Practical Motorhome's test team reviews the 32-litre Thermos Weekend to see if this is the perfect camping accessory for your motorhome holidays

Overview

We've been busy testing a lot of passive coolboxes for Practical Motorhome to find out which chillers are thrillers on tour. After all, we don't want to ruin our campervan and motorhome holidays with lukewarm lager, simmering cola and white hot wine!

Most motorhomes come with a fridge on board, but there's never quite enough fridge space for everything, is there? That's where a coolbox comes into its own – whether you use it for booze, soft drinks or a lovely fresh picnic on the beach. 

We took a group of coolers and opened them up in a warm room. Once they were all at the same room temperature, we filled them to 5% of each one's capacity with ice packs. We popped the lids on and left them for eight hours, taking their temperatures regularly to see how well insulated they are. 

Recent improvements in thermal foam have enhanced the efficiency of passive coolboxes – the ones that you fill with ice, or with ice blocks. It's a tried and tested method of keeping food and drinks cool on holiday. 

The 32-litre Thermos Weekend is in line with most boxes in our test in that it accommodates two-litre bottles. While most coolboxes are tall and narrow, The Thermos Weekend cooler has a more regular shape. Thermos managed this by manufacturing a coolbox lid that is incredibly thin in the middle, but it doesn’t take a genius to tell you that thin panels reduce thermal efficiency.

In fairness, though, this coolbox performed better than we’d expected. The minimum temperature was 15.3˚C below ambient room temperature (27°C), but it didn’t last long. The average temperature rose to 17.3˚C less than room temperature. The rival, the Campingaz Icetime is similarly priced, but performed better and is better built.

The dimensions of this coolbox are 45cm (h) x 46cm (w) x 25cm (d). In addition, it meets and exceeds the standard EN12546-2:2000. 

Funnily enough, it's not just the coolboxes that have raised their game recently. Of course you can still buy the normal blue ice packs from any camping accessory shop, hardware store or supermarket (in summer), and you can also do the job with actual ice cubes or blocks. However there's now a fresh new product to try in your coolbox.

Techniice sheets are gel-filled bags that make it easy to distribute the cold throughout the coolbox. Place one for every seven litres of storage volume. Three reusable sheets cost £25.

In the Practical Motorhome group coolbox product test, we also reviewed the Igloo Sportsman and the Igloo Island Breeze, two coolboxes from Waeco, the 42-litre Cool-Ice and the smaller, 22-litre Cool-Ice, as well as the Coleman Xtreme3

Technical specs

Dimensions (cm)45 (h) x 46 (w) x 25 (d)

Verdict

To sum up, the Thermos Weekend coolbox has a capacity of 32 litres, with room to stand a two-litre bottle upright. It's light and durable, with an integrated handle that locks into place for added security. It has Polystyrene insulation to keep your food and drinks fresh.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Its thermal efficiency impressed
  • Two-litre bottles can be accommodated
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