Best Outdoor Cooler: Reviews, Buying Guides & FAQs

Let’s assume you regularly host backyard barbecues, picnics, or even beach get-togethers. In that case, an outdoor fridge can come in handy, save you several trips to the kitchen/vehicle and keep you in the middle of the action. But you’d have to deal with keeping the fridge close to a power source and moving it around when it gets in the way. An outdoor cooler saves you all that stress. Outdoor coolers come in different sizes and offer a wide range of features, so choosing the right tool for your needs is the key to many successful backyard gatherings.

That is why we have decided to gather a list of the most efficient and budget-friendly outdoor coolers to provide you with your various cooling needs while having a lovely time alone or during a party. Below is a list of the best outdoor coolers you can get in the market.


1. Permasteel PS-205-GRY-AM 80qt Patio Cooler – Best Outdoor Cooler

The Permasteel 80 quart outdoor cooler is made of wood and has a powder-coated finish, giving it UV-resistant and rust-resistant qualities. These qualities give it long-lasting durability and also adds elegance to any backyard & outdoor patio. It comes with four caster wheels and two lockings for easy movement and stability, and two large grip handles for easy maneuverability. The Permasteel cooler features a bottle opener and cap catcher for conveniently opening bottles. If these features above are all you need in an outdoor cooler, then you shouldn’t hesitate to grab this Permasteel Patio Cooler.


Buying Guide: Outdoor Coolers

Are you looking for just an outdoor cooler? How much food do you need to store? Outdoor coolers can be compact or full-size, and their storage capacity and configuration often vary. It is also essential to find a cooler that is well equipped for temperature changes in your area to keep your food fresh and safe to eat. The outdoor cooler may be a simple appliance, but that does not mean it does not require careful consideration to find the perfect model for you. There are many things to consider when shopping for an outdoor cooler, and even small coolers can be expensive. Our shopping guide will help you navigate the shopping process and take your outdoor events to the next level:

Key Considerations

Before you begin your search for an outdoor refrigerator, you need to ask yourself what food you will keep in your cooler, how much space you need, and how often you will use it. A beverage cooler can be compact or medium and may or may not need a freezer, depending on the type of beverages you plan to store. However, if your cooler will also store supplies for cookouts, a freezer is essential.

One thing we’d like to point out is that outdoor coolers fall into different categories. There are rotomolded coolers, outdoor cooler carts, and carry-along portable coolers. You’re free to select any of the coolers as long as they can contain your food items.

Dimensions

The size of your cooler (which is different but may be related to its storage capacity) should be appropriate for your patio, porch, or garage. Take careful note of the height, width, and depth according to your needs.

Storage Capacity & Construction Materials

Manufacturers often display the storage capacity of the cooler (measured in cubic feet). In general, 20 cubic feet or more is ideal for a family of four, but this estimate is for a traditional indoor refrigerator that can serve as your primary food storage. For an outdoor cooler, you may only need three cubic feet to store a handful of drinks. However, some outdoor coolers offer up to 6 cubic feet of storage.

You should watch out for an outdoor cooler made of metal material — body and base. The material enhances durability and also features rust-resistant and UV-resistant qualities. Wooden and plastic materials are also appropriate as far as they feature the above attributes.

Portability & Weight

Caster wheels are essential in an outdoor cooler, especially if they are cart-styled. They will move smoothly if the wheels are present, especially when loaded. Ideal caster wheels are 360-degrees oriented, and at least 2 of them should be lockable. Side handles are necessary for excellent maneuverability.

You shouldn’t neglect the weight of the outdoor cooler you’re interested in. If the cooler is heavy, you may find it diificult to move it around. Thankfully, most outdoor coolers are lightweight; nevertheless, you should compare the cooler’s weight to the overall weight you intend on carrying with you, especially on camping and hiking trips.

Other Features to Consider

The factors above are essential when choosing your outdoor cooler. However, look out for features that are not so obvious such as the bottle opener and cap catcher for the easy, quick, and convenient opening of beer, drain plugs for effortless cleanup, a bottom rack for extra storage side shelves for additional space. These features are of utmost importance because they will save you and your guests a lot of time and stress.


Best Outdoor Coolers Reviewed

Below are some of the best outdoor coolers that you can choose from:

1. Permasteel PS-205-GRY-AM 80qt Patio Cooler – Best Outdoor Cooler

best outdoor cooler image 1

The Permasteel 80 quart outdoor style cooler cart wins the spotlight as our best outdoor cooler. It is made of wood and has a powder-coated finish, giving it UV-resistant and rust-resistant qualities. These qualities give it long-lasting durability and also adds elegance to any backyard & outdoor patio. It comes with four caster wheels with two lockings for easy movement and two large grip handles for easy maneuverability. The Permasteel cooler features a bottle opener and cap catcher for convenient bottle opening. There is a drain plug for easy and fast cleanup. This cooler comes with a removable dual-hinged lid for easy loading and unloading of food and beverages and a sturdy lower rack to store extra drinks or other items you wish to keep.

It has a dimension of 35.5 x 20.25 x 32.5 inches and weighs 48.5 pounds. The Permasteel outdoor cooler can hold up to 10 – 12-ounce cans of beverages with additional room for ice. Due to its injected molded insulation technology, it can keep your food and beverages cold for several hours. This powder-coated steel cooler is ideal for entertaining your friends and guests during backyard barbeques, picnics, and get-togethers.

Pros

  • Excellent durability and UV-resistant body.
  • Wheels and handle for easy mobility
  • Versatile & excellent capacity

Cons

  • Screw holes may not be bored properly

2. Goplus 16 Quart Cooler – Best Portable Outdoor Cooler

best outdoor cooler 2 image

The Goplus Outdoor cooler stands out because of its portability. It’s made of premium polyethylene and shatter-resistant polyurethane material that provides insulation and strength. Its integrated khaki body with padded stainless steel handle gives it added durability. It comes with a drain plug for easy cleaning after use. Additional features include 2 cup holders at the top for holding cups and beverages, secure T-handle latches for securing the lid, non-skid feet at the bottom for stability, and molded loops on the cover & liner, plus a lock for security.

Due to the high-quality insulating materials, this cooler is eco-friendly and energy-conserving. This cooler features a large capacity, which can hold 24 canned drinks without ice. The Polyurethane insulating material plus the all-in-one structure maximizes insulation and keeps ice frozen for up to four days – as they claim. You’ll possibly get two days. Besides, the sealing design prevents leakage. Its multi-purpose design gives it dual capacity — it can refrigerate and can also keep warm. This outdoor cooler is useful for various outdoor activities such as camping, picnics, e.t.c.

Pros

  • Excellent durability 
  • Non-skid feet for stability
  • Multifunctional
  • Excellent portability

Cons

  • Shallow depth of cup holders

3. Outsunny 80 QT Rolling Cooler – Best Outdoor Cooler Cart

outsunny outdoor cooler 3 image

The Outsunny 80 QT Rolling Cooler is a durable steel frame outdoor cooler with a stylish colored finish. It’s the perfect keep-cool accessory for any outdoor get-together. This 20-gallon cooler has two openings, so you can easily access contents from both sides. It comes with convenient handles on both sides so you can easily pull or carry it with one other person. Additionally, you get four caster wheels and two lockings for easy movement and stability. There is a drainage hole at the back to drain excess water quickly and clean the cooler.

This cooler comes with a bottle opener and bottle cap catcher for quickly opening drinks. You can use the bottom shelf below to hold essential items you want to keep nearby, such as the cups and mixers. The Outsunny outdoor cooler requires simple assembly, and all the necessary hardware comes included in the packaging. It has a dimension of 33 x 18 x 16 inches and weighs 31.9 pounds. You can use it for a backyard barbeque, pool party, and picnics, and just about any outdoor gathering.

Pros

  • Excellent durability 
  • Wheels and handles for easy mobility
  • Simple assembly required

Cons

  • Legs may not appear as sturdy as you want.

4. Clevr 80 Quart Rolling Outdoor Cooler

Clevr rolling cooler outdoor

The Clevr Rolling Outdoor Cooler is yet another outdoor drinks cooler you should consider. It sports an alloy steel body lined with injection foam insulation on the body and the lid to keep the contents cool for days. The durable and stylish all-weather wicker surface blends well and looks great with all styles of patio furniture. This cooler comes with four sizeable multi-directional swivel wheels that rotate 360 degrees for easy transportation. And two sturdy handles for easy maneuverability. The two-wheel brake or lock system helps to maintain stability and secure the cooler in place.

It has a bottom shelf, which will serve as extra storage space for additional beverages, cups, and other items. This cooler has a dimension of 15 x 34.25 x 34.25 inches and weighs 37 pounds. The 20-gallon capacity cooler can store up to 70+ canned beverages or 50+ bottles. It is ideal for various indoor and outdoor activities such as backyard barbeque, picnics, pool party, e.t.c.

Pros

  • Excellent build quality.
  • Wheels and handles for easy mobility
  • Large capacity for drinks.

Cons

  • The drain plug may leak.

5. Stanley Adventure 16 Quart Outdoor Cooler

The Stanley Adventure Leakproof Outdoor cooler is tough, lightweight, and a great pick for campers and hikers. It has a high-density polyethylene outer shell and sturdy latches, enhancing durability. The durable rubber string allows you to hold the vacuum bottle on the flat top, while the double-wall foam insulation keeps the ice frozen for up to 27 hours. A silicone gasket on the lid ensures superior insulation and makes this cooler completely leak-proof when the latches are locked.

You can quickly grab and carry this cooler and get going, thanks to the heavy-duty top handle. It has a dimension of 16.7 x 12.7 x 11.2 inches. It’s spacious yet weighs only 3.9 pounds when empty. It’s perfect for outdoor activities such as camping, picnics, pool party e.t.c. Considering its small size, you shouldn’t expect the cooler to hold many items like the other coolers in its class.

Pros

  • Excellent durability and sturdiness
  • Leak-proof when locked
  • Excellent portability

Cons

  • Shallow cooler depth.

6. Suncast Resin 77 Quart Outdoor Cooler

The Suncast Resin, 77 Quart Patio Cooler, is a sturdy resin cooler that provides years of outdoor use. It features a decorative wicker design that complements your existing outdoor decor. The cooler’s convenient hinged lid opens easily, giving you access to drinks and treats. Simultaneously, the wire basket holds additional cans, bottles, or entertainment accessories, while the bottom cabinet space chills dozens of beverages with extra storage below. It comes with an external drainage tube for effortless draining of water and cleanup. Four caster wheels are situated below — two locking and two non-locking for stability when left freestanding.

The Suncast spacious outdoor cooler has a dimension of 22 x 26 x 34 inches and weighs 31 pounds. It can hold 72 canned drinks or six 2-liter bottles to keep the party going without going indoors frequently. At first sight, you’ll deduce that it’s durable and aesthetically appealing because of its design. We want to point out that the wire basket on the cooler may rust quickly, so you should take care to clean it as often as possible.

Pros

  • Sturdy and durable.
  • Spacious room for beverages.
  • Pleasing appearance.

Cons

  • The wire basket is prone to rust.

7. REYLEO 21/52 Quart Portable Outdoor Cooler

The Reyleo 21/52 Quart Portable Outdoor Cooler sits on the last spot in our list of the best outdoor coolers. It’s made of a rotomolded material, which makes the frame more sturdy and durable. This material is non-toxic, odorless, UV-resistant, and not easily discolored. Its 1-inch thick polyethylene insulation keeps your food and drinks fresh for long weekend camping and fishing trips. You will most likely get about two days of coolness from the cooler, depending on how often you open it.

This cooler comes with the following packages; a built-in bottle opener, a fish ruler on top of the lid cover, a cup holder, two rubber locks to keep the lids secured when closed, and four non-slip mats for stability. The Reyleo cooler has a dimension of 29.3 x 18.1 x 17.9 inches and weighs 32 pounds when empty. It offers a spacious 52-quart capacity that can easily hold up to 80 canned beverages.

Pros

  • Sturdy and durable rotomolded body.
  • Pleasing appearance all around.
  • Spacious room for beverages.

Cons

  • Rubber latches fall once opened.

FAQs – Best Outdoor Coolers

What is an outdoor cooler? An outdoor cooler is a mobile cooler made with insulating materials to keep your food and beverages cold and fresh during outdoor activities such as camping, picnics, pool party, e.t.c. Due to these insulating materials’ low heat conductivity, they help keep the ice frozen, thereby preserving the cooler’s content.

How long should an outdoor cooler keep ice frozen? It all depends on the insulating material used for the outdoor cooler. Regardless of the weather conditions, an ideal outdoor cooler should keep ice frozen for days. However, to ensure that the ice remains frozen, keep the cooler away from direct sunlight, and the lids should always be closed after loading or unloading food and beverages.

Are outdoor coolers water-resistant? The water-resistant quality of an outdoor cooler is dependent on the material type used to construct both the body and the lid. Most outdoor coolers are water-resistant.

What is the capacity of an ideal outdoor cooler? It depends on the amount of food and beverages you intend to store in your outdoor cooler. There’s no definite capacity for your cooler, so you should get what will meet your needs.


Conclusion

As this review draws to an end, we hope you have already chosen the best outdoor cooler that best suits your needs. There’s no telling that the outdoor coolers will be useful accessories for your camping, backyard barbeque, picnics, outdoor parties, and get-togethers.

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