5 Best Electric Coolers For Camping And Outdoors

Rilor Staff
Update: November 11, 2021
Table of Contents

We all know that coolers are great for various camping and outdoor recreations. But do you know what's better than these coolers? 

The best electric coolers, of course!

Needless to say, these powered coolers are run by electricity. This means that as long as there is an outlet or power source in your campsite, these coolers can keep your drinks and ingredients fresh, cold, and free from spoils. When choosing an electric cooler, you have to consider its insulation, temperature control, and overall portability. 

If you are searching for the top-rated electric coolers in the market today, the following list should serve as a good start!

5 Best Electric Coolers

 Capacity Type
Dometic CFX3 35 Powered Cooler 36 litersHard-sided
Dometic CFX3 95 Dual Zone Powered Cooler 94 litersHard-sided
GoSun Chill Electric Cooler 40 litersHard-sided
Whynter FM-45G 45 Quart Portable Refrigerator 42 litersHard-sided
COSTWAY Portable Car Refrigerator 66 litersHard-sided

1. Dometic CFX3 35 Powered Cooler


The Dometic CFX3 35 Powered Cooler is an excellent machine for keeping your food fresh wherever you go. It features heavy-duty but lightweight construction, thanks to its ExoFrame body with fender edges. It also has rugged, spring-loaded aluminum handles that enable you to carry it comfortably. Furthermore, the Dometic CFX3 35 includes a VMSO3 compressor cooling technology. The latter ensures that all of its contents are refrigerated and frozen down to -7 degrees Fahrenheit. 

With its Active Gasket technology, the cooler provides a foolproof seal; it can maintain low temperatures while reducing power consumption. There's also a high-resolution color display on this cooler that lets you configure its setting easily. Coupled with soft-touch buttons, you will be able to control the performance of this cooler in a jiffy. 


  • Type - Hard-sided
  • Capacity - 36 liters
  • Materials - Plastic/metal/polyurethane
  • Dimensions - 27.3 inches x 16 inches x 15.7 inches
  • Weight - 37 pounds

2. Dometic CFX3 95 Dual Zone Powered Cooler


If you want an electric cooler that has an extra-large capacity, I suggest that you get the Dometic CFX3 95 Dual Zone Powered Cooler. Since it is a Dometic cooler, you can expect that it comes with an extremely rugged ExoFrame architecture that makes it durable and lightweight. It features dual storage compartments, which also have independent temperature controls. In this way, you can cool and freeze different food items simultaneously. No need for any waiting game. 

Of course, it also has the VMSO3 compressor so that it can freeze and refrigerate efficiently. Controlling the cooler isn't difficult, thanks to the presence of soft-touch buttons and vividly clear colored display. With its 3-stage dynamic battery protection system, you can ensure that this cooler isn't susceptible to accidental discharges. Moreover, such technology also enables the cooler to maximize its battery usage. 


  • Type - Hard-sided
  • Capacity - 94 liters
  • Materials - Plastic/metal/polyurethane
  • Dimensions - 37.9 inches x 20.9 inches x 18.6 inches
  • Weight - 66 pounds

3. GoSun Chill Electric Cooler


Compared to other coolers, the GoSun Chill Electric Cooler isn't that flashy. However, it is one of your best choices, especially if you want a seamless and versatile cooler for your next picnic or outdoor eat-out. Since it doesn't require ice, you can maximize its entire 40-liter volume to store your food and drinks. You'll also don't need to settle on one power source. This device can be operated by an AC adapter, solar panel, or a 12-volt cord. Meanwhile, its included PowerBank+ also charges other devices such as tablets and laptops. 

Interestingly, the temperature control of the GoSun Chill Electric Cooler is quite versatile. You can adjust its internal temperature from -4 degrees Fahrenheit to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. It doesn't lose its cool either, thanks to its R-10 insulation that is crafted from closed-cell polyurethane foam. This also got a powerful and energy-efficient DC brushless compressor for long-lasting use. 


  • Type - Hard-sided
  • Capacity - 40 liters
  • Materials - ABS shell
  • Dimensions - 23.5 inches x 19 inches x 16 inches
  • Weight - 30 pounds

4. Whynter FM-45G 45 Quart Portable Refrigerator


This portable refrigerator (or cooler) is definitely designed to handle constant use and abuse! The Whynter FM-45G 45 Quart Portable Refrigerator has an extremely sturdy, powder-coated steel housing. It is not only tough but can handle the elements with ease. Even its side handles are made from stainless steel. This rugged machine has a storage capacity of 42 liters, which enables it to fit up to 60 cans of your favorite beverages. Meanwhile, its temperature is adjustable from -8 degrees Fahrenheit to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you activate its Fast Freeze function, it will cool down to its lowest temperature setting as quickly as possible. 

Similar to other electric coolers here, the Whynter FM-45G 45 Quart Portable Refrigerator can be operated with 110V AC and 12/24V DC power sources. In fact, you can plug this device into AC and DC outlets simultaneously! But if you do that, this unit will be primarily powered by AC. 


  • Type - Powder-coated steel
  • Capacity - 42 liters
  • Materials - ABS shell
  • Dimensions - ‎16.5 inches x 23.5 inches x 20.5 inches
  • Weight - 45 pounds

5. COSTWAY Portable Car Refrigerator


Another large-size powered cooler that you should check out is the COSTWAY Portable Car Refrigerator. This one features 66 liters of holding capacity, allowing it to pack up to 20 750-ml wine bottles. It has two divisions, too. One is for refrigeration, and the other one is for freezing. It gives you enough control in how to keep your ingredients fresh and free from spoilage. It has an ergonomic two-way door construction that lets you access its contents easily. 

Interestingly, the COSTWAY Portable Car Refrigerator has an integrated LED light that lets you use it even in low-light conditions. Hence, it easily fits various situations and ordeals. You can also guarantee that it can withstand the elements, thanks to its ABS plastic construction. When it comes to temperature control, this portable electric cooler is far from disappointing. It is capable of rapidly cooling its interior--from 14.8 degrees Fahrenheit to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. While it cools, it doesn't draw too much power from your car's battery. It is as energy-efficient as it gets!


  • Type - Hard-sided
  • Capacity - 66 liters
  • Materials - ABS shell
  • Dimensions - 26.5 inches x 18 inches x 21.5 inches
  • Weight - 47 pounds

How To Choose The Best Electric Coolers

Nothing beats the versatility of a portable cooler to keep your food, drinks, and snacks ice-cold while you're on the move. Portable coolers come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from tiny plastic mini coolers to large, heavy-duty electric coolers.

Electric coolers provide the convenience of hands-free operation and the ability to keep your food and drinks ice-cold for extended periods as long as there's a power source. 

But of course, you have to treat the process of choosing these electric coolers more prudently. If you want to have a guide, the following checklist can help you out. 


One of the most valuable aspects of electric coolers is their insulation. Without insulation, it is impossible for the cooler to keep your replenishments fresh and cold. 

But why do you still need insulation for an electric cooler, even if it is capable of cooling your food and drinks without ice? Well, there are situations where you have to unplug the cooler. For instance, traveling by foot or journeying on the road would require you to detach the plug of these powered coolers. You would want to make sure that your delicacies don't get spoiled before you can reach your destination.

The same thing is true when you are about to sleep in the evening. For you to be able to conserve power, you have to unplug the cooler from its power source. You have to guarantee that your food won't get spoiled overnight. 

The quality of insulation may also depend on the thickness and ruggedness of the cooler. The thicker it is, the more efficient it is in retaining its temperature. Surely enough, you would want an electric cooler that doesn't have seams or cracks where the elements can enter. As much as possible, the cooler should have no openings. 

Temperature Control

Being able to control the internal temperature of an electric cooler is a key reason why people--specifically, outdoor enthusiasts--invest in this item in the first place. Of course, some food requires refrigeration. Others have to be frozen. Hence, it is quite essential that a powered cooler can do this task as seamlessly as possible. 

Now, I get the fact that many electric coolers are claiming that they won't disappoint your expectations. However, it is not a secret that only a few coolers can actually provide exceptional temperature control.

One of the things that you need to take a look at is the display or readout of the electric cooler--if it has one. You have to make sure that it displays accurate information about the internal temperature. Next, you should check the mechanism on how the temperature is adjusted. Is it easy to use? Or is it something quirky? 

Some electric coolers use knobs for adjusting their temperature. However, the most popular ones feature digital controls so that they can provide accurate incremental adjustments. 

Energy Efficiency

It is nice to know that electric coolers exist to provide a convenient setup in cooling your food even while outdoors. While the idea of having these coolers are pretty extravagant, you have to realize that they use electricity. No source of power simply means that you can't use these electric coolers. 

Most powered coolers are affixed to cars, RVs, and other vehicles--since they are the nearest and most plausible power source. Specifically, they are attached to the batteries, which, in turn, enable them to draw power. An electric cooler that consumes too much energy can easily kill your vehicle's battery. Once that happens, and you don't have a spare battery, you'll end up being stranded. 

Typically, powered coolers use compressors in their operation. If you are familiar with their technicalities, these compressors work similarly to your fridge. They cycle through steady and cooling stages. The power consumption of an electric cooler is dependent on how much energy is used in completing these cycles. 

Specifically, it would be best if you could get a cooler that has a low power draw. In this way, you can guarantee that the cooler operates in the lowest amperage or voltage possible. 

In Summary

The best electric coolers arguably provide the most convenience in keeping your food and drinks fresh while you are outdoors. They function as coolers, but their performance is more convenient and ergonomic than traditional coolers. While it is true that they aren't that lightweight, you can still bring them to established campsites and other accessible areas. With them around, your hunger and thirst will always be satisfied!

That's it for now. If you have inquiries, feel free to ask me in the comment section below.

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