How to Use Dry Ice and Dry Ice Coolers

How to Use Dry Ice and Dry Ice Coolers

For those of you, who are not satisfied with the cooling performance of the usual orca insulated back pack cooler, there is another option. Let me introduce dry ice to you! In this article I will explain the main differences, some pros and cons and give some tips on choosing the right cooler for dry ice.

So, the dry ice, what is it?

When you think about ice, what’s the first definition that pops right into your mind? Exactly! Ice is simply frozen water, everybody knows that. However dry ice has a surprise for you. It is made of gas! And due to the fact that dry ice is colder than ice, it can make items colder a lot faster.

Pros and cons.


To begin with, there is no watery mess. This white smoke you see in the videos? Yes, that’s dry ice evaporating! No water soaking, no ruined items in the cooler, no melted water at the end of the day.

Second, as I mentioned before, dry ice is significantly colder than just ice. As a result, you can chill your items really fast, which is super convenient when you’re in a rush.

Last, but not least, size. Dry ice can be bought in small chunks which require less space in your cooler. And we all know, there’s never enough space, right? 😉


First of all, an obvious one, dry ice is extremely cold. I used it as an advantage before, but there is a different side of a coin. If you don’t put a towel or paper or anything to separate dry ice from the items, you risk ruining them. Of course, ice creams or frozen meat won’t suffer from it, but what about drinks and, for example, sandwiches? You don’t want them to turn into ice bricks.

The second point is connected to the first one. I repeat, dry ice is VERY cold, so you need to follow some basic security rules, otherwise, you may hurt yourself. Wear gloves and long sleeves while touching dry ice. Remember, it can burn your skin really bad, so better think of it as a bowl of boiling water.

Third, dry ice is expensive. I know, it’s a bummer, but if you have many items and you need a lot of ice, better go with normal ice, or you may find your wallet empty.

Dry Ice Cooler.

Make sure that your cooler has some sort of ventilation. Why? Because when dry ice evaporates, it turns into a gas. And if this gas has no way of escaping, it may turn you cooler in a time-ticking bomb!

How to put Dry Ice in the Cooler?

There are two ways of putting in you cooler. Either you put dry ice at the bottom of the cooler and make some kind of barrier between ice and items, then you put them on top of it. Or you put your items first and only then put ice.

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About the Author: Sean Foster