DeWalt 65-Quart Cooler, 5-Gallon Water Cooler, and Tumblers Review
When DeWalt contacted us about reviewing some of their new rotomolded coolers, we reached for some ice. They sent us a sampling which included a DeWalt 65-quart cooler, a 5-gallon water cooler, and a stainless steel tumbler. We had already used a 10-quart insulated lunch box cooler, and it was nice to experiment with some of the other models.
- Attractive look and feel
- Well-thought-out features
- Durable handles and straps
- Excellent available sizes and options
- Expensive (as are most rotomolded coolers)
10-Second SummaryThese DeWalt coolers offer just as much cooling capacity and capabilities as the big dogs, but with a look that turns heads. Pricing varies depending upon the retailer, so keep your eyes open for deals. The hardware is solid, though long-term testing is needed for determining whether the hinges and latches will hold up to constant use. Certainly, the outer shell is among the toughest we’ve seen.
Dewalt 65-quart Lunchbox Cooler
The Dewalt 65-quart cooler certainly grabs your eye. Yellow and black seem to be a favorite on some job sites—but it also turns heads while tailgating. Aside from the colors, however, this DeWalt-branded cooler has some excellent features. It also did a great job in our ice retention testing.
Build Quality and Durability
While Dewalt built these rotomolded coolers to be durable, they didn’t seem to waste a ton of space. It fits perfectly into a small boat or SUV. And, of course, it fits nicely into the back of a work truck—even one with a Peragon tonneau cover. It’s a great all-around size for having around the house for hurricane prep or using at picnics or outdoor events. The perimeter around the storage space doesn’t extend outward as much as the Otterbox Venture 65 cooler. We like the more optimized structure.
The handles are sturdy and stiff. Extra-long nylon straps give you enough maneuverability to pick up the cooler and transport it to and from your truck or SUV.
Solid Gasket Seal & Latches
A raised lip and nice rubberized gasket ensure a tight fit to keep contents cooler for longer. It works similarly to any freezer or ice chest.
The hard plastic cam latches mate to a soft rubber hinge. This allows for easy latching and unlatching to open and close the lid. It feels like it should hold up over time. If a weak point exists, it’s the base of the soft rubber hinge. Several brands use these style latches, however, and they seem to do well.
DeWalt doesn’t claim these coolers are bear-resistant. However, we don’t see how a bear could possibly smell anything inside or gain access to the contents.
DeWalt also built-in two cup holders on top. These shallow holders work well and support anything from cans and bottles to large 30-ounce tumblers.
Of course, we can’t overlook the integrated bottle opener—a primary feature if we ever saw one.
On the right side of the DeWalt 65-quart cooler, you have a pull-chain style capture that attaches to the inner drain plug. This works nicely to keep that plug from disappearing on you. As a bonus, you can also remove the outer plug, letting you drain the cooler very quickly.
Ice retention was decent on this cooler. Expect to see 3-4 days of potential cooling depending upon what you place inside and how often you open the chest. In our testing, we filled it with around 50 pounds of ice and dropped in some cold (not frozen) beverages. We then placed the DeWalt 65 qt cooler in our shop for several days, opening it once a day to check the ice. After 24 hours, you can see the ice begin to pull back some from the sides. Keep in mind, we were not using any of the optional ice packs.
On the sides, DeWalt provided rail attachment system. Presumably, this could work with an optional side table, seat-back, or additional cup-holders. No current accessories exist for these, but they look almost identical in shape and size to the Orion 65 cooler.
While DeWalt doesn’t include an internal tray or basket, you can pick one up for around $15. Also available are cutting board dividers ($30) and ice packs ($20 each) that secure to the top of the lid. You can pick up the 65-Quart Cooler for $299.99. Here’s how the DeWalt 65-quart cooler stacks up compared to some other brands:
- RTIC 65: $259.99
- Pelican 70QT Elite (larger model): $359.95
- DeWalt 65-Quart Lunch Box Cooler: $299.99
- Otterbox Venture 65: $349.99
- Yeti Tundra 65: $349.99
- Orca 75 (larger model): $316.89
- Orion 65: $499.00
DeWalt 5-gallon Water Cooler
Like the DeWalt 65-quart cooler, the DeWalt 5-gallon water cooler uses a nice gasket seal to keep your drinks cool. While you could technically use this container for cold storage, the design seems to be for serving cold water or other beverages.
The push valve on the bottom uses a rubberized central button. The size and ergonomics make it simple to use—much easier than a standard plastic spout. The unique design allows a significant amount of water to flow smoothly from the spout. It also seals back up quickly once you release the button. Insulation is reduced around the spout, so expect some condensation.
The cam latches on the DeWalt 5-gallon water cooler are plastic, but they feel secure. Plastic ensures the main latches won’t oxidize over time, and our experience with this style has been very successful over several years now.
The water cooler uses a similar raised lip and gasket to the 65-quart cooler, providing a positive seal on the lid.
Expect much faster heat loss on this product vs. the standard coolers. You have less insulation. You can definitely get a full day or more of cooling, however, if your beverage has a sufficient amount of ice stored inside. If you can’t add ice, be sure to pick up one of the optional ice packs to attach to the lid.
Dewalt puts non-slip feet on the bottom of both the DeWalt drink cooler and the 65-quart cooler. They stick really well. In fact, I took both coolers, empty, in the back of my F-150 work truck to get ice. I didn’t baby my turns, starts, or stops. When I travel with empty 2.5-gallon Chlorine containers—they end up all over the back of my cab. To my surprise, the weight and “stickiness” of these coolers held them in place for the entire trip.
Like the other coolers, the DeWalt drink cooler seems tough. You should be able to sit on top of it without fear of caving in the lid. You can pick up the 5-gallon DeWalt water cooler for around $119.99.
Here’s how the DeWalt 5-gallon water cooler compares to other brands:
- Coleman 5-gal Beverage Cooler: $24.84
- Igloo 5-gal Seat Top Water Cooler: $29.95
- DeWalt 5-Gallon Water Cooler: $119.99
- Yeti 6-Gallon Water Cooler: $299.99
- Rubbermaid 5-gal Water Cooler: $29.96
- Gatorade 7-Gallon Cooler: $83.00
DeWalt Tumblers and More
While the two Dewalt coolers remained the star of the show, you can also pick up Dewalt drink tumblers. We got to sample a 20-ounce stainless steel Dewalt tumbler that works well for both hot or cold drinks. We liked the simple latch on the lid which closes off the top with a rubber seal. It prevents sloshing, but a small vent hole in the lid means you can’t expect to hold it upside down. That allows some steam to escape (and hot air to ingress). We kept a glass of ice water cold for well over 4 hours.