Igloo’s competitive prices and never ending variety contributed greatly to its popularity on the market. However, there are certain series that had a greater impact on the brand’s reputation; series like the Igloo MaxCold.
Indeed, the MaxCold series pumped life into the brand and lured in an even wider range of users due to the versatility, variety and affordability of the included coolers.
In fact, Igloo’s MaxCold series has broken the brand’s previous records and established an unprecedented performance sheet that can be compared to high end roto-molded coolers.
Thus, for all the right reasons, our editors decided to put the MaxCold lineup under the spotlight and figure out the objectivity of these claims.
In that regard, the following review will tackle variety, design, build quality, performance and the prominent features of the Igloo MaxCold cooler Series.
So, let’s get right into it!
Available Sizes & Dimensions
Variety is the spice of life but for Igloo it’s much more than just that. Truly, the brand has been popularized based on their ability to find a match for every one out there.
So, let’s find out whether the MaxCold series stays true to the brand’s biggest pillars.
The invention of hard-sided coolers revolutionized the quality of time we spend in the outdoors. So, it was only reasonable for Igloo to offer a wide variety of Maxcold hard-sided coolers
Similar to many lineups, the MaxCold series has been through a number of upgrades throughout the years and eventually landed on a selection of 6 prominent sizes. Accordingly, Igloo made sure to stretch its lineup from a 40Qt wheeled option all the way up to 165Qt beast.
Thus, whether you’re looking for a quick/fun little cooler for regular BBQs and picnics, a reliable cooler for camping or a solid option for big game hunting / angling, you will definitely find your match in the following offered sizes : 40Qt Wheeled, 50Qt, 52Qt, 70Qt, 100Qt, 165Qt.
Igloo MaxCold 40 Qt Roller Cooler
Igloo MaxCold 50 Qt Cooler
Igloo Maxcold Quantum 52 Cooler
Igloo MaxCold 70 Qt Cooler
Igloo MaxCold 100 Qt Cooler
Igloo MaxCold 165 Qt Cooler
Hard-sided coolers are definitely great for their long term capabilities but they aren’t fit for all tasks. Accordingly, Igloo enriched their
MaxCold series with a bunch of soft-sided designs that are meant to cater for the rest of us out there.
MaxCold thus offers a wide range of soft-sided coolers and that was rather surprising. In fact, soft-sided coolers are hardly ever prominent because they aren’t as big of a demand as their hard counterparts; or are they?
Igloo understands that while hard-sided enthusiasts are more passionate about their field, there are more people out there in need of a decent soft-sided cooler.
Actually, Soft-sided coolers are great for daily commuters, 9 to 5 workers, job sites and other short duration activities.
With a Backpack, a Cool Fusion 36 Can, a Gripper 16 Can, a Hard top gripper 22 cans and a Tote, Igloo raids the soft-sided market, providing a fulfilling choice for everyone out there.
Igloo MaxCold Backpack
Igloo MaxCold Gripper 16
Igloo MaxCold Tote
Igloo MaxCold Cool Fusion 36
Design & Build Quality
Design might not strike you as a priority for many brands but Igloo knows the value of an attractive cooler. In that respect, Igloo has taken a huge step forward, comparing their old models to the MaxCold series as they have given the new comer much more character and ferocity.
In that regard, Igloo’s MaxCold coolers can’t be described as familiar since they look nothing like all the affordable coolers you’ve seen before. However, Igloo maintains the design pillars that contribute to the coolers’ resilience and ice retention abilities.
Having said that, except for their wheeled model, the MaxCold series maintains the traditional boxy design with smooth edges and easy access in order to cherish the familiarity of a good old hard-sided cooler.
On the other hand, the soft-sided coolers’ designs have clearly benefited from the brand’s experience. Thus, instead of looking like garbage, as affordable soft-sided coolers normally do, MaxCold soft-sided coolers look quite sharp with structural integrity and a relatively ow profile.
As for quality, it is obvious that Igloo isn’t trying to build high-end coolers. Yes, Igloo has been unapologetic about the quality of their coolers because while they might not match the rigidity or finer tuning of prominent coolers like Yeti or Pelican, they are definitely the best coolers in this price range.
Accordingly, Igloo’s MaxCold selection adopts the same strategies but most importantly, the same materials of build you’ve seen in other Igloo cooler models. Thus, the coolers at hand aren’t going to survive a roof drop like Rotomolded designs but they are built to endure everything that a normal cooler goes through.
Also, the brand’s insistence on minimalistic designs grants it the advantage on focusing its efforts on fewer details and features to guarantee that they will work properly and for as long as necessary. However, it must be said that replacing a part of an Igloo cooler is one of the easiest and cheapest things you can do. So, longevity is definitely stretchable on both hard and soft-sided MaxCold coolers.
Ice Retention & Insulation Ability
Now, let’s premise this section by acknowledging the obvious. Igloo’s MaxCold coolers aren’t built with the rotational molding approach, they do not have 3 inches thick walls nor do they feature leak proof gaskets. However, and we have tested this over and over again in peak summer temperatures, it is interesting that Igloo’s coolers are capable of pulling up to 4.5 days of ice life in 90°.
MaxCold hard-sided coolers feature rather thin yet robust outer/inner layers of plastic that sandwich some decent foam insulation, a standard plastic lid with no gasket (it will leak when tilted) and a strong endurance.
But How? That doesn’t make any sense, right? Why is it that some coolers cost triple as much for a similar performance?
Well, we wish we could answer these questions. What we can say is that we objectively believe that Igloo’s MaxCold coolers are worth every penny you spend on them and that goes for all sizes.
When it comes to soft-sided coolers, MaxCold decided to go for a basic antimicrobial layer on all of its models to prevent the growth of microbes inside the coolers. Then, they made sure that the coolers get a quality inner liner to prevent leaks.
Eventually, all MaxCold soft-sided coolers benefit from a layer of ultratherm insulation, increasing the thickness of the walls by 25% and raising ice retention life all the way up to 24 hours on average.
A lot of premium brands seem to have nailed every aspect of coolers but only a few can say that their included features are wholesome.
Igloo’s MaxCold series is in for a challenge, considering that coolers in this price range depend greatly on practicality to shine. Thus, to push back, Igloo blessed its MaxCold series with the following features:
While the smaller hard-sided coolers roam freely, the larger units benefit from the simplest latches available.
Now, we weren’t expecting to see anything complicated, considering the affordability of these coolers, but we were pleasantly surprised to see how firm these latches grip onto the body once locked.
Quick Access Hatch
One of the most unique features that you’ll find on larger MaxCold coolers is the hatch on top of the lid.
Amazingly, the hatches have proven to be highly efficient and practical since they’d allow you to take out or put in cans, bottles or fish without letting all the cold air go out by opening the entire lid.
Unsurprisingly, Igloo’s MaxCold coolers feature one of the simplest handles you can find on the market. Thus, if you were expecting anything fancy, you’d be disappointed because Igloo sticks to basic plastic handles that are firmly attached to the body of the cooler (no rope attachment)
Wheels & telescopic handles
Igloo blessed two of their coolers with robust plastic wheels and that contributed to the popularity of the 70 and 40Qt MaxCold units.
Indeed, these two coolers are significantly valuable to those of you who are constantly on the move.
Nonetheless, it is important to note that the 70Qt comes with a telescopic handle that is much more familiar and comfortable, while the smaller 40Qt features a rather awkward extending handle on the front side of the cooler.
Cool riser Technology
One of the most prominent features offered by the brand is the riser technology we see on the 70Qt MaxCold.
Having a flat bottom cooler will definitely grant you more room for storage but a raised floor will push insulation to its maximum potential. So, if you want the best performance, the 70Qt is your best bet.
Other Prominent Features:
- Standard valve draining plugs
- Lid straps to keep it from pressing the hinges
- Grippy bottoms
- Rough skin to prevent scratches and dents
Who is it for?
As big of a claim as it is, we think that it’s safe to argue that Igloo’s MaxCold series has a cooler for everyone out there. In fact, whether you’re an avid hunter / angler, a dedicated campers, a hiker, a picnic lover or a BBQ type of person, you’re going to find the perfect match for you in this series.
Actually, the brand’s soft-sided selection extends the range of audience all the way to job sites, workers, commuters and those of you who need a compact bag to keep a sandwich and a drink fresh for a day.
Most importantly, Igloo’s MaxCold coolers are highly affordable and that limits the target audience for those who are on a tighter budget because you can definitely find better for twice or triple as much.
Igloo MaxCold Vs. Yeti Tundra: Which Is Better?
While it would be fun to see a full on show down between a brand like Igloo and a conglomerate such as Yeti, we would be satisfied today to compare two of their most prominent series.
Hence, in this segment of the review, we will be comparing Yeti’s Tundra lineup to the spectacular MaxCold series. Accordingly, we are going to go gradually from variety to design / quality, then performance and wrap it up with a final verdict.
First things first, Yeti and Igloo seem to be in a tight competition in terms of variety because both brands provide almost the same number of articles in both hard and soft-sided sections. Hence, we are going to settle down to a draw in this category.
As for design and quality, we simply cannot sit here and pretend that Igloo’s series has a chance compared to a giant such as Yeti. Truly, while Yeti’s tundra coolers feature thicker plastic coats, denser and higher-end foam injection and an overall premium final design, Igloo commits to its humble standards and lags behind in all those areas.
Concerning performance, the Tundra and MaxCold lineups are seemingly miles apart but in reality they are almost the same.
Yes, we are fully aware of what we’re saying – how can we compare a Rotomolded, heavily insulated and airtight series to a set of coolers that lacks all of that? – Well, in simple words, numbers speak louder than anything else and since Yeti Tundra’s can achieve 7 days of ice life on average, Igloo is a competitor with a 5 days average performance.
Compare To: YETI Tundra 45 Cooler
- The YETI Tundra 45 combines versatility with durability with a capacity of up to 26 cans with a recommended 2:1 ice-to-contents ratio
- Ice stays ice thanks to up to 3 inches of PermaFrost Insulation and an extra thick FatWall design is certified Bear-Resistant
In conclusion, Igloo’s MaxCold lineup has proven to be one of the most anticipated budget choice on this season and we fully agree.
You simply cannot deny that these coolers work and most importantly, they cost significantly less than any other competitor, which provides such numbers.
Nevertheless, this doesn’t distract us from the fact that these coolers are noticeably cheap in everything else but performance and if that’s a problem to you then you can always opt for tougher and much more durable options as long as you’re willing to shell out some serious dough.
- Igloo max cold cooler offer the ultimate in cold retention with utratherm insulated lid and body
- Ultratherm insulation in body and lid helps keep things cold
- Igloo max cold cooler offer the ultimate in cold retention with utratherm insulated lid and body
- Treaded drain plug for easy hose hook-up for ultimate easy-to-drain performance
- foam insulated lid and body for maxcold 5-day ice retention performance
- flip-up tow handle reduces towing force by up to 50%