Jackery Explorer 500 Review Portable, Versatile Power

Jackery Explorer 500 Review Portable, Versatile Power

Oh Hello, Jackery Explorer 500!

Ben here with another product test and review blog! I’m pleased to share with all of you our third and largest member of our portable power station family… the Jackery Explorer 500.

You may have already read our blogs on the Explorer 240 and Jackery HLS 290 (if not, check ’em out!) and how they’re excellent additions to any off grid, mobile work/play, or emergency preparedness situation. Backup power options are always a plus to have on hand.

So what else can I say about the Explorer 500 that hasn’t already been said? 

It has more power! Blog done.

Just kidding, there’s more…

The Right Stuff + Savings

portable power station jackery

There are many similarities to the smaller Jackery portable power models like the pure sine inverter, multiple charging methods, solar panel compatibility, etc. It can power MORE with not that much added weight.

They maintain a light, compact, and durable battery pack without compromising the excellent quality Jackery is known for. They’re able to pack in 500Wh while still only weighing 13.32 lbs. — they even added a nifty little LED flashlight on the side! Woo.

finance wild drive life

We love saving money and you probably do to, SO enjoy these coupons (Thanks, Jackery!):

$79.45 off for Jackery E500 power station Use Code: Meagan500 (5% code + $50 off coupon) ACTIVE FROM 01/07/2020 7:00 AM PST to 02/29/2020 11:59 PM PST

$30 off on Jackery 100W Solar panel Use Code: MeaganSP100 ACTIVE FROM 01/07/2020 7:00 AM PST to 02/29/2020 11:59 PM PST 

My face below says everything about how much I enjoy Meag taking awkward photos of me. Okay, let’s get back into it!

jackery power station at work
“Hold it right there!” — Why Meag, why?!

PRODUCT SPECS:

  • Battery Capacity: 518Wh (24Ah, 21.6V)
  • AC Output: 110V, 500W (1000W peak.)
  • Car Port: DC 12V, 10A , 2*DC Output: 12V, 7A (Total 120W)
  • USB Outputs (3): 5V, 2.4A (each)
  • Input: 8mm DC, 12V~30V (100W Max)
  • Dimensions: 11.84*7.59*9.2 in
  • Weight: 13.32lbs

More Power

power station jackery 500

My favorite thing about this battery is the added versatility you get with the extra power, 500w. It’s easy to see from Jackery’s website and other blogs that the Explorer 500 can power a TV for seven hours or charge a smartphone 50 times. Those technical specs are great for understanding the capacity of the portable battery, but I didn’t open the box and say, “Yay, I can’t wait to charge my GoPro 92 times!

What I’m getting at here is that there are some real world practical applications, or dare I say, life hacks that the 500 can be used for.

Here are a couple examples from our recent ventures and life here in southern Maine.

Jackery at Work

Someday we’ll convert the van from a tool shed to a camper! 🙂

The daily application I use the Jackery Explorer 500 for is with my business at various job sites.

I (Ben, if you missed that earlier) run a home improvement and renovations business that is completely cordless. Our chop saw, table saw, drills, etc. are battery powered. We’re big fans of the Dewalt Flexvolt series.

Sometimes we HAVE to work outside, even during a nippy Maine winter.

This versatility makes set up a breeze wherever we’re stationed and there’s no tangled cords to deal with. It also means we can work anywhere regardless if there’s easy access to electricity or not.

On long days we can eat through our tool batteries pretty quickly and that’s where the Jackery Explorer 500 comes in.

I built a charging station in my work trailer to recharge dead batteries on the job site. I know, charging batteries with a battery isn’t the most efficient use of electricity. But that’s not what it’s about here. It’s about flexibility. It allows us to be off grid anywhere and still be able to get work done without any interruptions. 

Off-Grid Power

wild drive life product testing
This shot is from our last cross-country trip. Ahhh Arizona in January. It’s a beautiful thing.

For any weekend road trippers or anyone thinking about trying out vanlife, this part’s for you. 

Meag and I recently purchased a 4×4 1993 Mitsubishi Delica van with the intention of converting it into a weekend camper this spring. It’s currently my work vehicle as you see in these photos! All in good time, right?!

The idea of setting up a battery bank with solar and alternator charging capabilities in a van conversion can feel a bit overwhelming if you’re just starting out.

There are varying battery types, charge controllers, inverters, and complicated wiring to install. It’s all doable but sometimes requires the assistance of a professional.

A Simple, Portable Power Option

jackery explorer 500

A simple, out of the box power source like the Jackery Explorer 500 could be a viable option if your goals are more weekend trips and short-term fun vs. full-time living! This power station has everything you need built right in and is compact enough to store anywhere in your vehicle.

Add one of Jackery’s Solar Saga 100w solar panels and you’re ready to rock.

Since our Delica is indeed a road trip vehicle rather than our full time home like the bus, we’re all for simple setup!

I’m setting up the Explorer 500 to power our lights, refrigerator, water pump and of course an immersion blender for smoothies. It’ll also act as a charging port for laptops and phones.

Charging the Jackery Explorer 500

With options to charge via a 12v car port, AC wall outlet, and solar panels like we mentioned above, it’s easy to keep the 500 charged whether you’re parked or on the road. It’s a plug and play version of your typical micro off-grid power set up. 

Now, I’m not saying this is a full replacement for full-time RV living.

The 500 isn’t large enough to power all the components of an RV for very long. However, if you’re just looking to get away for the weekend or can stand live live full time with minimal power requirements, this can be a great option for you. 

Another Great Product from Jackery

These are just two examples of what you can do with the Explorer 500. Everyone knows you can use a battery to go camping or if there’s an emergency, but there’s so much more if you just use your imagination.

Catering, tailgating, farmer’s markets, movie in the park, I could go on and on. As long as you think outside the box and apply a little creativity there are endless possibilities when you have portable battery power at your fingertips. You can read more about the Explorer 500 and the Solar Saga 100 on Jackery’s website, too!

Don’t forget about the awesome coupons we shared earlier. Here they are again:

$79.45 off for Jackery E500 power station Use Code: Meagan500 (5% code + $50 off coupon) ACTIVE FROM 01/07/2020 7:00 AM PST to 02/29/2020 11:59 PM PST

$30 off on Jackery 100W Solar panel Use Code: MeaganSP100 ACTIVE FROM 01/07/2020 7:00 AM PST to 02/29/2020 11:59 PM PST 

AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE: This post contains affiliate links which earn us a small commission from any purchases made from our blog. This comes at no extra cost to you at all whatsoever! It keeps us writing and sharing what we love with you. We only write about products we’ve actually put to the test and stand by for their awesomeness. We’ve worked with Jackery a few separate occasions and only have good things to say.

ENJOY and thank you for your support! — Meag + Ben