Igloo BMX 52 Cooler Review: If you are looking for a budget cooler with a large capacity that will last a long time and above all offers excellent insulation and above-average portability, I recommend this Igloo BMX 52 cooler.
Igloo BMX 52 cooler is a blow-molded cooler that will offer you above average performance such as durability, capacity, usability, and above all insulation for several times lower price than its competitors. By keeping the ice for 5 days, you can comfortably enjoy camping a few days away with enough food and drink.
What We Like
- Low price
- Great insulation time which is about 5 days
- Rubberized T-shape latches to keep the lid tightly closed
- Fish ruler
- The cooler is a lightweight
- Cool Riser Technology that elevates the cooler away from the hot surface
What We Don’t Like
- There is no dry-goods basket
- When you use the tie-down slots to secure the cooler, you will be not able to open the cooler
- Plastic hinges
- The cooler comes without rubber gasket
Igloo BMX 52 Quart Cooler Review
Watch this short overview about Igloo BMX 52 Cooler
Design, Capacity and Dimensions and Weight
The construction of the BMX 52 as well as the entire BMX line of coolers has a heavy-duty blow-molded construction which gives the housing great durability, very lightweight, and for a much lower price.
However, it should be noted that these coolers that had a blow-molded construction lagged behind in durability compared to those that have a rotomolded constriction. However, to improve durability, this cooler has additional protection in the form of a metal plate called “metal kick plates”.
This Igloo BMX 52 cooler weighs just 16.33 pounds (about 7.4 kg) which is really not heavy for its size. The external dimensions of this BMX 52 are 26.2 inches in length, 16.42 inches in width, and 16.0 inches high.
Capacity: This 52-quart cooler (which is equal to 49 liters) has enough space to hold about 83 12oz cans. This is really enough for a few days away from your home with your family or friends.
It is normal that the first thing that interests us when we consider buying a cooler is its isolation, ie the period of ice retention. To improve the insulation capabilities, the body of the Igloo BMX 52 cooler has a special construction called MaxCold body which has a 20% thicker layer of insulating foam, including its insulated lid that successfully handles direct sunlight.
So, according to the manufacturer Igloo, they claim that the Igloo 52 cooler can keep food healthy and safe under 45 Fahrenheit for 5 days. From practice, we all know that most manufacturers’ claims about the insulation of their coolers are incorrect.
First of all, most users claim that this cooler keeps food at a safe temperature between 4 and 4.5 days without pre-cooling. As for ice retention, even after the fifth day in the cooler, you will find a large amount of ice, which means that your drinks will still be well chilled. But if you want to improve the insulation time of your cooler, there are some useful tips that will really help you.
However, if you compare the size and price of this cooler, it is great compared to the far more expensive coolers in this class whose insulation is only 1 to 1.5 days longer. Also for the great insulation capabilities of this Igloo BMX 52 cooler, I really have to mention these features as well.
- First, the base of this blow-molded cooler is made by Cooler Rise Technology, which makes the cooler slightly raised from the floor, more precisely from the heated surface. This reduces the contact area between the cooler and the heated surface on which it is placed. Also, another positive feature of this construction is that it improves the airflow between the base of the cooler and the heated surface on which it is placed, thus reducing the heating of the lower part of the cooler.
- Second, the cooler has UV inhibitors that protect the contents of the cooler from the external influences of sunlight. In case you want to further the increase in ice retention then it is worth investing in a few extra ice packs.
Extra Tip: Here you can read about the best ice packs for the coolers we recommend.
Durability is another feature that this cooler can boast of. This is due to its specific construction called BMX which is used in all coolers of this line such as Igloo BMX 25, Igloo BMX 52, and Igloo BMX 72. Otherwise, BMX comes from Blow-Molded Extreme which means the plastic used for making this cooler is characterized by huge strength.
In addition, the visible diamond metal plate on the front lower middle of the cooler, so-called “impact plates”, additionally protects the housing from damage.
Speaking of durability, the cooler features oversized stainless steel hinges that give you confidence at first glance. However, according to the experience of many users, they did not prove to be solid (sturdy) and durable compared to the body of the cooler.
The cooler also has a pair of handles that are not only beautifully designed but also quite durable and quite easy to use. Let’s not forget to mention that this model uses the same design of the latches as its smaller sibling Igloo BMX 25.
They are completely rubber and softer than the soft T-shape latches used in most of its competitors but still sturdy. This softness of the latches allows you to lock and open the cooler very easily.
The rubber construction of these latches in many people initially causes uncertainty in their durability and quality. Some argue that if these latches are exposed to direct sunlight for a long time, they will lose their quality and be damaged. However, this has not happened so far.
Igloo BMX 52 cooler comes with a lot of things you will like as:
And I can freely say that these are one of the most stylish handles for coolers, especially in this price range. In fact, the BMX 52’s handles are made of solid, durable rubber-coated plastic that offers comfort when you need to carry a cooler. They are attached to a stainless steel tube at the base that gives smoothness to the rotation of the handles.
Good to Know: When it comes to handles, for all those who have this cooler and for those who decide to buy it, there is one very important thing you need to know. In fact, the steel pipes that are the pillars of the handles, at their ends, they have plastic plugs that are about one inch long.
These plugs are usually loose and can be easily lost, which is a very common case with many Igloo BMX 52 Cooler owners. But this problem can be easily solved if you put only a few drops of glue on the ends of each pipe where the plastic plugs are located.
As I mentioned, the handles on this cooler are made of rigid rubber to last a long time and have the popular T-shape. Compared to other types of handles from its competition, these are very easy to use. They tend to hold the lid tightly in place.
One thing I really like about these latches is that when you unlock the cooler and lift the lid, the latches stay upright. This is a really big deal, if you let the lid close, the latches will not stand in the way. You just need to fold them back when you lift the lid and they will stay in that position. Unlike cheap coolers where the latches do not have the ability to stand upright and always prevent the lid from closing properly, there is a high chance that the latches will be damaged.
This cooler has a nice rubberized plastic drain plug in the type of screw which is garden hose compatible and it really facilitates the operation of the drain plug. But there’s one thing I really liked about this drain plug, and it’s the small stainless steel chain that connects the cooler and the drain plug. This small but very useful accessory will not allow you to lose the drain plug. This is very interesting because most premium class coolers that are twice and three times more expensive do not have this accessory.
The hinges of this cooler are one of the weaker sides, although they are made of plastic, like those in the cheaper coolers, the good thing is they work very well and much more justify the low price of this product. To protect these hinges from being stretched and increase their service life, the inside lid has a stainless steel chain attached to the body of the cooler and does not allow the lid to lean too far back. This is another great solution for a low-cost cooler.
This is one of the less practical solutions for this product when it comes to tie-down slots. In fact, as far as durability is concerned, it is within the expected range, but the problem is their location. They are molded into the corners of the lid. The problem is that once you secure the cooler in place with ropes using these slots, you will not be able to open the lid if you want to take something from the cooler. So if you want to tie the cooler down and you want the lid to be free in case you need to take anything from the cooler, you have only one option and that is to tie the cooler down using its side handles.
Cooler Rise Technology
Here’s another practical solution that sets the BMX 52 cooler apart from its competitors, it’s the Cooler Rise Technology. This makes the cooler slightly raised from the surface on which it stands. This drastically reduces the contact area between the cooler and the hot surface on which it stands. On the other hand, the empty space between the lower surface of the cooler and the surface on which it is placed allows air to flow, which reduces the heating of the cooler during the hot summer days and contributes to the insulation capabilities of this cooler.
Diamond Impact Plate
One thing you’ll notice most when you first look at this cooler is the large metal on the front. This big diamond metal plate or so-called “impact plate” and what they say from the Igloo, is that this plate will give enhance the durability and ruggedness of this cooler.
Also, those who go fishing often will like the fish ruler located on the top of the lid. So whenever you have a catch, you can measure it.
But there are things I would like to see in this cooler in the future such as rubber gasket on the lid, bottle opener, and also dry-goods basket.
- Construction: heavy-duty blow-molded
- External Dimensions: 26.2 inches long, 16.42 inches wide and 16.06 inches high
- Internal Dimensions: 20.75 inches long, 12.75 inches width and 12 inches high
- Igloo BMX 52 weight33 pounds (about 7.4 kg)
- Capacity: 52 quarts (equal to 49 liters), it can hold 83 12-oz cans
Who is this cooler for? Simply put, this is a cooler for those who need a cooler with great capacity and great performance but still, they can’t afford it because of their limited budget. In this case, the Igloo BMX 52 is the best choice for you when it comes to performance ratio, capacity, and price. This blow-molded cooler will really surprise you with its performance and a large number of useful features for a very low price. Simply put, it’s a great investment.
I hope you’ve learned a lot from this Igloo BMX 52 cooler review. If you want to ask or add anything about this cooler feel free to write below in the comments box. Thanks for your time.