The evaporation sites of a solar desalination device were expanded from conventional 2D to a new type of 3D by leaving the side area of the porous water transporter exposed to the air. The 3D solar desalination device permits not only photothermal distillation by the photoabsorbers at the top under sunlight illumination, but also additional non-photothermal evaporation on the side of the water transporter that works even at night by exploiting environmental heat. For the first time, we developed a unique configuration of water transport exposed to the environment with a great contribution to an active site increase and confirmed the significant impact of the active site increase on the solar desalination performance by systematic and strong pieces of evidence. Due to the effective utilization of enormous evaporation sites on the top and side surfaces in the 3D configuration, the device exhibited a significant steam generation rate of similar to 0.74 g/h under 1 sun illumination, which is similar to 1.5 times higher than the maximum value achieved with photothermal evaporation only. Our study suggests an innovative change which incorporates additional non-photothermal evaporation in the solar desalination device can be a straightforward and efficient way to address clean water deficiencies worldwide in the future.