Electric Coolers - worth the cost?

RobR1T

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For the car campers, is the electric cooler a “must have” or just a luxury item? Are you using an external battery apart from your R1? If not, are you using 12V or 120V Rivian supply?

My outings are typically 2-3 nights at a time. I’m rarely space limited because it’s just me. My coolers usually contain fresh meat and produce for cooking…and maybe a few cold beverages (I’m more of a bourbon guy). I’m trying to determine if the benefit justifies the cost ($1K+).

Recomended brand / models? Camp with it in your truck bed or backseat?

thanks for input!
I’ve yet to find anything that works well.

 

DJG

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Please excuse the elementary questions, but want to better understand the need for external battery.

Q1: If I’m running electric cooler from Rivian 12V plug, do I run risk of draining the R1 12V battery regardless of SOC of battery cells? Does Rivian throw a warning light if 12V battery starts running low?

Q2: If I run electric cooler from Rivian 120V outlet, is the SOC all that I have to be concerned about?

Q3: I assume if I’m able to keep Rivian plugged into L2 charger at campground, then all of this is a moot point?

Thanks for sharing intel…very helpful.
1. Most decent fridges have battery protection features built in that will shut themselves off if they see a voltage drop in the source battery. In the Rivian case, the 12v is backed up by the main battery, so you don't have this risk anyway (unless the entire vehicle battery is drained of course.

2. Yes, though it should be pointed out that a) 120v will use more power than 12v regardless of source and b) having outlets on in the Rivian requires other systems to also remain on, which multiples the total power usage. So in order of most efficient power usage, it would be 1) 12v from external battery 2) 110/120 from external battery 3) 12v in Rivian 4) 110/120 in Rivian.

3. Yes, that is basically correct. Plugged into a L2 outlet, you can run the fridge, sleep in the car with HVAC, cook meals with induction, run blenders, etc. etc. and you'll add more charge than you'll use.
 

NY_Rob

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My Dometic CFX40 is a total game changer!!!! And not just for camping! .... It’s great for those Costco/grocery runs.
Thank you!!

My wife called me nuts when I put it in the back of the i3 during the summer when going grocery shopping. I knew we needed ice cream that trip and it was 90F outside (and even hotter inside the car).. .why should I have "ice soup" by the time we get home when I can set the cooler at 0F and keep the ice cream in pristine condition till we get home?

I also keep it next to the "chefs table" when we BBQ.. it holds the essentials like tequila, beer, wine coolers... fillets, sausages, etc... you know, the "must have" stuff the BBQ chef needs to keep happy while slaving over a hot BBQ for the party guests 😁
 

Singletracker

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Thank you!!

My wife called me nuts when I put it in the back of the i3 during the summer when going grocery shopping. I knew we needed ice cream that trip and it was 90F outside (and even hotter inside the car).. .why should I have "ice soup" by the time we get home when I can set the cooler at 0F and keep the ice cream in pristine condition till we get home?

I also keep it next to the "chefs table" when we BBQ.. it holds the essentials like tequila, beer, wine coolers... fillets, sausages, etc... you know, the "must have" stuff the BBQ chef needs to keep happy while slaving over a hot BBQ for the party guests 😁
Yup. it’s also nice that you can hit the grocery store, then stop by the hardware store or wherever, on the way home, without worrying about that ice cream melting 👍 I camp a lot. I‘ve had my Dometic for several years and can’t begin to imagine how much time and money I have saved, not having to buy ice all the time.
 

NY_Rob

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Yup. it’s also nice that you can hit the grocery store, then stop by the hardware store or wherever, on the way home, without worrying about that ice cream melting 👍 I camp a lot. I‘ve had my Dometic for several years and can’t begin to imagine how much time and money I have saved, not having to buy ice all the time.
Funny you mention that... because rather than racing home like a mad man to prevent the ice cream from melting.. we made two other stops on our way home that afternoon. Much more relaxing....
 


Singletracker

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Funny you mention that... because rather than racing home like a mad man to prevent the ice cream from melting.. we made two other stops on our way home that afternoon. Much more relaxing....
👍
 

NY_Rob

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Wouldn't be surprised to see some of the coolers go on sale this Black Friday..
 

mini2nut

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Australian ARB coolers are supposedly the Rolex of the bunch. You do pay a heftier price however.
 
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ORFynder

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Costco has one. I’ve used it for several years with no issues. Works wonderful. Nothing like your food not getting soggy from melted ice and it always being cold. It was less than the comparable Yeti cooler.
I got a Massimo Electric Cooler at Costco for $230. I know its not better then most of the coolers on this thread but if I have any issues I know I can always return to Costco for a refund at anytime
 

Madsen203

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I got a Massimo Electric Cooler at Costco for $230. I know its not better then most of the coolers on this thread but if I have any issues I know I can always return to Costco for a refund at anytime
This is what I had and used for years. There is a video on alipcoolers on how to tune the settings so you can adjust accuracy of thermostat, change swing temps, etc. fantastic value overall. Uses about 50wh of energy so on a large battery, it can last a day or two without significant impact. A small solar panel charger means it can run indefinitely camping with minimal sun.
 


crashmtb

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Oh, it says electric coolers. I was going to say I didn’t think this isn’t that kind of forum
 

jemkewl

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We've used a Massimo electric cooler for years (was a great deal on Costco).

We always power it with a portable lifepo4 battery or a 120watt portable solar panel.

It is primarily used for groceries and the like - allows us to not have to go straight home after hitting the store with the kids.
 

 
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