December 20


How Long Do Camping Coolers Last and How to Store Them


By William Chutney

Published: December 20, 2021

So, you are thinking about going on a long camping vacation or taking a trip to a lake? Then you will need to make sure that you have plenty of ice to keep your drinks and food cool and fresh during the entire duration of your getaway. The issue is that it can be hard to know how long the heat will stay out of the cooler and the amount of ice to use in it. Today, we will be looking at how long an ice cooler lasts and the best way to store them, so you can get the most of your ice cooler for the amount of time you need to use it for.

How Long They Last

On average, ice in a cooler can last between 2-4 days when stacked and used in a good way. If you find a good quality cooler and stack your cooler in the correct way, the ice can last for up to even 10 days. The conditions will need to be very specific for this to happen. The type of cooler will determine how well it works. A Styrofoam cooler tends to be effective for 18-24 hours. A steel belted cooler will usually keep ice frozen for 2-3 days. Then a cooler with extreme ice retention and press and pull latches can make ice last for 4-5 days. Just make sure you do your research to get the best cooler for what you need.

Making Ice Last Longer

If you want your cooler to work above the average number of days, then you should definitely look at applying some of these ideas. You should reduce your airflow, which will decrease heat transference. You can increase the cooler’s insulation to reduce the amount of heat passing into the cooler. Pre-cooling or freezing your food will keep the inside of the cooler cold. Adding salt will lower the freezing temperature of water, making the ice colder and last longer. Large blocks of ice take longer to melt, so you should use them in your cooler. Finally, make sure you have an ice to product ratio of 2:1  and pack your cooler correctly.

Storing an Ice Cooler

Now you know what you need to do to make the ice in your cooler last as long as possible, you need to make sure you store your cooler in the right place. If it’s hot outside, you should find the coolest, shadiest area to store your cooler. This could be under a tree or buried in the ground. Wrapping a blanket around it can also help. You should always make sure the cooler isn’t in direct sunlight and it is closed properly. Whatever the weather, you should always keep your cooler in a safe, sheltered location when you aren’t using it. You need to make sure you know ways how to keep food cold while camping to reduce food waste and storage issues.

When you pack your cooler correctly, store it in the right place, and carry out the necessary precautions when you’re using it, the amount of time the cooler lasts dramatically increases. Just make sure you do your research into the cooler you buy and stick to the rules to ensure the ice lasts longer.

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