Keep ice longer by pre-cooling your cooler

 In 2min Tuesday

Keep ice longer by pre-cooling your cooler

In the previous episode I talked about seven tips to keep ice in your cooler longer and then today I’m going to be elaborate on one of those tips The first tip that I gave which is Pre-cool your cooler. I think this is super important and possibly one of the most critical steps to keep ice in your cooler longer. That’s why I wanted to cover this topic again and expand on it. There’s a lot of simple prepping steps that can go into this and you have to have a little bit of forethought to do it. However, I figured I had this expensive cooler I might as well be using it to the best of its ability.

The other day I went out camping, and I had ice last over five days. All my friends were out of ice, and some of them even have nice expensive coolers like yetis or other coolers along those lines. They asked me “how you keeping your ice in the cooler so long.” I told them with a smile. You have got to watch my video on keeping ice in your cooler.

Why should you be pre-cooling your cooler? These rotomolded coolers have a lot of thermal mass, and they take a lot of energy to cool them down. You should use the energy to cool the cooler down with something other than the contents that you’re going to be putting into the cooler. You don’t what those contents to be wasting their energy on cooling your cooler. Also because they are a more massive cooler they take a long time to warm back up, which is a benefit. The cheaper coolers are much lighter, and they have a significant thermal swing. What I mean by that is, if you drop ice into a cheap cooler, and it’ll cool it down quick, but the cheap cooler will heat it up fast. One benefits were these rotomolded coolers is that there is thick, dense, and heavy and they will absorb a lot of that cold energy and then it takes a lot of time to heat them up.

What do you need to bring that temperature down inside of the coolers? I use frozen water bottles; others use block ice, some food or ice packs. All of these would work, just drop the ice/bottles in the cooler, close the lid and walk away. The purpose it to get it as cold as you can before the food and drink is placed into the cooler. You also need to fit this into your schedule. You should be pre-cooling the cooler a day or at least the night before.

When your cooler has been sitting in a hot spot like your attic, shop or garage then cooler is just as hot as those locations. It was 83° in my shop the other day, and that means the cooler was 83° inside and out. I typically bring the cooler into the house, where its a bit more comfortable temperature. Then I place frozen items in the cooler to pre-cool it. This causes a thermal battle, and the cooler is going to be on the losing side. Just overnight I can take my cooler down into the low 40’ies. Then you pull all the items you used to pre-cool out of the cooler. This is one of the reasons that I like to use frozen water bottles as they don’t leave any water behind.

Once you get that cooler chilled you are good to go. You can start packing your cooler how you want. Not wasting energy from the food or beverages that you packed in there. After this step is performed you can start looking at my other steps to keep Ice in your cooler longer.

If you have any other suggestions on how to pre-cool your coolers please let me know. I am always looking for new and better ways to do things.

Check the video out on Youtube

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