Hands on Review: Pelican Elite Cooler

pelican elite cooler review

Pelican Elite Coolers by Pelican.  30 quart capacity.  Extreme ice retention: 2 inch of polyurethane insulation with a 360 degree freezer-grade gasket that delivers extreme ice retention for up to 10 days.  Features: molded handles and tie-down slots, 3 inch locking latches, reinforced lockable hasp, stainless steel bottle opener, anti-shear hinge system, leakproof drain plug, 4 self draining cup holders, integrated measuring board on lid in centimeters and inches, non-skid rubber feet.

Made in the USA: includes pelican’s legendary lifetime guarantee – you break it, they will replace it…Forever.

A top down look at the cooler.  The label reads Pelican – 30 – Made in the USA.  You can see the fish scale on the top both in inches and centimeters.  The top also has four cup holders that are designed to let condensation runoff the side, instead of pooling.

Close up of the top label

A close up of the cooler lock hole.  The stainless steel part on the bottom functions as a bottle opener.

A closer look at the closing latches.  I have a good number of coolers and have never seen anything like these before.  Pushing the orange button releases the latch.

Underside of the latch

I like to keep the lids of my coolers cracked open during storage.  I live in relatively humid part of the country and I do not want to trap any moisture inside my coolers.  For most coolers this means wedging an empty water bottle in the lid to keep it slightly open.  The design of the latches on this cooler allows them to keep the lid propped open for storage.

Sticker on the front.  Reads 7 days ice.  30% Lighter.  22 Cans (2:1 ice ration).  Made in the USA.

Comment on weight: This is a chunky monster of cooler.  This label says it’s 30% lighter.  I’m not sure what it’s 30% lighter than, but I can tell you that it is surprisingly light for it’s ruggedness and size.

A look at the bottom.  You can see the four non-skid rubber feet.

Close up on one of the non-skid rubber feet.

Drain with cap on

Drain with cap off

The Pelican Elite with lid open

A look at the inside of the lid

Close up the lid and lid gasket

A look inside the cooler.  Drain channel and drain to the right.

Certified Grizzly Bear Resistant seal on the left hand side of the cooler

Measurement of one of the sides of the cooler.  I’d call that about 4 1/2″.  Not a measurement of insulation as there is a lip that’s included in the measurement.

Measurement of the front of the cooler.  I’d call that about 4″.  Not a measurement of insulation as there is a lip that’s included in the measurement.

Pelican Elite 30 Quart diagram and specifications

Explanation of some of the features of this cooler.  Ice Retention: World-class coldness holds ice for days. 2″ thick solid insulation. Freezer-grade 360 degree seal.  Press & Pull Latches: Secure, easy to use latches hold tight under pressure. Guaranteed to last. Rugged Hardware: Molded-in lock hasp keeps contents secure. Built in stainless bottle opener.

Details on IGBC Certification

Brief description of the Pelican Limited Lifetime Warranty that covers this cooler with a link to full terms and description

Flashlight Test: “flashlight test” to check for missing insulation.  To do that, you put a bright flashlight in the cooler (in the dark) and then shut the lid and check for light coming through.

I used a Lux-Pro LP366 Flashlight, it’s a dual function LED flashlight/worklight that sports 220 lumens (worklight feature on high).

A pretty boring photo, but it proves the point.  I saw no visible light on any side.  None whatsoever.  Not around the lid, the drain plug or the bottom including the drain channel area.  No light at all.

pelican elite cooler review

This cooler is a beast.  It’s packed full of features, thoughtfulness of design and quality.

I own a number of great including Igloo’s Rotomolded Sportsman Cooler,  Cooler Shock’s 48 Can Cooler, Stanley’s Adventure Cooler (30 Quart,  16 Quart and 7 Quart) and RTIC’s 45 Quart Rotomolded Cooler.  Considering all that, I can tell you that the Pelican Elite is the highest quality cooler I’ve ever owned or even seen in person.  If you’re looking for a rugged, high quality cooler, I’m just not sure how you could do any better than the Pelican Elite.

This is a review of the 30 quart size.  Other sizes are available from 20 quarts all the way up to 150 quarts.

Pelican Elite Cooler – via Amazon

Also: Hands On: Roto Molded Igloo 55 Quart Sportsman Cooler on our companion site Homebrew Finds

Also: Cooler Shock Gel Packs – these are awesome

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