Gallagher S12, Gallagher S40, or Gallagher S6. They have adjustable solar panels but aren’t as sturdy.
The other perk is the built-in performance meter. The only ones with even a remotely similar feature are the Zareba ESP10M-Z or the Zareba ESP5m-Z, which have indicator lights and nothing more. This makes the Parmak Magnum a more convenient solar charger as it notifies the user of the joule output and any issues with the device.
- At 3.1 joules, this is the most powerful solar electric fence charger out there, with nearly three times the output of the Zareba ESP10M-Z.
- Keeps in large livestock like bulls and cows like the Silver Streak 12V Lightning Diverter but over longer fencing sections.
- Keeps out large predators and pests like bears.
- The sloped solar panel makes it more convenient to use in winter.
- A built-in performance meter makes it easy to monitor.
- It’s the most expensive of the solar fence chargers on this list – twice the price of the Zareba ESP5M-Z.
- At 22 pounds, this can be cumbersome to mount – it’s five times the weight of the Silver Streak 12V Lightning Diverter.
- A low battery warranty can result in out-of-pocket costs for replacements – the Gallagher S40 has a better battery warranty.
2. Silver Streak 12V Lightning Diverter Solar Fence Charger
The Silver Streak 12V Lightning Diverter is a fantastic choice for buying something a little cheaper than the Parmak Magnum Solar-Pak. It does sacrifice in joules, but it’s much lighter and easier to mount, making it versatile for most fencing types.
This Silver Streak fence charger puts off two joules of energy. This is less than the Parmak Magnum’s 3.1 but would serve just fine on fencing between two to ten miles depending on if it’s single strand or multi-strand. Anything longer would require the Parmak Magnum, which can reach up to 30 miles.
Animals Being Contained
This product packs enough voltage to keep just about any livestock safe and secure in their paddock. This includes cows, horses, and even bulls with the right setup.
In addition, it’ll keep large pests like deer and predators like bears away from the animals. This is also accomplished with fence chargers like the Parmak Magnum or even the Zaareba ESP10M-Z with similar voltage outputs.
When used on multi-strand fences, it’ll keep smaller animals in and small pests and predators out. However, it’ll probably be overkill and more expensive than devices designed for this use, like the Gallagher S12 or the Gallagher S6.
The Silver Streak will have one advantage of piercing through a sheep’s wool, which is not common in lower caliber devices. Only the Parmak Magnum and maybe the Zareba ESP10M-Z on a single strand can do this reliably.
The Silver Streak comes with the standard two-year warranty on the device, also found in the Parmak Magnum or the Premiere Solar IntelliShock. This also puts it above the Zareba ESP10M-Z and the Zareba ESP5M-Z, making it a better option for smaller livestock.
Unfortunately, that standard warranty doesn’t come with the battery because the battery isn’t included with the purchase of the Silver Streak. It is the only solar electric fence charger on the list that doesn’t have a battery, making any of the others a better choice in terms of battery. The Gallagher S12, Gallagher S40, and Gallagher S6 all have three-year warranties on their batteries.
The Silver Streak also loses some points as it requires at-post mounting. The Parmak Magnum can be installed on anything strong enough to hold it, and the Zareba ESP10M-Z can do more than just the t-post.
That being said, it only weighs four pounds, so that it can be mounted on more fencing types than the Parmak Magnum could, even if it is t-post specific. That lack of versatility may be a deal-breaker for some, however.
Other Products Notes
While the lack of battery is a downside, the lower cost can justify purchasing a better battery while saving money. In fact, both the cost of the Silver Streak and a third-party 12-volt deep cycle marine battery will still be about a hundred dollars cheaper than the Parmak Magnum.
Perhaps one of the most appealing features of this fence charger is the built-in lightning diverter with the 5J lightning fuse included. It is the only solar electric fence charger on this list to feature such capabilities.
When used in lightning-intensive regions, this could make it a better choice than the Parmak Magnum and the Zareba SP10M-Z. They, and the others on the list, only have basic protections when it comes to lightning.
- Cheaper than the Parmak Magnum while offering similar joule output.
- Comes with built-in lightning protection not found in other products like the Zareba ESP10-Z.
- Lightweight at four pounds, though, this doesn’t include the battery weight.
- Contains large livestock like cows and horses similar to the Parmak Magnum.
- Keeps out large predators and pests like bears and deer.
- No battery included, unlike any of the other fence chargers on this list.
- Requires a t-post mounting that may not suit certain electric fence setups – Premier Solar Intellishock may be a more convenient alternative.
3. Zareba ESP10M-Z Solar Fence Charger
The Zareba ESP10M-Z Solar Fence Charger is probably the best on the market for corralling smaller livestock. It is versatile by supporting a variety of wire types and is compact for just about any fence. If small livestock owners are unsure what to pick, this is a safe go-to option for just about any setup.
With a .15 joule output, the Zareba ESP10M-Z comes up short against the Parmak Magnum, Silver Streak, Premiere IntelliShock, and the Gallagher S40. But if the designated area is smaller than 10 miles of fencing, then the .15 joules should be enough for the job.
Animals Being Contained
The joule output means the device is best suited for smaller livestock as opposed to larger animals. If needing to corral, sawhorses, then the Silver Streak or Parmak Magnum are better choices.
Small animals do as well of a job as the Gallagher S12 or Zareba ESP5M-Z would as they have similar joule outputs and are meant for similarly sized animals.
It does nudge these options out if the fence is single strand and meant to deter larger animals. One example could be keeping bears out of beehives.
Considering the standard warranty offering is two years, the Zareba ESP10M-Z’s one-year warranty on both device and battery is a bit short. The only other product with this small warranty is the Zareba ESP5M-Z or the Parmk Mangum’s warranty on the battery.
In fact, when comparing warranties between similarly performing products, the Gallagher S12 would be the better choice with its three-year warranty on the device and battery.
The Zareba ESP10M-Z does redeem itself in terms of versatility when compared to the Gallagher S12. The latter requires a steel rod to mount. The Zareba ESp10M-Z can mount on just about anything. Being only four pounds, it can also be mounted to fencing that the Parmak Magnum couldn’t.
While most fence chargers support just about any type of wiring, the Zareba ESP10M-Z can only support steel, aluminum, poly tape, poly wire, and poly rope. If using anything else, the owner may want to buy the Gallagher S12 that doesn’t have this limitation.
Other Products Notes
One major advantage of the Zareba ESP10M-Z is that it can last up to two weeks without needing a charge. The only product that can outlast this one is the Gallagher S40 at three weeks, largely due to its customized power settings. The Zareba ESP10M-Z achieves two weeks without having to turn it off or tweak its output.
There is also an indicator light like the Zareba ESP5M-Z to notify of any problems or issues. It’s not quite as useful as the built-in performance meter found on the Parmak Magnum, but it’s better than nothing, which is what most devices offer.
- It can be mounted on t-post, y-post, and round wooden fences, making it versatile for most fencing types, especially the Silver Streak.
- The indicator light is convenient for identifying problems and diagnosing issues with solar-powered electric fences.
- Can go two weeks without sunlight depending on conditions.
- Comes with a warranty supporting lightning damage.
- It cannot contain larger animals like cows or bulls unless set up in a small area on a single strand – Parmak Magnum is a better option for this.
- Not very reliable at keeping out larger predators.
- The one-year warranty is concise compared to other solar fence chargers – especially the three-year warranty offered by the Gallagher S12.
- Doesn’t support every wiring type used on an electric fence, unlike the Premier Solar Intellishock.
4. Gallagher S12 Solar Fence Charger
The Gallagher S12 Solar Fence Charger is a great choice, thanks to its ability to support any wiring method. It’s incredibly lightweight, is easy to mount, and comes with a great warranty as well. This is a solid choice for less conventional electric fences or those with unusual setups that require a versatile solar electric fence charger.
The Gallagher S12 has a joule output of .12, which is just shy of the .15 output of the Zareba ESP10M-Z. This will let it cover about four miles of fencing, which is around what the Zareba ESP10M-Z offers.
Animals Being Contained
The Gallagher S12 was designed with smaller livestock in mind, similar to the Zareba ESP10M-Z or the Premier Solar IntelliShock. It doesn’t do anything special above the others for these kinds of animals, and honestly, the three are rather interchangeable in this regard.
If anything, the Zareba ESP10M-Z or Premier Solar IntelliShock might be a better choice against larger predators on a single strand, thanks to a higher voltage.
The Gallagher S12 stands out from the crowd thanks to a three-year warranty on the battery and device. The only other devices to match this warranty are the Gallagher lineup, the Gallagher S40, and Gallagher S6.
This device must be installed on a half-inch steel rod, unlike the Zareba ESP10M-Z or Parmak Magnum that can be installed anywhere. In some cases, this may be more advantageous as it does not need to be directly attached to the fence like those same options would and makes it better suited for non-traditional fences like those that use poultry mesh.
It also differs from other options like the Zareba ESP10M-Z in that it can support any type of wiring.
Other Products Notes
It needs to be worth noting that the steel rod isn’t included. Where the Parmak Magnum or Zareba ESP10M-Z can be mounted right away, this device will require the purchase of a steel rod.
- Easy mounting on a steel rod guarantees proper grounding and can be easily relocated – unlike the Parmak Magnum.
- Very lightweight at 2.4 pounds making it half the weight of the Zareba ESP10M-Z solar charger and much more mobile.
- An above industry standard warranty of three years beats out options like the Silver Streak.
- It can support any type of wiring found on an electric fence, unlike the Gallagher S40.
- Does not come with a steel rod for mounting purposes.
- The lower joule count makes it ill-equipped for large animals and livestock, making the Parmak Magnum a better choice.
5. Premier Solar IntelliShock 60 Fence Energizer
The Premier Solar IntelliShock 60 is a viable but expensive option for a solar-powered fence for smaller livestock. The high price is somewhat offset by very adaptive mounting and an adjustable solar panel. This device is about as simple as it gets when putting together a solar-powered fence.
The Premier Solar IntelliShock is much more powerful than the Zareba ESP10M-Z or the Gallagher S6 with a .6 joule output. In terms of total fencing, it’s in the same camp as those devices; however, the manufacturer recommends under 10 miles for multi-strand fences.
The Zareba ESP10M-Z or the Gallagher S6 would be better options from a price-per-fence mile standpoint. An exception would be if the fence were single strands. But even then, the Parmak Magnum or Silver Streak would be better options.
Animals Being Contained
Like the Zareba ESP10M-Z or the Gallagher S6, the Premier Solar IntelliShock is intended for smaller animals like goats and pigs. The only way this solar electric fence charger stands out from these products is that it may support a larger area on a single strand.
In smaller pests like raccoons and coyotes, it’s functionally the same solar electric fence charger for a higher price.
The warranty is the standard two years seen in the Parmak Magnum and Silver Streak. The battery, on the other hand, is low at only a 30-day warranty. The only solar electric fence charger worse than this is the Silver Streak, but that’s because it doesn’t come with a battery.
The manufacturer also states the batteries are ill-equipped for freezing conditions. Between this and the subpar warranty picking the Gallagher S12 is a better choice by far.
The one major advantage the Premier Solar IntelliShock would have over other options is that it doesn’t require being mounted and is meant to sit on the ground simply. No mandatory steel rods are required to mount like the Gallagher S12, Gallagher S40, or Gallagher S6.
That being said, this simple setup can also be a downside. Another solar-powered fence charger would be off the ground and avoid flooding or snow. The Premier Solar IntelliShock is at risk. Its solar panel is also on the ground and would struggle to absorb the same energy as the Gallagher S12 could.
Other Products Notes
Considering the device is meant to rest on the ground, it will require additional protections that another fence charger wouldn’t need. Some solar fence charger reviews suggest like a water-resistant container or even a box or shelf to sit on would be strongly encouraged.
In the end, it might be more work to mount this device as opposed to the Parmak Magnum or even the Gallagher S12 with its steel rod.
- Unlike the Silver Streak, setup can be as simple as attaching it to the wires and setting it on the ground.
- It supports multi-strand fencing, making it great for small animals like chickens and rabbits, similar to the Zareba ESPM10-Z.
- Great for keeping out small predators and pests like raccoons.
- It comes with the standard two-year warranty on the solar fence charger – better than the Zareba ESP5M-Z.
- No rusting thanks to the UV-treated polycarbonate case.
- The solar panel can be adjusted on the ground to get the most solar energy during the day.
- It’s almost as expensive as the much more powerful Parmak Magnum fence charger.
- 30-day warranty on the battery is really low when others like the Gallagher S40 offer three years.
- Having it on the ground may not always be practical in terms of flooding, the fencing location, or setting up the solar panel – something like the Gallagher S12 with a steel rod might be a better fit.
6. Gallagher S40 Solar Fence Charger
With a .4 joule output that puts it at less than the Premier Solar IntelliShock, but above options like the Zareba ESp10M-Z or the Gallagher S12.
With a single strand of fencing, it can support up to 25 miles. This puts this solar-powered fence in the neighborhood of the Silver Streak, though the latter device can support multi-strand fences at this length.
Animals Being Contained
The Gallagher S40 does as well as the Gallagher S12 or the Zareba ESP10M-Z at keeping smaller animals contained. It does carve itself a niche at keeping larger predators out that these devices may struggle with over a larger area.
That being said, it will struggle to contain bulls or cows, and the Parmak Magnum or even the Silver Streak would.
Like other Gallagher products, the Gallagher S40 solar fence charger comes with a three-year warranty on the device and battery. This puts it above the Parmak Magnum, Premier Solar IntelliShock, and Silver Streak. Not to mention the Zareba ESP10M-Z and the Zareba5M-Z with their one-year warranties.
Like other Gallagher products, this solar-powered fence charger can be mounted on a half-inch steel rod. Allowing the fencing to remain entirely untouched by the device. It does weigh eight pounds, unlike the 2.4 pound Gallagher S12, so getting a stable rod is important.
The Gallagher S40 must be mounted on a steel rod separate from the fence, unlike the Parmak Magnum, which can be attached directly to the fence.
Unlike most others on the list, its solar panel can be rotated 360 degrees to capture the most sunlight possible wherever it’s placed. This can maximize solar energy gains where another solar charger like the Parmak Magnum or Silver Streak would be limited by where they are mounted on the fence.
One major downside that causes the Gallagher S40 to be less favorably reviewed than other options is that it only supports poly wire or turbo wires. If using any other wiring type, the Gallagher S12 fence charger would be a better option, no question.
Other Products Notes
This product is unique because it has multiple power modes that allow users to adjust the pulse setting on their fences. This enables it to go three weeks without receiving solar power. The only other product that comes close to this is the Zareba ESP10M-Z.
That being said, it can only achieve three weeks if it’s set to a lower setting now and then. Whereas the Zareba ESP10M-Z maintains the same steady flow for the entire two weeks.
- Three weeks without direct sunlight is great for winter months or areas that see the limited sun.
- Multiple power modes ensure the solar-powered electric fence doesn’t drain too much power when it isn’t needed and can be raised when it is.
- The above-average warranty at three years for the device and battery – better than options like the Premier Solar Intellishock.
- Great for small animals like goats and pigs.
- Adjustable solar panel to guarantee a steady flow of solar energy.
- It’s a bit more expensive than products with similar capabilities like the Silver Streak 12V fence charger.
- It can only support poly wire or turbo wire, making it less versatile than other Gallagher S12.
- The Gallagher S40 is heavy for its eight-pound capabilities, making it nearly twice the weight of the Silver Streak 12V.
7. Zareba ESP5M-Z Solar Fence Charger
The Zareba ESP5M-Z solar fence charger is a decent option for smaller yards with smaller animals. It’s a run-of-the-mill option without the flash. The best solar fence chargers have yet avoided many of the downsides that come with those devices as well. If the fence is fairly standard and the owner isn’t sure what to pick, then this is a solid option all around.
This device will provide an electric fence with 0.1 joules of energy, almost on par with the Zareba ESP10M-Z or the Gallagher S12. With a single strand that’s around five miles of solar-powered electric fence and with multiple strands, it’s much smaller than the 10 miles offered by those devices.
Animals Being Contained
The Zareba ESP5M-Z is ideally suited for smaller animals like the goats and pigs in the Gallagher S12. It can be used to protect pets in a backyard, but it’ll be more expensive than the Gallagher S6.
When it comes to larger predators, a single strand may do the job, but a more powerful option like the Parmak Magnum or the Silver Streak would be far better choices.
With a one-year warranty, the Zareba ESP5M-Z is a poor choice. The only other fence charger with this low of a warranty on both the device and the battery is the Zareba ESP10M-Z. This makes the Gallagher S12 or Gallagher S40 better choices with their three-year warranties.
A built-in mounting bracket for the solar fence charger can be mounted on just about anything. This makes it incredibly convenient and easy to mount compared to the Gallagher S12, Gallagher S40, and Gallagher S6, requiring third-party steel rods.
It can also support any kind of wiring, which makes it more versatile than the Gallagher S40.
Other Products Notes
The Zareba ESP5M-Z does stand out a little with the ability to go two weeks without receiving a charge to the solar panel. The only other devices that can achieve this are the Zareba 10M-Z and the Gallagher S40, with the latter requiring a lower pulse setting.
The solar panel is also capable of rotating 360 degrees like the Zareba ESP10M-Z. This ensures a steady flow of solar power to the solar panel other devices on the list would struggle to receive, especially the Premier Solar IntelliShock when placed on the ground where its solar panel may be obstructed.
Then finally, the Zareba ESP5M-Z has an indicator light identical to the one found on the Zareba ESP10M-Z. It isn’t as convenient or informative as the built-in performance meter on the Parmak Magnum, but it is a feature not found on the other solar chargers.
- The mounting bracket makes for easy installation on just about any kind of fencing.
- Studs make it easy to connect to just about any kind of wiring, unlike the Gallagher S40.
- Solar panels that can rotate 360 degrees for maximum effect.
- It can go up to two weeks without a charge in ideal conditions.
- Built-in indicator light makes sit easier to identify any problems and diagnose them.
- The one-year warranty is shorter than the standard two-year warranty on most solar electric fence chargers like the Premier Solar Intellishock.
- The joule output is unreliable against larger animals and predators, making the Parmak Magnum a better choice.
8. Gallagher S6 Solar Fence Charger
The final product on the list is the Gallagher S6 Solar Fence Charger, and it’s best suited for use with pets. It might be tweaked for larger animals or even oppose predators. But it’s ideal for keeping dogs and other smaller animals in a backyard.
The joule output is the lowest on the list at .06 joules. The next one up is the Gallagher S12, and it has twice the joule output at .12 joules. This leaves the Gallagher S6 with the smallest coverage of any fence charger reviewed. The max amount of fencing it can support is .74 miles with a single strand, far below anything offered by any of the other devices on the list.
Animals Being Contained
Because of the small joule output, it’s the least equipped out of the others to contain animals or keep others out. Some solar fence charger reviews state this product is best used to keep pets in a backyard or corral chickens with poultry netting for a lower price than the Zareba ESP5M-Z. But other than being a cheaper alternative, there’s not much of an advantage.
The Gallagher S6 is redeemed a bit by having one of the best warranties out there at three years for the device and battery. Still, the Gallagher S12 and the Gallagher S40 also come with three-year warranties and are better products overall.
Interestingly this fence charger also comes with lightning protection built into the warranty as the Parmak Magnum has. It likely won’t be needing it, given this fence charger is best suited for a backyard, but it’s a nice touch regardless.
The Gallagher S6 is very lightweight at 2.4 pounds. It is surprisingly the same weight as the Gallagher S12 solar fence charger. So this isn’t an advantage by any means. Still, it allows the Gallagher S6 to be much more portable for a temporary electric fence than, say, the Parmak Magnum at 22 pounds would be.
Like the Gallagher S12 or Gallagher S40, it also requires being mounted on a half-inch steel rod. This can help keep the solar panel in direct sunlight longer than others like the Silver Streak.
Other Products Notes
This certainly isn’t the best solar fence charger on the list, but it is the cheapest. It is also the only one to use 6-volt batteries, where every other solar fence charger uses 12 volts.
Overall it’s by far the cheapest option to purchase and replace. It’s a fraction of the price compared to something like the expensive Parmak Magnum.
- It is the cheapest solar charger – it’s almost a fourth of what someone would pay for the Parmak Magnum.
- Six-volt batteries are much cheaper to replace.
- It comes with a three-year warranty which beats options like the Premier Solar Intellishock.
- Mounts on a half-inch steel rod for maximum support without burdening the fencing.
- Great for keeping out small pests or keeping pets from running away.
- Small and lightweight making it very portable, unlike the bulky Parmak Magnum.
- By far the lowest joule output – the next highest is the Zareba ESP5m-Z, and it’s almost twice the output.
- It Will not contain larger animals or keep out larger pests like the Parmak Magnum.
- Mostly intended for backyard or chicken coop use.
Buying Guide For Solar Fence Chargers
Features To Look Out For In Solar Fence Chargers
The core function of a solar-powered electric fence is the joule output. The joule output will determine how long the solar-powered electric fence can be before requiring a second device or an alternative power source. A single-strand fence can be much longer than a multi-strand fence. Having a higher joule output can also offset the loading when weeds contact the fencing and still do their job.
A higher joule output on a solar fence charger can also sustain a higher voltage when keeping the animals contained or the pests out. Large livestock like cows, horses, bulls, or large predators and pests like deer, bears, and wolves will require a higher voltage and, therefore, a higher joule output. Small livestock like goats, rabbits, and pigs, or small predators and pests like raccoons, coyotes, or rabbits will require a smaller voltage and a smaller joule output.
Animals Being Contained
As mentioned earlier, the joule output is important to keep certain animals in or out of the designated area. The best solar electric fence for the situation will vary, and the best solar fence charger will vary.
For instance, the fence will require multiple strands or even netting to minimize gaps if working with smaller animals. At the same time, larger animals might need only a single strand to keep them from trying to pass through the electric fence.
Predators and pests can be a bit trickier as bears are notorious for getting through electric fences, and coyotes can slip in just about anywhere. These factors will all affect the joule output requirement and which solar fence charger should be purchased.
The standard warranty for solar fence chargers seems to be two years for both the device itself and the batteries. Some individuals may be comfortable with a smaller warranty if the device or batteries are fairly cheap to replace or if the solar electric fence charger will see limit higher warranty might be preferred if use.
Suppose the fence chargers contain larger livestock or keep out large preferred. This ensures replacements or repairs can be obtained for what is likely to be more expensive solar fence chargers.
Each electric fence will be made out of different materials that can affect whether the solar charger can be mounted directly to the fence or if it must be separate. Having to mount the device to a t-post may not be a big deal for some. Others might prefer or require having the fence charger stand on its own with a steel rod. Weight and the size of the fence charger and the battery can play a role in how it’s mounted.
The other factor considers when installing an electric fence is what wiring is going to be used. Some solar fence chargers work with just about any wiring type, while others only support specific kinds. In addition, some devices simply clip on. In contrast, others require the wiring to be wrapped around posts in the solar charger.
Other Products Notes
While most fence chargers are designed to go several days to a week without seeing sunlight, this may or may not be acceptable for each scenario. For some, the best solar electric fence will be able to go 2-3 weeks without sunlight before receiving a charge. In contrast, others may be fine with one that can survive less time on a charge. It’s also important to note that fence chargers that see more use due to mobile animals or weeds will want a larger charge.
Some fence chargers will have multiple power modes to let the user tailor it for their own use. Lowering the pulse rate at night can help conserve the charge and help the fence charger last longer.
The other aspect to consider with the best solar electric fence charger is whether the fence charger has additional features. Some will come with indicator lights signifying whether the device is working properly. Which can serve as an early warning sign the electric fence isn’t running and make diagnosing the problem easier.
The length and type of fence and the animals being contained will largely dictate which fence charger should be used. Longer fences with large animals will need an electric fence with a high joule output. Shorter fences with multiple strands may also need a fairly high joule output.
Regional factors can also affect which solar fence chargers work for the right situation. Some areas can justify a fence charger that sits on the ground where areas with flooding may prevent this. The position of the solar panel on the device can also be important for areas with limited sunlight.
Ultimately, many factors should be considered, and no one device serves every situation. The Gallagher S6 fence charger would be ineffective for miles of fencing to keep cows in. While the powerful Parmak Magnum would be overkill to protect a small rabbit hutch in someone’s backyard, not to mention it is costly.
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