Best Large Coolers Of 2022: Great Picks & Buying Guide

Katie Finn By, Katie Finn
Updated
RTIC Hard Cooler 145 qt
Image credit: Amazon.com

The Rundown

1. Best Overall: RTIC Hard Cooler 145 qt

"RTIC Hard Cooler 145 qt. Is a specially designed cooler that is equipped with a low profile design, high-quality construction, and superior insulation to keep your food and drinks cold for days. From the simple yet elegant graphics on its exterior to the durable rubber latches on its lid, this cooler has been crafted to withstand the elements." Read Review

2. Best For The Price: Igloo Polar 120 Qt. Cooler

"The Igloo Polar 120 qt. cooler is the perfect size to provide ample cooling space for a day at the beach, a picnic, or to keep food and drinks cold on game day. The ultratherm insulated body and lid keep ice for 5 days at 90 degrees Fahrenheit, so you can enjoy your ice without having to worry about melting or slush." Read Review

3. Best Convenient: Coleman Ice Chest | Coleman 316 Series Wheeled Hard Coolers

"The Coleman 318 Series Wheeled Hard Coolers are a convenient and comfortable way to carry drinks and food. The lid and body of these coolers keep the ice for up to 5 days, so you can enjoy your favorite cold beverage for longer. These heavy-duty 6-inch wheels allow for easy transport and the durable tow & swing-up handles make it easy to bring along wherever you go." Read Review

4. Best Powerful: Bison Coolers Extra Large 125 Quart Rotomolded Cooler Box

"The Bison Coolers Extra Large 125 Quart Rotomolded Cooler Box is perfect for the person who always needs to keep a cold drink or ice cream handy. Designed with a 2" thick lid and insulated walls, this cooler can retain ice for up to 10 days. The Bison Coolers Rotomolded Coolers provide superior insulation which prevents your food or drink from spoiling." Read Review

What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the term “cooler?” If your answer is anything related to camping, tailgating, or any other outdoor activity in the summer months, then we have some great news for you.

Coolers are essential for keeping your food and drinks cold in the summer heat. They come in all shapes and sizes, from small hip packs that fit into your pocket to massive ice chests that can keep your food and drinks icy cool for hours on end. Whether you're looking to stock up on smaller cooler bags for road trips or need one of the best large coolers for parties, here are our top picks.

As the result, we found some top trending models on the market that many customers tend to search for. In addition, we believe that the RTIC Hard Cooler 145 qt is one of the best options available to you. We also provide you with Igloo Polar 120 Qt. Cooler model that you may consider if the top is not your choice.

Our Top Picks

TOP Choice #1 RTIC Hard Cooler 145 qt
Our Score:
9.8
RTIC
  • A Sidekick For Every Adventure: Rotomolded construction makes this cooler tough enough to handle every excursion—from your next cross-country roadtrip to a week on Lake Powell.
  • Heavy-Duty Protection: The combination of durable rubber T-latches and molded tie-down slots will keep your food and beverages secure.
TOP Choice #2 Igloo Polar 120 Qt. Cooler
Our Score:
9.6
Igloo
  • Threaded drain plug for hose hook up and easy draining
  • Ultratherm insulated body and lid keep ice for 5 days at 90 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Reinforced swing-up handles with tie-down loop feature
  • CUP HOLDERS WITH DRAIN: Molded into the lid to keep drinks from spilling; fit up to a 30-oz. tumbler
  • HAVE-A-SEAT LID: Closed lid supports up to 250 lbs.
  • FOR THE LONG HAUL: Heavy-duty 6-inch wheels and durable tow & swing-up handles designed for easy transport
  • ✅SERIOUSLY PORTABLE: Open, ergonomic grab rails make it easy to carry, tie down, and secure. Oversized anti-skid rubber feet. Perfect all-purpose cooler for sporting events, camping, fishing or tailgating.
  • ✅ PREMIUM COOLING: Pressure-injected 2" thick lid and insulated walls for maximum ice retention. Double-wall silicone gasket for tight seal keeps perfect insulation for premium cooling.
  • - READY, SET, JOURNEY: All Blue Coolers Ice Vaults will hold up to the toughest abuse due to the best in class durability. Whether you need to simply keep the sun away at a soccer game, or need a cooler than can withstand bears, bugs and the wild outdoors, Blue Coolers camping cooler will get it done.
  • - ROTOMOLDED DESIGN: The roto-molded construction ensures that each cooler has a consistent wall thickness and is free of imperfections. It is virtually indestructible and the rotomolded design provides you with a cooler that is ready for your most adventurous journeys. It’s the perfect guy gift.
  • Thick Ultratherm foam in body and lid provides MaxCold 5 Day performance.
  • Threaded drain plug allows for easy draining of melted ice and option for hose hook-up
  • Another Igloo Industry First: Horizontal telescoping handle requires 50% less lifting effort.
  • FITS ALL THE ESSENTIALS: The 65qt Palisade Rotomolded Cooler effortlessly fits 64 12oz cans of soda, sparkling water, or other refreshments. The large interior is wine bottle friendly, fitting most long-neck bottles.
  • PALISADE ROTOMOLDED COOLER: Haul your drinks and snacks and keep them cool the entire time. This durable and insulated cooler is ready to roll wherever your adventure takes you and the crew – from the beach, to the trails, to the mountains, and beyond.
  • Swing-up handles with stainless steel reinforcement and rubber grips provide premium touch points
  • Rubberized T-latches secure lid closure and lock in the cold
  • Oversized hinges and stainless steel screws extend product life
  • Temperature Retentive: The 3-inch foam insulated walls plus the cool-lift design feature will make worrying about your ice melting a thing of the past.
  • Mobile And Multifaceted: Use the heavy-duty rope handles to take the 45 anywhere and when you need an extra hand—this cooler doubles as a step stool, tabletop, or cutting board.
  • The Perfect Size: The 45 is small enough to carry alone but big enough to store drinks for the whole group.
  • The Rotomolded Construction makes the Tundra armored to the core and virtually indestructible so wherever you decide to take it, this portable cooler’s sturdy construction will stand up to the rigors of the journey
  • All Tundra coolers feature T-Rex Lid Latches constructed of heavy-duty rubber so you’ll never see another busted latch and has patented keeper technology
Product Images, Product Titles, Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API

Tips for choosing the most appropriate model among the list of best large coolers

Perhaps as a customer, you may be looking for a best large coolers that may provide you with just what you want, such as being environmentally friendly, freely selected, and so on.

In this section, we will discuss with you the buying guides and main factors to consider when planning to buy the product from e-commerce websites, so that when the time comes to make your final selection, everything would be laid out in front of you.

Weight And Portability

Weighing your cooler is an important factor for those who will be carrying it or moving it around regularly. For models with less capacity, they can weigh as little as 10-15 pounds and up to 50+ for those that have 75+ quarts storage. This number goes up dramatically when you load it down with food and drinks. Even though the handles are made of rope, some are plastic and others are nylon. They are too heavy to be carried for extended distances. We recommend wheels if portability is important. They are easier to carry for longer periods of time and more convenient for one person, so they're less burdensome.

Wheeled (Rolling) Coolers

We mentioned above that if you have cooler needs such as mobility and large capacity or maximum ice retention it is a good idea to look into a hard-sided rolling model. These wheeled monsters can still be difficult to maneuver on uneven terrain, and will need assistance if there is no clear path. A rolling cooler is a good choice for camping, tailgating or days at the beach.

Cooler Drain Systems

Many of our hard-sided coolers have drainage systems that allow you to drain the water out once the ice is melted. This is usually a pop-off or screw-on cap located at the bottom of cooler. Simply remove it and let the water flow out.

Cooler Latch And Closure Systems

The cooler's closure or latch is a key feature of premium models and will play a major role in cooling performance. Two rubber T-handles are a common feature on high-end, hard-sided coolers. They keep the lid in place and prevent it from opening. They are extremely sturdy and user-friendly.

Cooler Sizes (Capacities)

A few things to consider before we get started: Size. Importantly, coolers do not measure the interior capacity of all models. Some coolers use cans to measure interior capacity, others use liters or quarts. However, most manufacturers use quarts as a unit of measure. We've used that measurement in this article when it was possible. A final point: Don't let the product name fool you.

Bear-Resistant Ratings

Many top-rated hard-sided coolers can be listed as being bear-resistant. This is an important consideration if you are camping in bear territory. You should specifically look out for IGBC ratings. This indicates that a cooler has been tested and is in compliance with their regulations. You should ensure your cooler is included if you plan to travel in bear-proof gear or frequent backcountry areas.

Ice Retention And Cooling Capabilities

Ice retention is one of the most difficult things to determine when researching coolers. This is largely due to external factors. The temperature of the air and direct sunlight have a significant impact. Ice quantity is also important. Most brands suggest a ratio of 2:1. You should also open the lid as often as possible to let warm and cold air into your cooler. Pre-chilling your cooler before loading it is a good idea to ensure maximum efficiency. To reduce the cooler's interior temperature, you should fill it with ice at least for a couple of hours. Once you are ready to go, add fresh ice in the right ratio. You can also expect your cooler to become pre-warmed if it is left out in the sunlight before you load it up.

Cooler Construction

There are two main types of construction techniques used to make premium hard-sided coolers: injection molding and rotational molding. Yeti popularized rotomolding (even though they weren't technically the first company to do so) and is the dominant market at the top end. This type of cooler is made from a single, continuous piece of plastic which is then rotated to form the desired shape. These coolers have fewer stress points, so they are more likely to break under pressure. They also feature a thicker outer shell that ensures exceptional durability. Cost and weight are the main drawbacks.

FAQs

How Do I Clean My Cooler?

Warm water and dish soap will generally clean your cooler. You can also use warm water and bleach to remove stubborn stains or odors.

Which Size Cooler Do I Need?

Although you might feel compelled to buy a large cooler, make sure it fits in the car. Smaller coolers can be lifted without the need for assistance. However, coolers with larger capacities can hold more ice and so tend to stay cool longer than smaller models.
Higher coolers can store bottles more upright. Models with recessed lids are better for loading items higher, but they may become warmer.

How Does A Portable Cooler Work?

Combining the insulation of the cooler with the ice you put inside, either ice cubes, ice packs, or foam, slows down warm air circulation and helps keep things cool.

What Is The Best Hard Cooler?

There are many coolers. It really doesn't matter which cooler you choose. A cooler that is more resistant to damage will be the most suitable if you intend on using it every week.

Does Food Stay Cool In A Portable Cooler Without Ice?

But it will take longer than if you put ice inside the cooler. Insulation in the cooler stops food from heating up faster than if left out. The temperature of the cooler and how chilled the food were at the beginning will determine the time it takes to cool down. Even frozen foods will heat up faster if they are kept cool in a trunk compartment of a vehicle.

Can I Use Dry Ice In A Cooler?

Most times, the answer is yes. Some coolers can be damaged by dry ice, but the majority should work fine. However, you will need to cover dry ice with blankets or other insulators. A cooler designed for dry ice is best if you plan to use it every day. You won't have to do any special tasks because the cooler has compartments to store dry ice.

How Long Does A Cooler Stay Cold?

It all depends on how efficient the cooler is at insulation. This includes the temperature outside, initial temperature of food and its stacking. Food can be kept cold for up to 4 days with ice (the best), in ideal conditions. A high-end cooler may even keep it chilled for as long as 10 days.

How Much Do Coolers Cost?

Consider what your cooler will be used for. If you need it to store food or drinks for several days or at extreme temperatures then more money is an investment in food safety. A cooler that is cheap and cheerful may suffice if you just need to chill a handful of drinks for an afternoon barbecue.

Conclusion

In summary, the best large coolers is the one that will provide you with exactly what you want. Provided that you are not satisfied with the models listed above, we propose Lifetime 90820 55 Quart Cooler for you. 

If you are unclear about how to select an item for yourself or someone else at any time in this post, please let us know! Our team of professionals is always pleased to help you find the best match.


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About Katie Finn

Katie Finn

Katie Finn is a freelance writer who loves to explore the world and go camping. She's also an editor for CampfireUSA, where she enjoys writing about wildlife and camping tips. She also has a passion for reading and learning new things, which she often incorporates into her writing.

Read Katie's full bio