Cool Boxes Buying Guide

PORTABLE COOLER BUYING GUIDE

The ideal portable cooler varies from person to person. This guide sets out important considerations to have in mind, allowing you to make an informed decision based on your individual needs and preferences.

  • Cooling technologies – what’s available?
  • Cooling and freezing in hot climates
  • What size should your cooler be?
  • Which energy sources do you want to use?
  • Avoid a flat vehicle battery
  • Are you concerned about noise from your cooler?
  • Will you travel for long or short periods of time?
  • Coolers for use away from the vehicle
  • Is it possible to cool “passively” without the need for power?
  • Do you want to pre-select a target temperature?
  • Cold drinks for the driver
  • Easy to clean features
  • Refrigerate and freeze simultaneously
  • Is there a cooler that can heat too?
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Cooling technologies – what’s available?

There are three types of cooling technology: absorption, compressor and thermoelectric cooling. Each technology has its own particular advantages that recommend them for certain conditions. The key features of each are:

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Types of Cooling technologies

Absorption

  • Gas-powered cooling allows you to travel off-grid
  • Silent operation
  • Cooling performance depends on the ambient temperature
  • Convenient three-way power options: 12 V DC, 230 V AC and gas operation

View absorption portable coolers >

Thermoelectric

  • Low purchase cost
  • Lightweight
  • Performs well in inclined position 
  • Typically heavily dependent on ambient temperature, but the unrivalled cooling power of certain Dometic thermoelectric models break the mold!
  • 12/24 V DC, 230 V AC operation possible
View thermoelectric portable coolers >

Compressor

  • Excellent cooling even in extreme ambient temperatures
  • Powerful cooling enables refrigeration and deep-freezing
  • Low power consumption
  • Performs well in inclined position 
  • Suitable for solar operation
  • Integrated battery protection
  • 12/24 V DC, 110 – 230 V AC operation possible

View compressor portable coolers >

Cooling and freezing in hot climates

It is important to consider the type of climate you’ll be in, while using your portable cooler. 

Thermoelectric and absorption coolers will cool between 18–30 °C below the ambient temperature. Clearly, this may not be adequate if you are travelling in a region where temperatures reach 30 °C or more.

And so in hot regions, we recommend using a compressor cooler. As shown in the table below, the cooling performance is so powerful that it can deep-freeze in even the hottest ambient temperatures:
 

Cooling technology

Outside temperature

Internal temperature achieved

Thermoelectric

40 °C

22 °C to 10 °C (depending on model)

Absorption

40 °C

20 °C to 10 °C (depending on model)

Compressor

40 °C

Preset temperature within range: 10 °C down to –22 °C (depending on model)


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Vilken storlek bör din kylbox ha?

Först av allt bör du ha lagringsutrymmet som finns tillgängligt i ditt fordon i åtanke. Sedan antalet personer som kommer att använda kylboxen. Du bör även ha i åtanke hur länge du vill vara oberoende av butiker – kanske har du som avsikt att resa till avlägsna platser? Slutligen kräver större kylboxar mer energi för sin drift – är de extra resurserna som krävs värt mödan? Vi tillhandahåller storlekar för att passa alla situationer.

Kapacitetsutbudet efter kylteknik är:

Absorption: 31–40 l
Termoelektrisk: 8–37 l  
Kompressor: 10,5–88 l
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Vilka typer av energikälla vill du använda?

Standardenergikällorna för Dometics portabla kylboxar är:

Energikälla

 

Absorptionsteknik

12 V / 230 V / Gasol

Termoelektrisk teknik

12 V / 24 V / 230 V

Kompressorteknik

12 V / 24 V / 110 V – 230 V

 

Absorptionskylboxar utmärker sig för sin anpassbarhet, eftersom de antigen drivs med växelström eller likström – och när de används utanför fordonet kan de även drivas med gasol! Kompressorkylboxar är lämpliga för solenergi drift på grund av sin låga energiförbrukning. Solenergi är ett rent och billigt alternativ.

Se absorptionskylboxar med flexibel drift >
Se kompressorkylboxar lämpliga för solenergi drift >

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Undvik att batteriet laddas ur

Det integrerade batteriskyddet i våra kompressorkylboxar undviker att batteriet laddas ur. När strömnivån i ditt fordon har laddats ur till en förinställd “frånkopplingsnivå”, kommer det omedelbart att stänga av strömmen till din kylbox. Dina drycker kan efter en stund bli lite varmare, men du kommer åtminstone att kunna köra hem!

Eftersom absorptionskylboxar drivs med gasol och el erbjuder de en bättre lösning för att skydda batterikraften i ditt fordon. Termoelektriska enheter kan dra nytta av en spänningsvakt för låg spänning som skyddar batteriet genom att automatiskt stänga av strömmen vid låg spänning. Finns på vissa modeller men även som ett valbart tillbehör. 

Effektivitet är också viktigt. Alla kylboxar som drivs enbart med el måste enligt lag värderas för sin effektivitet. Vi har satt ett nytt effektivitetsriktmärke för kompressorkylboxar – vår CFX är den första kylboxen som har fått värderingen A++. Våra termoelektriska kylboxar når ständigt värderingen A+++. Absorptionskylboxar behöver inte ha någon energimärkning eftersom de huvudsakligen drivs med gas.

Se kompressorkylboxar med batteriskydd >
Se högeffektiva termoelektriska kylboxar >
Se högeffektiva absorptionskylboxar >
Se spänningsvakter för låg spänning >

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Are you concerned about noise from your cooler?

Depending on where your fridge will be placed and how sensitive you are to noise, the operating noise of a fridge may be important. Noise levels depend on the cooling technology used in the cooler:

Absorption – absolutely silent
Compressor – occasional, quiet running
Thermoelectric – continuous fan noise

View silent absorption portable coolers >
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Will you travel for long or short periods of time?

While travelling for long periods, you’ll appreciate having a deep-freeze function that extends the life of your food. A compressor cooler can freeze down to –22 °C.

For shorter trips of a few days or a week, an absorption cooler will be perfectly suitable. In certain models, you can even store ice cubes inside the refrigerator’s evaporator component. Although not as powerful as compressor units, absorption fridges will cool contents.

A thermoelectric refrigerator keeps items cool, rather than cools them itself. This makes it necessary to pre-cool items before setting off on your trip. It also makes it a less suitable option if you intend to rely on it for more than a day or two.

View compressor portable coolers >
View absorption portable coolers >
View thermoelectric portable coolers >

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Coolers for use away from the vehicle

Several models of Dometic cooler are suitable for taking to the beach or for use at picnics away from the vehicle. For this type of usage, we recommend a lightweight model of cooler which should, ideally, also feature a carry strap and/or sturdy handles for convenient transport.

To maintain cooling performance, wherever you are, an absorption cooler’s ability to run on gas is a significant advantage. All types of portable cooler could rely on a battery for power away from the vehicle. Alternatively, you could adopt the traditional and cheap solution of reusable ice packs.

Finally, there are the non-powered, passive coolers which are specifically designed for cooling “off-grid” (see next).

View coolers with carry handles or straps >
View absorption cooler with gas cartridge >
View batteries >

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Is it possible to cool “passively” without the need for power?

Our “roto-molded” non-powered cooling boxes boast superior insulation and durability thanks to their thick construction. This allows ice to be kept for 3–7 days depending on usage and ambient temperatures! Impressive stuff. View non-powered cooling boxes >
Passive Cool box Fishing

Do you want to pre-select a target temperature?

Only compressor coolers allow an exact, pre-set temperature to be achieved. Some models of thermoelectric and absorption coolers allow you to vary the level of cooling power used, but a specific, target temperature cannot be chosen. View compressor coolers with pre-set temperature control >
CFX100 detail

Cold drinks for the driver

Long drives can be thirsty work and, on such occasions, you’ll appreciate having a portable cooler within easy reach of the driver’s seat! Some models of portable cooler fit neatly between the front seats while others can be firmly strapped into a passenger seat using the seatbelt. View ideal coolers for use while driving >
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Easy to clean features

If hygiene is a priority for you and your family, then a cooler that is convenient to clean is a big plus. Look out for features such as a plug to drain away melted ice and removable parts such as baskets or dividers. View portable coolers designed for easy cleaning >
Dometic WAECO Picnic Final

Refrigerate and freeze simultaneously

Certain models of compressor cooler have two independent cooling zones. This means that one zone can be used to refrigerate and, at the same time, the second zone for freezing. A highly convenient feature that saves you having to buy (and store) two cooling units. View compressor coolers with two cooling zones >
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Is there a cooler that can heat too?

Some of our coolers can keep their contents warm, as well as cool. Although not designed for heating food from chilled, by placing a hot pie in a unit that heats up to 65 °C, it can be enjoyed warm later that day! View portable coolers with heating function >
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