All of us have had thirst problems when camping, especially when we set ourselves in the woods or anywhere. The need for water is always a big issue when we are out camping; this is why we need to have a cooler that can keep our fresh water that we desperately need. It is not easy to make the right choice especially if you wanted to choose one based on your preference, so it is much better to go through the process of reading reviews and buying guide.
With all of this in mind, let’s dive right into a comprehensive buying guide for selecting the best coolers for camping. Then, we will look at the 6 top rated camping coolers, their features, pros and cons and some FAQs related to them. This would help you even narrow down your search for the best one. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
Buying Guide to the Top Rated Camping Coolers
What would outdoor camping be without coolers? Endless days of meal-less and beer-less days. The better question is what would camping be without coolers? All that is missing is ice packs to keep food and beverages cold. So, let’s look at an unbiased and honest buying guide for a good cooler!
1. The dimensions
The volume of the coolers is very variable: from less than 10 litres for the smallest to a hundred litres for the largest. For classic family use (picnics, etc.), a model with a capacity of between 20l and 30l is sufficient to accommodate, large bottles (1.5 l) and food.
Opting for a higher capacity also means assuming the size (storage, car, etc.) and the weight that goes with it.
2. The weight
This is something to consider if you travel on foot with your cooler (picnic, etc.). As a general rule, the more sophisticated its technology, the heavier the set.
We found that the electric versions are, on average, twice as heavy (approx. 4 kg for a useful volume of 20 l) when compared to the passive ones. High-performance models – for boats, motorhomes, etc. – can even weigh several kilos!
Usually, coolers show signs of weakness in their handles. It is therefore worth inspecting the products before buying them and having a critical look at their quality of manufacture (anchoring of the handle, etc.)
4. The price
The brand as well as the technology have a big impact on the price. For a useful volume of around 20 litres, there are passive coolers for around $80 and up.
My Top 6 recommendations of the Best Coolers for Camping!
1. Igloo BMX 52 Quart Cooler
If you’re looking for a cooler that’s durable, lightweight, and sturdy, you’ll find it in the Igloo BMX 52 Quart Cooler. The latches are extremely sturdy, and the handle is ergonomic. This is a great choice for anyone who wants to take their cooler on an adventure or even just a trip to the beach. It won’t weigh you down, so you can bring all of your snacks wherever you go!
The Igloo BMX 52 Quart Cooler has been designed to be both durable and strong. It’s also incredibly light-weight at only 18.7 pounds, making it easy to carry around without straining your back or shoulders! The built-in t-grip latch system adds to the security of this product by making sure it stays closed securely no matter what kind of weather conditions you might encounter along your journey!
This cooler is perfect for camping trips because it keeps things cold for up to 5 days! If that’s not enough time for you, then maybe try packing ice cubes instead. This product comes in multiple colours so there’s something for everyone’s taste preferences!
- The latches are extremely sturdy, and the handle is ergonomic
- Extremely durable and rugged
- Weighs about 18.7lbs which makes it extremely light-weight
- Suited for camping, fishing, tailgating, beach trips, etc.
- Comes with a built-in T-grip latch system for added security
- It does not have an air/water-tight seal!
1. Is this cooler heavier than a Yeti one?
Actually, it’s a bit lighter than a Yeti. So, this makes it extremely portable and convenient to carry for outdoor activities!
2. Does it come with a warranty?
Yes! It actually comes with a 3 year service warranty directly from the manufacturer.
3. Does it include wheels?
No! Although this cooler is extremely light-weight and portable, yet it does not include any wheels for further mobility.
The Igloo BMX 52 Quart cooler is designed specifically to meet the needs of campers and other outdoor enthusiasts. It is built to last, and it should be able to handle the rigors that an active person would put it through in the course of his or her activities.
The price may seem a bit high, but the value is unquestionable. This cooler is designed to last a long time while providing the best possible performance.
2. Igloo Heavy-Duty 25 Qt BMX Ice Chest Cooler
The Igloo Heavy-Duty 25 Qt BMX Ice Chest Cooler is the perfect cooler for a small family! With a rugged and heavy-duty blow-moulded construction that’s built to last, this cooler has got you covered. It comes with a reinforced base for increased durability, so you never have to worry about dragging it over rough surfaces or bumping it when you’re loading it up.
And its 4-5 day cool retention means that even when you forget your cooler outside overnight, it’s still going to keep your beverages cold until morning! The Igloo Heavy-Duty 25 Qt BMX Ice Chest Cooler comes with in-built UV inhibitors for added protection against sun damage!
- Rugged and heavy duty with a blow-moulded construction
- Comes with a reinforced base for increased durability
- Has a cool retention of 4-5 days
- In-built UV inhibitors for protection against sun damage
- The hinge rods are made of stainless steel
- Comes with a T-grip latch for added security
- It does not have an air/water-tight seal!
1. Does this cooler have an insulated or a hollow lid?
This cooler features an insulated lid! The lid is of a concave shape which is towards the top of the lid.
2. How many beer/coke cans can it hold at max?
It can hold up to 10-15 cans at max. However, if we talk about medium cans, it can even hold up to 20!
3. Does it come with a warranty?
Yes! It actually comes with a 1 year manufacturer warranty directly from the manufacturer.
If you are looking for a heavy-duty ice chest, then this is the one that you need. It has an impressive tubular steel frame and comes with a reinforced base for increased durability. Also, it has a cool holding capacity of 4-5 days. The in-built UV inhibitors keep the water cool and protected against sun damage.
The heavy-duty hinges are made of stainless steel to increase longevity of the product as well. The whole product designed in such a way that you can carry this beautifully crafted cooler with ease anywhere, anytime.
3. Coleman Xtreme Portable Cooler
Do you enjoy the outdoors? Are you an avid camper? Or maybe you’re just looking for a way to keep your food cold while you’re out and about. No matter what your reason, we’ve got the cooler for you!
The Coleman Xtreme Portable Cooler is a great addition to any camping trip or picnic. It can hold up to 100 cans, so there’s plenty of space for your favourite beverages. It also has moulded cup holders that help prevent spills and keep everything organized, so nothing gets lost. The lid is insulated and contains an extra wall insulation that keeps ice intact up to 5 days even at 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius).
It’s easy to carry with comfort grip handles on each side! And don’t worry about cleaning—the interior walls are removable and dishwasher safe! This cooler is perfect for all kinds of outdoor activities: picnics in the park, camping trips in the mountains, tailgating before football games… even just sitting around your backyard enjoying the weather!
- Comes with an insulated lid and an extra wall insulation
- Can keep ice intact up to 5 days even at 90 degrees Fahrenheit
- Can hold up to 100 cans
- The lid contains moulded cup holders to prevent spilling
- Extremely easy to carry with comfort grip handles
- Easy to clean and leak resistant
- The handles could a bit more comfortable!
1. Can this cooler keep dry ice cool?
The use of dry ice in this cooler will be a complete success. Even high-end coolers with rubber seals, such as the Yeti, are not airtight enough to prevent a dry ice problem, and because this cooler has no seals, there will be no pressure build-up in the cooler.
2. Is this lid completely insulated?
I’m not sure, but I believe it is. When closed, it has a very sturdy feel and fits really tightly.
3. Does the drain plug have screw threads?
Yes, the cooler has a push in plug! Overall, these features of the cooler make it an extremely good buy.
If you need a cooler to keep your food fresh during a road trip or picnic, the Coleman Xtreme Portable Cooler is a great choice. It is easy to carry with its handles and can also fit easily in your car trunk. Its design allows it to prevent moisture caused by ice melting and also keeps water from leaking.
The insulation lid keeps liquid cold for longer periods of time which means it maintains the temperature even when you store frozen food inside. You can also place the cooler on an uneven surface since the bottom has a heavy-duty metal construction!
4. YETI Tundra 45 Cooler
The YETI Tundra 45 Cooler is the perfect item to add to your camping gear collection. It comes with a capacity of up to 26 cans, meaning you can fit all the essentials for your next camping trip. Its built-in 3 inches PermaFrost insulation keeps your drinks cold for longer periods. You can comfortably leave it outside in the sun and the PermaFrost insulation will ensure that your drinks remain cold.
The YETI Tundra 45 Cooler also has a Rotomoulded construction which makes it extremely durable and strong. You can place it on any surface without worrying about its durability as it’s made from heavy duty Polyethylene plastic. It has T-Rex lid hatches for added security and its rubber latches will keep your cooler securely closed at all times.
Did we mention that this cooler weighs just 23lbs? It is extremely light-weight which makes it easier to carry around especially during long hiking trips.
- Comes with a capacity of up to 26 cans
- Has a built-in 3 inches PermaFrost insulation
- Extremely durable with a Rotomoulded construction
- Has T-Rex lid hatches for added security
- Weighs about 23lbs which makes it extremely light-weight to carry
- The cooler is a bit heavy when compared with similar coolers in its price range!
1. How much ice can this cooler hold?
I’ve filled it up to the brim with 40 pounds of crushed ice. Of course, that leaves no room for anything else, but I was hauling ice to fill half of my second Yeti.
2. What is the max. number of cans this cooler can hold?
It can hold 30 cans on the bottom and a lot more on top, but you must leave room for ice. So, I’d suggest 48 (small cans), with plenty of room for ice.
3. Can it work without ice?
Yes, if there was no ice, they would remain chilly for a short period of time. However, if you want ice cold drinks, you must add ice.
Overall, the YETI Tundra 45 Cooler is a slightly more expensive cooler compared to other coolers that are on the market today. But it comes with its unique features that make it worth every penny. It has proven itself as an ideal cooler for fishing and can also be used as a family picnic cooler or any other outdoor activity.
Despite the hefty price tag, if you are looking for a cooler that will meet your needs when you are fishing or just having a family picnic, go out and get Yeti 45 today!
5. YETI Roadie 24 Cooler
The YETI Roadie 24 Cooler is a must-have for any road trip. It’s 30% more efficient than the Roadie 20, which means it can hold up to 10% more food and drinks for longer trips. The Roadie 24 also has a quicklatch design, making it easy to open and close. This means that you don’t have to struggle with clunky latches every time you want to get something out of your cooler.
This Cooler is also extremely durable. It’s made with a Rotomoulded construction that makes it strong enough to withstand being thrown around in the back of a car or truck without breaking or cracking, even if it falls on its side!
And finally, the YETI Roadie 24 Cooler can hold up to 18 large cans! This means you won’t have to worry about running out of food or drinks during those long road trips.
- Is 30% more efficient and is up to 10% lighter than the Roadie 20
- Can fit easily behind the driver’s seat
- Is extremely durable with a Rotomoulded construction
- Has a QuickLatch build which ensures a flexible, simple, and one-handed access
- Can hold up to 18 large cans
- Sometimes the handles come in the way of opening!
1. Can the cooler leak if tipped?
Tipping the container on its side with the lid gasket seam exposed may result in leakage. So, the fluid may flow out if you find yourself in this situation!
2. Is the Strap adjustable?
There is no method to adjust the handle, but there is an attachment that allows you to build your own strap out of webbing. You could even fix it inside a car so that it doesn’t move.
3. How long can it keep ice?
When you use Yeti ice in conjunction with regular ice, your ice will last much longer. Although I understand that some people assume that Yeti Ice is adequate, the Yeti website expressly states that Yeti Ice is intended to be used in conjunction with regular ice to enhance its effect.
When I use Yeti Ice with standard ice and don’t open it frequently, my Roadie lasts 4-5 days.
The YETI Roadie 24 Cooler is a nice medium size cooler that fits plenty of ice and cans, without being too bulky to pack in the back of your SUV. This versatile cooler is large enough for a long weekend trek or can be easily packed in a carry-on when flying to your favourite fishing lake.
The one-handed quick latch system makes loading and unloading quick and simple. If you need a medium sized cooler that can hold plenty of ice and cans at an affordable price, we recommend the YETI Roadie 24 Cooler.
6. RTIC Ultra-Light 52 Qt Ice Chest Cooler
It’s hard to get away from it all when you’re dragging around a heavy cooler. We get it, and we’ve got the solution. The RTIC Ultra-Light 52 Qt Ice Chest Cooler is up to 30% lighter and features the latest cutting-edge technology. Not only will you stand out as the coolest (pun intended) person at the campsite, but you’ll also have less trouble carrying your cooler around.
The RTIC Ultra-Light Cooler comes with a built-in divider basket to keep things organized so you don’t have to worry about digging through ice to find what you want. And thanks to its closed-cell foam insulation, which is 3 inches thick, your ice will stay frozen for up to 7 days in 100 degree heat! Talk about keeping things cool as a cucumber.
This rigid cooler has rubber T-latches and tie-down slots for added security, ensuring that it stays locked tight, so your supplies remain safe and secure no matter how treacherous the trail gets. It’s extremely portable and convenient to carry, so you can take this cooler with you on any adventure without having to make too many sacrifices. When it comes to an RTIC Ultra-Light 52 Qt Ice Chest Cooler, everyone wins!
- Is up to 30% lighter and features the latest cutting-edge technology
- Comes with a built-in divider basket to keep things organized
- Has a closed-cell foam insulation which is 3 inches thick
- Is extremely portable and convenient to carry
- Features rubber T-latches and tie-down slots for added security
- It’s a bit bulky!
1. Does this cooler come with a basket and separator?
Yes, it includes both. The basket and the separator will help you keep things extremely organized!
2. Does it come with wheels?
No! It doesn’t come with wheels.
3. Is there a warranty?
Yes! There is a 1 year limited warranty from the manufacturer which includes replacement of any defective or malfunctioned part.
If you’re looking for a new, lightweight cooler for your next fishing trip, or perhaps one that can withstand the hot sun, the RTIC Ultra-Light 52 qt cooler is just what you need. It’s surprisingly sturdy and waterproof and it has a high-quality insulation that can keep items cool for several days in warmer conditions.
Whether you’re going on a weekend camping trip or to the beach with friends and family, this is an excellent option.
The Bottom Line
It is crucial to look for a cooler that is the right size. You do not want to get something that is too small, or too big. An overly large cooler will be bulky and heavy, while an undersized one will not retain enough ice or keep your food at a steady temperature. A good rule of thumb is to consider how much food you plan to store in your cooler, as well as whether or not you intend to use it outdoors.
Once you have chosen your ideal size, see what features are offered on the product that you are considering. Most modern coolers have features such as cushioning, insulation and wheels. These are all great design elements for camping coolers to have and will impact whether or not your camping trip will be a good one.
Also, if you are highly confused about which one to buy, just go with any one which we have mentioned above. All of them are the best ones according to their price point and are the best bang for the buck! Be Safe And Happy Camping.!