I don’t know who wants a battery-powered mixture fridge, freezer, and ice maker on wheels that may be charged by a photo voltaic panel, however I like realizing that you simply’re on the market, wandering the planet with a cocktail in hand whereas bending Mom Nature to your will.
The EcoFlow Glacier is pitched at RV and boat homeowners or anybody trying to carry trendy luxuries into the good outside. Its record value begins at $1,099 / €1,199, however that’s earlier than including extras like a 297Wh battery for a day away from the grid, wheels and telescoping deal with to make the 50.7-pound (23kg) unit extra moveable when its 38-liter (40-quart) capability is maxed out with meals and drinks, and as much as 240W of photo voltaic panels to maintain that seashore social gathering bumpin’ for so long as the solar will shine.
I’ve been testing the Glacier for a couple of weeks, and I’m beginning to perceive its enchantment. It helps that I’m a budding vanlifer who additionally enjoys the occasional libation.
Importantly, the Glacier cools down quick. EcoFlow claims it’s going to drop the temperature from 86 levels Fahrenheit (30 levels Celsius) to 32 levels Fahrenheit (0 levels Celsius) in quarter-hour. In my battery take a look at at house in a room measuring 64 levels Fahrenheit (18 levels Celsius), it took 17 minutes for the Glacier to chill all the way down to my desired dual-zone temperatures of 42.8 levels Fahrenheit (6 levels Celsius) for the fridge and 14 levels Fahrenheit (detrimental 10 levels Celsius) for the freezer. The reported temperature on the built-in show and EcoFlow’s app aligned intently with my very own thermometer, which measured 6 levels Celsius and detrimental 9 levels Celsius on the 2 sides. On the fridge facet, I packed a jug of prechilled milk alongside bottles of room temperature tonic water, and within the freezer, I positioned two luggage of ice and half a loaf of bread.
The compressor is noisy when initially cooling down the unit, measuring about 41dB from one meter away in my testing. It then goes nearly fully silent, minus the occasional gurgle and a few bizarre scratching sounds, which I’m informed is fuel contained in the fridge shifting by a one-way valve. The sound is akin to a drained however decided little mouse attempting to flee a metal bucket loaded with thumbtacks. It’s noticeable in a very quiet room however rare and adequately subtle that it took me a couple of days to comprehend that my home didn’t, in truth, have an infestation challenge.
In common energy (not Eco) mode, the compressor comes on each half-hour or so after which runs for about three minutes to keep up my desired temperatures. At 32dB, the sound isn’t too dangerous, nevertheless it’s loud in comparison with any trendy built-in kitchen fridge and one thing you’d undoubtedly discover when sleeping close by.
A detachable divider separates the fridge and freezer sections, and the EcoFlow Glacier can mechanically detect whether it is inserted. When it’s, you might be offered with temperature controls for the 2 separate zones. In any other case, EcoFlow treats the inner capability as one large fridge or freezer with house underneath the lid to retailer the divider. The Glacier additionally remembers your earlier temperature settings when the partition is added or eliminated. Sensible.
Making ice is fairly fascinating since it’s important to make it after which detach it. Let me clarify.
You first must fill the reservoir with as much as 1.4 liters (slightly over a 3rd of a gallon) of water. That’s sufficient to make about 5 batches of ice earlier than a refill warning seems within the app and on the unit itself. You then hit the “make ice” button within the app or on the Glacier management panel, select both small or massive cubes, and wait wherever between 11 and 17 minutes — the primary spherical of ice takes longer. The ice varieties round a subject of 18 steel pins contained in the reservoir, and it’s loud. In my testing, it hit round 51dB from a distance of 1 meter for the complete ice-making course of. The unit beeps when completed and continues to take action till you run a separate operation to detach the ice. Fortuitously, the beep could be turned off within the settings.
Hit the “detach ice” button to start releasing the ice from the pins. This course of took wherever between 30 seconds and three minutes in my testing. As soon as the countdown timer is full, slightly tug on the basket lifts the hole ice ovals out of the reservoir, however not with out dripping water in all places should you overlook to shake off the surplus. Good factor that Glacier has an IPX4 resistance to splashing water and lightweight rain. The ice produced is comparatively strong, making greater ice “cubes” with thicker partitions than these produced by my very own devoted ice machine.
EcoFlow says that the Glacier will run for as much as 40 hours off its 297Wh battery, however my real-world testing yielded simply 22 hours. That truly appears affordable since I used to be utilizing it closely in common energy mode — not Eco mode. I made ice 4 occasions — two batches of small cubes and two batches of huge — for a complete of 72 cubes throughout my battery take a look at, all whereas the fridge was loaded and protecting every compartment cooled at a gentle 6 levels Celsius / detrimental 10 levels Celsius as described above. Glacier’s 120W DC compressor consumed about 12Wh to 15Wh of energy throughout every session, which is excellent in comparison with typical ice makers that use inefficient AC compressors. I may have prolonged battery life in Eco mode, which permits for a wider vary of temperature fluctuations.
When plugged into an AC outlet, the Glacier used a complete of 394Wh over a 24-hour interval. Throughout that point, I made three batches of ice, whereas persevering with to function in a dual-zone (6 levels Celsius / detrimental 10 levels Celsius) configuration. Eco mode in the identical situation consumed 354Wh in a day.
As for portability, the detachable telescoping deal with and wheels are a necessity, in my view, for anybody who must even semi-regularly transfer the 30.6 × 15.2 × 17.5 inch (776 × 385 × 445mm) unit from place to position, particularly when loaded with meals and drinks. The deal with is a bit quick for my six-foot body, which brought about me to bash the fridge into the again of my legs at occasions. Additional, the wheels are inflexible, inflicting the fridge (and the glass bottles inside) to vibrate like hell when pulled alongside bumpy roads. However I’d fairly endure these indignities than have to hold this beast alone for various ft at a time.
Another notable issues:
- The Glacier can’t be powered by photo voltaic alone. Related panels merely cost the detachable battery through an XT60 port on the fridge.
- You can also’t make ice when solely powered off a 12V cigarette outlet — another excuse you’ll need to pay extra for an non-obligatory battery or two.
- The battery chemistry is Li-NMC, not LFP, as a way to pack extra capability right into a smaller house.
- The Glacier has a single XT60 enter port for energy / charging (automobile and wall adapters included within the field).
- EcoFlow says the battery expenses in as little as 2.1 hours underneath excellent 240W (11–60V, 13A Max) photo voltaic situations (which don’t exist), 2.2 hours from AC (180W), or about 4 hours (12V) or 2.1 hours (24V) when plugged right into a automobile (192W, 8A Max).
- The detachable battery has a bidirectional 100W USB-C PD port. Meaning it may possibly cost your devices whereas additionally powering the fridge or be recharged through the identical USB-C charger you employ to your cellphone or laptop computer.
- Cleansing the ice maker’s water reservoir is a problem with all these pins sticking up. The water could be drained through a small hose hidden by a panel door — one thing you’ll need to do earlier than attempting to roll it away. In any other case, the water will slosh out.
- The built-in carrying handles on the highest left and high proper of the unit will also be eliminated for extra everlasting installations.
- When the lid is open, two lights assist illuminate the insides.
- The Glacier can be a part of your native community over 2.4GHz Wi-Fi, the place it may possibly then be monitored and managed remotely through the wonderful EcoFlow app. It additionally helps Bluetooth for direct connectivity.
- Oddly, the Glacier doesn’t supply a direct DC battery port to obtain energy immediately (and effectively) from certainly one of EcoFlow’s personal lineup of large batteries.
As a gadget fan and outside fanatic, I need to say that I actually just like the EcoFlow Glacier. It does what it says it’s going to on the field and performs every perform properly, which is absolutely saying one thing for a three-in-one equipment. However let’s be actual, should you’re going to purchase this factor, then you need to nearly actually get it with a battery for $1,399 / €1,399 and sure the detachable wheels / deal with combo as properly, boosting the worth by one other $99 / €119.
Is that value justified? Laborious to say, as a result of should you’re the sort on the lookout for an ice-making fridge / freezer combo to be used in distant areas, then the standard guidelines of worth for cash in all probability don’t apply. It’s actually a query of how a lot you’re prepared to spend to take trendy comforts into locations the place these luxuries aren’t normally obtainable.
Fortuitously, EcoFlow gadgets are recurrently on sale, particularly through the end-of-year holidays, which may prevent 20 % or extra on that record value.
Images by Thomas Ricker / The Verge
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