Gear Review: Jackery Explorer 880 Portable Power Station
Keep Your Gadgets, and Small Appliances Running with a Power Source You Can Take Anywhere
Imagine sitting on your comfy camping chair, listening to the birds chirp, and gazing at the Grand Tetons with a warm cup of coffee when you suddenly realize it is a workday. Instead of moving to an established campground or firing up your generator, you get down to business in the same exact spot that you’re currently sitting. The Jackery Explorer 880 Portable Power Station allows you to do just that, providing off-grid power wherever you need it.
Having a reliable power source while off the grid or out adventuring can enhance your experience and provide an extra layer of comfort and safety. Whether it’s running your coffeemaker in the morning, charging your camera batteries before a hike, or cranking up your speakers at the beach, power makes the experience better—especially when it is portable. The Jackery 880 Power Station provides a robust yet lightweight power source to carry you through the knowns and unknowns of your busy RV life.
If you’re like us, you don’t have solar on your rig, and you usually rely on a gas generator for power. The Jackery power station is a perfect alternative to that setup, allowing us to charge our electronics, run appliances and small fans, and turn on noisemakers (toddler RV life). We take our Jackery everywhere and even use it to power our baby monitor when we are outside enjoying a campfire in the boondocks.
As full-time travelers, we spend as much time as possible exploring the outdoors. But sometimes we have to get some work done too. Noting ruins our ability to work from the wild faster than depleted batteries on our laptops and phones. Thankfully, the Jackery Explorer 880 enables us to work remotely without the need for additional power.
Weighing in at a little under 22 pounds, the Explorer 880 is lightweight and portable compared to most generators. It is equipped with a handy built-in flashlight for use at the campsite or inside the RV. The floodlight provides illumination, which makes working on projects after dark much more manageable. Being able to see and power your equipment means that you will be able to finish projects or address maintenance concerns more efficiently.
When the station runs low on power, there are several ways to recharge it.
- AC outlet, full charge in just over 6 hours.
- Charge through your 12V car outlet in 12.5 hours
- Charge with two 100W solar panels in 6.5 hours in direct sunlight
Not only are there multiple options for charging the Explorer 880 itself, but once its battery is topped off, it provides on-the-go power for your other devices and equipment. With the Jackery, you aren’t left sitting at the outlet and away from the fun. The portability and efficient charging connections give you the option to take it with you and charge your gadgets quickly.
Rugged and Functional
The Jackery has a functional design that makes it easy to use and gives it a sleek appearance. The company removed all the extra flaps and unnecessary buttons that take up space on similar products and only end up breaking. This simple but effective design takes the guesswork out of operating the Explorer 880 and adds to the equipment’s sturdiness at the same time.
The handle is large, rugged, and built into the case. Unlike some other models, it isn’t an attachment that could easily break. The relatively lightweight and slender profile makes it easy to pack but still has a solid enough build quality to handle the bumps and spills that come with everyday travel—even on extreme adventures!
The Explorer 880’s built-in digital display makes it easy to see the effects of power input and output. It clearly shows how much battery life remains and where the charge is being allocated. Knowing this makes it easy to gauge what devices use the most energy and require the most time to charge. This is extremely useful when preparing for a trip, giving you a better understanding of how much power is needed and how long it will take to charge.
Best of all, the Explorer 880 is completely silent and doesn’t produce any emissions. It also operates nicely in inclement weather conditions and can be used reliably in the cold of winter or the heat of summer. This makes it an eco-friendly option that you can depend on when you need it most.
But How Long Can I Run…?
Run my blender? Two hours! We hope to be invited to your campfire, too, as we assume you are making delicious camper beverages if you are running your blender for that long.
Here’s a breakdown of how long the Explorer 880 can power some commonly used small appliances:
- Blender (300W) – 2.3 hours
- Microwave (1000W) – 42 minutes
- Electric Grill (500W) – 46 minutes
- Coffee Maker (550W) – 1.28 hours
- Mini Fridge (60W) – 60 hours
We depend on Explorer 880 to run the fans that keep the kiddo’s room cool and charge important electronic devices. The system can operate for multiple days before we need to recharge the batteries. And thanks to a wide variety of ports and outlets (see below), the power station can simultaneously run or charge up to eight devices.
The power station itself weighs 21.8 pounds, and Jackery’s solar panels are also very lightweight. When charging via the sun, the Explorer 880 connects to the panel via a single cable.
Power for all your devices!
- Three AC Outlets providing up to 1000W continuously
- Two USB-C ports
- Two USB-A ports (One Quick-Charging)
- One 12-volt car port
It is an extremely powerful system for the weight, although if you need more power or are looking for a smaller power station, Jackery does offer other models. Visit Camping World to see the entire line-up.
Added Bonus—Solar Charging!
One of the biggest bonuses of using the Jackery Explorer 880 Portable Power Station is its ability to self-charge. When paired with Jackery’s SolarSaga solar panels, the unit can be recharged simply by using sunlight. This comes in handy when boondocking or living off the grid for an extended time.
Additionally, the solar panels themselves have charging ports built into them, which increases the Jackery’s functionality further. The solar panels can charge devices without the power station, meaning you can separate the station from the solar panels and charge devices in multiple locations.
It should be noted that environmental factors such as tree and cloud cover can impact the speed and efficiency of solar charging. Place the SolarSaga solar panels in direct sunlight on a clear day for the best performance. Under those conditions, it is surprising how quickly you can charge the Explorer 880 or other small electronic devices.