When choosing a roto molded cooler there are a lot of “name brands” out there and all of them claim to be the best. Most have similar features, but yet there is always a large price difference. This leaves most people searching for the best bang for their buck. Two great examples of quality coolers at a cheaper price are from the Igloo Sportsman Series. Igloo is a name synonymous with coolers, and the Sportsman is their version of the high end cooler. The question then becomes, can it keep up with Yeti, Engel, Pelican, etc?
Jump To => Igloo Sportsman Sizes
Igloo Sportsman Series Ice Challenge Results
In our Five Day Ice Challenge, where we tested all the name brand coolers such as Yeti, Grizzly, and Pelican, we also tested two Igloo Sportsman Series Coolers. We tested the Igloo Sportsman Series 40 Q and 55Q. Why would we test two of the same style and manufacturer coolers? We wanted to confirm if there was a difference in ice retention based on cooler size alone. Here we had two exact same manufacturers and model cooler, the only difference being quart size; a 40 Q Vs a 55Q. After five days there was no noticeable difference in ice retention between the 40Q and 55Q. Furthermore, both coolers held ice on par with a Yeti Tundra 45 and longer than a Grizzly 40Q. The Igloo Sportsman series cooler often comes in at a significant discount compared to a Yeti and Grizzly. Therefore, if you are looking for a solid cooler for the money that can hold ice on par with the “name brand” coolers, the Sportsman Series needs a second look. Individual Video comparisons at bottom of post.
Why Many Feel the Sportsman is Best
As mentioned previously, the Igloo line of coolers has stood the test of time. Igloo has been around much longer than most other coolers and they haven’t stopped working toward perfection. Igloo is constantly improving their products so that they can compete in the marketplace.
The Igloo Sportsman Coolers 40-quart cooler has 2 inches of insulation in the lid and a 3-point grab handle that will ensure your comfort when carrying. There are T-Grip lid latches which makes the cooler very secure. You can rest assured when taking this cooler camping as it is certified bear proof, and there is an integrated fish ruler on its lid making it a perfect fishing cooler. If you are hauling it in your truck or on your boat, anti-skid feet will ensure it does not slide around. It also drains easily, thanks to its’ oversized drain/plug. This cooler is also large in size, but not in weight at only 23 pounds. The best feature we liked about the Igloo, which is different from all other coolers, is the “notched lid hinge.” As you open the cooler you’ll feel a little notch at the 90 degree mark. This helps the cooler lid stay open and not blow/tip shut easily.
The Igloo Sportsman 55 has all of the same features as the Sportsman 40-quart cooler along with aluminum hinges to ensure long lasting durability. It does weigh slightly more than the 40qt Sportsman cooler at 41.95 pounds. There is a locking area on the front of the cooler so that you do not have to worry about bears or unwanted hands getting inside. It also features raised non-skid feet to further ensure that it stays cool and stable, no matter where you are taking the Sportsman. This cooler also has the notched lid which allows for the lid to remain open.
Igloo Sportsman Price Comparisons
When looking at cooler prices online, Igloo coolers that we reviewed are substantially less than other coolers of a comparable size. Often looking online can result in saving up to a hundred dollars when comparing to other high end manufacturers. However, most of our readers are curious to know whether that cheaper price comes at a cut in performance.
What Our Ice Retention Tests Revealed
We compared a Yeti Tundra (among several other coolers) of a comparable size and ice expectancy to the Igloo 5-day cooler (Sportsman). We kept the coolers beside each other and tested them in the same environment. We found that an Igloo could hold ice for just as long as many other roto molded coolers including the Yeti. This is true even in extreme temperatures. In addition to testing in Winter months, we also tested in the summer months of FL with afternoon temps reaching the mid 90’s every day. The results were the same; Igloo can keep up in terms of performance. Thus, there is no reason to spend a fortune to obtain a more than capable cooler. Our Igloo Sportsman 55 review proves that high dollar quality does not have to come with a high dollar price tag.
Our Igloo Sportsman 40Q Video Review & Ice Challenge Results