When I set out to test the 500W EBL Power Station, I didn’t expect to have as many uses for it as I ended up finding. I figured I would use it as a light to brighten my campsites, a way to charge my laptop on long drives to trailheads, a phone charger for all my friends phones at once, and a general backup in case of emergencies. But what I didn’t think of was that it could charge all of my devices at once or that it could power my wifi so I could keep working from home when my power went out. I also didn’t realize that it would be able to accept a solar charge at the same time that it was charging all of my devices so that I could keep the battery from draining for long trips in the backcountry.
Power stations aren’t for everyone, but for anyone that spends extended periods of time off the grid, wants to have a backup in their home in case of an emergency, or wants to be able to power larger items at a campsite, read on to see why I think this EBL power station is a great bang for your buck.
EBL has been powering devices for over 20 years. They’ve made a name for themselves in the rechargeable battery space offering reusable batteries that reduce waste for thousands of different consumer applications. Over their 20 years in business, they’ve become known for creating reliable, long lasting batteries and have recently brought the same technology from their rechargeable batteries to power stations.
Where To Buy
You can purchase EBL products at the following:
Portable Power Station 500W
The EBL 500W Power Station is a great intermediate power station that’s perfect for weekend trips and people who have lots of different devices to charge. It sits right in the middle of the range between a 300W power station and a much larger 700W power station. If you’re looking to do more than just charge your phone and laptop, then this power station is perfect for you. It’ll allow you to charge many devices at once and keep you charged up for long weekend adventures. EBL also offers a solar panel if you’d like to extend your off-grid trips.
I really like the EBL power station because it features a large handle that makes moving it around simple. It’s also fairly intuitive to use. All you have to do is hit the power button and then select which output you’d like to receive power and you’re off to the races. The best part is, if you forget to turn it off or select the wrong output, the power station will turn off automatically on it’s own to conserve battery.
- Power Rating – 500W
- Capacity – 519.4 Wh
- Input Power – 105W
- Output – Pure Sine Wave
- AC Output – 110V±10%/60Hz
- Weight – 17 LBS
For in-depth specifications check out the listing on EBLs website: https://www.eblofficial.com/products/ebl-portable-power-station-500w-with-100w-solar-panel
For determining the best power station size for your needs, see our complete guide to power station sizing.
EBL claims that the power station can charge from a wall charger in about 6-7 hours, a car charger in about 7-8 hours, and from a solar panel in about 7-9 hours. The wall charger and car charger times are fairly accurate, but I found in my testing that it will most likely take much longer than 7-9 hours with a 100W solar panel. It’s very difficult to get direct sunlight for 7-9 hours without clouds, shade from trees blocking the panel, or the sun angle shifting.
What Can it Power?
This small power station packs a punch, it can power up to 10 devices at once ranging from your cell phone and laptop to a drone or a projector to play your favorite movie when you’re out camping. It features 3 DC outputs, 2 AC outputs, a wireless charger, 3 USB-A ports, and 1 USB-C port. Realistically, it can power more devices at once than you’ll need it to.
It has enough capacity to charge a smartphone 44 times, a laptop 10 times, a TV for 7 hours, or a 30W fan for 12 hours. I think powering things like a fan, a TV, an outdoor projector, or many devices at once is where this power station really excels. Imagine going on a camping trip and running a large fan in your tent to keep you cool at night or bringing all your friends together on a camping trip to watch your favorite movie on the big screen. If none of those things are appealing to you, then you’re probably better off with a standard power bank that you can throw in your bag and charge your phone a few times with.
As with most power stations, the EBL 500W power station is limited by its output wattage of 500W. A lot of products have a very high (well over 500W) startup draw, which means that right when they’re turned on they have a very high power draw and then as they continue to operate, their draw levels out. Many common household appliances like blenders, toasters, or anything that creates heat have high startup draws, which means they would not be able to used with this power station. If you’re looking to power personal heaters, microwaves, or other large appliances, you’ll have to buy a power station with a higher capacity and higher wattage to accommodate high startup power draws.
Optional Solar Panel
The optional solar panel that EBL sells along with this power station is great. It features a large handle that makes carrying it around a breeze, it has magnets that quickly snap together so you can pack it up quickly and it even features a zippered pocket to store all of the cables to connect it to the power station. It’s also incredibly easy to set up and use. You just unfold it, pull the legs off of the velcro that holds them, and then point it in the direction of the sun. It’s that simple.
Realistically, I think the solar panel is better at keeping the battery at its current charge level than it is at charging the battery. Unless you’re watching the panel and moving it all day as the sun moves, it’s going to be very difficult to keep it at its max wattage all day long. However, if you’re out in the backcountry for an extended period of time and you put up the solar panel while charging your laptop or any of your other accessories, it’s perfect. As long as you don’t draw more than 75W (which I almost never did during testing), you won’t lose any charge in the battery so you can keep it saved up for evenings or days when the sun isn’t out.
That being said, if you feel comfortable leaving the panel out while you’re out doing activities while camping or on the roof of your van while you’re working remotely during the day. It will charge most of the battery even at less than optimal sun levels. So all in all, the solar panel is a great addition to the power station if you spend lots of time off the grid.
I tested the 500W power station while at home, on a few road trips to visit friends, and on a long weekend rock climbing in the mountains of Colorado. It’s durable, easy to move around in, and holds up to extremely hot high desert temperatures. However, just like any other battery, I wouldn’t recommend leaving it in direct sunlight for extended periods of time. If you buy the optional solar panel, it’s really easy to stash the battery and all of your devices in the shade of the solar panel while they charge. If not, just make sure to keep the battery covered in your tent or in the car.
Where to Buy?
EBL power stations are available from a variety of different sources. They can be found on Amazon, at Walmart, or can be purchased directly from EBLs website.
Overall Rating – 4/5
Despite being at a slightly lower price point than some of its competition, the EBL 500W Portable Power station is a quality product. It’s well designed, easy to use, and has more features than the average adventurer would need. It’s durable, portable, and based on my testing will most likely last a very long time. I’d highly recommend it to anyone who’s looking for a power station for weekend trips and the occasional week long off the grid adventure.
Paul Brastrom is an active outdoorsman from Houston, Texas. He recently completed his goal of climbing all of the Colorado 14ers and is continuing to spend his time in the Colorado Rockies. A digital marketer during the week and a mountain biker, splitboarder, rock climber, hiker, runner, and fly fisher when he’s not a work, Paul is at home in the mountains.