One of several options in the Island Breeze lineup, the 48-quart Igloo Island Breeze Cooler is one of the cheapest coolers you'll find at retail. I got mine on sale at Dick's Sporting Goods for just $15.
Well, you get what you pay for -- and in the case of the Island Breeze, that means you won't get much. For starters, the design lacks a lid latch or even a drainage spout for when your ice inevitably melts. And melt it will, my friend, as the Island Breeze put up some of the worst performance I saw from any of the coolers I tested. You'd arguably be better off with a disposable Styrofoam cooler like the $4 Lifoam model I used as a control.
My recommendation: Upgrade instead to the Igloo MaxCold Cooler. At a cost of $45, it offers top-notch performance for the price, and even managed to beat out a couple of high-end coolers that cost hundreds more. But whatever you do, skip the Island Breeze, because like most island breezes, it runs warm.
The Igloo Island Breeze is as basic as hard coolers come. The only features of note are the handles, the hinges and the fact that it comes in a couple of different color options.
Igloo pegs the cooler's capacity at 48 quarts, and that number checked out when I filled the thing with water. To be exact, the measured capacity came in at 47.6 quarts, so Igloo isn't shortchanging you on size the way some other brands do.
All of which brings us right to performance, and I'll tell you right off the bat, it ain't pretty. With 3 pounds of ice inside, the Island Breeze didn't even last a day before returning to room temperature. That left it in a virtual tie for last place with the Rubbermaid Ice Chest, another cheap cooler that just isn't worth it.