I bought this recently and it works great. Been experimenting every night with something else to run constantly while I sleep. The first charge was “light” but after that - this sucker s like the energiser bunny. Fan, CPAP, radio - 8-10 hours with left over charge (40%!) to spare.
Guess we’ll have to use the back door for a bit. I’ve put in a call for someone to smack the server to get the discussion links on the main page.
Does anybody know if the charging system for the power pack is a “smart charger”? All the research I’ve done recently about lead acid batteries says that the best way to make sure the battery doesn’t die (ie sulfation) is to have it on trickle charge all the time…
This could really light up my life
The manual states that you can leave the system plugged in all the time without damaging the battery. So I tend to believe that it’s “smart,” but I can’t really say how smart.
Great Question! Yes it has an on-board charge controller that monitors the power in and out. The best way to store the GOAL ZERO Escape 150 is to have it plugged in to some type of power source, either the wall, solar or car (car charger sold separately). If you cannot supply power to it all the time, please make sure to maintain the power pack by giving it a full charge every 3 months, or as often as you can. The main benefit of having it plugged in all the time (cost about a dollar/year to do that) is that when you need to use it, whether it’s for a power outage or when you go camping, you will know your power pack has a full charge and it is ready to go!
Take a look at the discussions the last time this was on sale. Someone who said he was with Goal Zero answered many of the questions posted.
He did say that it could be left plugged in all the time. Otherwise, charge it up every three months to keep the battery levels high.
EDIT: I see s/he beat me to it
Unless there’s been an update without a model number change, this device will not charge iPads and other smart devices that require higher voltages through the built in USB port. Not a major issue since you can just use the power plug or car cigarette lighter adapter. I use the usb port to charge my bluetooth headsets.
Bought one of these about a year and a half ago. Powers a 17 inch laptop on regular setting (no super duper energy saving) for a good two to four hours.
I have no apparent issues leaving this plugged in at home, turned on, with devices plugged in to it as a sort of battery backup.
These are fully compatible with Goal Zero’s line of larger solar panels, if that’s your thing.
Hey nice of you to stop by. Re. Solar charging, can you tell me what I need, besides a solar panel? I think I have some kind of regulator, a 30 watt panel, and a much smaller one, maybe 5 watts.
Can anyone say how well this would power a set of studio lights (flash photography) in the field. In my case, a Novatron power-pack pushing a couple of 1000 watt/second flash heads? If that worked, photographers should swarm this.
I’ve been known to have ninja speed! I’m a he, sorry to disappoint anyone with that revelation :),and I have been with GOAL ZERO since we launched our full product lineup in August of 2010, so I know the product extremely well. This is the GOAL ZERO product my family and I use at our home, or on our family camping trips! Oh, and I like long walks on the beach :)!
The strobes would not work with this GOAL ZERO product unfortunately. We do have a larger system, which is usually sold out all the time because of high demand, that would be perfect for that application for professional event photographers. It’s called the Yeti 1250.
On a previous woot sale, at Jun 18, 2012 7:28 AM, a commenter (not the Goal Zero rep) said that, per TSA regulations, this could not be taken by air, either as carry on or as luggage. To the Goal Zero rep: do you have a comment on that? Is that true?
With that size panel (30 watt) you would definitely need a charge controller to go between the panel and the battery you are charging to avoid damaging the battery. We put our charge controllers on the power packs themselves. We will also have a GOAL ZERO branded external charge controller in September that will be simple and easy to use with any of our panels.
Thanks for the information.
Officially, I need to say that it’s best to check with TSA on that question. I will check with them on it and repost as soon as I have an answer for you. If the answer is that you cannot, their staff may need some training because I’ve never had a problem with any of our gear on a plane. In fact, I’ve done a full gear demo a few times while being screened. I’ll find out what their restrictions are and let you know.
Thanks! The commenter at Jun 18, 2012 7:28 AM wrote that the TSA considered lead acid batteries to be “spillable” batteries. Since this device apparently uses AGM batteries, the material inside should not be spillable, but, on the other hand, this is the TSA I’m asking about.
Yet another gadget to render real camping useless.
Might as well stayed at home in the backyard. Is what I say.