Thursday, September 5, 2013

Review - SunRocket Portable Solar Hot Water Kettle and Thermos

Look at this:

SunRocket Solar Hot Wter Kettle & Thermos.

Looks like a rocket, right? It's not!

Introducing the SunRocket Portable Solar Hot Water Kettle and Thermos.

This is one of the coolest products that I've ever used. It arrived on a cloudy day and, since the forecast didn't look promising for a week or so, I decided to try it out ... after all, if it could work when the skies are Gray, it would have no problem with full sunshine. So I opened the lid and filled it with cold water (it holds 500ml/17oz). The inside of the kettle is red, rather like looking into the center of a volcano. To give me a baseline of activity, I checked the temperature of the water ... it was 73.9°F (approximately 23.28°C).

Next, I opened up the solar panels and placed it in the brightest spot I could find with the panels facing the sun ... or about where I thought the sun might be if the clouds weren't restricting my view.

The SunRocket Solar Kettle with solar panels open.

I waited an hour and tested the water temperature again. This time it was 86.3°F (approximately 30.17°C). Not bad on a less-than-desirable day.

After another hour, I checked again: 117.8°F (approximately 47.67°C). Definitely hot enough for washing dishes or one's hands/face, having a warm cup of instant soup or coffee or dehydrating vegetables/fruits for cooking. It wasn't hot but impressively warm considering I didn't have any sunshine.

The instructions state that, after heating, closing the solar doors will turn the kettle into a thermos, keeping the contents warm for hours. So I closed the panels, waited an hour and a half and checked the temperature again ... 110.8°F (approximately 43.67°C). Nice heat rentention!

Let's take a closer look at this marvel:

Parts of the SunRocket Solar Hot Water Kettle

This unit weighs in at 2.6 lbs (1.2 kg) and measures 17.7 x 4.2 x 4.2 inches (45 x 12 x 12 cm). It is BPA free and the high-grade glass means that water tastes like water ... no weird flavors. Since temperatures can get well above boiling, the kettle includes a pressure-release valve making it safe to use. The only cautionary statements that I could find on either SunRocket's website or the package is that the contents can become very hot so users need to demonstrate care when opening the unit and pouring out the liquid.

How would one use the solar kettle?

I can think of many uses ... while camping, hiking, picnicking or boating to warm water for coffee, hot chocolate, soup, or washing up (how many times have you had to wash up with cold water ... burrrrr). Perhaps carry it to a sporting event (think winter Football games) when a nice hot drink would be welcome.

It's also perfect as part of an emergency kit, for those times when your power fails or when your drinking water is contaminated ... yes, it pasteurizes water killing Giardia, Cyrptosporidium and other water-borne bacteria.

At home one could save energy by using it to warm water for an afternoon cup of tea or for washing dishes. And, it would make a wonderful gift for anyone on your list.

The SunRocket Solar Hot Water Kettle is a great product ... it's lightweight, convenient and provides hot water ... all with energy from the sun.

I received a SunRocket Solar Kettle & Thermos in order to write this review. I received no other compensation. All opinions expressed are mine and mine alone and reflect my honest opinion of the product reviewed.

Images courtesy of the SunRocket site.

This post was included in the Dude, Sustainable! Blog Hop!