Our Top Picks
- Dometic CFX3 Portable Solar Refrigerator – Best Overall
- Whynter FM 45g Quart Portable Refrigerator – Most Efficient Energy Use
- Alpicool C15 Portable Refrigerator – Best at Keeping Food Cold
- Dometic CFX28 Portable Refrigerator Freezer – Best Compact Product
- ICECO VL60 Portable Refrigerator – Most Durable
- GOSUN Chill Solar Powered Cooler – Best Portable Cooler
- ACOPOWERED RA Portable Solar Powered Refrigerator – Runner Up
- ICECO JP40 Portable Refrigerator Freezer – Fastest Temperature Drop
- COSTWAY Portable Car Freezer Refrigerator – Most Transportable
- Sundanzer Solar-Powered Refrigerator – Best Dual Compartment
Camping is the perfect time to head out into nature and connect with your friends or family. You can feel close to the elements and as though you are on the edge of society, all while being in the comfort and protection of your campsite. But what happens when you need a place to store your items to keep them cold? Sure, coolers with icepack will work fine, but they can only last so long and won’t reach cold enough temperatures for your needs.
With any of the best solar refrigerators, you no longer have to worry about where you’re going to be keeping your food while on a camping trip. These fantastic solar fridge and freezer combos make camping easy, all while harnessing the power of the sun or the energy from your car. Whether you’re out camping with friends or you’re in an emergency with a power outage, these solar refrigerators will come in quite useful.
We’ve compiled a list of our 10 favorite solar refrigerators so that you can have a better understanding of what to search for when purchasing a solar device. Each of the refrigerators on our list is designed to make your camping trip easy and to harness an eco-friendly experience whilst out on the trail.
Our 10 Favorite Solar and Portable Refrigerators
Before we dive into the meat of the list, it’s important to note that while some of these refrigerators do include solar panels that gather solar power from the sun, others are your typical ac or dc fridge. The term solar refrigerator is much akin to the use found with solar showers. Many of the solar fridge products found online are simply refrigerators that work outdoors and are eco-friendly. They are perfect for any camping trips or emergencies.
However, our list, unlike many that you’re likely to encounter that claim to be filled with the best solar refrigerators, actually does include solar fridge freezer devices. Whether you’re looking for a solar-powered refrigerator or a portable fridge that simply safe for our solar system, we have the perfect products for you. Here are our 10 favorite solar and portable refrigerators.
Dometic CFX3 Portable Solar Refrigerator
This device is one of the truly solar-powered refrigerator products available as it includes solar panels that will keep your food cold as long as you need it to. The Dometic Refrigerator begins with the initial kick-in of the internal ac and dc batteries, but once those run-out, it can switch to any solar power it gathered throughout the day. Our favorite part of this product is that it does this automatically, without any flip of a switch. Once it senses depletion, it switches itself over.
Easily one of the best solar refrigerators in terms of durability, this fridge is made of an aluminum alloy frame that will keep it safe, no matter what happens to it. Trust us; we tried to damage it while testing it. The frame is a heavy-duty addition to this product. The best part about this protection is that it doesn’t add to the weight – the ExoFrame technology used by Dometic makes this a lightweight refrigerator and freezer.
As far as temperature control goes, you’re going to struggle to find a better solar-powered refrigerator than this one. Nothing gets in or out of this product unless you want it to with its well-insulated interior. The freezer can even deep freeze down to -7-degrees Fahrenheit if needed. This is easily the best solar refrigerator for heavy cold and temperature control. The solar panel will keep your food cold long after the batteries have died.
- Utilizes solar power once batteries die
- Heavy-duty frame
- Well-insulated and energy efficient
- Lightweight and solar-friendly
- The app is difficult to navigate sometimes
Whynter FM 45g Quart Portable Refrigerator
The best feature of the Whynter FM 45g Quart Portable Refrigerator is its power supply. While it might not be directly powered by the sun like the Dometic is, it makes great use of ac power and can switch to a dc refrigerator should the need arise. This high-efficiency refrigerator avoids too much energy consumption and is easily one of the most high-quality refrigerator-freezer devices on our list.
12/24v dc or 110v ac power will keep this fridge running long into the camping trip. Unlike the power independence of the Dometic, this refrigerator isn’t the best for living off the grid. However, it is a highly efficient ac and dc power refrigerator and will keep your food and drinks cold as long as you have access to a charging point. Another fantastic feature of this solar refrigerator is the space it offers. You’re getting 45 quarts of space, which can get as cold as -8-degrees Fahrenheit – even colder than the Dometic!
While the Whynter FM 45g might not have a solar panel or utilize solar energy, this is still one of the best solar refrigerator options on our list as it makes great use out of the power it has. The charge controller is a fantastic addition that makes this fridge and freezer combo the perfect eco-friendly product. With so much space, you know that you won’t run out of room for your next camping trip.
- Highly efficient use of ac and dc power
- The internal charge controller keeps it running even when one power source runs out
- Energy-efficient and easy to use
- Doesn’t use solar power
- Temperature control can be annoying
Alpicool C15 Portable Refrigerator
This solar refrigerator is built to last but not to weigh you down. The plastic casing is both lightweight and durable, much like the Dometic. The Whynter solar refrigerator was quite durable but weighed a lot, making it difficult to transport easily. While the Alpicool C15 Portable Refrigerator might not be as big as other solar refrigerators on our list, that’s what makes this one so perfect for camping. It’s one of the most portable solar fridges we’ve tested and is perfect for any camping trip.
Our favorite feature of this device is the insulation. It utilizes high-efficiency foam to keep the cold in and ensure that nothing gets inside that you don’t want in there. You can customize the sizing options if you’re looking for a slightly bigger refrigerator freezer. Still, we found the smallest sizing option’s portable nature to be what really made this fridge stand out. Other fridge freezer combos can be difficult to transport, but not this one.
If you’re looking for a small solar fridge that can keep your food cold, no matter where you go, then the Alpicool C15 has you covered. Much like the Whynter, this fridge runs on a 12/24v dc input while keeps the battery running and ensures that the energy doesn’t run out too quickly. We loved this little device and found it to be one of our favorite portable fridge options available.
- Lightweight yet durable
- Designed for portability
- Keeps running long after the 12v dc is disconnected
- Doesn’t run off of solar power
- Difficult to use at first
Dometic CFX28 Portable Refrigerator Freezer
Back on our list is the company Dometic! They are one of the best solar refrigerator makers, and the two products we’ve featured of theirs so far are a testament to their capability. If you’re looking for a refrigerator with the best use of solar power from Dometic, then their other entry is the choice for you. However, if an eco-friendly refrigerator or freezer that makes highly efficient use out of 12/24v power is more your style, this is a fantastic choice.
The Dometic CFX28 solar refrigerator is a dc refrigerator that can keep your food and drinks cold, all the way down to -7-degrees Fahrenheit. With a capacity of 26 liters, this is another fantastic portable solar refrigerator that will make your camping trip both easy and energy-efficient. While it might not be as durable as other products on our list, it certainly can hold its own and will keep your food safe when in use.
As we mentioned, this is the device to go for if you’re looking for a dependable and reputable company that makes solar fridge products that run off 12v dc power. This energy-efficient solar fridge freezer is the perfect device for an easy camping day where the only source of power you have is the car you bring along with you. Keep your food cold long into the trip with the Dometic CFX28 solar refrigerator. Eco-friendly and a pleasure to use.
- Highly energy efficient
- Small and transportable
- One of the best uses of dc power
- Some customers claim it died after a few months
ICECO VL60 Portable Refrigerator
If you’re looking for a heavy-duty device that even comes across as a little industrial, then this is the best solar refrigerator for you. The ICECO VL60 Refrigerator comes with impact-resistant caps and shock resistance so that you know it won’t be damaged, even on the rocky road to your campsite. Much like the Whynter portable solar fridge, this device can utilize ac or dc power depending on the situation. It’s an eco-friendly solar fridge that’s perfect for any solar system.
Easily one of the largest fridge freezer products on our list, this device comes with two compartments that can fit up to 89 cans of soda-worth of space. You’re never going to run out of space to place things with this fridge-freezer. The internal, automatic charge controller ensures that it will never die on you, barring too much use. We used this product for hours on end without a hint of power drainage.
We highly recommend this fridge-freezer for anyone going on rough terrain for days looking for a shock-resistant device that can store plenty of food. Ensure that any food or drink you bring along is safe with the ICECO VL60 portable solar refrigerator. With plenty of cubic feet (cu ft) of space, this is sure to be one of the best refrigerators you can bring along for any camping trip.
- Plenty of storage space for food or drink
- Utilizes both ac and dc power
- Refrigerator and freezer keep your food cold even in the harshest conditions
- Durable and heavy-duty to a fault
- Less portable
- Doesn’t include solar panels
GOSUN Chill Solar Powered Cooler
This is the perfect hybrid solar power refrigerator as it can be charged with the internal solar panels or via your typical plug-in charges. We found the GOSUN Chill mini fridge to be the perfect answer to the best solar refrigerator to bring with you to the beach. It’s small, light, and includes a solar panel to gather charge directly from the sun. While it might be small, it’s still one of the best solar refrigerator products we’ve seen.
One of the coolest, and our personal favorite, additional features of this refrigerator is the flexible solar panels. Most solar panels are rigid and take up space on a product, but with the GOSUN, you won’t have to worry about your solar panel being damaged. Its touch-screen temperature control is an exciting feature that helps make this refrigerator and freezer efficient and fun to use.
As far as portable solar fridges go, this might be one of the best we’ve seen. It has one of the lowest cubic feet numbers on our list, but it’s the perfect solar refrigerator for a day at the beach. You can take this freezer refrigerator with you wherever you go, and you won’t have to worry about where the power will be coming from. Use the energy from the sun with the solar panel, or simply plug it in and charge it through your car. This little device makes all energy accessible.
- The solar panel collects energy from the sun
- Portable and easy to use
- Keeps your food cold up to -4-degrees Fahrenheit
- Small storage space and cubic feet
ACOPOWERED RA Portable Solar Powered Refrigerator
While this device might not have any solar panel directly included, the universal adapter allows it to be easily charged via the sun regardless. The ACOPOWERED Refrigerator is one of the best solar refrigerators for living off the grid. It can be charged using solar energy, a car power cord, a built-in battery, and so much more. It’s similar to the GOSUN in that it has many charging methods but is much bigger with more cubic feet of space.
Your typical charge can last you anywhere from 10-15 hours at a basic 32-degrees Fahrenheit. However, if you need a quick chill, this freezer refrigerator has the ability to shoot down to -4-degrees at a moment’s notice. Our favorite feature of this portable solar refrigerator was the trolly design, which enabled you to take it almost anywhere without lifting it and carrying it the whole way.
Many refrigerators and freezers that utilize solar energy as a main source of power tend to have lower battery life. ACOPOWERED does a fantastic job at making sure that’s not the case with this fridge. With its access to a solar panel at any time and the ability to charge almost anywhere, this solar refrigerator will keep your camping trip going for days on end with a full charge.
- Portable trolly wheels
- Solar panel access provides energy anywhere you wish to camp
- Large cubic feet for a solar refrigerator
- Able to chill food to 10-degrees in less than 40 minutes
- Some issues with the charger adapters
ICECO JP40 Portable Refrigerator Freezer
Worried about making the wrong decision and regretting it? Worried about a product failing and needing a quick, free replacement? The ICECO JP40 is a fantastic choice for you. It comes with a 5-year warranty, which is something their other solar refrigerators don’t even include. Though we doubt you’ll want to replace this refrigerator and freezer combo as it hosts some of the coldest temperatures on our list. With -7-degrees as its lowest point, the only product on our list can compete the Dometic CFX3.
With over 8 cubic feet of space, this little freezer is the perfect portable product for your camping trip. What made this fridge stand out amongst the rest was its eco mode. Many refrigerators and freezers put full power into everything they do, but that can quickly deplete their energy. The ICECO allows you to switch to eco mode to help preserve power and keep your solar refrigerator running longer.
With the 12-foot long dc adaptor, you can charge this solar refrigerator far from the car. ICECO does a fantastic job at creating some impressive refrigerator or freezer devices. Make sure that your food stays cold long into the camping trip with this impressive refrigerator and freezer.
- One of the coldest solar refrigerators on our list
- 5-year warranty protects your fridge
- Eco mode helps preserve the battery
- Not as durable as other products on our list
COSTWAY Portable Car Freezer Refrigerator
You’re essentially bringing a refrigerator and freezer along with you as a suitcase for your next trip outdoors. The most exciting feature of the COSTWAY Portable solar refrigerator had to be the transportability of the device. The extendable handle lets you carry it along behind you without having to bend over and irritate your back while the flexible wheels work on almost any terrain. This solar refrigerator makes the trip to your spot simple.
As far as practical in-use features, this solar refrigerator is pretty standard. It comes with a fridge and a freezer section so that you have plenty of storage space to place your items. It can plug into your car via many different ports for optimal charging and near-constant power. When we tested the energy consumption on this device, we were pleasantly surprised with the outcome. It has a multi-layered battery that helps conserve energy while keeping the power high.
Compared to the rest on our list, there’s not much that makes this fridge and freezer combo stand out. And that’s a good thing! It has all of the standard ratings – easy to transport, reaches -4-degrees, highly efficient, and low energy consumption. Without any flashy features, this company spent their time focusing on the necessities, and it shows. Your food and drinks will stay cold for the entire duration of your camping trip with this solar fridge.
- Charges with both ac and dc power
- Highly efficient energy use
- Flexible wheels are great for any terrain
- Temperature regulation can be difficult
Sundanzer Solar Powered Refrigerator
This is certainly an interesting solar energy fridge. It’s one of the refrigerators on our list that utilizes the sun’s power via a solar panel. Still, the Sundanzer Refrigerator is also one of the least transportable out there. It’s bulky and doesn’t come with any wheels, so you’ll have to carry it along with you. If you have quite the hike ahead of you, we don’t recommend this solar fridge. However, if you’re just stepping out of your car into the campsite, then this might be one of the best solar refrigerators you can get.
The solar panel allows for ample charging when the sun is out, and the ac/dc connection allows you to charge it during any other type of weather. Your footprint in this solar system will be greatly reduced, but you won’t have to worry about losing your food. We were very much put off by the bulky design of this fridge freezer combo, but after we got it to the spot we wanted it and started using it, we were pleasantly surprised.
The Sundanzer solar-powered refrigerator certainly isn’t for everyone, but when it fits your needs, it will be one of the best purchases you’re likely ever to make. Also, what it lacks in transportability, it makes up for in cu ft. It hosts a spacious interior with plenty of cu ft for any food and drink. This fridge and freezer device will ensure that your camping trip isn’t spoiled just because you can’t go too far from the car.
- Fast cooling
- Utilizes solar energy and dc power
- Plenty of cu ft for storage options
- Bulky and heavy
- Difficult to transport anywhere
The Honor Roll for Best Solar Powered Motion Light
RUNNER UP -> ACOPOWERED RA Portable Solar Powered Refrigerator
What really made this freezer stand out to us what its adaptability. Users could utilize solar power energy but didn’t need to rely on any built-in solar panels. The universal adapter made charging your fridge via solar energy easy as you could simply plug it into external solar collectors for just as good of a charge as any ac or dc port. On top of that, the ACOPOWERED fridge could hold its charge longer than most others on this list barring the Whynter fridge.
So, the use of solar power without the drawback of dealing with a built-in solar collection device on-top of the efficient use of battery life is what makes this our second favorite fridge on the list. All other features are on par with the top freezer options on our list, but these few standouts are what make this solar device so appealing to us. Not to mention the decent cu ft of space available.
WINNER -> Dometic CFX3 Portable Solar Refrigerator
Dometic simply knows how to make them right. The Dometic CFX3 fridge and freezer offers plenty of cu ft of space and will keep your food safe while ensuring no cold will escape. The durable, shock-proof frame ensures that no damage will come to the freezer’s body, nor the food within. But, this extreme protection of your contents isn’t the only advantage this freezer has on the rest.
The Dometic CFX3 is the perfect hybrid device in that it utilizes ac and dc power when it can and then stores the sun’s energy through its solar panels. You’ll never run out of power, and your freezer is sure to be one of the coldest you’ll find from a solar refrigerator. We absolutely adore this freezer and are sure that you will too. It’s perfect for any camping trip and any emergency where the power goes out.
A Quick Buyers Guide To Solar Refrigerators
Now that you’ve seen examples of the best solar refrigerators available, it’s time to decide for yourself which one is the best for you. Here are a few key tips on finding the perfect freezer for your needs based on what criteria makes a quality device. Each of the products on our list will meet the following criteria and are quality examples of the top solar refrigerators.
What to Consider in a Solar Refrigerator
As with all types of products, there are many advantages and disadvantages to purchasing a solar refrigerator. As far as necessity goes, this might be one of the few products where a need is real for some people. Here are a few things you should consider when shopping for your solar refrigerators.
The goal of any freezer that uses the sun’s energy should be to reduce any carbon footprint that you might leave behind. All of the best freezer options do their best to conserve energy and reduce their overall output. This is what makes the devices on our list “solar fridges,” as many of them don’t actually include solar panels for energy collection. With a solar fridge, the eco-friendly aspect is one of the most important features.
Sometimes, camping isn’t about pulling up to a spot and getting out of your car with the campfire right there. In many cases, you’re going to need to bring your device along a rocky trail before you’re at the right location. Having a product that can either maneuver across this rough terrain or is easy to carry along with you as you hike to your spot can be quite important.
With that being said, some fridges on our list are fine examples of devices that put focus into other categories yet still show plenty of reasons why people should buy them. The Sundanzer might not be easy to move around, but it hosts an exuberant amount of cu ft and energy efficiency to make it an excellent outdoor use option. Portability is important, but some products make it work without it.
Many solar refrigerators are designed for remote use, not just for camping. If you live in an area where access to energy might be scarce, having a solar refrigerator or one that can access dc power will prove to be essential. Whenever you’re without power, your fridge shouldn’t be the thing you have to worry about. When your power cuts, your food will be fine when using a solar device.
As long as you have access to the sun or a source of dc power, your fridge should be able to withstand the power outage. This is one of the most important things to consider when shopping for a similar product, and something that each of the devices on our list were tested for. Keep your food safe, even once your access to power is cut.
What Features Make a Solar Powered Refrigerator
Now that you’ve narrowed down your list to a few devices, it’s time to consider what features are a necessity to you. When shopping for the devices we tested, these were the features that we deemed most important. To even be considered for your shopping cart, we highly recommend searching for refrigerators that excel in these categories. A quality fridge will always come with quality features.
First and foremost, if you’re looking for a device that will work off the grid and is perfect for bringing along with you for your next camping trip, then the power supply will be the most important feature to consider. Solar power is the best method of charging your fridge for anyone who will be without access to a direct source of ac or dc power. Collecting the energy from the sun will enable you to take your fridge truly off the grid.
However, if your fridge’s uses don’t necessarily entail living far from sources of energy, then having a hybrid fridge or one that is energy efficient through its use of ac and dc energy will work just fine. Again, the type of fridge you purchase will come down to what fits your situation best. For some, a solar-powered fridge simply isn’t what they need, while others cannot have one that connects to a power source.
The higher the number of cu ft you have, the better your organization options, right? Not necessarily. Some of the best fridges in the organization come in small packages with not too much space. It’s all about what the interior looks like and where they place their focus. Some of the largest devices with the most space are the ones with the worst organization available. This is because they simply provide an open cavity for food and drinks without separation or division available.
The organization is important as it will enable you to store much more in your limited space. The goal of many solar fridges is to keep as much food as possible cold for a long amount of time. If you have a refrigerator with plenty of organization options, then you’ll be able to make the most out of the space available and might even be able to store more than the larger competitors.
Keeping your food safe can easily be accomplished by keeping your fridge safe. With a durable, heavy-duty refrigerator, your food can be protected as the fridge’s body is unlikely to be compromised. This is especially important for any campers looking to take their devices on a long and rocky road to the campsite. With a strong product, you won’t have to worry about dents or breaches.
Products like the Dometic CFX3 accomplish this feature well as they encase all corners and edges with a strong, aluminum-alloy material that helps protect the overall structure and preserve the food inside. While ensuring that a device has quality insulation is important, none of that matters if the body is quickly compromised. With a strong exterior, your food will be safer than ever before. Protect your food by protecting your refrigerator.
Finding the perfect solar refrigerator for your needs doesn’t have to be difficult. By simply knowing what makes a quality fridge and what to avoid in a product and what features will be most important for your needs, you’ll be able to choose the perfect fridge in no time.
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