As most of you know by now, we have an off grid cabin in Southeastern Oklahoma. During the past year (2018) we have made many videos as well as ran out of time to actually get them uploaded in a timely manner. Job change, life etc.
So in this post, I am not only sharing with you the initial video of the Biolite Solar Home 620 as well as give you a 9 month review on this product and how it has helped our lives at the off grid cabin. If you would like to watch the initial video of this product you can click this link. That link will take you to our YouTube page and if you haven subscribed yet I would love to talk you into doin so.
9 Month Review on the Biolite Solar Home 620
We purchased this unit back in March of 2018 and took it to the off grid cabin (still a work in progress, more on that later.) It comes in a nice looking box, we purchased ours from Amazon.
Install was very easy. It comes with a small Solar Charger that we put on the roof of the mini cabin and then ran the wire bundle into the attack of the mini cabin. The Main unit was placed near the front door. This is a good place for us to monitor the Panel, as well as lay the MP3 Music or listen to the FM radio that comes built in the unit.
Since everything is pretty well fool proof, there is no real wiring to be done, it is all plug and play and simple, you can’t plug stuff in the wrong way. Once you determine where you want the unit, the lights, and the switches, you can have your system installed in less than 30 minutes.
The unit comes with the clips and small nails so you can keep the wire bundles nailed to the walls ad or hidden behind the walls. It is a very simple and clean install process.
In the past 9 months, the unit has worked flawlessly. I will say for the money and effort involved it is a very well priced item that is holding up nicely to our off grid cabin use, all summer long. As the weeks of summer past by and fall was approaching, we noticed the heavier cloud cover and shorter daylight days where taking a tole on the charge time of the unit.
We took my father down to the cabin for the first time in June. We left the one light near his cot, on low all night so he could get up with out tripping over the ladder to the upstairs. In case nature called in the middle of the night.
Again, this unit worked great all summer. If I was able to change a few things, I would like to see a little bit bigger solar panel as well as a hair larger battery could be included. But I also know that would make this unit a little more pricey, and I am happy with what it is doing for 150 bucks. I Know I have mentioned the low daylight charging, but the system would still work a single light for over 6 hours at half charge. It just struggled to get the battery fully charged on the shorter cloudy days.
Easy to Instal
Works as expected
Reasonable price for everything it does, Lighting, Charging via USB, FM radio, etc
Light weight, would work great in a tent or small RV, Jeep, Etc
*** You area actually Helping others in need with your purchase from BioLite, they help families over seas with home lighting for each unit sold here in the US. Check out their website for more information on this.
Battery Life in Inclimate Weather and or Low Light Days of Fall., For the price point this is still acceptable and not really something I would harp on, since we are still using the lights even into winter now.
So our final thoughts on this unit, it is truly a great lighting option for off grid cabins on a budget. When you figure it cost over a hundred bucks for gas and groceries to even get to the cabin, the cost of one trip will provide you with lighting for the next year at the very least, and I expect it will last several years with that being said.
We get a lot of storms on the mountain, High Winds, some hail, sleet, ice, etc and the unit is still performing nicely. Obviously if it is covered with ice and snow it will not charge because the sun will be blocked out, and on that note, if you watch in the video, our cabin is covered and surrounded by trees, so I don’t think even in full summer daylight, it doesn’t get a full charge all day long due to the partial shading of some of the trees.
Again, I think this unit would work great in a Tent as well as a Cabin, We will be adding a tent to our channel soon. I am not too sure I won’t be getting another Biolite SolarHome 620 for our new tent. If you would like to Purchase a Biolite for your cabin or tent, you can click this link to be taken to the AMAZON store.
I will try to add the Video below, if it doesn’t work Click this Link if you want to see the Biolite Solar Home in Action.