Welcome to yet another post, this time it's a long-awaited Igloo Kegmate review.
But all of these coolers tend to fall short for one particular drink that’s a staple at many parties but doesn’t work very well with the conventional hard cooler: the keg.
I love drinking keg, especially when it’s nice and cold. I love the way it feels in my mouth and the sensations it gives me as it goes down. On a hot, sunny day, it just feels like heaven!
Keeping keg cold with a hard cooler isn’t easy, though. It’s supposed to come out of a tap, and not many of them have a tap. For the ones that do, the keg can really stain the insides, which are made of plastic.
Igloo decided to have a crack at this problem with their own jockey box: the Kegmate. They went out there and built a cooler for a keg, that just so happens to be a beautiful 54-quart cooler that you can use for a ton of other things as well.
What they came up with was not only a success, it was a work of art! We really loved how it works and enjoyed all the keg it cooled for us.
Now that I’m sober, I think I’ll share that good news with you!
Igloo Kegmate Review
Design and Construction
This entire Kegmate cooler is made out of stainless steel with a non-metallic base that is elevated. Hats off to the stainless steel design because it is a heavy cooler that’s going to do some heavy-duty work (we've seen this before with other steel coolers).
Stainless steel should be more reliable than plastic in that respect. The hinges are stainless steel, and so are the hardware and the rest of the latches. This cooler was clearly built to take a beating without flinching!
There isn’t much to be said about the inside. It’s a regular foam construction built for insulation, though I wouldn’t say it’s necessarily cutting edge or the best in the industry, but it does get the job done.
For the most part, you will be using this cooler to cool your keg for the duration of a party. Beyond that, it will retain ice for up to 4 or 5 days, which is still great if you want to keep your craft beer chill in the house.
This cooler comes with quite a few things to help with your keg experience.
It includes coils, connections, and an interchangeable tap handle. You can also use it to store up to 85 cans of 12 ounces each.
On the outside, the handles are wide and made of stainless steel. They make carrying this 54-quart big boy a breeze. You also get backup rubber grommets to help avoid leakages.
Other features include the usual Igloo staples that we’ve come to expect from their products. There’s a large drain plug for draining out the water, a bottle opener in the front for those beer bottles you’ll be flaking out a keg with, and Cooler Riser Technology™.
You can check out some higher resolution pictures right here.
Like I said earlier, the main selling point of this jockey box cooler wasn’t the ice retention, but rather the keg-friendly features.
The ice retention is fairly good, but not spectacular. We did try to test it with a bucket load of ice and it held out for 2.5 days. With some proper pre-chill of the cooler, and with some cold gel packs or ice blocks thrown in, the ice retention time should be 3-4 days.
I thought that was pretty good, both for a keg and for normal food and drinks that you might want to put inside it.
Sizes and Colors
Not much to say here. It only comes in one size of 54 quarts. Since it’s made of stainless steel, that’s the only ‘color’ it comes in. It looks fabulous in that ‘color' though (note: I'm a fan of retro-style products, so I'm a bit biased here)
Considering how great the construction of this cooler was, we were a bit disappointed to find out that it only had a warranty of 1 year.
We thought this product definitely warranted (no pun intended) a warranty of at least 5 years. That would be a great statement, on Igloo’s part, of their faith in their own workmanship.
We can, however, begrudgingly understand why they might be incentivized to only give a 1-year warranty. Despite its durability, this cooler does have a lot of small components to it that somewhat complicate things.
Igloo Kegmate Cooler
Check out hi-res pictures at: igloocoolers.com
Igloo Kegmate Cooler Features
Single faucet jockey box
One stainless steel 3/8″ O.D. 120′ coil.
Backup set of rubber grommets
Stainless steel shank and ice box coupler
Chrome faucet with black faucet knob
Stainless steel swing-up handles
Stainless steel hinges, latch and hardware
Capacity: 85 12-oz cans, 54 quarts (51 liters)
Weight: 16.65 lbs, 7.6 kgs
Exterior Dimensions ( L x W x H ):
24.4″ x 15.9″ x 16.5″
Warranty: 1 year
How to use the Kegmate Cooler from Igloo?
Ideally, you should have your keg barrel, a CO2 pump, and a regulator nearby to get maximum utility out of the Kegmate.
- Start by opening your Kegmate and tightening all the connections on the coil
- Next, install the tap that comes with the package. Make sure to make it nice and tight
- Check the pressure gauge on your CO2 tank. Ideally, it should be at 35 psi
- Connect the hose that comes with the Kegmate package to the back of the Kegmate. Make sure to use the included washer
- Attach the coupler to the keg barrel and turn it clockwise. Pull the coupler handle out and press down to tighten it
- Once you have a tight connection, open the valve on the CO2 tank and test the tap on the Kegmate to make sure there aren’t any leaks
- Now that everything is firmly in place, fill the Kegmate with ice. The chest holds about 40 pounds of ice when filled all the way to the top
- Give the ice about 5 minutes to chill the coil so the keg comes out really cold. You can take this time to swap out the removable tap handle with your favorite one. You keg should be ready to drink soon!
Keeping the Keg Beer Cold – Other Options
The Kegmate is clearly a great option for keeping your keg beer. But are there other options out there? Turns out there are. We have reviewed at least 3 products that would be a potential alternative to the Kegmate.
A kegerator is a special type of refrigerator that has been altered to store and dispense keg. They typically have a tap on the top, space for a keg barrel and a CO2 tank, and rollers to make mobility easier.
They also typically use electricity to keep the keg chill and carbonated. You can read our best kegerators reviews to learn more about them.
Kula Cooler with a Tap
Kula, Florida cooler company, has created some pretty interesting coolers. There is the Kula 2.5 and the Kula 5, both of which are rotomolded and – believe it or not – gator proof.
They also have a tap attached, from which you can pour out your keg. Both of them have an ice retention period of 6+ days. You can learn more about them in our Kula Coolers review.
Yeti Silo Cooler
It was originally designed to be a viable alternative to water coolers. However, it can be used just as easy to store your keg. We wrote a full Yeti Silo Review.
Igloo Jockey Box – Where to buy?
Amazon is the largest and most trusted online marketplace. You will get to read real reviews of the products by past buyers, getting a clear view of the product, before you make your buying decision. They also have other perks like money-back guarantees and, if you’re a Prime member, same-day delivery.
Buying at igloocoolers.com is another great option as you'd be buying directly from the manufacturer so for sure that's a 100% safe option as well.
Igloo Kegmate Review – The Conclusion
Let's wrap up our Igloo Kegmate Review. Here goes our summary:
Igloo Kegmate™ 54 Qt. Jockey Box Cooler Rating
- Ice Retention
The Kegmate cooler is a remarkable piece of innovation packed in the retro-looking body. Apart from our issues with their warranty, we absolutely really liked their product and would recommend it to anyone who would like a special purpose jockey box keg cooler.
User Review( votes)
Last update on 2021-07-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API