A Portable Charger makes life easier
No power, no cell phone service and just static on the radio. It sounds like something out of a disaster movie but in fact this is what I experienced after hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. It was 4 months before we got power back to the house and that was plenty of time to find out what I needed to make life easier. The the first thing I’m going to write about in this series is the portable charger (power bank) that is typically small enough to put in your pocket or bag.
Portable Lithium charger
Get yourself a portable lithium charger that can power all your USB devices. Look for one that is above 20,000 mAh (6-7 full cellphone charges) from a reputable brand and you won’t have any regrets. You can even get some that will power your laptop if it has USB-C charging capability. I got one a few weeks after the hurricane and I’m still using it over a year later. It just comes in so useful on the many occasions when I’m nowhere near a power outlet and my device needs power.
Portable Charger in your disaster preparation kit
In the months after the hurricane I would use it to keep my kindle, phone and lights powered. When cell phone service arrived back in our area I found an adapter to allow it to power the mobile hotspot continuously throughout the day when the generator was off. It saved us a lot of money on gas while allowing us to use the laptops to work online. The reality is that most people just can’t afford to run a generator continually – especially for months. But when you do use the generator or the car, plug in the battery charger to store the excess power for your devices later on.
My personal portable charger is the Anker 20100 mAh. It has served me well and a year later I can’t notice any decrease in capacity. I’ve charged it from outlets and solar panels and never had a problem. Check out today’s deal on Amazon.com for the Anker battery packs that has 31% off the 26800 mAh battery charger (higher end) for $59.99. Or click here for a cheaper 10,000 mAh one for $25.99.
The other brand I can recommend is RAV power. These links are affiliate links which means (should you click and purchase) I get small commission at no extra cost to you. This helps with the running of the website.
I take mine nearly everywhere
So whether you are future proofing yourself for a disaster, a creative professional who wants to be charging camera/phone batteries on the go, a builder who is out on site most of the day, or even to keep your iPad charged for long flights and travel, then a portable charger is for you. Bingeing Netflix on the couch and don’t want to leave your phone across the room connected to the outlet – the charger will solve your problem. It has so many uses that I guarantee it’ll be hard for you not to get your money’s worth from it.
Shipping issues due to lithium batteries
Now (in passing) the one problem with being overseas in Puerto Rico is that the majority of these companies won’t send me these portable chargers because they contain lithium batteries. The post office has strict rules on posting these by air but if you live in the states this is obviously not an issue. However, if you in Puerto Rico and are planning a trip over to the states to see family you can have one ordered and waiting for you (or visa versa if they are coming to visit you here). You can carry all of these without any problems in your hand luggage on the plane. Or you can head down to Walmart or BestBuy and see what price they are locally (in my experience more expensive).
Thanks for reading and until the next article where I’ll look at charging these same portable chargers using a portable solar panel to give you even more freedom!
My name is David Hamilton and I’m from Northern Ireland but currently living in Puerto Rico. I have a degree in Biochemistry and a M.Phil in molecular virology from Queen’s University Belfast. I write on some of my interests which range from virology, astronomy and science related subjects to history. Thanks for your interest!