If you are looking for the best camping cooler to keep your cold or fresh items cool for a relatively long time, you should especially pay attention to 2 factors: both size and cost. Before making a buying decision, it is highly recommended to do some homework, so you can know the cooler you plan to buy has features and amenities to meet your camping requirements. Therefore, this also can help you avoid buying a discounted camping cooler every 1 or 2 years, saving much money for you.
Best Camping Cooler
We’ve done a lot of research and have compiled this list of top 5 best camping coolers for you to choose from, based on their durability, quality, convenience features, ice retention time, ratings, prices and customer reviews. Choose one of them and you will have a great camp.
Yeti Tundra Cooler
After noticing its price tag, many people may feel surprised at its price. Indeed, the price seems a little high. However, this Yeti Tundra cooler is considered as one of the best coolers on the market, due to its great features. This cooler is perfect for excursions and camping trips, and it is especially great for those long camping trips and excursions involved various weather conditions and diverse terrain. Its insulation layer is extremely thick, so it can keep your cold beverages and other perishable foods still cold for several days and its lid can seal everything inside from the outside heat. It is designed to be tough and be compatible with dry ice. Plus, it comes with different sizes for you to choose. In a word, if you need a versatile camping cooler, it is the perfect choice.
Engel Coolers High Performance ENG35 Roto-Molded Cooler
This cooler has surprising ice retention time. It is able to retain ice for about 8 to 10 days. Therefore, if you need a cooler for your extended trip, it is the best choice for you. All the perishable goods can be kept cool or cold for an extremely long time. This cooler has an extremely construction and its lid is also specially designed to reduce the chance of slipping or skidding. This also means it can double as a table or a chair. Even if you would like to stand on it, it is also OK. And it is also very easy to carry due to its rope handles, special carry grips, tie-down options and draw-down latches. This freezer is sealed tightly. What’s more, you can divide its interior into several compartments to store different items. Highly recommend!
Coleman 82-Quart Ultimate Xtreme Cooler
This cooler also has a great ice retention time. Generally, it can keep your cool food and beverages up to 6 days in 90 F. And it is also a rolling cooler, because it has wheels, so you can easily haul it to anywhere you like. The inner space is also very large, and it allows you to store up to 129 12-ounce cans. Plus, its lid even has beverage holders. It is very convenient when it is in use. Both the exterior and interior are very easy to clean. It also is equipped with a drainage channel, so the draining is effortless. Therefore, you don’t need to worry about getting soggy foods.
Igloo Ice Cube Maxcold Roller, 70-Quart
Many uses spoke highly of this camping cooler, due to its special shape and design. Its portability, practicality and convenience are obvious. The lid is designed to be deep. Even if you overfill this cooler, you have no problem of closing the lid. It is able to keep rice for about 5 days. However, the more items you pack in the cooler, the shorter ice retention time you will get. The height of the inner space can accommodate 2-liter bottles upright. This cooler allows you to store up to 114 12-ounce cans. Its telescoping handle and 2 wheels make it easy to push or pull. The price tag is also surprising. It is so affordable, not breaking your bank.
Polar Bear Coolers H2O Cooler
This best camping cooler will give you excellent cooling performance just in easily portable packages. It comes with many different sizes, including 24- and 48-pack sizes. The main material of its outer shell is nylon, so it is more durable, sweat-proof and leak-proof. Its liner can be removed for cleaning, so the cleaning becomes pretty easy. Its access zipper is very sturdy and can sustain frequent uses. It even comes with a handy dandy bottle opener. And what’s more, it also comes with a side pocket that allows you to store some small items. Generally, it can keep ice for about 24 hours.
Best Camping Cooler Buying Guide
Camping coolers are so great and they are not only a place to store some ice frozen but they can help you keep your food and drinks chilled for several days at a time. And they are not a good storage device but also a multi-function party saver. If you plan to go camping, such a camping cooler is really a must-have item.
When it comes to choosing the best camping cooler, there are some factors which should be taken into account.
Most camping coolers use a foam insulation. However, this also can make different units have different insulation qualities, since they use different sheer amount of insulation. Of course, the longer the ice can stay frozen in a cooler, the better insulation quality the foam is. And the outer insulation should be thicker, which can keep your food and beverages cold longer.
The high end ice chests or coolers use using polyethylene foam of 1.5” or more on all sides. And there are other two main types of insulation: polyurethane insulation or extruded polystyrene insulation. They are minutely different when being used to make camping coolers. However, the most important factor is the thickness of foam.
A good quality cooler must seal perfectly. For a cooler, an exchange of air between the outside and inside is not a good thing and this will ruin its insulation value. Therefore, when looking for a cooler, don’t buy one with poor sealing, even if it seems more inexpensive. On the contrary, you just need to buy a cooler with rubber sealing gaskets around its lid and robust locking system. Rubber gaskets are very the key point if you want your cooler to keep foods and drinks chill for some days. Plus, you’d better make sure the unit can latch and stay latched every time.
If the cooler gets wet inside, you’d better drain the water outside and make it stay dry. When the ice melts, this will happen. And after cleaning or washing your cooler, you also need to drain your cooler. Therefore, a drain option is also needed to be considered. Drain plugs should be receded inside the cooler’s body of its case, and this can prevent them from being broken or just knocked loose.
This factor seems not important, but if the cooler is full of ice, water and food and becomes very heavy, you will find suitable handles are so important. Handles should be comfortable and robust and are able to tolerate much weight and use. And don’t choose a cooler with handles which cannot be tucked away seamlessly. If that is so, you will find it is not so easy to fit it tight in your RV or trunk. Poor handles are also very bad. Once they are broken, you will be stranded.
The size of the cooler is also very important. Too small or too large is not good. First, you need to consider how much space you have left for your cooler in your truck, because other camping gears also need to take up space. And then, you need to know how much space you need inside the cooler to store essential food items.
Of course, the inner space is so crucial, so it is not wise to store these items that don’t need to stay cold. Therefore, avoid storing these food items and this can help saving space. You can pack your room temperature or dry food outside so that you only need to carry the smallest cooler for your trip.
Best Cooler Brands
Of course, the best cooler brands should be Yeti. If you haven’t heard of them before, you may have not bought a cooler. They are the best choices at any prices. However, they tend to be pricey, but the best cooler is not cheap.
Another good cooler brand is Pelican which manufactures similar coolers that balance between performance and price.
Elkton is a relatively brand and offers many good offerings at a reasonable price. Therefore, the best cooler brands include:
If you plan to have camping trip on a hot weekend this summer, of course, a good cooler will make your trip much easier. If you don’t have a cooler, you will be sorry. Such a cooler can help you cook the way you would like to have.
For camping in hot summer, such a cooler can allow you to store the food items and keep them fresh. Of course, the cooler you choose should have ample inner space and insulation which can meet your needs.
The coolers you choose for camping should fit your actual needs. And our reviews can help you make a right decision.