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Old 10-08-2013, 09:55   #1
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Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

Heading off on a 6 week adventure on east coast. Our J100 is only outfitted with 2 coolers. Thinking of upgrading to the Yeti cooler since we burn through ice. That said I saw (a rather pricey) ac powered cooler that also uses a portable solar panel. Any experience with either??
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Old 10-08-2013, 10:04   #2
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

Igloo just came out with a new line of coolers that have thicker insulation than the yeti's at 2/3 the price. If you can afford it and have the 12V power available I'd still go with a 12V fridge like an engel.
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Old 10-08-2013, 10:42   #3
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

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Originally Posted by susswein View Post
Igloo just came out with a new line of coolers that have thicker insulation than the yeti's at 2/3 the price. If you can afford it and have the 12V power available I'd still go with a 12V fridge like an engel.
Recommend the Engel too!
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Old 10-08-2013, 10:58   #4
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

You must be able to replace the amps a fridge sucks up. If you are not equipped for that..... just go with a good cooler, dry ice if you can get it. I imagine even the great Engle is going to take 50-70 amps a day...? You dont want to spend your vacation "bowing to the refrigeration/recharging gods".... you can get ice along teh way if you must right?
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Old 11-08-2013, 05:54   #5
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

Get dry ice. Leave it in bags. Line bottom of cooler with dry ice. Put wet ice over, leaving it in bags. Also use frozen water jugs. Put food on top. Keep drinks in one cooler, food in another.
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Old 11-08-2013, 06:29   #6
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
You must be able to replace the amps a fridge sucks up. If you are not equipped for that..... just go with a good cooler, dry ice if you can get it. I imagine even the great Engle is going to take 50-70 amps a day...? You dont want to spend your vacation "bowing to the refrigeration/recharging gods".... you can get ice along teh way if you must right?
In refrigerator mode our Engel 45 would usually use less than 20 amps per 24 hours.
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Old 12-08-2013, 20:38   #7
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In refrigerator mode our Engel 45 would usually use less than 20 amps per 24 hours.
Wow. Engels definitely seem sweet. Need to do our daily meal plan tomorrow to sway the final call. Awesome input everyone
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Old 13-08-2013, 03:57   #8
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We ran our edgestar 64. on our old mono for 3 days straight off a crappy old deep cycle. Kept it at about 29. With no re charge. You could 6 or 7 days if you turned it off each night. A cooler yeti or other will not provide anywhere near in hot climates.
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Old 13-08-2013, 21:06   #9
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

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Originally Posted by susswein View Post
Igloo just came out with a new line of coolers that have thicker insulation than the yeti's at 2/3 the price. If you can afford it and have the 12V power available I'd still go with a 12V fridge like an engel.
The igloo coolers for a 50 were 350.00 at west marine. But my max size is 40. or roughly 25 inches wide. We put one on each side. i think the yeti is the only option for us... Unless of course we stick with out traditional ones and just suck it up buying ice non-stop...
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Old 13-08-2013, 22:04   #10
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

jb, if you invest in the best insulated coolers that you can and load up on dry ice, that's probably the best way for you to go. Or at least, block ice from bait shops, which lasts at least 3x-4x longer than cubes.

A solar powered cooler might keep things cooler longer on any given day, but I wouldn't expect it to do a lot of good or to help overnight. I'd try to plan the trip with less need for "cold" anything if possible.

For cold drinks, get a mesh bag. Put the cans or bottles in, lower over the side, and there's usually cold water some where below 10-20' under a thermocline. You'd be surprised how quickly that can chill the drinks, well enough to keep everyone happy.
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Old 14-08-2013, 08:57   #11
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Re: Yeti or portable mini fridge? Any solar options?

We carry a Yeti on the stern. It is absolutely unbelievable. It will keep a cooler full of beer, water and soft drinks in ice for 4 to 5 days! I will never carry an Igloo again. They are junk. The trick with the Yeti is to ice everything down the day before we depart and then re ice the morning we are leaving and it will hold for days and days (out in the Caribbean sun).
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