In the heat of summer, it’s tough to stay cool. Can you invest in a Lifetime Cooler Vs Ozark Trail? Which one is the better buy? Let’s compare features and benefits to see which option is best for you.
A lifetime cooler has a stainless steel exterior and interior walls, while an Ozark Trail has plastic exterior and interior walls with metal liners. Lifetime offers insulation on all six sides so that cold air stays inside while hot air stays out, but the design of Ozark Trail means there are four cold-air inlets on one side only.
Now, let start with the post below!
Lifetime Coolers vs Ozark Trail: Which Cooler Is Better Value For Money?
Two of the best premium coolers available are the Ozark Trail and Lifetime Coolers. They are both available at Walmart for an affordable price, but which cooler offers the best value for money?
Because they are frequently on sale, Lifetime coolers tend to be cheaper than Ozark Trail coolers. However, Ozark Trail coolers can be roto-molded, making them more durable than Lifetime coolers that are blow-molded.
Both coolers have similar ice retention and features, but they also have their problems. It comes down to personal preference as to which cooler is best suited for you. For me, Lifetime coolers are my favorite.
This article will examine the differences and similarities between the Lifetime and Ozark Trail coolers. It will help you choose which cooler to invest your money in if any.
Because they are roto-molded, Ozark Trail coolers can withstand more abuse than Lifetime coolers. Lifetime coolers are blow-molded.
This means that Ozark Trail coolers are made of thicker plastic, which makes them more durable and less likely to be broken. While Ozark Trail coolers are stronger (they can withstand bear attacks), they are not as durable as Ozark Trail coolers.
The bear tested the cooler and ripped a large hole. This would not be possible with a rotomolded cooler.
Even though they are tough enough to take on almost any challenge, lifetime coolers can still handle it. Ozark Trail coolers are probably a little more difficult, but it’s not by much.
Ozark coolers can also warp when exposed to the sun, according to some customers. Although this is not a major problem and is covered under warranty, it raises questions about the quality of their construction.
Features in Common
These coolers look very similar with only minor differences. They look very similar if you compare them side-by-side.
First, I will outline the positive features, and then we will look at the differences.
2-3 Inches of Insulation
Each cooler has around 2 inches of insulation in its walls and 2-3 inches of insulation in its lid. They can keep ice longer than regular coolers because of this insulation.
These coolers have a rubber gasket around the lid. This seal helps keep warm air out and cold air inside the cooler. These coolers don’t have to be air-tight or leak-proof.
Rope Handles with Plastic Grips
Both coolers feature similar rope handles that have plastic grips and molded-in handles. Each brand’s smaller sizes have a pull-up metal handle with a rubber grip that allows for one-handed carrying.
Certified Bear Proof
These coolers can be locked with a padlock at the front to make them bear-proof. Bears will not be able to get inside these coolers when you go camping.
Built-in Bottle Opener
Although it is a minor feature, I find this to be a very valuable feature. Both coolers have a front lock that doubles as a bottle opener. These coolers will always have a bottle opener, so you don’t have to worry about not having one.
Hose-Compatible Drain Plug
Both coolers come with a hose-compatible drain plug. You can attach a drain plug to your cooler to drain it from your campsite without moving it. This is a great feature.
Both coolers come in a similar size range.
Lifetime offers a 28-Quart (55-Quart), 55-Quart (77-Quart), and 77-Quart.
Ozark has a 26-Quart (52-Quart), 73-Quart (73-Quart), and 52-Quart (53-Quart). Ozark also offers a 110-Quart size and a 60-Quart wheeled model.
Each cooler comes with a 5-year limited warranty. This warranty covers any defect the cooler might have.
If there is a problem within five years, notify the manufacturer and send you a replacement cooler.
These warranties do not cover normal wear and tear or damage to your cooler from an accident.
There has not been a direct comparison of the ice retention between the Lifetime cooler and the Ozark Trail cooler.
However, ice retention tests have been done on each one separately. It seems that the Lifetime coolers outperform the Ozark Trail coolers.
Below is a graphic that shows Lifetime’s test of their 55-Quart cooler compared to the Ozark Trail 52 Quart cooler.
They claimed that Ozark Trail held ice for only six days, 21hrs, while the Lifetime cooler held it for eight days, 7.5hrs.
The test was conducted by Lifetime and could have been biased. The 55-Quart Lifetime cooler has a larger capacity than the Ozark, so that it could have contained more ice. This would have skewed the results.
No matter what other tests have been done and customer reviews or reports, it seems that Lifetime will keep Ice slightly longer than Ozark coolers.
The coolers are nearly identical in price, but Lifetime coolers appear to be more affordable than Ozark Trail coolers.
Although the smaller 28-Quart sizes are very similar in price, the Lifetime 55 is under $100, while the Lifetime77 is slightly cheaper than the Ozark Trail.
This all depends on Walmart’s current price, which can change daily. Just a few days ago, Lifetime 77-Quart coolers weren’t on sale.
Sometimes, coolers from Ozark Trail are cheaper on Amazon than on Walmart’s website.
You can compare the prices of each cooler by linking up on Amazon and Walmart.
These coolers have a few unique features that make them stand out from one another. Although most of these features are not important, they can help you make a decision.
Both coolers feature pull-down rubber latches, but they work differently.
Ozark’s latches are designed to be pinned onto the cooler body and locked into place.
Lifetime’s latches offer a cam latch system that I love and find much easier to use.
The lids of Ozark Trail coolers are fitted with shallow cup holders.
My biggest complaint about my Yeti cooler, Lifetime, and Lifetime cup holders is that they don’t have them.
Ozark Trail is, in fact, the only rotomolded cooler that has cup holders in its lid. This is a very nice feature.
The Lid Ruler
Ozark coolers have a ruler built into the lid.
People fishing use this rule to measure their catch quickly. A nice little add-on.
The Ozark Trail coolers are available in two colors: a dark grey color with black accents and orange accents, or a white color and black and orange accents.
Lifetime coolers are only available in one color: grey with black and white accents.
Both coolers can have feet that are both anti-skid and easy to slide.
This is Lifetime all in one. The cooler’s anti-skid feet will work when it is horizontal. If the cooler is tilted, lift one end of the non-slip feet off the ground.
The Ozark Trail has a reversible, non-slip/slide foot. The feet must be manually removed, turned over, and re-screwed. It’s not something that you can do quickly, but it is possible to choose the type of feet you prefer.
Problems with Lifetime Coolers
Although I have written a detailed write-up about the problems with Lifetime coolers, I will also highlight the most important issues that you need to be aware of.
They aren’t as strong and leak-proof as other rotomolded coolers. The gaskets are often loose.
These coolers are also limited in size, do not come with wheels, and are only one color. These are minor issues, but they are still very affordable.
Problems with Ozark Trail Coolers
I have also written a detailed write-up about the problems with Ozark Trail coolers, but I will also highlight key issues.
Customers complaining of warping from the sun is the biggest problem. Although this is less noticeable when the cooler is moved into the shade, it can still cause warping.
The Ozark Trail doesn’t have as good an ice retention as other rotomolded coolers. Customers have mixed opinions about the Ozark Trail. Some say it works well, while others complain that it melts too quickly. These tips will help you keep your cooler ice colder longer.
What Cooler Do I Recommend?… Whichever One Is Cheapest
I find it almost impossible to recommend coolers that are so similar.
The main reason you would buy one of these coolers over a Yeti or another cooler like Yeti is the cost.
Premium coolers are the most expensive. I recommend Ozark and Lifetime as the best options.
Sometimes it will be Lifetime, sometimes Ozark Trail.
Both are very similar in performance, and you’ll be happy with both.
I don’t see any reason to choose one cooler over another. The Ozark Trail cooler is roto-molded, so it is stronger and more durable. It also has cup holders. The Lifetime cooler comes with slip/slide feet, which keeps the ice longer.
You will make the final decision.
The Best Places To Buy Ozark Trail and Lifetime Coolers
Lifetime and Ozark Trail coolers are often on sale, so it is worth looking for these coolers at the lowest price. These coolers can be purchased on sale for as low as $10-50, and the Lifetime 55 cooler is currently available at Walmart for less than $100.
Amazon and Walmart
Both coolers can be bought in-store at Walmart (if stocks are available) or online at Walmart.com.
They can also be purchased through Amazon, and the prices frequently change on both sites.
Therefore, I cannot say that Amazon is always more expensive or Walmart always is cheaper, as these things change from time to time.
You can find the price of each cooler on the following links. Then, you can choose the most affordable one.
Other Coolers Similar To Lifetime or Ozark Trail
Many coolers look like Lifetime and Ozark Trail, but I don’t think there is any other option that is as affordable that I feel comfortable recommending.
1. For The Smaller Size – Nash Sub Z Cooler
A Nash Sub Z cooler is a smaller cooler option. Although it is slightly more costly than Lifetime and Ozark, the Nash Sub Z cooler comes with a back support cushion.
This cooler has excellent ice retention and is one of my favorite small hard-sided coolers.
2. Even More Budget – Coleman Xtreme 5-Day Cooler
The Coleman Xtreme 5-Day cooler is a more affordable option.
It’s not roto-molded, and it lacks many of the Ozark and Lifetime features like rubber latches and gaskets. It can store ice for up five days and performs well as a cool.
This cooler is also half the cost, so it’s a great option if you want to save money.
3. More Expensive But Nicer – RTIC Coolers
An RTIC is a good option if you are looking for something more luxurious than the Ozark or Lifetime, but you don’t want it to cost as much as a Yeti.
These coolers are less expensive than Yeti, but they look almost identical and perform nearly as well. I recommend them because they make great coolers.
Is Ozark Trail cooler as good as Yeti?
The Ozark Trail coolers cost half as much as a Yeti cooler. They are also about half as expensive as Yeti coolers. However, they are not as good as Yeti coolers. There are still some good features, despite their shortcomings. This is a great choice for budget-conscious shoppers.
Are lifetime good coolers?
Lifetime’s 55-quart High-Performance Cooler, rated at five stars by customers, is larger than expected. It performs better than rotomolded coolers that can cost hundreds of dollars. … Bottom line: This cooler is a great middle-ground option that doesn’t break the bank.
How long does a lifetime cooler keep ice?
The Lifetime cooler is backed by a 5-year warranty, 7-day ice retention, and 60 cans of ice. It will outperform the rest.
Do Ozark Trail coolers leak?
The Ozark Trail Welded Cooler’s outer is water- and puncture-resistant with a leak-proof seal of 100%. … The exterior of the EVA-molded ice cooler features a waterproof, heavy-duty base, a zippered pocket, and a removable shoulder strap with a shoulder pad.
A hot summer can be a challenge for anyone. No matter how many cold beverages you consume, it’s always nice to have an extra cooler on hand in case someone else wants one or if the ice melts before your next trip out of town.
This post has given you some helpful information about buying coolers and ways to keep them chilled longer so that they last through any heatwave. Now it’s up to you! Which type of cooler are you going with? Let us know what your decision is in the comments below!
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