The 6 Best Solar Radios

By Kami Turky

Last Updated:

There are dozens of solar radios out there, each boasting unique features and promising the best performance. 

But how do you cut through the noise and find the one that truly meets your needs?

That’s why I’ve tested over 30 different models to bring you this meticulously curated list of the top solar radios. 

Each one has been evaluated on various critical parameters like battery capacity, charging options, additional features, durability, water resistance, price, and warranty.

So, without further ado, let’s delve into the details!

Moliao Solar Radio

Brightness: ★★★

Run Time: ★★★★

Functionality: ★★

Warranty: ★★★

SprGri Solar Radio

Brightness: ★★★

Run Time: ★★★★

Functionality: ★★

Warranty: ★★★

KAYINOW Solar Radio

Brightness: ★★★

Run Time: ★★★★

Functionality: ★★★★

Warranty: ★★★

Best Solar Powered Radios Selection

Editor’s Choice

SprGri Solar Radio

Key Features

  • Battery Capacity: 10,000mAh
  • Dimensions: 6.2 x 2.5 x 3.9 inches
  • Tuner Technology: FM
  • Brightness: 650 lumens
  • Illumination Range: Up to 65.6 ft
  • Run Time: Up to 90 hours
SprGri Solar Radio

Let’s kick things off today with the SprGri Solar Radio, which I’ve picked as the Editor’s Choice. 

Why this one, you ask? Here’s the scoop.

The flashlight on this radio packs a punch with 650 lumens of brightness. 

That means it lights up a lot, making it perfect for outdoor adventures or when the power goes out at home. 

Plus, it throws light up to 65.6 ft away—handy for finding your way around a dark campsite or digging through the garage.

I put this radio to the test last month on a camping trip in the Colorado woods. 

We got there late, it was pitch black, and honestly, setting up camp seemed like a huge challenge—especially with kids who were a bit spooked. 

But this radio’s flashlight lit up the area so well that we could easily find and set up our campsite.

It’s got three light modes too. 

On high, it can light up the trees and make the whole place feel a bit magical. 

We used the high setting to walk through the woods and switched to low to keep things cozy once we were settled in. 

Battery-wise, it’s equipped with a hefty 10,000mAh battery that lasts up to 90 hours

That’s a lot of peace of mind, ensuring you stay connected and illuminated no matter how long your adventure lasts.

Even if the weather turned bad, I knew we could rely on it to stay informed and call for help if necessary.

My only gripe? 

The plastic casing feels sturdy but could be a bit tougher to feel completely rugged.

Overall, the SprGri Solar Radio is a solid choice for anyone who loves the outdoors or just wants a reliable backup for emergencies at home.

Pros

  • Bright flashlight at 650 lumens
  • Illuminates up to 65.6 feet
  • Large 10,000mAh battery
  • Loud SOS emergency alarm
  • Multiple power options: solar, crank, USB-C

Cons

  • The plastic casing could be more durable
  • Only a 30-day return policy

Key Features

  • Battery Capacity: 5,000mAh
  • Dimensions: 6.77 x 3.7 x 2.91 inches
  • Tuner Technology: AM/FM 
  • Brightness: 300 lumens
  • Illumination Range: Up to 262.5 ft
  • Charge Time: Up to 120 hours
  • Run Time: Up to 13 hours
  • Waterproofing Rate: IPX6
  • Warranty: 1-year
Bestway Innovations LLC Solar Radio

The Bestway Solar Radio packs a 300-lumen flashlight that can light up to 262.5 ft away—super useful when you’re hiking at night or setting up camp after sunset.

I had a chance to test this out during a nighttime hike in some remote mountains. 

As the evening turned dark, I switched on the flashlight and I could see clearly through rugged terrain and steep climbs, which was a huge confidence booster.

One of the coolest features is the NOAA Weather Alert. 

It has 7 preset weather bands, so you can stay updated with the latest forecasts and emergency alerts. 

During my hike, as a storm rolled in unexpectedly, the radio kick blared a loud SOS alarm and flashed red lights, which was a clear signal to seek shelter. 

Thanks to this feature, I found a safe spot just in time as the downpour began.

It’s also built to handle the elements with an IPX6 waterproof rating, making it resistant to water splashes and rain—perfect for unpredictable weather.

The only downside is the long charge time—up to 120 hours

But, it’s not a deal-breaker since the radio also offers alternative power sources like a hand crank, and USB charging, and it can even use AAA batteries.

In short, if you love the outdoors, this solar radio could be a great addition to your gear, keeping you safe and informed, no matter where your adventures take you.

Pros

  • Bright flashlight with 300 lumens
  • Illumination reaches up to 262.5 feet
  • Good battery capacity of 5,000mAh
  • Waterproof with an IPX6 rating
  • 1-year warranty

Cons

  • Takes up to 120 hours to fully charge
  • Plastic material may not be as durable as other options

Best Bang for the Buck

Missonchoo Emergency Solar Radio

Key Features

  • Battery Capacity: 5,000mAh
  • Dimensions: 6.02 x 1.85 x 3.03 inches
  • Tuner Technology: AM/FM 
  • Brightness: 100 lumens
  • Charge Time: 2-3 hours
  • Run Time: Up to 50 hours
  • Waterproofing Rate: IPX3
Missonchoo Emergency Solar Radio

Sometimes, you just need a gadget that does the job but still packs a punch without costing a fortune. 

Enter the Missonchoo Emergency Solar Radio—it’s the kind of tool that gives you a lot for a little.

This radio comes with three lighting modes—far beam, dipped beam, and a combination of both—you can adjust the light to suit whatever you’re doing.

I tested this model last month during a series of severe thunderstorms that hit my area.

Last month, when a bunch of thunderstorms hit my area, I got to see what this radio could do. 

I could safely light up a big chunk of the yard to check for storm damage without tripping over anything. 

Inside the house, the dipped beam was perfect—it lit up the room without blinding anyone.

One of my favorite features is the high-definition LCD screen

It’s not something you usually find on solar radios, and it makes it so much easier to use. 

I could flick through the settings and find exactly what I needed without any fuss.

The only downside is its IPX3 waterproof rating

It’s fine for a few splashes here and there, but it won’t handle a downpour or anything more than that. 

Still, if you’re looking for a reliable, affordable solar radio that goes beyond just tuning into stations, the Missonchoo Solar Radio is worth checking out.

Pros

  • The brightness of 100 lumens
  • Good 5,000mAh rechargeable battery
  • Up to 50 hours of runtime
  • High Definition LCD screen
  • Loud SOS alarm
  • 4 power options

Cons

  • Only IPX3 waterproof rating
  • Just a 30-day return policy

Best Compact Design

Moliao Solar Radio

Key Features

  • Battery Capacity: 10,000mAh
  • Dimensions: 2.28 x 6.5 x 2.28 inches
  • Tuner Technology: AM/FM/WB
  • Run Time: Up to 48 hours
Moliao Solar Radio

The Moliao Solar Radio is pretty sleek, measuring just 2.28 x 6.5 x 2.28 inches, so it fits nicely in your hand or slides right into a backpack.

But don’t let its compact size fool you; this little radio packs a punch. 

It catches AM, FM, and Weather Band frequencies, hooking you up with your favorite tunes and critical weather updates from 7 NOAA stations.

I wanted to see what the Moliao Solar Radio could do, so I took it with me on a hike in the Sierra Nevada—famous for its quick weather shifts.

As we hiked, it kept us up to date with consistent weather alerts. 

When it warned us of an incoming storm, we were able to find a safe spot way before things got rough.

The radio also sports a 10,000mAh battery that can last up to 48 hours on a single charge. 

I tested it thoroughly, using the radio and flashlight functions and even charging my cellphone for about 6 hours

Even after all that, the battery still had plenty of life left.

The only drawback? 

It only comes with a 30-day return policy and no extended warranty. 

This might be a worry if something goes wrong after a month, as any repairs or replacements would be on you. 

But with its sturdy design and top-notch performance, this seems like a small risk.

All things considered, the Moliao Solar Radio is a solid choice for anyone needing a reliable, high-performing radio for outdoor adventures or emergencies.

Pros

  • Compact and sturdy design
  • Large 10,000mAh battery capacity 
  • Up to 48 hours of working time
  • Powerful flashlight and SOS alarm for emergencies

Cons

  • Only a 30-day return policy; lacks a long-term warranty

Best Multifunctional

KAYINOW Solar Radio

Key Features

  • Battery Capacity: 5,000mAh
  • Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.8 x 3 inches
  • Tuner Technology: AM/FM 
  • Connection Distance: 33 ft
  • Brightness: 90 lumens
  • Illumination Distance: 96 ft
  • Run Time: Up to 48 hours
  • Waterproofing Rate: IPX5
  • Warranty: 2-year

The KAYINOW Solar Radio packs a punch with all its features, making it a top pick for anyone needing a do-it-all radio. 

One of the coolest things about it is the auto-scan feature

This handy tool does all the work for you, finding and saving clear radio stations automatically. 

That means less messing around with dials and more time enjoying your favorite tunes, catching up on the news, or getting weather updates.

But there’s more to love about this radio. 

It’s equipped with a powerful 3W LED flashlight that comes in super handy in the dark, plus it sports the latest Bluetooth 5.0 technology

This lets you easily switch to streaming music from your own devices whenever you feel like a change from the radio. 

It also supports TF card playback, so you can load it up with your top audiobooks or playlists and have them ready for your next outing.

Another standout feature is the Bluetooth connection range of up to 33 ft.

 This is useful when you’re at a campsite—you can leave the radio in the middle and roam around freely without worrying about losing your music connection.

It’s also built to last, with an IPX5 waterproof rating and a solid 2-year warranty, giving you peace of mind about its durability and long-term performance.

The only potential drawback? 

The price—it’s a bit on the high side. 

Also, the 90-lumen flashlight might not be enough if you need bright light. 

It’s good for basic tasks, but if you’re planning to navigate tricky terrains in the dark, you might need something stronger.

All in all, though, the KAYINOW Solar Radio is worth considering if you’re after a top-notch, reliable radio that can handle a variety of situations.

Pros

  • Illumination distance of up to 96 feet
  • Large battery capacity of 5,000mAh
  • Up to 48 hours of runtime 
  • Up to 33 ft Bluetooth range
  • IPX5 waterproof rating 
  • 2-year warranty 

Cons

  • 90-lumen brightness may be insufficient for some
  • Pricier than similar models

Key Features

  • Battery Capacity: 5,000mAh
  • Dimensions: 6.9 x 2.4 x 3.9 inches
  • Tuner Technology: AM/FM 
  • Run Time: Up to 12 hours
  • Waterproofing Rate: IPX3

The Raynic Electronics Solar Radio is a real powerhouse when it comes to tuning in wherever you are. 

It handles AM/FM stations with ease and doesn’t stop there—it also picks up shortwave (SW) signals and has 7 preset channels from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). 

Just remember, to snag these updates, you’ll need to keep the radio on and manually tune into the right stations.

This radio is also packed with 5 power options: a hand crank, solar panel, built-in rechargeable battery, AAA batteries, and AC power. 

I put all these to the test on a week-long camping trip, and each one brought its A-game. 

The solar panel could keep the radio going for about 6 hours each day under direct sunlight. 

It even helped charge our smartphones, giving them about a 20% boost in just an hour—super handy when you’re out in the woods.

When it got dark or cloudy, I switched to the hand crank. 

Just three minutes of cranking gave us about 30 minutes of radio time, perfect for catching the evening weather updates.

At night, I used the built-in rechargeable battery, which held up wonderfully, providing up to 12 hours of runtime. 

I also brought along AAA batteries as a backup. 

They’re easy to find and swap in, giving the radio an extra 10 hours of juice. 

This was essential for keeping our tunes and updates going when the other power sources were down.

The only real snag with this radio is its IPX3 waterproof rating—it can handle a bit of water but isn’t cut out for anything more serious than a splash. 

That said, I’d still highly recommend the Raynic Electronics Solar Radio as one of the best multi-powered emergency radios out there. 

It’s reliable, versatile, and keeps you connected and entertained, no matter where your adventures might take you.

Pros

  • Access to AM/FM/SW/NOAA channels
  • Versatile 5-way power sources
  • Large 5,000mAh battery capacity
  • Up to 12 hours of continuous use
  • Built-in compass and SOS alarm

Cons

  • Manual tuning for NOAA alerts
  • AAA batteries for power backup are not included
  • Only IPX3 waterproof rating
  • Only offers a 30-day return policy

What Is a Solar Powered Radio?

A solar-powered radio is a handy gadget that uses sunlight to power up. 

Here’s how it works: at the heart of the radio are what we call photovoltaic cells, or simply solar panels. 

These panels are made of materials like silicon that turn sunlight into electricity—this is called the photovoltaic effect, and it’s the magic behind most solar-powered devices.

The solar panels on the radio capture sunlight and convert it into electrical energy, which is then stored in a built-in rechargeable battery. 

This battery powers the radio and can keep it running for several hours after it’s fully charged, depending on the radio’s model and design.

But what if there’s no sunlight? No worries.

Many solar radios come with alternative ways to power up. 

For example, they might have a hand crank you can turn to generate power manually, or a slot for disposable batteries just in case. 

This makes them super reliable in various situations, whether you’re out camping, stuck during a power outage, or dealing with an emergency.

How to Choose the Best The Best Solar Radio?

1. Battery Capacity

When you’re picking out the best solar radio, one of the key things to look at is the battery capacity. 

This is measured in milliamp hours, or mAh, which tells you how much power the battery can hold from the solar energy it collects. 

The higher the mAh, the longer your radio will play before it needs a recharge.

But keep in mind, that the size of the battery isn’t the only thing that affects how long your radio will last before needing a charge. 

The radio’s power consumption plays a big role too. 

For instance, a radio with a big, bright LCD screen might use up power faster than a simpler model, even if they both have the same battery capacity.

Charging speed is another thing to think about. 

Some radios have big batteries that store a lot of power but take ages to charge up. 

Others might have smaller batteries that charge faster, so you can use them more often throughout the day, even though you’ll need to charge them more frequently.

Here’s a practical example: Say you have a radio with a 5,000mAh battery

If you use it to power a light that uses 500mAh, it should last about 10 hours

But if that light uses 1,000mAh, the battery life would drop to around 5 hours.

That’s why in my recommendations, I’ve focused on radios with at least a 5,000mAh capacity. 

This should give you a good balance of usage time and efficiency, whether you’re camping out or just hanging in your backyard.

2. Power Options

Having multiple power options for your solar radio means you can relax, knowing it’ll keep working no matter what comes your way. 

Here’s a breakdown of the common power sources you’ll find in solar radios:

  • Solar Power: This is the heart of a solar radio. The built-in solar panels catch sunlight and convert it into electricity. Just set your radio in the sun, and it’ll charge up, ready to keep you connected without any breaks.
  • Hand Crank: A lot of solar radios come with a crank that you can turn by hand to generate power right on the spot. It’s perfect for emergencies when you need to get your radio running immediately.
  • Rechargeable Battery: The energy from the solar panels or the hand crank gets stored here, so even when there’s no immediate power source, your radio can still run off the stored energy.
  • AAA Batteries: They’re a great backup for times when the rechargeable battery runs low, and there’s no sun or time to crank. Just pop in the AAA batteries, and you’re good to go.
  • AC Power: Some solar radios can also be plugged into a wall outlet with an AC adapter or a USB cable. This is super useful for indoor use or when you have consistent access to power and don’t want to worry about charging.

I’ve made sure that all the radios on this list come with at least three of these power options. 

This way, you can feel confident that you’ll always have a reliable way to stay informed and connected, no matter the situation.

3. Extra Features

Solar radios do more than just keep you tuned in; they come packed with features that turn them into versatile tools for all kinds of situations. 

Here’s a look at some of the cool extras you might find in your solar radio:

  • NOAA Weather Alerts: This feature provides real-time weather updates and emergency alerts. It’s essential for anyone who spends time outdoors lives in areas prone to severe weather, or just wants to stay ahead of the weather curve.
  • LED Flashlight: Many solar radios come with a built-in LED flashlight that can be a real lifesaver. Some even have different modes like high, low, and SOS, which can be crucial in emergencies.
  • USB Charging Port: Low on phone battery? No worries if your solar radio has a USB port. You can use it to charge up your phone or other devices, ensuring you stay connected, even when there’s no outlet in sight.
  • Alarm Functions: Beyond just waking you up, the alarm feature on some solar radios can alert you to specific broadcasts or emergency warnings, keeping you informed when it matters most.
  • AUX Input: Want to play music from your phone or MP3 player through your radio? With an AUX input, your solar radio doubles as a portable speaker, perfect for entertainment wherever you are.
  • Reading Lamp: Some solar radios also come with a built-in reading lamp. This can be super handy during power outages or for late-night reading when you’re out in the wild.
  • SOS Alarm: For extreme situations, an SOS alarm can make a huge difference. It blasts a loud siren and flashes lights to signal for help, making sure you’re noticed in emergencies.
  • Built-in Compass: Getting lost is less of a worry with a built-in compass in your solar radio. It’s perfect for hiking in unfamiliar territories or just making sure you’re heading in the right direction.

4. Waterproofing Rating

When you’re picking out a radio for outdoor adventures like camping or boating, it’s crucial to choose one that can handle a bit of roughing. 

This means looking for a waterproof or at least water-resistant radio is essential.

Water resistance is usually measured by something called an IP (Ingress Protection) rating. 

This rating tells you just how much the radio can take before the elements start to get the better of it. 

It’s usually made up of two digits – the first digit shows how well the radio is protected against solids like dust, and the second digit shows how well it can resist liquids.

Let’s break down some common IP ratings so you can understand what they mean:

  • IPX3: This rating means the radio can handle light sprays of water, like a bit of rain. It’s tested by spraying water up to 60 degrees from vertical at 10 liters per minute for 5 minutes. 
  • IPX4: A radio with this rating is protected against splashes from any direction. So, it can handle some raindrops or splashes by the pool, but you shouldn’t leave it out in heavy rain or drop it in the water.
  • IPX5: This is where things get more robust. An IPX5-rated radio can withstand water jets from any direction. This means you can spray it down with a nozzle (6.3 mm) and not worry about it taking damage.

From my experience, I’d say always aim for at least an IPX5 rating

Anything less might not cut it if you find yourself in a situation where your radio gets hit with more than just a splash.

5. Warranty

Lastly, it’s really important to check out the warranty that comes with your solar radio. 

A good warranty means the company stands behind its product and you’re protected if something goes wrong. 

Warranties can vary a lot, from as short as one year to as long as a lifetime. 

What the warranty covers can also differ—some might cover everything from parts to labor, while others might only cover specific parts of the radio.

Always take a moment to read the warranty details carefully. 

It’ll tell you exactly what’s covered and for how long, so you can know what to expect if you run into any issues. 

This can help you make a smart choice because knowing you have that backup can give you extra peace of mind.

In my list of recommended radios, I’ve made sure each one has at least a 30-day money-back guarantee or a 1-year warranty against manufacturing defects. 

This way, you’ve got a safety net, giving you some security right after your purchase in case something isn’t quite right.

FAQs

What Radios Work Without Electricity?

Solar radios, hand crank radios, and battery-powered radios are all designed to function without a direct electricity supply.

How Do Solar Radios Work?

Solar radios work by using a built-in solar panel that collects energy from the sun and converts it into electricity. 

Are Solar Radios Reliable?

Solar radios are generally reliable, especially if they come with multiple power options such as hand cranks or battery compartments. 

Can Solar Radios Charge Other Devices?

Some solar radios can charge other devices as they are equipped with a USB port that allows them to act as a power bank, charging other devices like smartphones or tablets. 

Conclusion

As promised, we’ve covered everything you need to know to make an informed decision on the best solar radio for your needs. 

And if you ask me, I’d recommend the SprGri Solar Radio for its impressive array of features, superior performance, high-capacity battery, fast charging solar panel, and exceptional waterproof rating.

I hope this article was helpful and if you still have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below.

Kami Turky

Kami is a solar engineer with nearly a decade of experience in researching, testing, and reviewing various solar products.He has also provided technical consultation to several organizations on the best ways to incorporate solar energy into their operations.When he’s not busy helping others find the best solar solutions, Kami enjoys spending time outdoors, hiking, camping, and exploring the natural wonders of his home state.

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