U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Old 12-27-2014, 03:34 PM
4,362 posts, read 4,856,103 times
Reputation: 2047


Insulated cooler bags on the market are made of a variety of materials for the purpose. Some have aluminum foil interior, others have white plastic lining covering some other materials (Polyethylene, Polyurethane, Polypropylene). See pix. So my questions:

1. Which type is better for keeping heat?
2. Which type is better for keeping cold?
3. Is a cooler that is better for keeping heat also better for keeping cold?

My impression is the aluminum foil type is usually for keeping food hot, and the whitish ones usually for keeping food/drink cold with an ice pack, but I'm not sure why, if so.
Attached Thumbnails
Different kinds of insulated coolers-cooler-foil.jpg   Different kinds of insulated coolers-cooler-other.jpg  
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Old 12-27-2014, 10:14 PM
Location: Greater NYC, USA
2,762 posts, read 2,622,439 times
Reputation: 1707
I do believe that materials are rated by their insulation properties. The higher the insulation rating the longer the food stays at needed temperatures.

It would be helpful if sites like Amazon would be more technical, for geeks like us.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-31-2014, 04:20 PM
Location: Vallejo
13,437 posts, read 15,036,253 times
Reputation: 11924
Insulation is basically insulation, doesn't much matter whether you're keeping hot out or in. Cold is generally easier since the relative temperature difference is less. Eg, if you're trying to keep something cold room temperature is only about 21-22C. If you're trying to keep your coffee hot, most people want it around 75-80C. Bigger differential.

Amazon.com: Zojirushi SL-JAE14SA Mr. Bento Stainless Steel Lunch Jar, Silver: Bento Boxes: Kitchen & Dining

Thermos makes some similar things. They'll knock the socks off your insulated lunch bags, but they're really over kill if you just want to through an ice pack in and a sandwich.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-01-2015, 11:04 AM
37,069 posts, read 38,262,371 times
Reputation: 14831
Heat moves in 3 ways; convection, conduction and radiation. Heat also always moves to cold, when you hold an ice cube in your hand the ice doesn't make your hand cold, it's sucking all the heat out of your hand. The foil may help with the radiation of hot foods but most of your heat loss is going to be through conduction. The insulating material itself is going to be the main factor and it's going to be the same for hot or cold.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.

Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top