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The Ultimate Guide to Goal Zero Yeti - Portable Solar Generators

By SSK Admin December 13, 2021

The Ultimate Guide to Goal Zero Yeti - Portable Solar Generators

Goal Zero Yeti - Portable Solar Generators

With such a huge selection of solar generators from Goal Zero, you can find the perfect fit for whatever you're looking for. From powering a short camping trip to acting as your main power source for mobile living to even being a viable home power backup, we have a generator that does what you're looking for.    

Goal Zero's Yeti line of portable solar power generators varies tremendously. From size, weight, output, battery type, etc, it can be overwhelming to figure out the best option that suits your needs. This article is your guide to the most popular line of solar generators on the market. We look at their technical specifications and explain how this translates to everyday use. You'll get suggestions on the best applications for each Yeti in the hopes of helping you choose the right one for you. As always, if you have any questions at all, feel free to reach out via e-mail or phone here.  

Every Goal Zero Yeti is named according to its watt-hour capacity, the names have not been chosen randomly.  For example, the Yeti 150 has one hundred and fifty watt hours of battery storage while the Yeti 3000 has, you guessed it, 3000 watt hours of battery storage.  Below you will find a link to each Yeti and below that, we have broken down in further detail the specifics of each Yeti.   

Goal Zero Yeti's:

- Yeti 150 

- Yeti 400

- Yeti 400 Lithium

- Yeti 1000 Lithium

- Yeti 1250

- Yeti 1400 Lithium

- Yeti 3000 Lithium

  • ** Feel free to use discount code ultimateguide on select Yeti's and Yeti Solar Kits **

Yeti 150

The Yeti 150 is the smallest solar generator that Goal Zero offers. It's super lightweight and made to be incredibly portable. It can output 80 watts continuously, which isn’t bad for a machine that weighs only 12 pounds. With a full charge, this Yeti boasts 150 watt hours of battery capacity. To put that into context, an average smartphone takes about six watts an hour to recharge. You can find our list of the most common appliances and how much energy they use here.

Real World Applications

The 150 is ideal for anyone who doesn't need to charge significant appliances.  So, this is a perfect option if you want to run some LED lights or charge up equipment like headlights, phones, laptops, cameras, etc. The 150 is a great option for a weekend getaway or a fishing trip, somewhere you would only need to recharge a few essentials, like a camera and maybe your phone.

If you pair the Yeti 150 with a Boulder 50 Solar Panel, you can recharge it in around five to six hours of ideal sunlight.

Technical Specs

  • Output (modified sine wave): 80 Watts continuous - 160 Surge
  • Input: 60W 
  • Battery: AGM Lead Acid - 168Wh 
  • 12-month warranty
  • Weight - 12 lbs (5.4 kg)
  • Dimensions: 7.75 x 5.75 x 6.75 in
  • Chainable: No

Yeti 400

The Yeti 400 includes an AGM Lead-Acid battery with a 400 watt hour capacity.  Having an AGM battery allows you to chain this Yeti with other batteries or another Yeti 400 to create a much larger battery bank. It can output 300 watts continuously with a 600 watt max surge. Think of the Yeti 400 as a conservative step up from the 150, because it more than doubles the storage capabilities as well as output. You might be able to run a few appliances on this generator, especially if they are Energy Star rated; however, this is still not the best option if you need to power anything of significance. 

Real World Applications

The 400 can be a great option for longer camping trips, around three to five days off the grid where you would need to charge your essentials. You should think of this as a bigger charger for your laptop, camera, headlamp, cellphone, etc, ideal for more than one person to charge up with. This generator is also a great option for van lifers who don’t need to run serious appliances but want a quick and mobile charging station for everyday electronics.

Technical Specs

  • Output (pure sine wave): 300W continuous - 600W surge
  • Input: 120W max
  • Battery: AGM Lead Acid - 396Wh 
  • 12-month warranty
  • Weight: 29 lbs
  • Dimensions: 10.25 x 8 x 8 in
  • Chainable: Yes 

Yeti 400 Lithium

The Yeti 400 Lithium has a few differences from its AGM counterpart. The first and most obvious one is that it has a lithium battery as opposed to a lead-acid battery, making it over 10 pounds lighter while keeping the same 400 watt hours of battery life. It can also handle 300 watts output continuously and has a higher surge rating of 1200 watts.  

Real World Applications

Just like the Yeti 400, this option is great for longer trips where multiple people need to charge up their essentials. If you're taking a long weekend trip in the Jeep or camping with the family, the 400 Lithium can power the fridge for the weekend and recharge the phones and cameras. It's also a great option for van lifers who don’t need to run serious appliances but want a quick and mobile charging station for everyday electronics.

Pairing the Yeti with a Boulder 100 can charge up your Yeti in as little as six to 6.5 hours of ideal sunlight.  

Technical Specs

  • Output (pure sine wave): 300W continuous - 1200W surge
  • Input: 120 Watt Max
  • Battery: Lithium - 428Wh capacity
  • 12-month warranty
  • Weight: 16.3 lbs
  • Dimensions: 7.5 x 11.25 x 7.0 in
  • Chainable: No

Yeti 1000 Lithium

** If you already have a Yeti 1000, you might be interested in our article on how to supercharge it here. **

The Yeti 1000 Lithium is the first generator in this list that outputs enough power that you can reasonably use it to power appliances or as the main power source for mobile living. As the name suggests, this Yeti has 1000 Wh of capacity and can output 1500 watts continuously with a 3000 watt surge. It weighs 40 pounds, which also makes it quite portable. 

Real World Application

You can keep this Yeti at your home as backup power in case the grid goes down or as the main power source for mobile living. The Yeti 1000 outputs 1500 watts with a 3000 watt surge, meaning it can basically handle any of your daily appliances. Many people have used the Yeti 1000 as the main power source for van living or even to power tools while off the grid or away from shore power.

The optional MPPT charge controller allows for much more efficient charging times. You can see our step-by-step article on how to install your MPPT charge controller here.

Technical Specs

  • Output (pure sine wave): 1500W continuous - 3000W surge
  • Input: with MPPT 685W overall.
  • Battery: Lithium 1045Wh capacity
  • 12-month warranty
  • Weight: 40 lbs
  • Dimensions: 10.1 x 15.3 x 9.3 in
  • Chainable: No 

Yeti 1250

The Yeti 1250 is the only generator from Goal Zero that is a significant size in terms of battery life and output but does not have a lithium battery. The Yeti 1250 has an AGM battery, meaning that you can chain this Yeti to other batteries to extend the battery life. You can learn about that here. It can output a continuous 1200 watts with a 1500 watt max surge. 

Real World Application

Since this Yeti is so heavy (103 pounds) due to the AGM battery, this one is not the best option for mobile living. There is an optional roll cart that makes it somewhat more portable, but this is still better off being a more permanent option. The only real benefit to this Yeti is the ability to chain it with other batteries. You can create a decent-sized battery bank, which is a good option for someone who is a solar rookie and intimidated by creating their own system with various parts and pieces.  

Technical Specs

  • Output (pure since wave): 1200W continuous -1500W surge
  • Input: 240watt max input
  • Battery: AGM Lead Acid- 1200Wh capacity
  • 12-month warranty
  • Weight: 103 lb
  • Dimensions: 11 x 16 x 14.5 in
  • Chainable: Yes

Yeti 1400 Lithium

** If you already have a Yeti 1400, you might be interested in our article on how to supercharge it here. **

The Yeti 1400 lithium is our number one pick for the most versatile and useful solar generator Goal Zero makes. It outputs 1500 watts continuous with a 3000 watt surge and boasts an impressive 1400 watt hours of battery storage.  It also only weighs 43 pounds, which means it is a super portable option. 

Real World Applications

This Yeti is probably the most useful because it's so versatile. You can take this one on your extended camping trip to power everything from the fridges to your phones and cameras or can keep this around the house as emergency backup power. If you want to power your next tailgating adventure, bring this generator and run everything from lights to your speaker. It's also quite lightweight, coming in at just over 43 pounds and making it super functional for mobile living as well.  This Yeti is definitely our favorite all-around and something that is in serious competition with the Inergy Apex.   

Technical Specs

  • Output (pure sine wave): 1500W - 3000W surge
  • Input with MPPT: 685W overall
  • Battery: Lithium - 1425Wh capacity
  • 12-month warranty
  • Weight: 43.7 lbs
  • Dimensions: 10.1 x 15.3 x 10.4 in
  • Chainable: No

Yeti 3000 Lithium

** If you already have a Yeti 3000, you might be interested in our article on how to supercharge it here. **

This Yeti is the biggest that Goal Zero offers, and the mega 3000 Wh of storage makes it a beast. The 300 Lithium comes pre-installed with an MPPT charge controller, meaning it can be charged pretty efficiently as well. It has the same output as the Yeti 1000 and 1400 but with more than double the battery capacity.  It's not chainable since it has a lithium battery, but it has three kilowatts of battery capacity, so odds are you won't need to chain it anyway.   

Real World Applications

This Yeti is more of a home backup option; portability was not the focus of this design. With a home integration kit, you can use this Yeti to power specific breakers during power outages. This machine is best kept as emergency backup power when the grid is down because its size and weight make it difficult to move. But, some customers have used it as a great way to power an extended camping trip where they are set up for long periods. You can run grills, TVs, lights speakers, etc off of this with no problem.  

Technical Specs:

  • Output (pure sine wave): 1500W - 3000W surge
  • Input: 685W overall
  • Battery: Lithium - 3075Wh capacity
  • 12-month warranty
  • Weight: 68.6 lbs
  • Dimensions: 10.1 x 15.3 x 13.1 in
  • Chainable: No

Final Words

If you have any questions or concerns about anything on this list, please reach out to us via phone at 877-242-2792 or e-mail at info@shopsolarkits.com.

You can also check out other useful and related articles here.

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