It’s hard to get excited about a cooler. It’s a plastic bland box pulled out in the summer months for days out, camping trips and short breaks. It’s much easier to get excited about cold beer, crisp salads, milk and meat that hasn’t gone off and our highest priority of all, insulin that hasn’t denatured in the middle of a holiday tens or hundreds of miles away from the spares in the fridge at home.
We’ve been traveling with the Powerbox plus for the last couple of months and although temperatures haven’t soared, there has been days warm enough to start testing out a prospective cooler. It’s performed very well. It was great to open up a cold beer on arrival at our destination when temperatures reached the mid-twenties and as a bonus, have chilled meats and non-limp salads ready for dinner without having to hit the nearest shop first.
We find a cooler indispensable in the summer months. We cook fresh ingredients when camping and preferred isolated spots with no electric hook-up. We also pack our own ingredients for short-breaks and days out to limit time spent food shopping on holiday. The Powerbox Plus has definitely made our lives easier. The 28L size is small enough to easily fit in the car, yet large enough to store food for a few days. It plugs into the car whilst we’re driving and on arrival, it’s easy to unpack food into a fridge thanks to its wide opening lid. If there isn’t a fridge, it could be plugged into a wall-socket – great for hotel rooms and budget accommodation with no kitchen.
It’s obviously built to last with attention to small, important details, like a lid that is at an angle that helps prevent the cooler from falling over when empty. I’m still not enthralled by something as bland as a cooler, but when I look at the Powerbox Plus I think about fresh food, cold beer and cool back-up insulin. Arriving late on a Friday in Dorset, having braved the weekend traffic, I just want to get down to the beach for a walk, not a trek through the local supermarket (the local farm shops are long closed) or food hunt in the small, local convenience shop that rarely stocks fresh food. Recommended.
Price: ± £ 86
Included: 12V car power cable and 240V mains power cable.
Campingaz is a French company founded in 1943 that focused on selling mixed butane and propane in disposable cans for camping and caravaning. They expanded and became one of the biggest names in Europe. They expanded in the accessories to go with the cans – cookers, lanterns, heaters and then into other camping gear like sleeping bags. They were acquired by Coleman in 1996 and continue to be one of the largest brands on the continent.
The Powerbox Plus is an active cooler that can be plugged into a 12V car plug-in or a 230V electrical outlet. It has a high build quality insulted with injected PU foam and it has an antimicrobial liner that restricts the growth of mould and mildew and blocks unpleasant odours. The cooler has a secure seal and the hinged lid opens wide for easy access.
- Keep contents at 18˚C below the ambient temperature.
- Four modes. Off, Night (less noise), Eco and Max mode
- Antimicrobial Liner
Product dimensions (external): 41 x 31 x 47 cm
Capacity: 28 litres
Item Weight (empty): 3.8kg
Colour: Grey with white internal and blue handle
Power: 12V or 230V wall outlet
Performance: 18 degrees below ambient
Decibel rating: 37db on low
Energy rating: A (117kW/h/annum)
Product Energy Specifications
Acoustic emissions in dB (A): 36 dB(A) re 1pW
Made in Italy
We based our Ergohacks Verdict on 4 weeks of tinkering, testing and using the Powerbox Plus provided by Campingaz. This article was first published on 5 May 2017.