Updated April 2019
Rtic has been lurking horns with the Yeti for the cooler world supremacy. And if we’d personify the whole rivalry – it will be the Samsung vs iPhone?
Which is which then?
Well, I’d say Rtic coolers are Samsung and Yeti the iPhone. So that I don’t sound bias in any way, I’d like point out that Yeti filed a lawsuit against Rtic for design infringement of their drinkwares, and coolers both ( hard-sided and soft-sided). The company were forced to discontinue similar Yeti look alike. And that was similar to the iPhone and Samsung saga.
Don’t get me wrong here: I’m not on any side but the side. Both chests are excellent at some specific function. Stick around to the end before drawing to a conclusion.
- 1 RTIC VS Yeti Rotomolded Coolers – Head to Head Review
- 2 Rtic Vs Yeti – Soft Sided Coolers
- 3 RTIC Ice Chest Types & Sizes
- 3.1 RTIC 20
- 3.2 Key Features
- 3.3 RTIC 45
- 3.4 Key Features
- 3.5 Yeti 65
- 3.6 RTIC 65
- 3.7 Key Features
- 3.8 RTIC 110
- 3.9 Key features
- 3.10 RTIC 145
- 3.11 Key Features
- 3.12 RTIC Cooler PROS & CONS
- 3.13 YETI PROS & CONS
- 3.14 Key RTIC Features
- 3.15 Bear Proof & Integrated Locking System
- 3.16 Heavy Duty Rubber T-Latches
- 3.17 Molded Tie-Down Slots & Non-Slip Feet
- 3.18 No Sweat Exterior
- 3.19 Freezer Grade Gasket
- 3.20 Comfortable Carry Options
- 3.21 Efficient Drain Plug
- 3.22 No Fail Hinges
- 3.23 Some Key Things RTIC Should Have Done
- 3.24 Ice Retention: RTIC Vs Yeti
- 3.25 Size
- 3.26 Price
- 4 RTIC VS YETI – So Which is Better?
RTIC VS Yeti Rotomolded Coolers – Head to Head Review
Let’s take a look at a head to head comparison between the product on each party. So without further ado:
RTIC 20 Vs. Yeti Roadie
Yeti doesn’t disclose its actual cooler size, why? For marketing reasons. You can check out Yeti actual sizes here. But in this review, we’d make use of the actual capacities. How about that?
The RTIC 20 has the same capacity as the Yeti. Both are rotomolded built. However, the RTIC weighing 17.5 lbs tends to be heavier than Yeti weighs 15lbs.
Despite having the same quart size – the RTIC holds 24 cans while the Roadie comes short at 14 cans.
Well, concerning ice retention, some reviews have reported up to 4 days of ice retention using either the RTIC or Yeti. However, the ice retention range may vary in real life situations.
RTIC 45 Vs Yeti 45
The Rtic 45 has almost the same built as the Rtic 20. The size seems to be the biggest difference between the two lads. Rtic 45 has an increased ice performance – according to most reviews, you should expect nothing less than 5 ½ days of ice, while the Yeti 45 can give up to 5 days of ice, Rtic is the clear winner in the ice category.
Unlike Yeti, RTIC uses a quart as the measure of their cooler capacities. The RTIC 45 has a 45 quarts capacity, so the Yeti 45 is 45 quarts? No! It’s 37 quarts. This means the Rtic is slightly bigger than the Tundra 45.
The RTIC 45 weighs 25 lbs, and the Tundra 45 weighs 23 lbs. Considering the specs, it’ll be right to say RTIC coolers are heavier than Yeti. Of course, both ice chests are Rotomolded.
RTIC 65 Vs Yeti Tundra 65
The 65 is a medium cooler in the Rtic ranks. The 65
It can hold up to 64 cans, 70lbs of ice, 65 qt of water and 16.25 gallons of water differently. It comes in a 36.5 lbs weight which is bulkier than the Yeti 65 at 29lbs making it easier to lug around. Yeti 65 has limited space with just a 42 can capacity and 52 pounds of ice.
You may get confused why the Rtic cooler and Tundra 65 have the same name size, but the former tends to be bigger? You can read more about how Yeti sneakily hide their cooler actual sizes.
The ice life of the RTIC 65 is slightly better as users have reported a 8 days of ice.
RTIC 110 Vs Yeti Tundra 110
RTIC 110 is a large medium cooler that is loved by outdoor enthusiast for its durability and insulation, you can easily get up to 7 days of ice from this model. In terms of space, it has enough room to fit in 110 cans, 115lbs of ice, 110 qts of water and 27.5 gallons of water respectively.
- Construction: Rotomolded
- Capacity: 110 quarts
- Weight: 48.5 lbs
- Ice life: 10 ½ days – 11 days
Yeti 110 can accomodate up to 74 Cans and 90lbs of ice. It weighs 39lbs when empty meaning it is easy to haul than the RTIC 110. It has thick walls that retain ice for long periods. Surely a type of cooler you’d want to have on your adventure.
- Construction: Rotomolded
- Capacity: 92 quarts
- Outside: 18 1/8” × 20” × 37 1/2”
- Inside: 10 7/8” × 14 3/4” × 29 3/8”
- Weight: 39 lbs
- Ice life: 10 days
Rtic Vs Yeti – Soft Sided Coolers
Believe it or not, Rtic and Yeti soft-sides are undoubtedly the envy of all soft-sided coolers on the market.
Although both soft packs are known for their ice retention, they can’t replace rotomolded coolers. For personal and short use, soft-sides provide more portability and mobility. Aside that, if you need large capacity, ice retention and long-lasting build – Rotomolded coolers are the way to go.
Shape: Rtic has a cube-shaped design with a flip lid for all the soft coolers in their ranks. On the other hand, Yeti hopper has a slim handbag shape with the zippers replacing the lid.
Carry Options: The Hopper features side handles and a shoulder strap, while the Rtic soft sides have two straps ( on the side and in the front which allows being picked up like a handbag).
Rtic Soft Pack 20 vs Hopper Flip
Small things come in big packages, and this statement holds true soft-sided coolers on the Rtic and Yeti product line. The Hopper 20 and Softpak 20 utilize a hard shell material on the exterior; the result is a non-sweating and puncture resistant cooler bag. Unlike other soft bags, this one’s won’t give in to tears.
Talking about capacity, the softpak 20 can hold up to 20 cans, while Yeti sits with a deficient of two (18). Everything is pretty much the same except for the lid closure type – the Hopper utilize a zipper, while the Rtic has a flip-lid.
Rtic SoftPak 30 Vs Yeti Hopper Two 30
The Softpak 30 has a 30 can capacity and 30lbs of ice. It is extremely light when empty weighing just 3lbs compared to the Hopper Two 30 5.5lbs when empty. Hopper Two 30 features a 23 can capacity and 28 pounds of ice respectively.
The capacity of mid-range Yeti and Rtic soft-sides have a bump in size capacity. As you’d expect the Rtic has more can capacity at 30, while the Yeti hopper can hold up to 24. However, both coolers will have the same ice capacity at 30 pounds.
RTIC Ice Chest Types & Sizes
The RTIC ice chests come in different shapes and sizes. With hard-sided and soft-sided coolers on their sleeves, users will have a lot of alternatives for every outing.
|Size (Quarts)||Capacity||Suggested Uses|
|20||5.5 gallons||Days out/ personal use|
|45||11.25 gallons||Camping/ Picnics/commuting|
|65||16.25 gallons||Overnight trips/weeklong trips/ camping/hunting|
|110||27.5 gallons||long hours of Hunting/tailgating/ fishing|
|145||36.25 gallons||Extended – camping trips/ offshore fishing/hunting etc|
There’s much more than meets the eye with this two. To get a clear picture of their strengths and weaknesses, we’d make a comparison of similar products from each brand juxtaposed in a review.
The RTIC 20 is the smallest cooler in the bunch. Considering the compact size, it’s excellent as a personal cooler. For users that are curious to know the actual size in quarts – the RTIC 20 is 22 quarts and can store up to 24 cans and ice. Besides, it weighs 17.5 lbs and also holds up 25 pounds of ice and 5.5 gallons.
Rotationally build to stand harsh environments, it includes 3 inches of insulation walls, meaning not only is protection guaranteed but ice retention as well. The manufacturers boast of 10 days of ice; however, some reviews have revealed 4 days in real life situations.
As I’ve mentioned above, the cooler is small, hence limits the space to store drinks, beverage, and food. But It’s an excellent companion for fishing, kayaking, picnic, tailgating and much more.
- 24 cans
- 22 quarts
- 25 pounds of ice
- 5.5 gallons
- Weight: 17.5 lbs
- Colors: White, Blue, Tan.
If I’m not mistaken, the Rtic 45 is the most popular choice based on reviews. Again, with the same features as the Rtic 20, the cooler provides more storage space for items. The Rtic 45 is engineered to be stronger than most coolers; the lid is hard and integrates a bench/cutting board.
Although the ice chest is a bit bigger, it will fit in perfectly into small spaces and various activities; fishing, tailgating, kayaking – name it.
Just weighing 25 pounds when empty, it’s a breeze to carry the cooler. It can hold up to 36 cans and 40 pounds of ice.
- 36 cans
- 45 quarts
- 40 pounds of ice
- 11.25 gallons
- Weight: 25.0 lbs
- Colors: White, Blue, Tan
Just like the other Yeti coolers, the Tundra 65 is Rotomolded. The thick walls, tight gasket and lid closure gives an incredible 7 days of ice. You’d be
We are getting to the large coolers category and trust me; it can only get better. If you want to go for that big hunt, fishing or camping, This 65 quarts cooler will cater all your needs. Also, it holds up to 64 cans and enough space for ice.
The RTIC 65 weighs 36 lbs which makes it a bit easy for an individual to carry it around. However, if you don’t lift weights, you may need a hand to raise it. Sure this cooler is for the populace, people going for extended trips will like this large chest.
- 64 cans
- 65 quarts
- 16.25 gallons
- Weight: 36.5 lbs
A giant cooler is ideal for anything from an extended camping trip to fishing and tailgating. The RTIC 110 is well suited to hold substantial amount of drinks and will have plenty of storage space for your lunch, snacks, and beverage.
Quite gigantic, this 110 quarts chest can hold up to 110 cans. If you want to fill it with ice, you will be able to stash in 115 pounds of ice, While the whole size can take up to 27.5 gallons.
- 110 cans
- 110 quarts
- 115 pounds of ice
- 27.5 gallons
- Weight: 48.5 lbs
- Colors: White, Blue
If your trip is for a week or more, we recommend the RTIC 145 cooler. In space and ice retention, this ice chest is up to the task.
With a 145 quarts capacity, you can store 145 cans. When empty – the cooler holds 155 pounds of ice and 36.25 gallons respectively.
Despite the size, this cooler can hold ice for a week.
Weighing in at 59.5 lbs, you can’t lift the cooler alone unless you get a helping hand. However, for those of you that built in the gym, it will be easy as pie to carry the cooler but you’ll lack the convenience to hold on to it for long.
- Capacity: 145 quarts
- Can separately hold: 155 pounds and 36.25 Gallons
- Weight: 59.5 lbs
- Colors: White
RTIC Cooler PROS & CONS
Long Ice Period – This is where I feel the RTIC has a great edge over the Yeti. In fact, their rotomolded coolers are likely among the Top 3 longest ice retaining coolers. The insulation is engineered to retain ice and that’s exactly what you get. You can have more than 7 days of ice provided you pack the cooler properly, use quality ice packs and you don’t leave in out in the sun for a beat down.
Price – The famous RTIC motto over price not overbuilt was a dig at their main competitors Yeti. Yeti are known for their steep cooler prices and RTIC has taken no time to produce coolers that are half as cheap and offer the same performance. We have to give them props for this.
Sleek Design – Although RTIC coolers are copy cats to Yeti. They are produced with every intent to make you love it at first sight. It is designed with great attention to detail and the result is a rotomolded cooler that retains ice incredibly well and sleek aesthetics. The body is slim, and not as bulky compared to other rotomolded coolers.
Handy Features – RTIC boasts of ample features for its price. Featuring all the essentials like integrated locking system, rotomolded construction, heavy duty handles, and tough latches, RTIC coolers are perfect setup for adventure junkies.
Limited Cooler Sizes – compared to Yeti, RTIC are available in 20, 45, 65, 110, and 145. This doesn’t offer many options for potential consumers. Although the sizes are rationally distributed to fit into the small, medium and large echelon. There aren’t enough sizes for people to choose. RTIC are potentially lacking in the large cooler class.
Quality – Well, we shouldn’t complain much about the poor quality of RTIC considering they cost half of what the Yeti cost. However, if they are to match Yeti these low quality constructions won’t make the cut. They need a quality control to ensure all their products are made with acceptable standards that will appeal to consumers.
Short Warranty – Unfortunately, RTIC covers the damage of their hard and soft cooler for just 1 year. What? Yes, just one. You can read more about their Warranty terms and condition here.
YETI PROS & CONS
Excellent Quality – Yeti made the toughest method of producing coolers popular among cooler companies. The Tundra series boasts up to 2 inch of insulation wall that is made for the wild. Yeti is a Buy for life product compared to RTIC.
Warranty – Although Yeti offers a limited 5 Year warranty, it is more generous than the 1 year RTIC is offering. You can read more about the warranty and part it covers.
Long Ice Performance – Tundra coolers have one of the longest ice periods. However, they tend to fall short of the RTIC ice retention mark.
Value – Yeti products are perceived to be more valuable. Even after years of using it you can still sell it and recoup some of your cash back at a decent price than many cooler brands.
Price – The steep price of Yeti is seemingly the biggest turn off for most consumers. This has led to people to ask questions as to why a cooler would demand a hefty fee.
Key RTIC Features
Rotomolded Construction: People often ask what is rotomolded? This is the process of using thermoplastic materials to create a solid shape that can stand up to abuse and retain ice for extended periods. Although popularized by Yeti, companies like RTIC, ORCA, ENGEL and many others have picked up the technology.
Now RTIC hard-sided coolers utilize the rotomolded construction to make it indestructible. The Thick insulated walls enable RTIC icebox to keep ice for extended periods.
Bear Proof & Integrated Locking System
RTIC coolers are tested by the Interagency Grizzly bear committee (IGBC) and are certified as grizzly bear resistant after passing real-life grizzly tests.
The hard-sided coolers from Yeti are built to keep out grizzly animals. Thanks to the security holes, you can use a padlock to lock to lock the chest. Not only do RTIC hard side keep out bears but intruders as well.
Heavy Duty Rubber T-Latches
A lot of work goes to the T-latches. The result is a latch which hugs well to the cooler, sealing the space between the lid and base for improved cooling performance.
If you are tired of busted latches, the T-latches provide a respite as it built with quality materials for lasting use. Latches often burst open, well, the T-latches is built to last for a long time.
Molded Tie-Down Slots & Non-Slip Feet
Molded tie sown slots secure your ice chest to the boat, or on any surface. Ride the waves without the fear of the RTIC failing off. To prevent your cooler from sliding off its kept position, it incorporates non-slip feet.
No Sweat Exterior
Unlike most soft-sided options, the RTIC utilize a no sweat design. This means even if you fill the cooler with ice, there’ll be none of that annoying sweat drips to form a puddle on the floor.
Freezer Grade Gasket
Freezer grade gasket is used in the lid. Rest assured, the grade blocks out the heat and the cold stays in. Another important function the freezer grade gasket offers is a tight seal. Even if the cooler is filled with water, the grade seals the base of the lid to prevent spills.
Comfortable Carry Options
Users have the two options to choose from: A padded molded in handles or a rope handles. The rope handle means there’s no breaking the handles on the RTIC. Also, both handle options have textured grips and users won’t find it slippery to hold on to.
Efficient Drain Plug
Draining water has never been easier. These coolers are equipped with drain plugs that purge water entirely; thus, increasing the ice period.
No Fail Hinges
The hinges of the cooler anchors the lid to the body. Now that’s what the no-fail hinges do. The hinges are constructed for lasting use. There’s no dulling moment unbreakable hinges.
Some Key Things RTIC Should Have Done
The RTIC hard-sided cooler would have been near complete with some of the missing features below:
Wheels – The bigger the cooler, the harder it is to carry. So what’s the solution? Simple, wheels. Yes, wheels provide ease of transportation especially when the cooler is filled up.
On the downsides, despite the absence of wheels and bulky weight of large RTIC models, it doesn’t take away its glory
More quart sizes – There are limited quart sizes in RTIC’s collection. Ranging from 20, 45, 65, 110, 145 quarts, the size options aren’t many. Although this point might be subjective, most reviews have seen people ask for more RTIC cooler sizes.
Ice Retention: RTIC Vs Yeti
As you can see from the reviews above. Aside from the Roadie 20 and Rtic 20 coming in as ties, Rtic comes on top of Yeti concerning ice life. However, both of these coolers are exceptional at holding ice for the best possible time, but RTIC edges the Yeti by a small margin in terms of ice retention.
RTIC quart size corresponds with the name. But Yeti doesn’t publicly reveal their quart size. Comparing both ice chests side by side, Rtic fits the quart size, while the Yeti is slightly less than its prescribed model number.
Rtic is cheaper than Yeti. As they say “overbuilt, not overpriced” the subliminal dig at Yeti shows Rtic is in the market to contend with the biggest cooler brand. You can also read an article on affordable coolers like the Yeti.
RTIC VS YETI – So Which is Better?
Rtic coolers vs Yeti, Who takes it?
Well RTIC put in the good fight with its sleek, affordable coolers but Yeti beats it in quality control, warranty and durabilty.
In terms of price and value, Rtic is slightly better than Yeti. However,It depends on what you like – Sure, Rtic provides coolers almost half the price Yeti costs, and it has edged (Yeti) in capacity and ice life. The latter has unique ice chests with great features and a large enthusiastic fan-base. Yeti has ample coolers under their belts with many cooler sizes unavailable in RTIC ranks.
RTIC is undoubtedly a worthy opponent to the Yeti. Albeit, it’s still playing catch up. For now they have to put in more work in the warranty and overall quality department. They came close to Yeti in this review, and with great improvement I can see RTIC in the close future leapfrog and give Yeti a run for its money.