Energy prices, remote professional life, travel… all of these come together to make many people pursue a self-sufficient life. And one of the keys to achieving this lies in the use of batteries and solar panels.

We have tested the EcoFlow River 2 Max battery with a solar panel from the same brand to see how, how much and under what circumstances they perform.

We start with the battery. The first impression is that it is a solid device, despite using plastic materials it does not look fragile and the entire configuration is robust, something to be expected in a device that is not going to stay in one place. It has a weight of almost 7 kilos and although it can be heavy to transport from one place to the other constantly, it is light for the use that is given to it. Of course, I missed a specific case, suitcase or backpack to store it when not in use and thus avoid damage from scratches, splashes, etc.

The EcoFlow River 2 Max includes three USB Type A ports, one C, two conventional outlets and a charger for the car cigarette lighter , with which it is also possible to charge it. In this case, the charging time is less than two hours, with home electricity the full charge is one hour and with the solar energy panel, it takes about three, four hours, depending on whether we are alert to the position of the sun and its intensity: we have tested it with the Asturian sun and it took us 4 hours in total.

An interesting advantage, in this sense, is that it has an application available for Android and iOS . With this you can regulate the charge rate, view the entrance of the car and configure it to 4A, 6A and 8A. Regulate the CC mode between solar charging, car charging and automatic. There is also the possibility of enabling the overvoltage capacity, for security reasons, as well as setting charge and discharge limits (very useful if we are somewhat fair). In direct test, with 100% battery, I was able to fully charge a laptop, four mobiles and a projector, all at the same time,No problem. And I still had four hours of charge remaining. Suggestion: for future models it would be interesting to use the upper part as a wireless charging module for devices that do not require a lot of energy, such as watches or helmets, thus taking advantage of space and not losing ports.

We now turn to the solar panel. Four segments that weigh a total of four kilos. It comes in a case that can act as a base to regulate the inclination at the moment of loading thanks to the fact that one of its sides is rigid. This is critical: Tilt and direction can take you from a three-hour charge to a six-hour charge . It is supposed to have a capacity of 160 W, we never exceeded 120W, perhaps because of the hours at which we tested it or because of the latitude (Asturias), it should be tested in other places.The charging time with the solar panel will depend a lot not only on the intensity, but also on how we place it.The charging time with the solar panel will depend a lot not only on the intensity, but also on how we place it. 

It connects very easily with the battery (in fact it works for many batteries from other brands) with some cables included. You can also directly charge some devices, but for this you have to buy the specific connectors. You just have to deploy it to start working, no configuration or waiting. After the hour of charging, its temperature increases significantly and it is not recommended to touch it. Despite this, there is no problem, it is supposed to be so. Like the battery, it has its weight and is not to be carried on hiking trails, more because of its size than its weight. Despite being foldable and thin (less than 7 centimeters), it has the width and length of a large suitcase. The case includes a closure that, although it is not hermetic, does come with a rubber protection, which reduces the amount of water that can enter if we are caught by an unexpected shower. The same for dirt or sand.

It is resistant to scratches and water, dirt and humidity , something logical if we take into account the environments in which it is used. It can operate between 0 and 60º C, so yes, in an ideal scenario we could leave it in the car while it charges. Although we have not tested this, for safety reasons, it is best that it be outdoors while charging: we are playing with renewable energies, but also with chemistry, and the interior of a vehicle can reach very high temperatures and cause risks.

All of this being said… both the battery and the panel can become an emergency replacement in the event of power outages at home, but they are not designed for this. It can power a fridge but connecting more devices to it already exceeds its capabilities . Yes, it will get us out of trouble with some table lights, mobile phones, computers, router and television. But not more than one day, unless we use the solar panel and still. It is designed for travel, motorhomes and camping or excursions. In these contexts it is just the right weight, can power a travel cooler and charge multiple devices at the same time. The solar panel is also easy to transport (more than the battery thanks to its case) and charges at an adequate speed, as long as we position it well.

Previous articleEcho Show 10, an Alexa of weapons to take
Next articleLG Gram, a scary laptop…with lights and shadows