Charge your devices

I don’t even know if this has been invented.

During the summer, inevitably our power goes off, sometimes for days. Is there a device that you can charge up ahead of time and then use it to charge, say, your Mac off of it although you no longer have electricity?

You mean like a battery-pack?

I use a UPS (uninterruptible power supply) for my Mac. While it’s main purpose is to keep power to my Mac for brief outages and to shut it down safely otherwise, it’s essentially a big, cheap(ish), heavy battery.

I never tried charging a laptop from it, but when we had a big power outage a few years ago, I used it several times to charge my phone.


I’m not sure. Just something you charge ahead of time and then it can be a power source for devices in case you are without electricity.

I have for example
which I can use with the battery-packs of my Festool Battery powered Tools, to recharge our iPhones and iPads.
I also have some Battery driven lights from Bosch, I can use my Bosch-Battery-Packs with, to provide a save light source.

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There is also a huge variety of dedicated battery-packs for USB Devices available, that you can also carry with you to extend the live of your iPhone during a long day.

I can not recommend these versions with solar-power, because these solar-cells are normally way to small, to really power/reload a smartphone or something like that.

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I have a Goal Zero power station, and solar panel for just such situations.

I have the 1500X model. I used it to keep my refrigerator running for several days, after a lightning strike that took out the power. I used the solar panel to keep it charging.

Also very handy when camping. :slight_smile:


Anker sells a power source that might fit your needs… Anker 521 Portable Power Station (PowerHouse 256Wh)

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Would this work? Do I need a special cable or something?

I have UPSes on all the devices I don’t want to reboot during a short outage. The house has a backup generator for longer power outages. It takes about a minute for the backup generator to provide power so I need the desktop computers and networking gear to stay powered up. I have 4 UPSes in the house.

Yes. Portable ones used for phones and tablets, especially. Often called power packs.

See The 4 Best USB Power Banks for Phones and Tablets 2022 | Reviews by Wirecutter

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@Ulli mentioned solar chargers. Most of those attached to battery packs do look way too small to be much use (unless maybe you live in the Mohave).

But … I bought this BigBlue 28W SunPower Solar Panels Charger with Digital Ammeter years ago, and have really liked it, recognizing its limitations:

  • no battery – it’s for charging devices in a sunny place;
  • it works best with full direct sun;
  • it still charges on somewhat overcast days, but slooowly.

Best use cases: camping, tail-gating, maybe boating (tho not waterproof) – anywhere you have an unobstructed sky and can point the thing more or less at the sun, and aren’t moving around.

It’s not a lot of power, but it’s handy.