For a very long time, it’s been debatable as to which exact state of ice yields the most favorable conditions for cooling, alongside the capacity to maintain low temperatures within coolers for longer periods of time; is it the ice packs, dry ice or ordinary ice?
Anyone in need of a beneficial outdoor experience would care less about all that’s offered, most of us are after the best, right? Regardless, it is from this principal question that we form a basis for the major topic of parley today; finding prime ice packs for your coolers.
Every camper who is in love with the verity of alfresco natural splendor is always interested in possessing a dependable refrigeration system to keep drinks, foods, as well as rudimentary items safe and chilled.
The essence of an ice pack is to ensure all essentials remain pristine, and that the health of your camping crew isn’t put at risk, in case all the stored products muck up and everyone is left on an empty stomach for a day or in two in the middle of the wilderness.
Finding a reliable ice pack isn’t a one-time affair you’d carry out just by visiting a one-stop shop prior to use. It is vital that comparisons are done before heading out for selection. What then, are the best ice packs to use for your cooler?
Top Ice Packs for Coolers
|① Engel Ice -TOP PICK|
|② Techni Ice|
|③ Cooler Shock|
|④ Yeti Ice|
|⑤ Arctic Ice|
① Engel Ice
This ice load is built to ensure all items in your cooler stay dry and frozen. Casings used by Engel are non toxic and reusable. Purchasing them would guarantee you a lifelong usability of the model, all you’d be required to do is refill them from time to time.
Every element of the pack is designed with you as the primary consumer in mind. The cases are non hazardous to minimize health risks that would pass to consumers in case the models came into contact with food products within the cooler. They are totally BPA free.
Engel packs are versatile. Their application ranges from basic household uses to a number of utilizations in industrial prospects. Smaller molds can be used in cooling lunchboxes while larger sizes work best in boat-coolers.
- These packs have a higher resistance to impact. The hard casings are impenetrable, they are durable.
- When subjected to a number of tests together with a 10lb-ice mass in a 35 quart cooler, Engel Ice packs facilitated an extension period that ranged between 24 and 36 hours, the best time spans ever witnessed with any ice packs.
- Ice loads are available in a variety of sizes. Analogously, the packs freeze differently.
- There are users who found coolers to be heavier after the addition of these packs.
② Techni Ice
Techni has incorporated the use of conventional sheets instead of the traditional hard packs we are accustomed to using. Techni avails to you thin sheets of paper made to last and withstand impact, even when handled roughly.
Setting the sheets ready for use is an erstwhile thing. You’ll only do it once. Despite the technicalities involved, the packs are generally easy to set up.
The first step in preparing them for use is submerging the sheets into warm water, then squeezing to force out withheld air.
Techni ice has done remarkably well in keeping cooler contents cold for long. When tested, the sheets extended the life of 20 lbs of ice for 12 to 18 hours.
- The sheets can be heated and used alternatively in relieving pain or relaxing sore muscles.
- The additional layer within the sheets keeps Techni ice packs durable. They are more resistant to heavy contact.
- The sheets can be cut to preferred sizes to make them fit perfectly in coolers.
- Techni sheets are easy to set up and use.
- The packs are expensive to purchase.
- When used for long, the loads tend to get slimy.
③ Cooler Shock
Just like with Techni Ice packs, when readying Cooler Shock models, setup procedures are required before putting them in coolers. The packs are available in different sizes. Depending on your financial ability as well as needs, you can choose the one that suits you best.
When delivered, these packs are always flat. To ready them for use, they need to be filled with precise amounts of water. Subsequently, use the zipper seals for closure after ensuring no air is left inside the sheets.
One procedural task that’s mandatory and unique to Cooler Shock packs is the sealing technique. You ought to use a hot-iron to seal the edges and keep the hems watertight. The packs extend the lifespan of ice for 18 to 26 hours on average.
- Cooler Shock designs are created in the USA.
- These packs are reusable. They exhibit unique and exceptional performance at keeping cooler contents chilled for long.
- The models are available in different sizes. Buyers can choose whichever works best for them.
- Some attest that it’s actually difficult to assemble the pack or prepare it for use.
④ Yeti Ice
Yeti is quite a household brand across the globe. Not only has the company been consistent in providing excellent coolers but also have they achieved a great milestone in delivering complementary ice packs for their customers.
The tests we carried out proved that Yeti Ice was designed to keep all your contents frozen, just the way you’d like them. The only downward to this model was the short freezing time of the ice, contents could be kept perfectly chilled but not for long.
All our touchstones led us to the same conclusion; the Yeti Ice pack can extend ice life and keep the cooler cold for approximately 12 to 16 hours. Being a durable load, Yeti serves you well for as long as a year without breaking or tearing. It’s pretty durable and long-standing.
- Yeti as a brand has made a score in the market as a trusted trademark. You can trust that their assets are reliable and in good working condition.
- The packs can extend the lifespan of ice and keep your cooler cold for 12 to 16 hours.
- Ice loads are available in different sizes. This gives you more options to look at.
- With a Yeti purchase, it’s our assurance that you get an honorable appreciation for your money’s worth.
- The only impediment with Yeti Ice is it’s short freezing time. It keeps foods and drinks chilled but not for long. Similarly, the pack does not stay cold for long, especially when there’s no ice in the cooler.
⑤ Arctic Ice
It’s one of the most affordable ice packs. Arctic Ice is designed to cater for anyone operating on a rigid budget.
One aspect that drew me to the Arctic pack was its performance. Ordinary ice melts fairly fast and even creates a waterlogged pool within the cooler. Arctic won’t create a soggy mess.
It keeps cooler contents chilled and dry, with minimal wetness to deal with. The bags are non toxic. Besides, they are leak proof and available in multitudinous colors.
- Arctic Ice is built in the USA.
- Being a leak proof design, this pack barely creates sogginess around the cooler.
- It’s a low cost model. The bag won’t cost you much.
- The bags are sold in multiple colors. Additionally, they are non toxic and safe to the environment.
- The packs work stay cold for long. Their ability to extend ice lifespan is quite low.
Why not ordinary ice for you cooler?
Anyone who has tried stocking his or her cooler with the normal ice would substantiate that the stuff didn’t fulfill it’s intended purpose as expected. In essence, most ice packs designed by manufacturers are reusable.
Reusable models save you a lot of funds. You don’t need to replace them every time you are going out for expeditions, unless the packs are worn out. Room for replacement may take up to 8 months. This time gap is fair enough for substitution.
The freezing apex of water is usually 0°C. The moment ice is taken from a deep freezer and kept in a cooler where the temperatures equal the melting point, the ice thaws instantly, turning your chest soggy in a matter of minutes.
Additionally, normal ice doesn’t contain specific additives, special insulation or packaging. The absence of these inhibitors would cause a huge mess. For this reason, considering an ice pack instead of ordinary ice would be a supplemental advantage to your adventures.
What exactly does salt do when added onto ice?
Adding salt on ice that is stockpiled in a cooler would only serve to keep the ice colder for long. By doing so, it’s melting rate is lowered. However, contrary to common belief, salt won’t simulate the melting degree and lower it in any way. It only keeps ice colder.
Furthermore, the coldness won’t last for long hence the need for acquisition of quality ice packs. These would do the trick by keeping the ice colder for long and also reducing the rate at which ice melts. This way, cooler contents stay colder.
Comparing dry ice to ice packs
One of the coldest elements used in cold storage is dry ice. Carbon dioxide is the basic structure from which dry ice is built. In terms of temperature notations, the element fairs at -78.5°C.
Unlike plain ice that melts when subjected to temperatures beyond its melting point, dry ice is divergently unique and doesn’t liquefy, even in extreme temperatures.
Despite the solid nature of dry ice and the extreme coldness that comes with it, this constituent is extremely cold and would require careful handling when being used for storage or cooling purposes.
Handlers are required to put on protective gear such as gloves( these should be made of leather) or ardent towels for safeguarding your bare hands. Touching dry ice with exposed hands for long would cause serious injuries like those incurred when subjected to severe burns.
In a nutshell, dry ice is the best choice for storing contents that wouldn’t be consumed or needed for a long time, such as chunks of meat in transit.
It is not advisable to use dry ice in ordinary coolers because it isn’t as multifaceted as the other elements of ice, hence the need for careful planning when handling and using. Similarly, dry ice is basically the carbon dioxide gas.
Opening and closing coolers frequently gives room for escape of cold air. For an ordinary cooler that is opened every now and then, dry ice isn’t the best alternative to consider.
What you need to consider when purchasing ice packs
When purchasing an ice pack for your cooler, ensure that it fits perfectly and isn’t too big. One precise way of determining whether a pack fits perfectly is checking the height and width of the case before acquiring it.
These measurements should be compared with inner dimensions of the cooler to avoid any miscalculations. Ensure that the pack fits both ways, horizontally and vertically.
While taking note of the ice pack sizes, remember, you’ll need to store a whole lot other essentials, foodstuffs, snacks and drinks.
You should go for larger packs in case you plan on using bigger coolers. Smaller models are recommended when you need to keep lunchboxes or smaller food containers chilled.
The size of your cooler matters a lot when finding ice packs to fit in. Take note of your cooler size and the space you need for storage before choosing the ice packs to use.
How long does the ice pack stay cold?
The duration factor depends on the nature of trip you are heading out for. In case it is a one-time adventure such as hiking or fishing, you may need packs that can keep the contents chilled for a few hours.
On the other hand, outdoor adventures such as camping may take days. In such situations, finding reliable packs that can keep the cooler cold for longer hours would be a wise decision.
The time factor is a critical decision you should consider any time you are heading out for an adventure in the wild. Will I stay for a day or two? Or is it just this afternoon?
Basing your answers on these questions, review and pick the most appropriate ice packs for the adventure.
Always evaluate your exigencies before making any step, to help you get what you need for the forthcoming experience. It’s advisable that you avoid purchasing an item that wouldn’t last you the entire trip, as this would only vitiate your outdoor trip.
In the same way, keep in mind the posterity determining precisely how long the pack would take in order to freeze, as well as how customarily you contrive on using it.
Generally, it’s vital that you evaluate the circumstances surrounding your plan to use the packs. This is the underlying factor.
Packs contribute to the weight of a cooler. When a cooler is packed with heavy ice loads, it becomes unamenable and tiring to carry over long distances, particularly when you are out in the wild and you’re all on your own.
Manufacturers have designed different packs, each with variations in weights. The weight of a pack is affected by a number of factors.
In many circumstances, the weight of an ice pack is dependent on how big it is (the size), and the different agents used to effectuate freezing.
Some packs have been designed with additional features, all with the sole objective of making them better and more convenient for use. We decided to give this special category an in-depth look.
This way, you can familiarize yourself with a number of aspects you’d find helpful in ice packs designed for your cooler.
Some manufacturers have designed covers that are sweat proof. These come in expressly when you’ve stocked dry foods or other essentials that shouldn’t come into direct contact with moisture. The covers will minimize wetness in and around the cooler.
Other designs can be fit precisely in your cooler by cutting them into desired shapes. A common problem most buyers experience when acquiring ice packs is finding those whose shapes and sizes fit squarely in coolers, both in height and width.
Such models minimize wastage of space in coolers, giving you more storage space for packing all your brass tacks.
Re-usable packs are the best to go with. The models are designed to last and withstand any sort of impact coming their way. You’d also save a lot of money, as you wouldn’t be required to purchase new models every time you went out for fun.
Just like any other cooler accessory, ice pack boxes need to be cleaned every once in a while. It helps owners in getting rid of the dirt that accumulates in and around the packs. It also gives you an opportunity to refill the pack with cleaner water.
Cleaning ice tanks is a major concern for some. It’s a hectic process for other people as well. Nevertheless, some tanks save you these hassles, as they can be shoved into a dish-washer and cleaned at the touch of a dial.
Environmental health has been an emerging issue for some decades hitherto. There are so many plastic products that pose a threat to the ecosystem whenever they’re disposed in water bodies or on land.
Nevertheless, ice pack manufacturers have been at the forefront of keeping the environment clean and safe, as some have developed BPA-free packs that are non-toxic and innocuous to the balance of nature.
Consider picking an ice pack that is leak proof. Your choice of an ice pack is a decision that will affect the cooler condition in a significant way. Leak proof packs work perfectly in keeping your cooler dry.
The package or casing used
When selecting ice packs for your coolers, look out for a model that is built of hard casing. Such a tank is durable and doesn’t break even when it’s accidentally dropped or thrown around by an unknowing child.
Tips to look at when concluding acquisitions
The most crucial aspect of the buying procedure is concluding payment and acquisition. Before doing so, make the effort to know exactly how the ice packs you intend to take into possession work.
To minimize the rate at which foods and drinks lose coldness, it’s advisable that you refrigerate the drinks before loading them into your cooler.
When arranging them in the ice chest, layer them on their sides to maximize contact with the packs. Foods such as meat can also be frozen before being loaded.
When manufacturers or sellers deliver coolers with ice to you, oftentimes they fail to indicate the messy nature of melted ice. When ice melts, more water is created. The resulting water potentially ruins dry foods and other rudiments.
Ice packs are safer and more efficient. In every outdoor escapade you’ll endeavor, all dry foods will be kept vapid and water-logging won’t be much of a problem.
For any active outgoing adventurer, a cooler is an integral part of the experience. Activities such as fishing and hunting demand favorable conditions for storage of any prizes garnered in the course of the expedition, hence the need for a unique cooling system.
Ice packs have been and still are the best agents at keeping cooler contents chilled. Most of these work optimally with ice in place while some thrive on their own.
Either way, it’s still important that you find the right product to prevent your essentials from going bad and also keeping the cooler in perfect working condition.
We carried out different evaluative criteria, and were able to come up with the Engel Ice pack as our best pick for you. The main reason for this recommendation is the extended lifespan the model adds to ice and your cooler as a whole.
The added time ranges between 24 and 36 hours. Engel Ice packs are accessible in a variety of sizes. The cases used to enclose the ice are hard and durable. They serve for long without getting even a scratch on them.
Engel is the ultimate choice for you, the packs ensure items in your cooler stay dry and frozen for long. There is no room for sloppy surrounds, dry foods stay dry.