Small Business Brief

Solar Energy

How to Set Up an Office Anywhere with Portable Solar Panels

You’ve started a business and it’s time to start thinking about office space. But those offices cost money-money that you could better use to grow your business.

On top of rent for your commercial lease, you’ll have to pay utilities, insurance, and cover the cost of equipment.

But what if you didn’t have to?

There’s no hard and fast rule saying you have to rent a commercial property to run a business. In fact, you can work anywhere at any time without paying high rent prices. You just need to have the right equipment.

So, what makes this possible? Portable solar panels.    

If you’re ready to ditch the rat race and work from anywhere, keep reading.

In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about setting up a portable office anywhere that you feel inspired to work.

Know What You Want to Do

Before you start shopping for portable solar solutions, you need to examine what you want the equipment to do.

Are you looking for a simple mobile office setup that allows you to charge reusable batteries on the go? Or do you need a power hub that can run a full office suite of equipment at once?

Solar power systems are limited in the amount of energy they can put out. You need to know how you’ll use the gear before you can decide how much power you’ll need. Keep in mind, more power does not necessarily mean bulkier gear.

But it can impact your budget. The more power you need, the more expensive the equipment will be.

Look at Your Solar Generator Options

Now that you know what you want your equipment to do, you can start searching for solar generators.

Think of solar generators as a battery and powerhouse in one. They house a large-capacity battery which stores power pulled either from a standard wall outlet or directly through solar panels.

The battery inside the generator stores direct current (DC) energy. This energy is not usable on its own. It has to pass through an inverter which then turns the DC energy into alternating current (AC) power.

AC power is the same type of electricity you’d get plugging into a wall outlet in an office. And most modern electronics can use this current and this current alone.

The inverter then sends the AC power to the standard outlets and USB plug-ins built into the generator casing. From there, you can charge your laptop, power monitors, and run a TV as long as the battery lasts.

Focus on Battery Capacity

Each generator’s use is limited by its battery capacity. The larger the battery, the longer you’ll be able to run your gear.

Most solar generators measure their battery capacity in terms of watt-hours. The more watt-hours a battery has, the longer its battery life will be.

If you’re looking for a generator that can run longer hours or more equipment, you’ll need one with a larger battery. Once you know the ideal capacity, you’ll need to choose between the two main battery types: lithium and sealed lead acid (SLA).

Sealed Lead Acid

Sealed lead acid batteries are the most basic types available. They’re durable, work reliably, and are relatively affordable.

That said, they tend to lose their charge in cold temperatures. Worse, once the battery is drained completely, it loses its total charge capacity.

What this means for you is the more often you drain the battery, the less energy it will store during each charge cycle. Even if the battery says it’s completely charged, it may only have about 80 percent of the total capacity filled up.

Lithium Batteries

Think of lithium batteries as a major upgrade from SLA batteries. They’re smaller and lighter, letting you pick a more portable solar generator.

But they also work better in cold temperatures and maintain charge capacity better than their sealed lead acid counterparts.

Unlike SLA batteries, their battery capacity won’t decrease if you drain the battery completely. The longer the battery capacity stays close to 100 percent, the less often you’ll need to replace the battery.

Pick the Right Portable Solar Panels

Once you have your solar generator chosen, you’ll need to pick the right portable panels to charge it on the go.

Solar panels come in different sizes and their size determines how much power they can send to the generator. Larger panels capture more sun at any given time. This means they send higher amounts of energy to the battery.

The larger the battery and solar generator, the more solar panels you can use to charge it safely.

Unfortunately, many solar panels are designed to be permanently mounted to a car, RV, or house. If you’re looking to build a portable office, you’ll need a portable panel. The team behind have a number of portable panels that will fit the bill.

Don’t Forget the Internet

Let’s face it…you rely on the internet to get your work done. But when you’re out in the wilderness or working in a city park, you won’t have access to public wireless internet. You’ll need your own connection.

You have a few options here.

Cell Phone Hotspot

Cell hotspots allow you to connect to the internet through your phone’s data plan. This is fine if you’re working for short bursts or don’t need a lot of speed for large uploads.

But if you rely on the connection, you risk paying hundreds in overage charges to your cell provider. Even unlimited data plans aren’t always truly unlimited. Most cell providers throttle your connection if you go over a certain amount of gigabytes each month. 

Dedicated Mobile Internet

Believe it or not, there are several companies that offer dedicated mobile internet with unlimited data usage. It’s typically designed for people living on the road or traveling in their RVs.

But if you’re looking to use it just for your business, there’s no reason it won’t work for you, too.

Best of all, these companies offer truly unlimited data usage. This means no throttling after certain usage levels.

Portable Solar Panels Are Only the Beginning

Running your business from anywhere you feel productive is a wonderful way to foster a positive work-life balance. And with the right portable solar panels in place, you’ll have enough energy to power your day.

But you still need to keep your business running efficiently. For more extra tips and tricks, read more here.