When embarking on MTB day trips, having supplies is important. A cooler can come in handy to keep water and other drinks cold, we well as some food items if need be. Of all the cooler brands, OtterBox is certainly one of the most innovative. What makes the OtterBox such a great cooler?
The OtterBox is a decent performing cooler with easy to use latches and sturdy design. It’s the only non-rotomolded cooler tested that’s also rated grizzly-resistant by the IGBC. Many find its handles to be comfortable but awkward in shape, and its hinge to be more gracile than many expect, but its solid dry storage tray can’t be beat.
There are high performing coolers out there, but if you’re a fan of the OtterBox shape, it may just be your cup of tea. In this guide, we will review the brand and discuss some of its most beneficial features. This will be an honest review since the market for coolers is very oversaturated.
OtterBox Cooler Overview
Throughout many rigorous insulation testings, the OtterBox proved itself to be a solid competitor. It has maintained FDA recommended safe food temperatures of less than 40º F for a full five days duing testing. Furthermore, it kept temperatures below 50º F, the average ideal temperature for most types of beer, for 5.8 days – also an above-average performance.
This is even more impressive considering it’s the only non-rotomolded cooler we tested to achieve above-average scores and even beating some of the rotomolded chests. Boasting a shiny silver IGBC grizzly-resistant rating, like several other coolers we tested, the OtterBox is a pretty durable cooler.
It has some of the thickest walls of any model in our review and large immobile handles that double as tie-downs. A rubber gasket makes this icebox airtight and leakproof. Even in a 225 lb tester, there are no worries or issues with bouncing up and down on top of this chest – not that we’d recommend doing the same, for safety’s sake.
Though we had absolutely no issues with the hinge, despite all our yanking and shoving, it is a much thinner design than seen in many of the coolers that have been tested with integrated hinges. Although some users aren’t blown out of the water by the durability of the OtterBox, we find it to be more than adequate. Another area in which the OtterBox performs well, and my personal favorite feature, is the unique latches.
Among coolers that are tested, it’s the only one with the latches attached to the body of the cooler rather than the lid, which means there are no dangling pieces while you root around for the last Diet Squirt. These latches are also surprisingly simple to use and require much less muscle power over the numerous rubber T-grips sported by other models. The biggest usability complaint is that the inside of the drain is rimmed with a comparatively wide ledge, preventing those last trickles of water from draining as easily.
Weighing in at 34.1 lb with a measured 66-quart capacity, the Otterbox falls into the middle ground among models that are tested. Surprisingly though, it’s much larger than its competitors – and not just because of its outstretched handles. While we think these thick, ergonomic handles are a conducive size and shape for carrying, their rigidity and smoothness don’t make for the most comfortable experience with sweaty summer hands.
Their immobile stance, sticking straight out from the sides of this already giant cooler, makes the overall package a rather cumbersome, awkward shape for anyone trying to pack this cooler along with a weekend-worth of other gear into a standard-sized vehicle. It’s also so long that, unless it’s completely empty, we need a second person to move this cooler around.
The OtterBox includes a simple plastic leash that prevents you from losing the drain plug – a useful feature for just about anyone. This cooler is also dry ice compatible – the only non-rotomolded cooler we tested rated as such – helping to extend the cold time of this big beefy box. It also features handy, non-slip feet and can be cleaned with a pressure washer after those particularly messy adventures.
About the same cost as some of the top-scoring contenders in our review, the OtterBox doesn’t blow us away with its overwhelming value.
However, it does bring some attributes to the table that we don’t find in its competitors, with a unique shape and some very user-friendly latches. If these features are right up your alley, then you may find this cooler to be worth it for your life. OtterBox offers anti-slide rubber feet to ensure your cooler stays where it is meant to be.
Mounting hardware is provided to add ice and any accessories to your cooler without carrying extra bags or pockets. You can also drain extra water from the bottom of your cooler by slanting it.
Venture brands consider other cool features. They avoid mixing items and make it easy to find what you need when you open the icebox, and this is what makes the OtterBox a great choice.
The Dry storage tray and the cutting board are great for this purpose. You can use them to separate food and drink based on the occasion or the guests you’re having at a get-together.
You will also receive a bottle opener, so you don’t need to ask your friend for one when you find the beer you want or run into the kitchen for one while you cook.
The inside has three slots that make it easy to organize what you have inside. However, the Separator can be purchased separately.
This is a great way to save money on snacks. Considering the price, it shouldn’t be too difficult to spend a few dollars.
Depending on your model, the Venture cooler will keep your items cool and ready to eat for 10-16 days. These figures are from their website. But what is the truth?
A 65-quart cooler with 16-days of ice retention is quite a feat, not counting the smaller ones. This is unrealistic unless the outside temperature drops and you follow these tips to maximize ice retention in your cooler.
It is essential to reduce the amount of time a cooler is opened. Keep it covered with a thermal blanket, place it in the shade, and use a 1:2 ice to ice ratio. Also, make sure you use the correct type of ice, ideally a large block ice with either a flake, cube, or chunk of ice. How you pack your cooler can also impact how long it will keep ice.
These are just a few tips to help you get the most from your cooler. You won’t be able to last more than ten days even if your cooler is Otterbox-sized, regardless of how well it’s insulated – unless you live in colder areas.
Don’t get me wrong. We’ve been impressed by the Otterbox Venture coolers. They are excellent at retaining ice. Otterbox Venture coolers dense foam insulation is over 2 inches thick and made from closed-cell polyurethane.
The physics are hard to cheat, so you can realistically expect to receive your 25-quart Venture cooler in 4 days, the mid-sized Venture cooler in 5-7 days, and the 65-quart Venture cooler in 8-10 days. This is in comparison to the top cooler brands.
Overall, Venture Line has a 5/5 retention rating. This should be good news for anyone planning a long vacation with friends or family, especially if they plan to spend a lot of time outside.
Many other features ensure great ice retention, including polypropylene shells on the outside and inside, seals, and freezer-grade silicone latches to keep the stuff cold air inside.
This category also includes stainless steel pins, polycarbonate, ABS latches, and the Nylon drain plug to eliminate any melted ice.
OtterBox Sizes and Colors
There are several Otterbox venture cooler sizes available for the Venture cooler, so customers can have a variety of options and carry their ice chest with ease no matter what.
Venture 65 is the largest option and weighs 32.95 lbs. It has an exterior dimension measuring 40.01 inches. 18.76 in. x 18.83 inches, an interior dimension of 27.92 inches x 11.67 x13.30, and an interior dimension at 26.72 inches x10.60 in. x13.30 in.
The Venture 45 measures in at 26.37 lbs and measures 31.39 inches. 18.76 in. x 18.83 inches Outside, 19.30 in x11.67 in x 13.30 inches. At the top, 18.10 in x10.60 inches x13.30 inches on the inside. On the inside, at the bottom.
Venture 25, weighing 16.79 pounds, is the most miniature model. It measures 26 inches in outer dimensions. 18.76 in. x 16.08 inches, with an inner dimension of 13.89 inches at the top x11.67 in x10.56 inches, with an inner dimension at the bottom measuring 12.73 inches x10.60 in x10.56.
There are many options when it comes to color. We’re not talking about just solid colors. There are also many designs and combinations of colors to choose from. As of this review, Venture’s most miniature model has ten options. The other two models offer more options, but still a good variety.
Venture coolers are a reliable choice for keeping your ice chest stocked for as long as you can. OtterBox offers lifetime coverage for any manufacturing issues.
The Venture line is on par with Cordova Coolers and Kenai, with a limited lifetime warranty. This puts it ahead of Engel, which covers you for ten years, YETI, which covers you for five years, and RTIC, which provides coverage for one year.
OtterBox Venture Ice chests are a great cooler because they can be used for many occasions. This is surprisingly rare, even for the most well-known brands.
This ice chest is excellent for outdoors people. It can hold ice lunches, drinks, and the cooler game you have gathered on your hunting trips.
This cooler is great for sports fans. It can be used for softball, touch football, and tailgating games with friends.
The Venture cooler has a rating of 4.6/5 for its multi-purpose capabilities.