OK, time for my second road tested product…
This one is one of my favourite pieces of kit from our test, the Ironman 30 litre fridge/freezer.
Over the past few decades I have been making UK & European road trips, both business and pleasure in all manner of vehicles from motorcycles to 7.5 tonne trucks.
When in a foreign land, a wet weekend in Wales or a day out off-roading on a pay n play site or green laning, its always good to be able to grab a drink or something to eat. This usually means buying something from a garage or local shop at road side prices. It also means you are forced at times to pick from limited or pretty nasty selections or go without!
Enter the Ironman range of fridge freezer units!!!
On our recent product testing road trip, we took an Ironman 30 litre Fridge/Freezer unit to take care of our food and drink needs.
The fridge is so simple to use that once set you literally put your food & drink inside in the morning and its ice cold by afternoon!
We worked out we saved a massive £200+ by taking our own drink with us and keep filling the fridge up with that. In fairness, neither of us drink tea or coffee so the main compartment was filled with soft drinks, water and 1 or 10 bottles of beer & cider. We also had meats, milk and butter in the dairy section too.
Set to our chosen temperature, our butter remained spreadable yet our beer and soft drinks had ice in them.
One of the best features on the Ironman fridges is their built in battery cut out switch. This funky built in feature regulates the power draw from the battery and senses when it is risking flattening the battery. When it gets to a set point it switches the fridge off, but it automatically switches itself back on once the power level in the battery rises again. This prevents the starter battery from ever becoming totally discharged and leaving you stranded! That’s some funky built-in smart technology!
At no time did our fridge drain the battery to such a point and that includes whilst being parked up at several campsites for more than one day at a time.
Due to the fridges extremely clear bright red led display and positive soft touch switches, control and regulation of the fridge is simple. All you need, is on the top of the fridge. The soft touch switches are simply arrow up/down for temp setting, Max/Eco for which power you want it set on and an on/off switch. Simples!
We had ours set on zero at night and -2 during the day when frequently reaching in for a cold drink.
Two great tips for running your fridge at its best are: Keep it full – a fridge is more efficient when full, as its cold contents help keep the fridge temp down. An empty or part filled fridge is working harder (using more power) when it is constantly trying to cool the air down in its empty void. Second tip: Chill your fridge down to temp on the mains the day before you go away. This too saves on battery draw. The power setting is indicated by a bright red & green lights. When chilling down on the mains pop it on Max, but once down to desired temperature, push the power button to select the Green light indicating its in eco mode.
Having used one on this trip for the first time, we can not imagine going back to our naff 12 volt “cool box”. These things are poop!
When on previous Euro trips around the south of France/Spain and Italy, it could not keep things cold or chill them down. We ended up filling it with bags of ice to chill our drinks inside and would not dream of putting any meat or dairy inside it. Don’t be mistaken, this is a top American brand item, but they are not up to the job as a proper fridge freezer like the Ironman units. The reality is, the Ironman fridge is better than our full size American fridge at home!!! It cools items far quicker!
The Ironman Fridges come in 30, 40 & 50 litre sizes. On test we opted for the 30 litre and for two of us in it constantly day and night for drinks it was more than enough. As the three sizes have the exact same foot print and just bigger in height, it makes fitting one in any vehicle an easy to locate, small unit. Would I go for a 40 or 50 litre unit having tested the 30 for two weeks… probably if I was going out to Morocco or on an equally hot climate where I would want a bigger percentage of meat or dairy products too. Likewise, if we were a family of 3 or more in Europe it could be a better option. That said, it chills things that fast that the 30 litre model coped superbly and was one of my favourite bits of equipment on the trip.
In addition, I put the fridge in an Ironman fridge protective/insulating cover. These bags are superb as they are made from a padded/insulated material inside a heavy duty hard wearing outer, complete with a couple of handy sewn in pockets.
In my Land Cruiser, I had hard wired in a fused din socket on excess cable from my rhs battery (24volt start system). I left excess cable so it could hid behind a body trim panel or extended out to the fridge mounting point when needed again.
I did not have an Ironman slide out fridge tray in my 80. They are a superb piece of kit but as I had already decided to use a sheet of plywood bolted to the load space floor in the seat mount bolts, I screwed some lengths of Ally Cargo Rail in the ply temp floor and used my ROCK N ROAD 4X4 Cam Buckle Straps with sewn in Securing Rings to secure around the fridge handles. The result was a very neat securing method with zero movement in any dimension.
The result of our road test: The fridge operated absolutely faultless from setting up and installing, to returning to the UK. These are truly remarkable pieces of kit. As they save money too, they really are a “must have” item.
Check out our Rails, Rings and other securing products in our Hardware section or see out straps in the Nets & Straps section.
For further information including custom made webbing cargo nets or straps, please feel free to call us on: +44 (0) 1772 378 120 or drop us an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out the fridges on our website under IRONMAN Products.