I would like to highlight some factors you can consider in order to narrow down you research for the best wheeled cooler. But first, let’s have a look at the most popular options on the market.
Last update on 2020-06-01 at 09:01 / Affiliate Links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Our recommended wheeled coolers:
Coleman Rolling Cooler | 50 Quart
If you are interested in a wheeled cooler but you don’t know where to start from, this option from Coleman is a great one to consider. I really like their heavy duty wheels that allow you to roll the cooler on any surface without a problem. They are durable and its size help you overcome obstacles while handling tough terrain even fully loaded. Moreover the telescoping handle will help you pull the cooler when need, but fold for a compact cooler design.
This cooler features cup holders on its lid which many will appreciate. You can place up to 4 cans on top and avoid spilling by accident. On the other hand, you can also use it as a seat if need since the lid can support up to 250 pounds. Overall this is a versatile solution that can keep your ice up to 5 days thanks to the extra wall of insulation. I really like its compact size, it has a beautiful black color that I adore and the 50 quart is the perfect size for me. If you find that this size fits your needs, I would highly recommend having a closer look at this wheeled cooler while researching.
Igloo Ice Cube 60 Quart Roller Cooler
Another great wheeled cooler that you can consider, this time from Igloo. This is a great budget friendly option that anyone with a limited budget should have a closer look while researching. Igloo is well known for their high quality coolers and this one is not an exception.
It has 60 quart capacity and features a telescoping handle and heavy duty wheels. It is easy to pull around even fully loaded, but I would prefer a 50 quart option for its compact size if it was for me. Overall, this is a great product at a great price that definitely worth checking out. If you are looking for a wheeled cooler that won’t break the bank and 60 quart is enough capacity for your needs, this is your best bet.
I wanted to include this wheeled cooler on this list, since many will opt for a larger option than the previous mentioned coolers. It has 100 quart capacity that will allow you to keep up to 160 cans and thanks to the extra insulation in its walls it is able to keep ice for up to 5 days.
The cooler has two large wheels and a tow handle that will allow you to pull the cooler when needed. Moreover, it has side handles that are vital for easy lifting. I like that they implemented a leak-resistant channel drain that will allow you to remove excess water, plus many will appreciate the 250 pounds support of the lid that allows you to sit and stand on top of it. Overall, if you need a large wheeled cooler, this one takes my vote. You can’t go wrong with this one.
Igloo 34231 Trailmate Marine Wheeled Cooler
I wanted to include this model on this list as an great all-terrain option that can be found at a reasonable price. If you don’t know where you will end up carry your cooler, this is your best since it can easily handle any terrain with its heavy duty wheels. It is ideal for boat decks, it can easily face obstacles with its oversized 10 inch wheels and it’s built like a tank.
Thanks to the insulated walls it has a four day ice retention and many will also appreciate the butler tray along with the cup holders on the lid. Plus you can easily use the mobile stand on the lid to place your phone or laptop if you want to see a movie. overall this is a lightweight option for its size, it is made from stainless steel and aluminum so it has marine grade parts that won’t rust. This is a great option for anyone looking to invest into a great wheeled cooler, especially if you plan to use it on a boat. Definitely worth a closer look while researching and while it might not be the cheapest on this list, it definitely is a great investment that worth every penny.
Things to consider when buying a wheeled cooler:
As long as you know what you’re buying, it doesn’t have to be difficult to find a wheeled cooler that is best for your needs. You don’t have to go out and buy the most expensive model either.
Here are a few things to look out for when you next go shopping for the best model for you.
There’s normally a noticeable gap between wheeled coolers. Standard models are aimed at the average user and usually available for between $50-75. More robust models are for those that take outdoor activities very seriously, with prices starting around the $200 mark. Note that if you opt for an expensive wheeled cooler, it’ll act more of a long-term investment.
Different coolers work better in different situations. If you’re going to the beach, you will need different things from your wheeled cooler compared to someone that’s going away for a few days. Ice retention is one thing that can determine which products are best for someone that needs to store ice for a long duration. On the other hand, most coolers will easily keep food and drink cool for a long time.
Capacity and Size
This refers to how much room you have inside the cooler available. It’s normally measured in litres or quarts, depending on where it was manufactured.Most wheeled coolers measure between 10 and 100 quarts. This is something to consider as the biggest capacity would also mean a heavier cooler to carry around, so make sure you can carry along the weight you plan to store inside. You best bet is to actually try and stroll around with a cooler fulled with food before your commit to a specific size.
Moreover, the capacity of the coolers greatly affect their size. If you need to carry your cooler with a vehicle, you need to consider not only its weight but also the size you need to dedicate. If you have plenty of storage space on your car, then you are lucky, but if you need to take a smaller vehicle to your work or vacations, it is wise to measure the available space before committing to a cooler with larger capacity.
In some scenarios, you could be easier to buy two smaller wheeled coolers rather than a single large one. This gives you more flexibility in terms of storage and carrying.
Previous coolers could keep ice frozen for up to a couple of days before it melted away, making it perfect for a short getaway or a trip to the beach. Nowadays, rotomolded coolers have much thicker insulation so your contents will stay cool for much longer. If you’re going away for a little while, you’re better off with this type of wheeled cooler.
Today’s most popular coolers will have either polystyrene or foam insulation. Polystyrene is far more popular option since this is a lightweight option yet durable, making the coolers quite portable and affordable. On the other hand, foam is not an ideal solution if you need to retain ice for more than a few hours.
Coolers made of foam insulation are generally cheaper to buy but in most cases they will leave much more to desire. Try to avoid foam insulation unless you are after a budget friendly product and need to hold your food and drinks cold for short periods of time.If that’s the case, the foam is your best bet.
Seals and Base Drain
Seals protect warmer outside air from entering the cooler. They also prevent the contents from leaking. Basic coolers don’t tend to have seals. It’s a feature you find more commonly with middle to upper scale models.
Drainage is very important, no matter your budget. Coolers with base drains make it easy to empty melted ice water without getting everything else wet in the process. Just make sure you’re getting a good one though.
This affects your overall comfort as you walk along with your wheeled cooler. This is even more important for taller people; getting too short of a handle will ensure you walk around with a permanent slouch, which isn’t good for posture. There are plenty of models on the market that feature side handles which can be quite handy if you need to carry the the cooler in case you face rough terrain and your cooler has too small wheel size to handle it.
Older wheeled coolers didn’t come with a lid lock or any type of security protection. It’s not really a problem if all you’re taking is a bucket of beers, but if you’re taking a week’s worth of food, you’ll want to ensure it’s safe so you don’t go hungry if the worst happens.
Modern wheeled coolers come with multi-point locking systems, tie-down points and latches. You can get some that also have a small slot to thread a padlock through.
Wheels, Mobility, And Portability
The wheels play a vital role on how portable the wheeled cooler is. If you’re planning on going off-track and away from the pavement, you need to get a model that has thicker wheels so it won’t get stuck in the rougher terrain. The bigger and heavier the wheeled cooler, the larger the wheels it needs to be.