thermoelectric coolers?
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  1. #1
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    Default thermoelectric coolers?

    Has anyone tried these? I've read that they were a better deal than melting ice in the other kind. We do travel and stay in a motel at least once a year. I've googled them and not found them plentiful. The ones I did find were pricey. I don't need a hugh one though,it's just DH and I. But we like to take bottled water and sodas with us Sometimes we may have leftovers for later. Ice from the ice machine melts.

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    Sorry so late on answering, but we have one and they have come in very handy. Remember they only cool down to 44 F below the surrounding air.

    We got ours at Walmart.

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    I did find one on the internet but it was rather small.It held six bottles of water and we planned to be gone for 4 days and pack lunches for three of them. We ended up having a kitchenette in our room so problem was solved. However I exchanged it for a larger one when we got home. I think we will be taking a weekend trip next month so will try the new one out.

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    did the last one you got the size of a mini fridge? That's the main way we use. We also have the smaller one for like a few cans of soda. I don't care for that one.

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    I know this is an old thread but camping season is coming again so maybe my post will still be helpful to others.

    We have two 12v chillers, a Coleman Power Chill and a Kool-A-Tron. We mostly use the Kool in the van because it fits between the front seats nicely. It's smaller and noisier than the PC. Food from the Kool is transferred to the trailer fridge once we're at camp and the K is shut down.

    The PowerChill sits in the back of the van during travel where it's plugged into a 12v outlet. Then it's moved into the trailer where it sits on a countertop and is plugged in to power using a converter.

    If you don't camp where you can hook up to power, a 12v chiller is not practical. If you tried to run them off of a battery that wasn't constantly being recharged like a vehicle battery is when the vehicle is running, they would drain the battery dead in short order.

    As previously mentioned, they do not cool like a fridge and will only go so low, depending the ambient temp. So if the temp is 85 degrees and the chiller will only cool to 40 degrees or so below that, you're getting into the danger zone for a lot of foods. Also, they will sometimes freeze up when it's too hot and humid. We had this happen twice with our PowerChill when we were in Missouri last July. (Yeah, I know, who goes to MO in July for a vacation? ) We ended up having to shut down the PC and not use it. IMO, they have their place but cannot be considered completely reliable. However, you could use some ice in a waterproof bag to boost the cooling capabilities if needed. Usually they work fine, but you do have to be aware of their limitations.

    Five day coolers do a good job if you pack the food and ice using about a 2:1 ratio, twice as much ice as food. If you're packing too much food and/or adding too many warm items, the ice will not last very long.

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    Registered User Early Bird's Avatar
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    We use our electric cooler for vacations ... ours is a Coleman with a plug for the car and another plug for inside. So, we just carry the cooler up to the hotel room.

    Also, we go about an hour away for a big shopping day once a month. We use the electric cooler then too.

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