The entire purpose of a pontoon boat is to give you and your family a fully-equipped escape from the stress of daily life. So packing that baby with all the fun and food you can should be the ultimate goal to guarantee satisfying pontoon boat ownership. Sure, there are tons of different accessories out there that might promise to do just that. But none of them combine pleasure and practicality the way that a pontoon boat cooler tables do.
Almost like a pontoon boat ottoman, these coolers are designed to offer table surface while serving their purpose as food and drink storage. Complete with cup holders, a pontoon boat cooler can bring cold, refreshing beverages within reach while you kick up your feet and enjoy the fun under the sun.
Should You Buy From a Manufacturer?
Because there’s pretty big interest in the purchase and use of pontoon boat coolers, some boat manufacturers offer them as an add-on. Now, it might seem like a good deal on the surface, but there are some points worth considering if you really want to get the best bang for your buck.
Cooler tables that come from boat manufacturers will often come with a better warranty. So should any damage or defect start to show during your use, you can be sure to get reliable coverage to address the issue at no added cost.
They will usually have to be fixed in place by drilling holes. Aside from limiting the flexibility of being able to move it around where you want it, having it fixed to the ground also makes it harder to clean the cooler out.
Most pontoon boat coolers from boat manufacturers are designed to look like a padded ottoman. So the top surfaces are upholstered and soft, instead of being a stiff table surface for eating and drinking. They don’t only call for more maintenance but also defeat the purpose of the cooler doubling as a table.
Should You Buy an After Sales Pontoon Boat Cooler Table?
There are tons of coolers out there that might not have been designed with pontoon boats in mind, but serve their purpose on a boat anyway. Inexpensive and far more practical, most boat owners will gravitate towards after sales coolers to get a functional boating essential without having to pay too much.
Inexpensive and easily available in most outdoor specialty stores. These coolers also come in a wide variety of designs that extend the functionality of the design by including other features like picnic chairs, extendable table surfaces, and wheels.
No need to drill them in place. These designs are intended to give you the freedom to move things around to match your preferences. So you can pull the cooler where you want to relax on your boat and do away with having to stand and get a drink every time.
They’re not exactly the best when it comes to warranties. With coverage that extends to a maximum of one year at best, you can’t expect to get impressive buyer protection especially if you’re choosing something that touts a more attainable price tag.
You can toss out the hope of finding something that matches your pontoon boat interior. While these after sales coolers are easy on the pocket and practically designed, they’re also utilitarian in appearances which might not sit well with boat owners who want seamless, stylish pontoon boat aesthetics.
How to Choose a Pontoon Boat Cooler Table
Just like everything else you’ve bought for your pontoon up until this point, not all cooler tables are the same. And while they might all look like they serve the same purpose on the surface, slight changes in design can shift the way they achieve that end goal. Knowing what your own preferences and expectations are should save you from a tedious episode of making a return or an exchange.
Size and Capacity
There are a number of considerations that come into play when figuring out the right cooler size for your boat. Aside from the available space on your vessel, there’s also the issue of how many people you’re catering to at a single time. If it’s just you and a buddy or two, then a smaller cooler with a capacity of one to two beer or soda can cases should be just fine.
Then again, there are coolers that should be able to cater to more boat guests if that’s what you usually expect. Some designs can carry as many as four or six cases of cans, featuring other compartments for food and snacks. Consider how many people you want to accommodate to find out what size cooler would be best for your unique situation.
Versatility and Added Features
Cup holders on a cooler is all good and well, but it’s old news. These days, cooler tables can come with a variety of added features that let them function as more than just food and drink storage. Most of those you’ll buy after sales will come with a solid lid that can be used as a full-fledged table. But then there are others that go the extra mile by incorporating removable picnic chairs as well.
Maneuverability and Handling
A cooler table that’s fixed to a single area on your boat can become a chore to use later on. This is especially true if you’ve got a little more space on your pontoon. Coolers that can be moved around by way of carrying handles or wheels make it easier to bring your mobile beverage station where you want it on the boat.
Of course, being able to move your cooler also means being able to bring it off the boat if you decide to go for a picnic on land. Carrying straps, handles, and wheels on coolers with telescopic pull handles can all be simple yet effective ways to move it around and bring it off deck should the need arise.
Cleaning and Maintenance
No one wants to put their food and drinks in a filthy, stinky cooler. So being able to clean it effortlessly after each use can be a smart consideration if you want to be able to maintain its interior in proper order. Most coolers will come with a drainage plug that you can pop out to get rid of accumulated moisture. Lightweight designs that can be turned over and rinsed out can also be particularly ideal if you’re keen on keeping things odor free.
The Best Pontoon Boat Cooler Tables
Equipped with all the fancy features that you might need to fully enjoy lunch on the boat, the Giantex Rolling Cooler Picnic Table comes with a 28 liter storage capacity for food and drink. Fitted with two wheels and a collapsible handle, the design was made to be pulled around for easy transfer anywhere on your boat. But what really sets it apart are the expandable side tables that stretches the surface area over 40 inches to give you enough space for up to three diners. For these reasons, the Giantex Rolling Cooler Picnic Table is often brandished as the best cooler for pontoon boat owners.
Lightweight yet extremely well-built, the Igloo BMX Cooler is a heavy duty design that touts blow-molded walls with extra thick insulation. This helps the cooler keep drinks and food at just the right temperature, without the addition of ice. So maintenance and cleaning are made especially effortless. If you do decide to add in some ice, the design can allegedly keep things cool for up to 4 days, depending on external conditions. And because it comes with tie down points and an anti-skid bottom, you can bet this cooler will stay in place even on the roughest of waters.
What’s a list of coolers without an entry from Coleman? Almost synonymous with coolers, the Coleman brand showcases its heavy-duty engineering with the Xtreme model. With an ice retention duration of up to 5 days, this cooler ensures excellent temperature regulation that keeps drinks cool on even the hottest summer days. The ultra heavy-duty design can take a pretty bad beating, guaranteeing excellent leak-proof construction even with rough, frequent usage. With a 62 quart capacity, this cooler also comes with two wheels and a pull handle that allows easy transport and mobility anywhere on your boat.
A pontoon boat cooler table can be a fun addition to your boat, allowing more surface area for eating and drinking while serving its purpose as a functional storage space for keeping your favorite beverages just the right temperature. Although there are quite a few choices out there, the Giantex Rolling Cooler Picnic Table is an easy top choice given its intuitive design and versatility. Offering more than just storage space, this cooler from Giantex gives you more seating capacity and a sturdy table surface for enjoying meals with a few good friends.