About Engel Coolers / FAQs

Who is Engel Coolers?

The original and still the best, Engel Coolers are the gold standard in high-performance, durable and affordable coolers. For the past 56 years, people who’ve needed to keep things cold have turned to Engel, the pioneer in portable refrigeration and cooling. Born in Japan in 1962, Engel started the portable AC/DC fridge freezer business, brought our innovative products to the US in 1999, invented and perfected the high-performance rotationally molded (rotomolded) cooler and holds the design patent for said coolers. All other rotomolded coolers are based on Engel. They saw our products at a boat show and loved the design and process so much that they decided to make their own.

Engel Innovation

  • 1962


    Over fifty six years ago Sawafuji Electric Co. Ltd in Japan invented the world’s first 12 Volt DC compressor. They proceeded to develop this into the worlds’ most durable freezer compressor, used to power the Engel Portable fridge-freezer we know today. From its early beginnings in the 1960's this unit has evolved into a powerful and efficient cooling unit. This is the only compressor of its type in the world.

  • 1999


    Founder and CEO, Paul Kabalin launched the Engel brand into the USA market.

  • 2004


    We launched the UltraCool fiberglass coolers which had a marine gel-coat finish, and thick polyurethane foam, which could retain ice for over a week.

  • 2005


    We launched first generation roto molded UltraCool coolers in the USA.

  • 2005


    Our compact groundbreaking cooler/dry boxes are perfect for keeping food fresh, for storing sensitive electrical equipment, cameras, medical supplies or safety equipment. They float and can be used as a ditch bag.

  • 2007


    Engel Original High Performance CoolerPaul Kabalin designed and patented a new one piece Roto high performance cooler, the first of its type in the U.S. Featuring ice retention of up to 10 days and a rugged, adventure ready build, it became an instant classic.

  • 2008


    Shortly after we displayed our ground breaking newly designed coolers, others followed. So far we have seen 60 brands enter this market segment. None have matched our balance in performance and our diversity of features.
  • 2015


    Our Cooler BackPacks are engineered to withstand harsh use on land or sea. Rugged, tear-resistant and waterproof, these backpack coolers go anywhere.

  • 2015


    Taking advantage of the latest vacuum technology, these stainless steel, vacuum insulated mugs offer the first truly leak proof lid - that the market wanted.

  • 2018


    Engel launches the HD30 high performance soft sided coolers. They are the easiest and widest opening cooler featuring patent pending Vacuum Valve Technology – which greatly increases performance.


What Products does Engel Offer?

Rotomolded Hard Coolers

Heavy Duty Hard CoolerThe best way to measure the effectiveness of a cooler is how long it keeps ice. Most Engel Hard Coolers retain ice up to 10 days. This is due not only to the rotomolded construction, but to the fact that there is a full two inches of insulation in the lid, the sides and the bottom, as well as the silicone gaskets that create a nearly airtight seal. Whereas other companies use low-cost, therefore more brittle, rubber for their gaskets. Additionally, Engel’s latch system is like no other, using easy open and close compression latches in rubber or optional stainless steel, creating an air tight seal –with less loss of cold – than other latches. Another benefit is that the proprietary weight disbursement system allowing you to stand on the cooler.


Our hard coolers come in a variety of sizes: anything from a cooler that will keep your six-pack cold and your snacks fresh to one that will hold your fresh catch during a deep-sea fishing excursion.


Soft Sided Coolers

Lightweight Soft CoolerThese are not your big box store soft-sided coolers. Engel Cooler Backpacks are engineered to withstand harsh use on land or sea. They feature a rugged, tear-resistant 500-denier polyester diamond rip stop outer shell with a waterproof TPE coating for easy cleaning.


Engel’s high-performance HD30 soft bag features patent pending vacuum valve technology, easy access zipper and a shoulder strap.


What separates the ENGEL soft-sided cooler from the competition is the fact that the ENGEL HD-30 is entirely welded while most of its counterparts are sewn. By welding all seams, warm air is kept out, dramatically increasing the life of the ice or ice packs inside. The welded seams ensure there will be no air or water leaks, and allows the soft-sided HD-30 to keep beverages cold for up to 4 days in 90° temperatures, according to an independent review. The HD-30 boasts an outer shell composed of durable 840 denier fibers that provide maximum strength and abrasion resistance. The front and back side are laminated with a Thermal Plastic Urethane (TPU) film adding another layer of strength and puncture resistance.


Drybox Coolers

Storage Drybox CoolerWhen you need to keep things dry, cold, hot or all three, Engel lightweight, airtight, insulated dryboxes are the perfect choice. Even if you’re using ice and some melts and the drybox tips over in your car, there won’t be any mess to clean up. The airtight gasket keeps hot air out and cold air (and ice!) in. These dry boxes are available in 7.5, 13, 19 and 30 quart capacities, and are waterproof to a depth of 3 feet. They are ideal for keeping food fresh for the day, storing sensitive electrical equipment, cameras, medical supplies or safety equipment. They float and can be used as a ditch bag.


12 Volt Fridge Freezers

12 Volt Portable Fridge FreezerWhen you’re on the road, you shouldn’t have to be concerned about ice melting or game spoiling and, with Engel Fridge Freezers you won’t have to be. Engel fridge freezers are the most energy efficient auto-switching AC/DC portable fridge freezers on the market. For nearly 50 years, travelers have relied on Engel to keep things cold when they’re on the move.


Performance Drinkware & Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Tumblers

Stainless Steel TumblerTaking advantage of the latest vacuum technology, Engel’s stainless steel, insulated performance mugs perform better than any other competitor on the market. Just like our award-winning coolers, we have thought of every detail to make these the highest quality possible –from the non-slip rubber base to the spill-proof screw in lid. Whether you want to keep your morning coffee hot on your morning commute or keep your libations cold while enjoying that outdoor concert, this is your mug.


How are Engel Coolers Made

Tell Me More about Rotomolding

Rotational molding, or rotomolding, is a manufacturing process where plastics are inserted into a heated, hollow mold that rotates. Once inserted into the rotational molding machine, the plastic is heated to the point that it softens. As the machine rotates it causes the plastic to disperse evenly into the mold. Once this process is completed, the molded plastic is steadily cooled so that the new form can solidify and take on its intended shape.  This process creates a seamless frame which is then filled with closed cell insulation for the ultimate cold retention. This is what allows Engel hard coolers to hold their ice for up to 10 days.


Tell Me about Injection Molding

Injection molding is a process by which molten material is injected into a mold. The material is first fed into a heated barrel, mixed and injected, or forced, into a mold cavity where it cools and hardens in the shape of the mold. At Engel we use this process to manufacture our drybox coolers and bait wells. These are airtight and lightweight. We consider these day coolers and they won’t hold their ice for much longer than that. Their ice retention would be comparable to a basic Coleman or disposable Styrofoam cooler.

Bear Resistant Cooler

How Strong are Engel Hard Coolers?

Our rotomolded hard coolers are so strong that each one is a Certified Bear Resistant Container. This distinction is bestowed by the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee (IGBC). We think being bear-resistance makes these coolers the strongest on the market.


What does “bear resistant” mean?

The Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee (IGBC) was formed in 1983 to help ensure recovery of viable grizzly bear populations and their habitats in the lower 48 states through interagency coordination of policy, planning, management, and research. IGBC-certified containers are those that meet food storage regulations on National Forests in grizzly bear habitat.

Engel Rotomolded Hard Coolers are products that meet those IGBC bear-resistant design and structural standards.


Note: To be certified bear-resistant, it is critical that padlocks are placed through both Duralock Security holes to lock your cooler shut.

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