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Yeti Silent Power Generators for Storms & Emergencies

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Photo by KPHO/KTVK

Here in Arizona, monsoon season is upon us and I hate to say it, but for those of you north of us, winter is just around the corner. Everyone has experienced power outages at some point, whether it’s a quick surge or an outage that lasts a couple of hours, but what would you do if the unexpected happens? How prepared would you be if you lost power and it couldn’t be recovered for days? Would you be able to keep in touch with your family or be able to contact emergency responders? Would you be able to keep critical medical devices running?

Standard generators use fuel and smaller ones have to be refilled every few hours. Heavy-duty generators take up a lot of space when they’re being stored and both options are bulky and while portable, let’s face it, they aren’t easy to move around. Not only that, but they’re noisy, they smell and you can’t bring them inside. If you want emergency equipment that’s not just going to take up space until you need it, there are better options!

Goal Zero (GZ) is a leading manufacturer of affordable, portable solar power supply. What’s so great about their products, is that you can use them all the time for all sorts of activities, so they won’t just sit around collecting dust until you need them for an emergency.

Goal Zero Yeti 400

A portable solar generator that uses a replaceable 12V, 33Ah sealed lead-acid battery (AGM) (Yes, I said it has a replaceable battery!). It can be charged by plugging it into the wall, plugging it into your cars 12V adapter, or by connecting it to a compatible solar panel.It’s a lighter weight generator at 29 pounds.

Charge Time

The quickest charging method is by plugging it into the wall with the AC Inverter.It can be charged in 5 hours using the wall charger or in 13 hours using the 12V car adapter. Using a compatible solar panel, the charge time varies quite a bit and of course there’s an additional variance if weather conditions are not optimal. We recommend the Boulder 30 Solar Panel which will charge the Yeti 400 in 26-52 hours, the Nomad 100 Solar Panel which will charge it in about 8 hours, or at a minimum the Nomad 20 Solar Panel which will charge it in 40-80 hours. The solar charge times are using one panel but you can also chain two Boulder 30 panels together (for example) and can cut your charge time in half!

Powering your Devices - Charges

It has an output display that tells you how much power your devices are pulling so you can monitor the output and the battery life.The Yeti 400 contains a 400Wh (Watt Hours) battery so if your device is pulling 50W then your battery would last 8 hours.We mentioned chaining GZ solar panels together to decrease charge time and you can also chain two Yeti 400s together to increase the output!

The number of charges depends on the Watt Hours of your devices. To give you an idea of what one Yeti 400 can do, here’s a list of commonly used devices and the number of times the generator will charge them.



Headlamp 100 charges
Smartphone 30+ charges
GoPro 70+ charges
Digital Camera 20+charges
Tablet 10+ charges
Laptop 3-5 charges

Keeping your Yeti 400 Healthy

The lifetime of the generator’s battery can be maximized by keeping it topped off when it's not in use. Having the battery topped off is also a good idea for emergency use, so it’s ready to go when you need it. If you can’t keep it plugged in, giving it a full charge every 3 months and storing it in a cool, dry place is recommended. Remember, the battery is also replaceable! If you plan to use the generator in below-freezing temperatures, it should be kept in an insulated cooler and plugged into a power source (solar panels if you’re off-grid). Extremely cold temperatures will otherwise affect the capacity of the battery.

Non-emergency Uses

RV camping, tent camping, hunting, ice fishing, outdoor photography, cabin power, tailgating, you get the idea.

Goal Zero Yeti 150

Goal Zero’s lightest weight portable generator, at 12 pounds. It uses the same type of replaceable 12V, 33Ah sealed lead-acid battery (AGM) battery as the Yeti 400.

Charge Time

The quickest charging method is by plugging it into the wall with the AC Inverter.It can be charged in 6 hours using the wall charger or in 8 hours using the 12V car adapter. Using a compatible solar panel, the charge time varies quite a bit and of course there’s an additional variance if weather conditions are not optimal. We recommend the Boulder 30 Solar Panel which will charge the Yeti 150 in 11-22 hours, the Nomad 20 Solar Panel which will charge it in 17-34 hours, or at a minimum the Nomad 13 Solar Panel which will charge it in 26-52 hours. If you chain two Nomad 20 panels together you can cut your charge time in half!

Powering your Devices - Charges

It has an output display that tells you how much power your devices are pulling so you can monitor the output and the battery life.The Yeti 150 contains a 150Wh (Watt Hours) battery so if your device is pulling 50W then your battery would last 3 hours.The Yeti 150 generators are not chainable.

The number of charges depends on the Watt Hours of your devices. To give you an idea of what one Yeti 150 can do, here’s a list of commonly used devices and the number of times the generator will charge them.



Headlamp 37 charges
Smartphone 15 charges
GoPro 25 charges
Digital Camera 12 charges
Tablet 6 charges
Laptop 1-2 charges


Keeping your Yeti 150 Healthy

The lifetime of the generator’s battery can be maximized by keeping it topped off when it's not in use. Having the battery topped off is also a good idea for emergency use, so it’s ready to go when you need it. If you can’t keep it plugged in, giving it a full charge every 3 months and storing it in a cool, dry place is recommended. Remember, the battery is also replaceable! If you plan to use the generator in below-freezing temperatures, it should be kept in an insulated cooler and plugged into a power source (solar panels if you’re off-grid).Extremely cold temperatures will otherwise affect the capacity of the battery.

Non-emergency Uses

RV camping, tent camping, hunting, ice fishing, outdoor photography, and tailgating.

Goal Zero Yeti 1250

I’m not going to go into the details of the Yeti 1250, but it’s great if you have a need for lots of power. The 1250 has a battery capacity of 1200Wh, can be charged in the same methods as the other two and is chainable with additional 12V, 100Ah batteries to increase the battery life. This is the generator you want if you want to be able to power your refrigerator in an emergency but it's also the heaviest at 103 pounds and comes with a cart handle and wheels.

Accessories

Goal Zero makes some neat accessories that are great for emergency use.

Light-A-Life 350 LED Light

A light that puts out 350 lumens and has an adjustable shade to put out broad, bright light or soft ambient light. Up to 8 lights can be chained together and when the lights are on before they are chained, the first light will control the on/off switch for the other lights. The light has an 8 foot cable and an attached carabiner with a magnet on top to make them easy to hang. These lights are compatible only with the Yeti Generators, Sherpa Power Packs or a 12V car adapter. The power output on a Light-A-Life 350 is 4.5W and one weighs 9.3 ounces.

Light-A-Life Mini LED Light

A light that puts out 110 lumens and has a collapsible diffuser to put out broad, bright light or soft ambient light. Four of these lights can be chained together and they operate independently from one another when chained. They have a 3.6 foot cable with a USB input for powering and chaining, a USB output for chaining, and a carabiner for easy hanging. You can also get a four-pack of shades with one blue, green, orange and yellow shade to change up the color of the light.

Lighthouse 250 Lantern & USB Power Hub

A chargeable lantern that puts out 250 lumens and also dims to preserve battery life. The lantern can be charged by connecting a compatible solar panel, plugging into a USB power source or hand crank. The Nomad 7 Solar Panel can charge the lantern in 7-14 hours and for every one minute of hand cranking the lantern will put out 10 minutes of light. The lantern has a built-in USB port so you can also stay connected by using it to charge your small devices like your cell phone. It's battery life lasts 2.5-48 hours depending on the usage and it weighs 1.1 pounds.

Lighthouse Mini Lantern

A chargeable lantern that puts out 210 lumens and also dims to preserve battery life. The lantern can be charged by connecting a compatible solar panel or plugging into a USB power source. The lantern has a built-in hanger and carabiner loop for easy hanging. It also has a USB port so you can stay connected by using it to charge your small devices. It provides one full charge for a cell phone. It's battery life lasts 4-500+ hours depending on the usage and it weighs 8 ounces.


What I Love Most about Goal Zero

Their mission. To make a difference in people’s lives, empower people by bringing reliable power to them, and encourage personal growth. This company has provided power and lights to those in the world who need it most, when they need it most. As a company, we love being a part of that mission.


GOAL ZERO Portable Sun Power On The Go

Here at Ridgeline Gear we are enthusiastic to add a new line of products we feel would be great for outdoor enthusiast, college students,  and techies on the go.  Goal Zero founder Robert Workman made a visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) in 2007 and was inspired to help communities empower themselves [...]

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