Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core

$999.95
4.35

Features

4.5/5

Design

4.0/5

Performance

4.5/5

Ease of Use

4.0/5

Value

4.8/5

Pros

  • High-quality BMS with LG battery cells
  • Lower price and good AC Inverter
  • Great max input (150W or 300W)
  • Tough exterior
  • Industry leader & Safety record

Cons

  • Cannot be expanded with Yeti Link modules
  • Heavier than Jackery Explorer 1000
  • Ugly top compartment
  • No mobile app control/monitoring
  • Battery not user replaceable
Read: 25 mins.
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A Worthy Power Station

What can a battery power station be used for? Power outages, emergency preparation, and recreation — all the while be rechargeable with solar panels. It has become an essential part of my survival kit and is one of the products I have much experience with.

Costway 53qt Car Freezer and Goal Zero Yeti 500x

Costway 53qt Car Freezer and Goal Zero Yeti 500x

This is an in-depth review of the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core with comparisons against the Yeti 1000x and Jackery Explorer 1000.

In July 2021, Goal Zero made a surprise announcement for its newest Yeti 1000 Core battery power station just five weeks after the flagship Yeti 1000x became available for purchase. The company now had three Yeti 1000 batteries in circulation:

  • Yeti 1000 Lithium (2017 – Discontinued)
  • Yeti 1000 X (June 2021)
  • Yeti 1000 Core (July 2021)

What are the differences? How do they compare to the Jackery Explorer 1000? I am a fan of both Goal Zero and Jackery as both bring their own advantages and disadvantages.

Sweet Spot: The 1000Wh battery capacity hits the sweet spot for many consumers, including this author, who are looking for the right balance of power and portability.

What Will Be Covered Here

Goal Zero Yeti 1500x & 500x, Jackery Explorer 1000 & 300

Goal Zero Yeti 1500x & 500x, Jackery Explorer 1000 & 300

My friends, family, and I had learned so much using products from a variety of brands like BigBlue, Rockpals/Paxcess, nrgGo, Jackery, and Goal Zero, a common question I would often get is: “What power generator is best for my situation?” This article will go over many of the basics in the TIPS section, including:

  • Gas/propane generators vs battery power stations (aka “solar generators”)
  • What I think about various power station brands
  • How to determine what battery capacity or solar panel would work for you
  • How I got each brand’s products to work with one another

Let’s dive into the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core review.

In A Nutshell

Goal Zero in a surprise announcement launched the Yeti 1000 Core power station on July 16, 2021, five weeks after the flagship Yeti 1000x was available for purchase. It is an Amazon-exclusive product in an apparent effort to counter lower-priced batteries offered by its online-only competitors. The competition for the best 1000Wh battery had just heated up! Which is better? As much as I hate to say this, it depends on your needs.

First, let us address the Yeti 1000 Lithium. It was Goal Zero’s first 1,000Wh lithium battery that was introduced in late 2017. It is no longer being sold, but some consumers still understandably confuse it for the newer models. Why? The company’s naming convention does little to help distinguish between the three: Yeti 1000 Lithium, 1000 X, and 1000 Core. So, “Yeti 1000” refers to which model specifically? To add to the bewilderment, the 1000 Lithium was referred to as simply “Yeti 1000” in the past. Then, even though the 1000 Lithium has “Lithium” in its name, both the 1000X and 1000 Core are also made with Lithium-Ion — just like their predecessor. Confused yet? I won’t fault you for that. Personally, I would have named the new model the “Yeti 1000C” at the least.

The Yeti 1000 Lithium was replaced with the Yeti 1000X on June 8, 2021, with a promise of being lighter, more powerful, and more efficient (with a built-in MPPT solar charge controller) — alas, at a slightly lower battery capacity. As the company’s new flagship, it retained the ability to integrate into Goal Zero’s vast ecosystem of products and accessories that are designed for off-grid travel, work, and whole-house emergencies. Emphasis on “ecosystem”. The Yeti X line can be extended for a wide variety of uses that most competitors, like Jackery and Rockpals, cannot match.

Goal Zero’s vast ecosystem of products and accessories are designed for off-grid travel, work, and whole-house emergencies.

Jackery is a competitor known for products that are lower cost, lighter, and come with great customer service. They sell directly to consumers primarily through online sales channels, thus saving some middleman expenses, instead of physical stores (like REI and Walmart) where Goal Zero had already established a strong foothold. Indeed, the Jackery Explorer 1000 costs $300 less than the Yeti 1000X and is a great, standalone unit for those who do not need to integrate directly with a vehicle’s battery or whole house. For many, the Explorer is “good enough”, but then there are also those who want the “best” (myself included, usually). Take for example the difference in both batteries’ enclosures. In an apparent effort to lower cost and weight, Jackery chose to go with a hard, plastic shell that could crack when dropped. This could potentially expose the internal battery and result in serious injury to life or property. The Yeti 1000X, on the other hand, is housed within a metallic case that makes it more durable but also heavier.

Jackery Explorer 1000 & 300, Goal Zero Yeti 500x

Jackery Explorer 1000 & 300, Goal Zero Yeti 500x

With the launch of the Yeti 1000 Core at the same price point as the Jackery Explorer 1000, Goal Zero made available a compelling, lower-priced product that turned many heads. It certainly did mine! Is it better than the Explorer 1000? (Spoiler: It tremendously narrowed the gap between both products!) Let us first look at the differences between the Yeti 1000X and Yeti 1000 Core.

Yeti 1000 Core is a compelling, lower-priced product by Goal Zero that turned many heads.

The new Yeti 1000 Core model retains the same dimensions and ports as its flagship sibling, but at a reduced price of $999, a slightly smaller AC inverter (1,200W continuous, 2,400W peak), and a lower, maximum charging input of 300W. It also loses support for the Yeti Link expansion module that would have allowed it to be extended with the Yeti Tank expansion batteries, or integrated with the Home or Vehicle with the appropriate kits. In other words, it is Goal Zero’s direct answer to the Jackery Explorer 1000 as a standalone power station.

Top: Yeti 1000 Core. Bottom: Yeti 1000X

Top: Yeti 1000 Core. Bottom: Yeti 1000X

When considering whether the 1000X or 1000 Core is better, I recommend the Core for most consumers who do not need to integrate their battery with a vehicle or home, or to support more high-powered devices or appliances. The X would be for those who want to be able to extend its capacity with more batteries, integrate into the home in case of a power outage, or vehicle for those living the nomadic “RV” life. It would also be for those who need the higher AC Inverter output of 1,500W (continuous) or 3,000W (peak) for more demanding power tools or appliances. Both power stations are fully solar-charging capable and have an efficient, integrated MPPT solar charge controller, although the 1000x can be juiced with more powerful solar panels for faster charging at up to 600W (versus the Core’s 300W).

Most devices power on at a higher (Peak) wattage than when they are already on (Continuous). Therefore, if its peak exceeds the power station’s max, it may not be able to start. Read on to learn more. We will cover this in more detail later.

Between the Jackery Explorer 1000 and Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core, the differences are less pronounced. As previously stated, both are priced the same at $999, and even though the Explorer has a negligible 19Wh battery capacity advantage, its AC Inverter is less powerful with a continuous output of 1,000W (2,000W peak) than the Core’s 1,200W (2,400W peak). Essentially, the Yeti can drive more higher-powered devices and appliances. Also of some importance is that the Yeti can be charged faster at up to 300W versus the Explorer’s 200W, but is heavier at 31.7 lbs than the latter’s weight of 22 lbs, a 44% difference. This is likely due to Goal Zero using better quality components (like a metallic enclosure instead of hard plastic). At one point, both companies used Tier 1 battery cells manufactured by LG, but Jackery switched to Chinese BAK Battery last year. Both power stations are essentially similar in overall size.

Jackery Explorer 1000 with SolarSaga 100W

Jackery Explorer 1000 with SolarSaga 100W

In the end, the biggest advantages between the Yeti 1000X, Yeti 1000 Core, and Jackery Explorer 1000 can be summarized as follows:

  • Goal Zero Yeti 1000X – Most professional, but higher-priced
    • Larger AC inverter to accommodate higher-powered appliances, super-fast charging at up to 600W, quality components and Tier 1 LG battery cells, and capability to be extended with additional batteries, vehicle integration, and whole-house emergency power
  • Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core – Best value for price and power
    • Mid-sized AC inverter, fast charging at up to 300W, quality components and Tier 1 LG battery cells, and lower price
  • Jackery Explorer 1000 – Lightest and lower-priced
    • Smaller AC inverter, lightest, good components and BAK Battery cells, and lower price

What’s Best? Goal Zero Yeti 1000x: Most professional, but higher-priced. Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core: Best value for price and power. Jackery Explorer 1000: Lightest and lower-priced.

All three batteries can be charged via the Anderson Powerpole (APP) or 12V car ports, use a high-quality Battery Management System, and output Pure-Sine Wave AC for sensitive electronics. I went ahead and sold my Explorer 1000 to my brother and grabbed myself the Yeti 1000 Core.

Tip: A battery power station like this one cannot be used to jump start a car. Instead, I suggest getting a small, portable one specifically made for that, such as my favorite: NOCO Genius Boost Car Jump Starter (Lithium Battery).

You can buy the Yeti 1000 Core only on Amazon, the Yeti 1000x on GoalZero, Amazon, and other retailers, and the Jackery Explorer 1000 on Amazon and Jackery.com. The Yeti 1000 Lithium model is no longer sold.

Support us by shopping at Goal Zero (Affiliate)

Support us by shopping at Goal Zero (Affiliate)

Note: Goal Zero renamed its Anderson Powerpole (APP) ports in Nov 2020 to High Power Port (HPP) to avoid trademark infringement with its inventor: Anderson Power Products. This is only a name change as the connector works the same way as before. For the purpose of avoiding confusion, I will interchangeably refer to the port as HPP or APP.

Comparison Summary

Here is a summary of differences between the various Goal Zero Yeti 1000 models and the Jackery Explorer 1000. The Yeti 1000 Lithium is the oldest of the Yeti series and is no longer sold.

ProductBattery CapacityAC Inverter
(Continuous)
AC Inverter
(Surge)
Max InputMSRPExpandableCharge ControllerWiFi, BTBattery SupplierWeightDimensions (inches)
Jackery Explorer 10001,002 Wh1,000W2,000W200 W$999NoMPPTNoLG or BAK22 lbs13.1 x 9.2 x 11.1
Goal Zero Yeti 1000c983 Wh1,200 W2,400 W300 W$999NoMPPTNoLG31.7 lbs15.3 x 10.2 x 9.9
Goal Zero Yeti 1000x983 Wh1,500 W3,000 W600 W$1,299Yes. Yeti LinkMPPTNoLG31.7 lbs15.3 x 10.2 x 9.9
Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Lithium1,045 Wh1,500 W3,000 W360 W$1,199Yes. Yeti Link, MPPTPWMNoLG40 lbs15.3 x 10.1 x 9.3
Power Stations Comparison

The Yeti 1000x, 1000 Core, and 1000 Lithium fit the Goal Zero Yeti Carry Case (Large) (Buy at Goal Zero | Amazon) that allows them to be used without taking out of the bag. I loved its design when used with the Yeti 1500x!

What’s Good? What’s Bad?

Pros

  • Lithium-ion cells made by LG (a top-notch, Tier 1 battery manufacturer)
  • Very professional, tough look with a pleasing color scheme, though I’m not a fan of the odd-looking top storage compartment that breaks the clean lines of the Yeti 500x
    • Aluminum exterior helps protect against bumps and battery puncture
      • Given that Li-Ion batteries become more volatile as capacity increases, this added protection is important
      • Environmentally friendlier than hard plastic
    • Vertical, rounded edge grilles provide extra grip, heat dissipation, and act like bumpers
      • Rounded corners are less likely to shatter than sharp edges
    • Jackery, Rockpals, and other brands I had used were made of hard plastic shell that may be more prone to cracking and overheating
    • Brushless fan on each side for cooling
  • Inexpensive price point into the Goal Zero 1000Wh family
    • Costs the same as Jackery Explorer 1000
  • 983 Wh battery capacity (31.7 lbs @ 15.3″ x 10.2″ x 9.9″)
    • Same as the Yeti 1000x
    • Comparisons
      • 40.0 lbs @ 15.3″ x 10.1″ x 9.3″ / Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Lithium
      • 30.9lbs @ 15.7″ x 8.3″ x 10.6″ / Ecoflow Delta 1300
      • 22.1 lbs @ 13.1″ x 9.2″ x 11.1″ / Jackery Explorer 1000
    • Roughly equivalent to a 265,675 mAh 3.7V power bank (or 91,018 mAh 10.8V)
    • Capacity to power a 30″ LCD monitor and Mini PC for 10-14 hours, a Toshiba 50″ Fire TV for almost 9 hours
  • Pure-Sine Wave AC Inverter capable of continuous 1,200W power (and 2,400W peak) — See USAGE section
    • Clean power for sensitive electronics
    • Less heat
    • Note: Some manufacturers claim to be Pure-Sine when they are actually Modified or Square Waves
  • High-quality BMS (Battery Management System) for safety
    • Provides built-in overload, overcharge (automatic stop when the device is full), and short-circuit protection
Yeti 1000x Ports. Yeti 1000 Core is the same

Yeti 1000x Ports. Yeti 1000 Core is the same

  • Regulated Output ports
  • Can power AC and DC (USB/12V Car adapter) at the same time
    • Common, supported devices: laptop, tablet, phone, light, fan, CPAP, projector, TV, refrigerator, camera, pressure cooker, miter saw
  • Multiple charging options with up to 300W
    • Can be used while charging
      • Although this is supported, doing so could hurt the battery’s lifetime
    • MPPT (Maximum Power Point Tracking) solar charge controller/regulator
      • Smarter, faster/more efficient, and costlier than PWM (Pulse Width Modulation). Older Yeti 1000 Li uses PWM
      • Suitable for larger systems
      • Can parallel-connect up to 4 solar panels with a combiner cable (not included) for faster charging (8mm-to-HPP 4x or HPP-to-HPP 4x cable)
    • 12V Car Charger (60W/120W) (Goal Zero | Amazon)
  • APP and 12V cigarette ports can be used to charge other Yeti power stations, but using them with other brands is not supported by the company
    • Was able to charge Yeti 500x, Jackery Explorer 1000, and Explorer 300
    • This method would combine both batteries’ capacities (ie. Yeti 1000 Core + 500x = 983 Wh + 505 Wh = approx. 1,488 Wh. Keep in mind there is some power loss during conversion/transfer)
Yeti 1500x charging Jackery Explorer 1000

Yeti 1500x charging Jackery Explorer 1000

  • Carry handles on each side with a comfortable, non-slip grip
    • Top of Yeti 1000 Core has a covered storage compartment
  • Excellent, informative LCD with LED backlight
    • Total power coming in (via solar panel, 12V car port, or wall charger)
    • Capacity left (as a percentage)
    • Total power (AC and DC combined) being used
      • Suaoki G500 (an unreliable product I do NOT recommend) displays the Wattage separately for DC and AC, which I prefer
    • Estimated hours
      • When Input > Output, shows time to full
      • When Output > Input, shows time to empty
    • Units can be toggled between “Volts” and for Output: “Amps”, “Watts”, “Watt-hours”
    • Press Units + Light buttons for 3 secs to display Yeti’s firmware version
    • Info button did nothing. Customer service said that, like the 1500x’s, “more features are coming” that will utilize it, presumably via a firmware update
      • How the 1000 Core will have its firmware updated remains to be seen
  • Bottom is well-protected by neon green, non-slip feet
  • Goal Zero cables are very well-made with solid connections that help weatherproof and prevent accidental disconnects
  • Manual: Unusually detailed with some helpful tips
  • Great technical support
  • Good customer service, though I was very impressed by the sizably positive stories from Jackery’s customers
  • 2 year warranty
  • American company founded with humanitarian goals
  • No Smartphone app-based remote control, power usage monitoring, battery optimization, notifications, and firmware upgrade via WiFi
    • Only Yeti 1500x and higher has this function
  • Battery capacity decreased by 62 Wh over its Yeti 1000 Lithium predecessor, but sheds 8.3 lbs in weight
  • Heavy at 31.7 lbs due to the use of aluminum housing instead of plastic
  • Battery not replaceable like the older Yeti 1400 Lithium
    • Leads to landfill/environmental waste. Please recycle responsibly!
    • Goal Zero asked to “stay tuned” when I inquired about user-friendly battery replacement options for the Yeti 1500x. I hope that this will become available for the 1000 Core as well
  • Anderson Powerpole (APP/High Power Port) input port is vertically arranged when most solar panels from other brands are horizontal
    • Requires a Goal Zero cable to work, though I found a great alternative that allows you to re-arrange the connectors’ orientation to fit any Anderson connector: iGreely APP Extension Cable
    • Initially thought that changing the APP orientation was a ploy for Goal Zero to sell additional cables, but it was also likely a way for the product to differentiate the ports as Input (vertical) or Output (horizontal) to prevent someone from connecting accessories incorrectly

Tip: It is possible to get multiple companies’ products (battery power stations and solar panels) to work with one another once you understand the different connector types, such as Anderson APP, MC4, 8mm, and so on. In one test, I had simultaneously connected solar panels by Goal Zero, Jackery, Suaoki, and Paxcess to the Yeti 1500x’s Anderson port to collect energy from all four! Although I did not test this with the Yeti 1000x or 1000 Core, it should work the same way. Expect an article about interconnectivity soon.

  • No secure way to prevent theft of power station (besides chaining the removable carry handles)
  • Not waterproof. Keep it away from water splashes, rain, and pool!
    • Lithium and fire or water can cause serious damage or injury!
  • Display, though quite informative, does not show separate power consumption for DC and AC
    • LCD is unreadable without LED backlight
  • No built-in light or LED bar to illuminate your area or blink “S.O.S.”, the international distress signal
  • No cable accessories or carry bag included besides the 120W wall charger (100-240V, 16V @ 7.5A)
    • Competitors often throw in cables for charging via solar or car cigarette socket, and sometimes a small case to hold them
  • Automatic shutoff when idle is an unusually long 30 hours
    • Ensures Yeti does not turn off when a low-powered device (like medical CPAP) is used overnight
    • Could unexpectedly drain battery from 100% to 86% with nothing connected (because AC inverter uses 7W on its own)
    • Power buttons can be accidentally turned on/off with a short press (ie. while packing away your camping gear)
      • Requiring a 2-second press to turn on or off would minimize unintended button presses
      • No master button to turn off ALL outputs at the same time
    • Other auto off times
  • Multiple fans turn on during high peak and can be too noisy for some

Ports

All output ports are Regulated.

Input

Yeti 1000 Core Ports /Goal Zero

Yeti 1000 Core Ports /Goal Zero

  • (2) 8mm (1 front, 1 storage compartment– but only ONE can be used at a time)
    • 14-50V, max 10A. Do NOT use a power source that exceeds the max Voltage or Amperage!
    • Max input: 150W
      • Jackery Explorer 1000, Rockpals 500W: max 200W
      • Included power supply outputs 120W
    • Only one of the 8mm ports can receive power
      • Having both ports receive different Voltage levels could have one drive power to — and damage — the other
    • Can be used for solar charging
    • TIP: Goal Zero and Jackery both use an 8mm connector, but they are not completely interchangeable
      • Jackery’s cable can somewhat be used with one or both GZ ports, but not the other way around. You will have to cut part of the cable’s plastic barrel to make it work with both companies’ products

CAUTION: Do NOT daisy-chain 2+ solar panels in sequence/series as that can output more than 50V combined and damage the power station! Connect them in PARALLEL with a Y-branch or Combiner cable instead! See “Solar Panel – Warning” section.

  • (1) High Power Port (HPP aka Anderson/APP)
    • 14-50V, max 25A. Do NOT use a power source that exceeds the max V or A!
    • Max input: 300W
      • Rapid-charging power supply available: 230W
    • Can be used for solar charging
      • Connect 2+ solar panels in PARALLEL with a HPP-to-HPP 4x Combiner Cable (max 300W) (Check on Amazon/Goal Zero)
  • (1) USB-C PD 60W – Both for input/output
    • Powerful enough to charge a 60W laptop (ie. 13″ MacBook Pro)
    • Can charge concurrently with the 8mm port for a total of 210W of input
      • Both ports are on a separate charge control circuit. There is no overload risk for using them concurrently

Note: If power is sent to both the 8mm and HPP ports, only the one with the highest input will be used.

Output

  • (2) AC with 3 prongs (120V, 60Hz, 10A) – Pure Sine Wave
    • Inverter handles a continuous 1,200W, peaking at 2,400W — See USAGE section
    • Note: Uses 7W with nothing plugged in
  • (1) HPP (Anderson/APP) (12V, max 15A, max 180W) — Yeti 1500x maxes at 30A for 360W
  • (1) Cigarette socket (12V, max 15A, max 180W)
  • (2) 6mm (12V, max 10A, max 120W)
    • Single, compact 12V port to universally charge electronics with different connectors using a variety of adapters
    • Allows GZ to create 12V products to use 6mm instead of the bulky cigarette socket
  • (1) USB-C PD (5-20V, max 3A, max 60W) – Both for input/output
  • (2) USB-A (5V, max 2.4A, max 12W)
  • (1) USB-C (5-12V, max 3A, max 18W) – QuickCharge

Usage

  • To turn ON or OFF the DC (12V Car/6mm/HPP, USB) or AC outputs, press the corresponding button (“12V”, “USB”, “AC”)
    • Note: This single-press (without hold) can lead to accidental power on/off, unknowingly draining the battery until idle auto-off kicks in
  • Turn off any output ports (AC/DC) that are not being used in order to conserve power
    • Without anything plugged in, the AC inverter still draws 7W on its own
  • Li-ion batteries have 500 charge cycles before capacity drops to about 80% from when they were new
    • Product could, in theory, be charged up to 2,000 cycles — about 20-25% of total capacity is lost every 500 cycle
  • To prolong the battery lifetime while in storage, keep the battery fully charged every 3-6 months
    • Or, according to customer support, keep it plugged in when not in use and discharge it to 50% every 3-4 months
      • The charging controller automatically gets disabled once the battery is full
      • You may also charge it to 80% for storage, but be sure to discharge to 20% every 3-4 months
    • NOT using the battery for a very long time can actually hurt its lifetime
      • There is no “memory effect” in this station’s battery
        • Note: It is better to NOT let it completely drain before recharging
      • Battery, like all Li-ion, slowly drains over time even when station is powered off
        • Could take 1-1.5 years to go from full to empty

CAUTION: Lithium-ion batteries do NOT like to remain discharged at 0% for prolonged periods of time. If you let your battery stay at 0% for too long, you may not be able to charge it again without specialized equipment.

  • Battery is NOT replaceable, although it appears that Goal Zero is working on a solution it previously had available for its older Yeti 1400 Lithium
  • Keep a car cigarette lighter with the power station — you could plug it into its 12V DC socket for starting a camp fire
  • Unlike LiFePO4 batteries, Li-ion can operate only in temperatures between 32-104F (0-40C)
    • GZ’s Battery Management System (BMS) limits:
      • Recharging in temps outside of 32-113F
      • Outputting power in temps outside of 14-149F

Continuous vs Peak Output

Yeti 500x: 300W (1,200W Peak)

It is important to understand the difference between Watts and Watt-Hours. How much power is used or produced is measured in Watts, and how much energy a battery can store is calculated in Watt-Hours. See the “Calculations” section below for more details.

How much energy a battery can store is measured in Wh (Watt-hours), and how much power is used or produced in W (Watts).

  • AC Inverter: Converts battery (DC) power into AC
    • Yeti 1000c provides 1,200W continuous output with a 2,400W peak
  • Peak/Surge (Starting): Nearly every device initially draws extra power to turn on. The highest amount it pulls is the Peak. As long as that number is below 2,400W, it can be STARTED. Examples…
    • Turns on OK (PEAK under 2,400W):
      • Freezer starts at 400W (peak), runs at 150W once on
      • Coffee maker starts at 1,400W (peak), runs at 800W once on
    • Will NOT turn on (PEAK over 2,400W):
      • Home AC starts at 4,000W (peak), runs at 1,000W once on

Most devices power on at a higher (Peak) wattage than when they are already on (Continuous). Therefore, if its peak exceeds the power station’s max, it may not be able to start

  • Continuous Output (Running): Once devices are on, as long as they keep drawing less than 1,200W total, they will stay ON until the battery runs out
    • CONTINUES running (under 1,200W)
      • 100W TV + 60W laptop = 160W
    • COULD STOP running (over 1,200W)
      • Temporary overdrawing beyond 1,200W for a few seconds is okay. A quality BMS will protectively shut down the battery if the surge does not end after a while. Regularly going over for a prolonged time can ruin the battery in the long run
      • 1,000W machine (2,100W peak) + 300W appliance (500W peak) = 1,300W. Probably will stay on for a short period
        • Add 1,000W mower (1,400W peak) = 2,300W. Battery will definitely shut down

Goal Zero Yeti Comparison

ProductBattery CapacityAC Inverter
(Continuous)
AC Inverter
(Surge)
Max InputExpandableCharge ControllerWiFi, BTWeightDimensions (inches)
Yeti 200x187 Wh120 W200 W120 WNoMPPTNo5 lbs7.9 x 5.1 x 5.1
Yeti 500x505 Wh300 W1,200 W120 WNoMPPTNo12.9 lbs7.5 x 11.3 x 5.8
Yeti 1000c983 Wh1,200 W2,400 W300 WNoMPPTNo31.7 lbs15.3 x 10.2 x 9.9
Yeti 1000 Lithium1,045 Wh1,500 W3,000 W360 WYes. Yeti Link, MPPTPWMNo40 lbs15.3 x 10.1 x 9.3
Yeti 1000x983 Wh1,500 W3,000 W600 WYes. Yeti LinkMPPTNo31.7 lbs15.3 x 10.2 x 9.9
Yeti 1500x1,516 Wh2,000 W3,500 W600 WYes. Yeti LinkMPPTWiFi, BT45.6 lbs15.3 x 10.2 x 10.4
Yeti 3000x3,032 Wh2,000 W3,500 W600 WYes. Yeti LinkMPPTWiFi, BT69.8 lbs15.3 x 10.2 x 13.6
Yeti 6000x6,010 Wh2,000 W3,500 W600 WYes. Yeti LinkMPPTWiFi, BT106 lbs15.3 x 10.1 x 17
Goal Zero Yeti Power Stations Comparison

Solar Panel – Warning

This power station can be charged with one or more solar panels as described in the “Ports > Input” section. There are SOME PRECAUTIONS you must take to minimize battery damage and/or injury to life/property:

ONLY chain 2+ solar panels in PARALLEL

  • Never exceed the maximum Voltage (V) or Amperage (A) of the power station’s charging port
  • If you want to use 2+ solar panels to charge faster:
    • Do not mix them with different V or A as the output might get reduced (less energy generated)
    • Do not daisy-chain them in sequence/series as that can exceed the power station’s maximum V or A
      • Always connect them in PARALLEL with a Y-branch or Combiner cable
  • Keep the battery out of direct sunlight while charging. You may have to use an extension cable to keep it in the shade

Wondering what size solar panel to get? See the “Calculations” section below.

Calculations: What Size? How Long?

What size battery should you get? How long will it power your fridge for? How long will it take to recharge? The below calculations can help answer those questions and are rough ESTIMATES as conditions, battery quality, and age can vary.

Time to Charge This 983Wh Power Station

  • Calc: Hours to charge battery = Battery capacity (Wh) / Input Wattage
    • Note: As battery approaches 75% full, the input charge will increasingly be slowed down to prevent overcharging
  • AC Wall: 120W @ 8.2 hrs [983 Wh / 120W]
    • GZ high-speed charger: 230W @ 4.3 hrs
  • Goal Zero 12V Car Charger (Goal Zero/Amazon)
    • 60W @ 16.4 hrs (5A setting) / 120W @ 8.2 hrs (10A setting, if car supports it)
    • Most other manufacturers only charge up to 60W. So, 120W with the Goal Zero is game-changing for me and comes highly recommended

Charge Time with Solar

  • Calc: Hours to charge battery = Battery capacity (Wh) / (Panel Wattage x [0.5 or 0.75])
    • In a perfect lab environment, solar panels charge at the listed wattage
    • Expect to only receive 50-75% on a good, sunny day (ie. 75W – 113W for a 150W panel), depending on panel’s age, component quality, and weather
  • 200W solar panel: as fast as 6.6 hours [983Wh / (200W x 0.75)]
  • Tips
    • Keep charging even when overcast as the panels will STILL collect energy
    • Underproduction: If a 200W panel is not making enough (ie. only 50W) due to bad conditions, adding extra ones (ie. two more 200W) can generate a higher, combined output (ie. 50W + 110W from the two panels = 160W total)
    • Overproduction: If the panels make more (ie. 400W) than the maximum the power station charge port can take (ie. 120W), only the max (ie. 120W) will go through

Watts Used/Produced by a Device

  • Calc: Watts used or produced by device = Voltage x Amperage
  • Vacuum with 120V @ 9.5A uses 1,140W
  • Solar panel with 12V @ 10A can produce up to 120W

Ideal Battery Power Station Size

  • Calc: Battery capacity (Wh) = Watts used by device x Hours needed for / 0.85
    • 10-15% of power is lost during power conversion
  • 45W car fridge needed for 8 hours: Minimum 424Wh power station (45W x 8 / 0.85)

How much energy a battery can store is measured in Wh (Watt-hours), and how much power is used or produced in W (Watts).

Time Before Battery is Empty

  • Calc: Hours available for device = Battery capacity (Wh) x 0.85 / Watts used by device
    • 10-15% of power is lost during power conversion
  • 60W laptop with 505Wh battery: Up to 7.2 hours (505Wh x 0.85 / 60W)

Time to Charge a Device

  • Calc: Hours to charge device = Device’s battery capacity (Wh) / Input Wattage
  • 60W laptop with 200Wh battery: Up to 3.4 hrs (200 Wh / 60W)

Capacity Comparison to Power Banks

  • Calc: Powerbank-equivalent capacity (mAh) = Battery capacity (Wh) / Voltage x 1000
    • 1 Ah = 1000 mAh
  • Yeti 983Wh @ 3.7V = 265,675 mAh power bank (983 Wh / 3.7V x 1000) or 91,018 mAh @ 10.8V

Tips and Suggestions

Cold Weather Use

Casio Men’s Pro Trek PRW2500T Solar Watch (28.0F temp shown)

I once went boondocking/camping in freezing 27F temperatures (as measured by my Casio Pro Trek PRW2500T solar watch), and a thermo warning icon had appeared on the Goal Zero Yeti 1500x display. Although I did not test this with the Yeti 1000 Core (yet), I expect it to behave the same way. The 1500x’s battery was still outputting power AND could be charged, but I had no idea what effect that symbol would have. Technical support later explained:

  • Warning icon appears when INTERNAL battery (not external air) temp is 5C/41F
  • At below 1C/33.8F, input charge gets limited (no longer full input) until INTERNAL is 3C/37.4F. Output is unaffected
  • Warning icon goes away when INTERNAL is 8C/46.4F
  • NEVER charge the power station itself in below freezing temperatures, or you will damage the Li-ion battery AND potentially limit its overall capacity
    • You CAN use it to power OTHER devices because the generated heat will warm its battery enough to be within operating temps
    • At below freezing temps, keep it in an insulated cooler and connected to a power source (ie. solar panels). The heat generated by the battery will keep it running as best as it can

Safety

  • Always test your devices with the power station before you depend on it on the go
  • Lithium-ion batteries are volatile
    • To minimize fire damage to your belongings or loved ones, store the power station in the garage and not inside the house. Best storage is a dry, cool place
    • You cannot bring a battery of this capacity on a plane
  • With the right BMS, quality batteries, and other factors, the power station can be STORED in the car during hot temperatures
    • Keep the battery out of direct sunlight. I usually store it on the floor of the car and crack open the windows a tiny bit
    • Do not USE any power station in a tightly enclosed area as it can overheat
    • Do not USE in the car if temperatures fall below or exceed the battery’s rated, operating temperature (32-104F or 0-40C)
  • Car charger: Only use it while the car is RUNNING. Otherwise, you may deplete your car’s battery and leave you stranded
    • Note: You cannot charge the battery to 100% capacity with a 12V outlet. If you have a 24V outlet, however, you could

Jump Start Car?

Genius Boost GB40 in Use /NOCO

Genius Boost GB40 in Use /NOCO

A battery power station like this one cannot be used to jump start a car. Instead, I suggest getting a small, portable one specifically made for that, such as my favorite: NOCO Genius Boost Car Jump Starter (Lithium Battery).

Goal Zero 12V Car Charger

I wanted to point out how GAME-CHANGING the Goal Zero 12V Car Charger is (Buy on Goal Zero/Amazon). The company inexplicably does not promote its benefits enough, but it can be used to charge batteries at a whopping 120W when the car port supports 10A (like my Toyota Highlander 2008 does!) All other car chargers I have (Jackery, Rockpals, Paxcess) only go up to 60W, but the Goal Zero can double that! What does that mean? Faster charging while driving around town! I bought two — one for use with the Yeti 1500x and another with the Jackery Explorer 1000.

The Goal Zero 12V Car Charger can charge a Goal Zero/Jackery battery at a whopping 120W!

Use With Other Brands

When I bought the Yeti 1500x, I wanted to find ways to use my existing investments with Goal Zero without having to spend a fortune. A more detailed article will be forthcoming, but here are some quick tips on how to get products from other brands to work.

Different Solar Panels

Yeti 1500x with Goal Zero, Jackery, Paxcess, Suaoki solar panels

As long as the solar panels from different brands or wattage produce the same VOLTAGE, you will be able to safely use them together with the Goal Zero 4x Combiner cable (8mm-to-HPP 4x Combiner Cable 150W max or HPP-to-HPP 4x Combiner Cable 600W max, but 300W max with the 1000 Core). The key here is to connect them in PARALLEL. If the panels are NOT the same voltage, then the panel with the highest volts will be used. I was able to connect these four panels with the Yeti 1500x — I did not test this with the Yeti 1000 Core, but expect it to work the same way:

Charging Other Batteries

I wanted to see if it was possible to use the Yeti 1500x to charge the Yeti 500x and Jackery Explorer 1000. The idea was to have solar panels charge the Yeti 1500x, that in turn charges the Yeti 500x, and finally, have appliances run off both batteries at the same time. This would turn a Yeti 1500x and 500x into a combined 2000Wh battery, for example. I repeated the test with the Yeti 1000x and saw similar results. I expect the Yeti 1000 Core to be the same.

Yeti 1500x used to charge other batteries

Yeti 1500x used to charge other batteries

  • AC wall charger > Yeti 1000x‘s 8mm input
    • Yeti 1000x’s APP output > Yeti 500x‘s 8mm input
      • This worked. While the 1000x was being charged by the AC wall adapter, the 500x was charging from the 1000x’s APP output port
      • Goal Zero support does NOT recommend this as the voltage is “not high enough to allow you to fully recharge the 500x”
    • Yeti 1000x’s 12V cigarette output > Goal Zero 12V Car Charger (Goal Zero/Amazon)
      • Yeti 500x‘s (or) Jackery Explorer 1000‘s 8mm input
        • This worked. The 12V Car Charger provided 60W or 120W to the Yeti 500x or Explorer 1000, depending on which Amp the 12V Car Charger was set to (5A or 10A)
        • Goal Zero support gave their blessing for the Yeti 500x. They could not guarantee their product’s safety when used with other brands. Fair enough

Goal Zero Official Carry Case

Those who have read my past reviews know how hesitant I am in purchasing carry cases made by the manufacturer themselves. They tend to be expensive, made of quality material, but lack pockets to store cables with. I changed my mind for the Yeti 1500x. The official carry case has one feature that no third-party could provide: the ability to connect cables to the battery without having to take it out of its protective case! The Yeti 1000x and Yeti 1000 Core use the same case, but because it is 1/2″ shorter than the 1500x, the USB ports barely cleared the open bag.

Goal Zero Carry Case (Large) for Yeti 1500x/1000x/1000c, 1400/1000 Lithium

Goal Zero Carry Case (Large) for Yeti 1500x/1000x/1000c, 1400/1000 Lithium

The material is good quality (as expected), and because the cables could already be stored inside the top compartment of the Yeti 1000 Core, the lack of pockets on the storage case is not as big an issue. I was able to keep my car freezer charged without taking the battery out of its case. The rubber feet at the bottom of the case also allowed me to more easily slide around the heavy battery inside the SUV’s trunk, saving my back from getting hurt.

Goal Zero Carry Case (Large) for Yeti 1500x/1000x/1000c, 1400/1000 Lithium

Goal Zero Carry Case (Large) for Yeti 1500x/1000x/1000c, 1400/1000 Lithium

Is it safe to keep the battery inside?

Would it overheat? There is a warning label on the bag: “NOTICE – When drawing more than 500W, remove Yeti from this case to prevent shut-off due to overheating.” I squeezed sandals into the sides anyway to allow some air flow, just in case.

Goal Zero support confirmed that the Yeti 1000 Core can be left in its case while being charged.

Yeti 1000 Core Tech Video /Goal Zero

Final Thoughts

Goal Zero made a surprise announcement with the Yeti 1000 Core just five weeks after the Yeti 1000x was launched. The new model retains the same dimensions and ports as its flagship sibling, but at a reduced price of $999, a slightly smaller AC inverter, and lower, maximum charging input of 300W. It also loses the Yeti 1000x’s Expansion module support that would have allowed it to be extended with the Yeti Tank Expansion Batteries or integrated with the Home or Vehicle using the appropriate kits.

Goal Zero vs Jackery: Yeti 1000 Core, 1000 X, Jackery Explorer 1000

Goal Zero vs Jackery: Yeti 1000 Core, 1000 X, Jackery Explorer 1000

The new model is an Amazon-exclusive that appears to be the company’s answer to its lower-priced competitors who have primarily been selling online on one of the World’s biggest marketplaces. What does that mean for us, the consumers? Increased competition and more choices! By selling directly and bypassing traditional, retail distribution channels, Goal Zero effectively is able to pass on the cost savings to customers with a compelling, lower-priced power station. The lower price with a more limited feature set should appeal to those who want a solid battery without all the bells and whistles of the company’s Yeti X flagship series. This strategy very much reminds me of what SONOS did with its PLAY:1 speakers: to introduce customers to less expensive models in hopes they will get a taste of what the company offers with its higher-end products.

Yeti 1000 Core is a good entry point into higher-capacity power stations from a company known for its safety record, large ecosystem of accessories and expansion modules, quality components, and global market leadership. It is VERY well-positioned against one of my favorites, the Jackery Explorer 1000, with MUCH better features, specifications, and components for the same price. I sold my brother the Explorer and added the 1000 Core to my collection instead.

Related Posts

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Where To Buy Related Items

Other Useful Topics

Gas/Propane Generators vs Battery Power Stations

In July 2020, I wrote about this topic after many asked what their differences were. In short, gas/propane generators can run virtually forever but are loud, dirty, and potentially quite dangerous. Battery power stations, on the other hand, are more portable, silent, less volatile, and can be operated indoor, but depend on external power (like solar) to recharge. Where gas/propane are used to GENERATE electricity, batteries STORE them for later use. Personally, I am a fan of the latter because they are so easy to carry around and are safer to use.

Goal Zero and Jackery are the two leading brands in battery power stations.

Who is Goal Zero (GZ)?

Credit: Goal Zero

Going through the company’s history, the founder in 2007 started with a vision to help the poorest people of Congo get out of poverty. Their first product: the GoBe battery that now is the Yeti 150. Goal Zero was formed in 2009 with the mission to do good and provide “reliable power in the hands of every human being”. Its charitable arm had provided aid in areas struck by natural disasters.

Goal Zero’s portable power stations stand out in an increasingly competitive field with their unmatched safety record and use of quality components — and correspondingly high price tag. In fact, their recently-released Yeti 6000x with its 6000Wh of energy (that can also be extended) is a powerhouse that not many competitors are able to safely provide.

A friend of mine said a year ago that GZ is “the best of the best” because of one simple reason: their vast ecosystem. I did not understand at the time what he meant, but as I learned more about the Yeti 1500x, my eyes were opened. The Yeti 1000x also taps into that same collection, but the Yeti 1000 Core does not.

What About Other Brands?

My friends and I had used and reviewed many power stations, and Goal Zero and Jackery had consistently been the best and most popular.

  • Goal Zero: Best components, large ecosystem of accessories, best-of-breed products, good customer service, global market leader, pricey
  • Jackery: Quality components, excellent customer service, online market leader, excellent prices
  • Rockpals: Decent components, low prices, spotty customer service. Paxcess is a sister brand
  • nrgGo: Newcomer, quality components, somewhat pricey, still unknown brand
  • Suaoki: Unreliable components and horrible customer service. What once was seen as an up and coming player in the industry quickly fizzled into oblivion

Battery Technology and Safety

Goal Zero debuted with Lead-Acid batteries that were bulky and heavy. Today’s devices use Lithium-ion (Li-ion) and Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) for more power in a smaller, lighter package. Li-ion, however, is more volatile and becomes riskier as more cells are packed together. The Yeti X series uses Li-ion.

  • How much energy a battery can store is measured in Wh (Watt-hours), and how much power is used or produced in W (Watts)
  • The higher the Watt-hour (Wh) capacity rating, the more dangerous the battery could become if not handled right

The quality of the battery cells and the BMS (Battery Management System) are crucial for safety.

Cell Manufacturers

Battery cells made by LG and Sony are among the best in the hobbyist world as are Sanyo/Panasonic and Samsung. Goal Zero’s are by LG. During my years of research, I found that use of lower-quality batteries could pose a serious risk to life and property and should become a crucial part in deciding what to buy.

Safety

The second part in a battery’s safe operation depends heavily on the design and BMS (Battery Management System). Some BMS manufacturers, unfortunately, overstate their capabilities that could lead to catastrophic failure.

  • Design should allow for proper, thermal cooling, use quality components, and obtain proper certifications
  • Batteries made by known manufacturers are less likely to fail
  • BMS should sufficiently restrict the battery from going past its capabilities

LiFePO4 vs Li-ion

If you are curious about Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries, they are bulkier, heavier, and cost more than Lithium-ion. However, they excel in these areas:

  • Less volatile and thus, safer
  • Charge cycle: 1500-2000 (10+ years)
    • Li-ion: 20-25% capacity loss after every 500 cycle (6-10 years with up to 2000 cycles, but diminishing capacity over time)
  • Usable in more extreme temperatures (-4F/-20C to 176F/80C). Li-ion: only 140F/60C max
    • Check with manufacturer for your battery to be sure
  • Holds 350-day charge. Li-ion: 300