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A Rotomolded cooler is a fantastic addition to your adventure gear. Unlike the coolers of my youth, rotomolded coolers are not only made with extreme durability in mind, but they are also made to keep food cold for a VERY LONG TIME.
Come on, we’ve all been on those trips where by day 2 you realize that everything in your cooler is a soggy mess and that the real test of bravery on your trip would be whether or not you actually STILL EAT what’s inside. Enter rotomolded coolers.
Here, we’re going to show why rotomolded coolers are so great, what brands are the best, all so you can decide what’s the best rotomolded cooler that suits your needs without costing too much.
Best Value Rotomolded Coolers under $200
What makes Rotomolded Coolers so great?
The cooler industry is changing, and if you’ve even spent a little bit of time searching for a new cooler, you’ve heard the term rotomolded pop up a lot. What exactly is a rotomolded cooler and what makes rotomolded coolers so great? It’s actually referring to how the plastic is molded and shaped. Instead of just injecting the plastic into the mold, in a rotomolded design, the mold is rotated so that the whole cooler has an even and consistent thickness.
Well, for starters, the insulation in a rotomolded cooler is more evenly distributed than in a traditional cooler. Because all the cooler walls are a consistent thickness, the rest of the cooler benefits. The overall result is longer ice retention. This type of construction also makes rotomolded coolers stronger than traditional coolers. Additionally, the production process allows a lot more flexibility for manufacturers, so a rotomolded cooler usually has better design integrated into it including more ergonomic handles and better drainage. Some of the coolers we’re featuring below are even bear proof certified, so chances are that these coolers are going to be able to handle just about anything you throw at them!
Are rotomolded coolers worth the high cost?
Well, that really depends on what you’re using the cooler for. Traditionally, when people think of a rotomolded cooler, they instantly think of a Yeti cooler that will set them back at least $400. Yetis aren’t the only option and there are so many affordable alternatives to Yeti coolers. Is it possible to get a high quality rotomolded cooler for under $200? Absolutely. Here, we’re showcasing the best value high-end coolers and cooler reviews. In then end though, there’s a bit of ‘you get what you pay for’ here. Paying for a really high quality cooler will give you really high quality performance in most cases.
Should I get a rotomolded cooler or a regular cooler?
If you need a cooler that will keep your drinks cold for a day on the lake, or something to store soda’s in at the barbecue, you absolutely don’t need a rotomolded cooler. Save yourself a chunk of change and head to the nearest big box store.
If you need a cooler that will keep food cold for multiple days, can withstand lots of use, is incredibly strong, and will last for years and years, then a rotomolded cooler is probably an excellent investment for you.
Honestly, until recently, I didn’t believe the hype. Then we got a Canyon Cooler (see below to see why we chose this one) and took it out with us for a trip in the desert. After 3 days out in the heat and sunshine, we pulled out cold sodas for the kids at the end of the day, and they were literally squealing with delight to have them on such a hot day. After that, I was SOLD!
Budget priced high-end coolers:
Image Brand Volume Ice Retention Weight Warranty Price Buy Canyon Cooler Outfitter Series 35qt 35 Quart 5-7 days 22 LBS LIFETIME Buy Now MILEE - Iceland Cooler 45 QT 45 Quart 6 days 23 LBS 5 Year Limited Warranty Buy Now Monoprice Emperor Cooler - 50 Liters 50 Liters 5 days 33 LBS Lifetime Warranty Buy Now SuperHandy Enhanced Ice Cooler 45QT 45 Quart 5-10 days 26.45 LBS N/A Buy Now Xspec Pro Roto-Molded 60 Quart High Performance Cooler 60 Quart Up to 7 days 31 LBS N/A Buy Now Landworks ENHANCED Cooler 45QT 45 Quart 10 days 26.45 LBS N/A Buy Now Mariner Watersports 45 Quart 45 Quart 7 days 31 LBS N/A Buy Now
Which Budget Rotomolded Cooler is the BEST?
Honestly, looking at these specs, it’s hard to tell the difference between one cooler and another. However, diving a little deeper, you’ll find that there are some pretty big differences. The biggest that I found is in the warranty. If I’m going to spend close to $200 on a cooler, the brand better stand behind it with a great warranty. You can see that the Canyon Cooler, Milee, and MOnoprice coolers all have great warranties. But the one that kicks it over the top is the Canyon Coolers BEARPROOF WARRANTY! Yes, these coolers are certified bearproof. That goes a long way for me because I’m pretty sure if it’s built to stand up to a bear, it can handle whatever my kids throw at it. Fun note, on the Canyon Coolers Instagram page, someone showed their cooler that a bear had tried to get into. They had taken a chunk out of the lid and scratched it up, but still had never gotten in (and Canyon sent them a new cooler). Honestly, if I’m choosing, that would be my first pick.
How can I get my cooler to stay cold longer?
Longer ice retention = longer adventures, right?
Well, if you know how to properly prepare and load your cooler, you’ll get a whole lot more bang for your buck. First of all, let’s talk about the wrong way to prep a cooler. You grab it off the garage shelf, head to the store for a case of soda (also off the shelf) and then pour a whole bag of crushed ice on top of it. WRONG!! You’ll have a cooler full of water and semi cold sodas by dinner.
Here’s the right way to load a cooler:
- The day before – get out your cooler and put a block or two of ice inside of it and seal the lid. These will probably totally melt, so just think of them as a small sacrifice for cold food in a couple of days.
- Pack the cooler with frozen, or pre-cooled food. If you put room temperature food in, it will take all your ice just to cool it down, so this step is critical.
- Fill the rest with ice. Block ice will stay frozen much longer than cubed, but for maximum cooling power, use a combination of both.
- Keep the cooler lid sealed at all times unless you are getting something out.
- Buy commercial ice – they freeze it to a lower temperature, so it will stay frozen longer than ice from your home freezer.