Frequently asked questions
What will my generator power?
Each output is capable of expending a certain amount of power at a time; just like every input can only accept a certain amount of power at a time. The amount of power each output can supply is measured in watts (W). This determines whether or not a specific output can power a specific device. The power requirements of a specific device or appliance is a combination of a voltage (measured in volts, or V) and a current (measured in amperes or amps, abbreviated with A). The voltages of all individual outputs on the generator are fixed. Each output can supply a certain amount of current – similar to power. For simplicity, one would need to plug a 12V device into the 12V output and a 120V device into the 120V output, etc.
Example: The 120 volt AC output on your generator can supply up to 1500W of power continuously. That means the generator can easily run a lamp with a 100W lightbulb. Additionally, the same 120 volt AC output on the generator could actually run fifteen 100W light bulb lamps at the same time (equivalent to 1500 watts of power). However, the same generator is unable to run a 1800W industrial strength blender because the power rating of the blender exceeds the maximum power (1500W) output of the generator.
Each generator’s user manual has the most up-to-date information about which outputs can support specific power or currents. Add the total amount of power or current from each device plugged into one outlet to ensure the power rating of that outlet is not exceeded. If the power rating is exceeded by mistake, the generator will protect itself by cutting off power to that outlet – much like a circuit breaker in your home. If this happens, unplug all devices from the generator, turn it off, and then turn it on again to restore power to the outlets. Please note that not all appliances use a constant amount of power continuously. Appliances like refrigerators turn on and off throughout the day. Appliances like this create a large power spike when first turned on. This is typical with devices containing large motors or compressors for cooling. The power rating on these devices reflects the amount of power the device needs during normal runtime. However, when first turning on the device, the initial power spike may exceed the power rating of the output on the generator, causing the safety feature to deactivate the output. The generator is engineered to handle power spikes but cannot account for all possible situations.
How long will the generator be able to power my devices?
To determine the length of time the generator will run, it is necessary to do some simple math on the size of the battery in the generator and the amount of power the device uses. Look at the generator’s user manual to find the size of the battery or battery capacity. The battery capacity is measured in watt-hours (Whr) or amp-hours (Ahr). The amount of power the device uses is measured in watts (W) or amps (A). If the device's power rating is listed in watts, use the watt-hour capacity rating of the battery for the calculation. If the device’s power rating is listed in amps, use the amp-hour capacity rating of the battery for the calculation. To estimate the runtime of a device in hours, divide the capacity of the battery in watt-hours or amp-hours by the power consumption of the device in watts or amps, respectively (capacity/power consumption = runtime).
Example: If the generator has a fully-charged 600 Whr battery, to run a 12V electric blanket that needs 60W to run, the generator can power the blanket for 10 hours (600/60 = 10). This calculation works for all devices running on DC power (example: 12 volt or USB outputs). There is one necessary change for devices that run on 120V AC. It takes power to convert battery voltage from 12V DC to 120V AC and the process the generator uses to do this is 90% efficient. That requires multiplying the final amount by 0.9. In this case, a lamp with a 60-watt bulb running on the AC outlet of the same generator will run for approximately 9 hours (600/60 = 10 x 0.9 = 9). To run multiple devices simultaneously, add the total watts or amps of all the devices before estimating the runtime.
Additionally, some devices list a current rating in amps and others list a power rating in watts, convert the current rating into power ratings by multiplying the current by the voltage (current rating x voltage = power rating). A 12V blanket needing 5A of current to run will be using 60W of power (5 x 12 = 60).
How long will my generator hold a charge?
Each generator has been engineered to use as little power as possible when turned off so that it isn’t discharged for too long, causing damage to the generator. Many other brands on the market utilize batteries for their generators that become useless when not charged every 3 to 6 months. In contrast, we recommend charging generators every 6 to 12 months to ensure it is prepared when necessary. However, unlike other brands, the warranty is not voided when the generator is not charged every 6 months. Lumio partnered with Lion Energy because they give their products a full year covered under warranty without being charged. If the generator sits idle for a year, it can be recharged and will operate as normal with little to no impact on performance. Please note: Generators must be stored completely turned off or the battery will deplete much sooner. It is recommended to fully charge the generator before turning it off and storing for an extended period of time.
How long does the generator take to charge?
Charging times for each of our generators vary by size and the charging method. For example, a wall outlet will charge a generator faster than solar panels. A solar panel in full sunlight charges the generator between 9 to 10 hours. Additional solar panels will reduce this time.
How loud is the generator?
These generators are essentially silent—the only noise produced is created by a small fan inside the unit that keeps the circuitry cool. It turns on and off as needed and is no louder than a desktop computer.
What is the warranty on the generator?
Each solar power generator has specific warranty information included in the product description. Please refer to the generator you are looking to purchase for specific information about your product’s warranty.
How long will my generator last before I have to replace it?
The lifespan of a solar generator is determined by the lifecycle rating of the battery that powers it. Every time a battery is completely drained and fully recharged, one lifecycle is added. We proudly use products with Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries which are the safest and longest lasting Lithium batteries on the market. This means our generators are rated for 2500+ lifecycles—4 to 6 times longer than the average generator on the market. If you completely drain and fully recharged the generator every day it would last for 7 years! Even after you reach the end of the lifecycle rating, the generator will continue to function and power your devices.