Survivalism & Self Sufficiency Topics > The Gear and Tool Review Board

Recommended Cheap Coolers

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I was in the same boat.  Walmart has an Ozark Trail brand.  I just recently picked up one of there coolers that is supposed to be equal to the yeti.  Paid $60 for something that yeti sells for $250+.  I've only used it twice, but so far I have been impressed.

CPT Morgan:
I've seen lots of review/tests on YouTube for coolers and I'm always impressed with how well the $50 coolers hold up to the very very expensive Yeti type coolers.  Below is a couple of examples (language warning on the first)...

I have an Orion cooler and my dad has a Yeti.  They both hold ice very well and are extremely durable.  I figure they will be the last 65qt coolers either of us will ever buy. 

A tip for keeping ice longer is to make sure the ice you buy is very cold.  If it just came off the ice truck it likely isn't much below 32 deg F.  Shop around for the coldest ice in town or throw it in your own freezer for a day before your trip.  I also make sure anything I put in the cooler is cold. 

Another tip is to put some frozen water jugs in the cooler overnight before you load it up (I always keep a couple gallons in my chest freezer).  It drops the interior temp of the cooler so you're not using the cooling ability of your ice to do the same.

Side tip, if you ever need to keep food warm you can fill your cooler with hot water for a while first.  I recently needed to keep 35lbs of cooked roast warm for an afternoon.  I filled the cooler up with hot water from my tap before I picked up the meat.  Blew the guys minds at the butcher shop (they cooked the meat).  They asked if it was a heated ice chest.  LOL  I let the water sit for a while then drained and dried it before I left to pick it up.  Meat was still hot hours later. 

I've been looking into all the suggestions thoroughly and researching a lot about the different coolers since this will probably be a pretty big purchase (I need 45qt+ to be comfortable). Here's what i'm thinking.

Smurf hunter said that Styrofoam coolers might be an option, but honestly I can't see that lasting too long.

I would try out an Ozark, but I hear that they're manufacturing practices in China are pretty unpredictable so I'd rather not risk it.

As for Yeti, Grizzly, Orion, and Rtic coolers, they all seem to be super premium and of course super expensive.

The Rtic brand does seem to have a great quality to cost ratio though, and I've found several sites backing up trekker's claim. This one actually says its one of the best coolers for the money. I would go for the Yeti, but the price is almost unjustifiable.

Any thoughts?

No offense to anyone but Yeti is a rip off, your buying the name. a good coleman cooler will do just fine.


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