Bodega Portable Car Refrigerator 38 Qt: An Honest Review

bodega 38qt portable car fridge

When adventure calls, keeping your essentials cool is non-negotiable. At least that’s what I learned in my travels. Luckily, the 38 Qt Bodega portable refrigerator became my travel companion and I believe it’s designed for both convenience and efficiency. Whether you’re heading off-road or setting up camp, this portable fridge promises to keep food fresh and drinks cold without the noise and hassle of traditional coolers.

With features like single zone cooling, mobile connectivity, and energy-efficient operation, it’s tailored for the active lifestyle. But does it meet expectations? This article delves into the Bodega fridge, scrutinizing its features, user-friendliness, and performance to see if it’s worth your investment.

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Quick Facts to Remember

  • The Bodega portable refrigerator merges stylish design with practical features such as wheels, a handle, LED lighting, and user-friendly controls, making it ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who are into road trips and camping.
  • Despite its potential in connectivity features with Wi-Fi and mobile app control, the Bodega car fridge’s operational integrity also relies on traditional methods, such as a straightforward control panel and efficient power consumption modes for cooling performance.
  • The Bodega fridge backs it’s price tag with robust performance, energy efficiency, and durability, along with a 24-month warranty that offers consumers peace of mind for their investment.
Our verdict

Bodega 38 Qt portable car fridge is a great asset to anyone's outdoor adventure. Whether you need chilled food while your camping, or to freeze your fish on a fishing trip, it can do it all.

  • Can both cool and freeze.
  • Ample of space (38 Qt)
  • You can control it with an app
  • Multiple ways to plug it in
  • Wheels for convenience and portability
  • Single zone chilling compartment
  • Sometimes spotty WiFi connection with the app

Chill on the Go: Unboxing the Bodega Fridge

unboxing of the bodega 38 qt
The unboxing of the bodega 38 qt. My cats were also curious

This isn’t your average cooler; it’s a 38 Quart technological marvel with a spacious 38 Quart interior that operates as one large unit. As a company that manufactures car fridges, Bodega has crafted this portable fridge freezer with road trippers and outdoor enthusiasts in mind, boasting the ability to transition from a permanent car fixture to a go-anywhere portable refrigerator.

Perusing the feature list, I notice the Bodega 12 volt car refrigerator is not shy about its ambitious guarantees. WIFI connectivity and mobile app control suggest a device that keeps up with the times, offering tech-savvy users the convenience of efficient operation from anywhere. But how will it fare when not nestled comfortably within Wi-Fi range? Moreover, with a powerful compressor capable of reaching a cool 32℉, it seems equipped to handle even the most demanding refrigeration needs. These are bold claims indeed, and I was itching to put them to the test.

Upon initial inspection, the Bodega car refrigerator portable unit stood out with its stylish design and apparent adaptability. It’s designed to keep your food fresh and your beverages cold, without the noise and hassle of traditional refrigeration products. The question is, will it stand up to the rigors of the road and keep those cool drinks as promised? Only time and testing will tell, but for now, the Bodega cooler’s list of features is promising a frosty future.

Some of the features of the Bodega car refrigerator include:

  • Stylish design
  • Portable and adaptable
  • Noise-free operation
  • Keeps food fresh and beverages cold
  • Easy to use and maintain

With these features, the Bodega car refrigerator seems like a promising option for those looking for a portable refrigerator or a car freezer, providing a cooling solution on the go.

Appealing to adventurers, weekend warriors, and those who carry home comforts into the wilderness, the Bodega portable refrigerator can be a valuable asset. It’s a fridge, a freezer, and a cooler, all wrapped in one, and if it lives up to its claims, it could be the missing piece for a perfect getaway. Let’s explore further what makes this fridge function and evaluate if it merits a spot on your next journey.

Setting Up Your Portable Bodega Car Fridge

setting up bodega fridge(1)

The transition from box to backseat is unexpectedly uncomplicated with the Bodega car fridge. Once unboxed, it’s clear that the setup of this portable fridge freezer is designed to be hassle-free.

With a choice between a wall plug adapter, and cigarette lighter connector, powering up the Bodega cooler is a breeze, no matter where you find yourself. The fridge has a user-friendly control panel, and it springs to life with a simple press of the ‘Power’ button, or can be turned off just as easily with a long-press for 3 seconds.

There are a few considerations to ensure optimal performance:

  • The Bodega portable refrigerator must sit horizontally to operate correctly, with an inclination angle that doesn’t exceed 5 degrees for extended periods.
  • The temperature can be set to your preference, in Celsius or Fahrenheit.
  • The battery protection modes ensure that your vehicle’s battery won’t be drained while keeping your supplies chilled.
  • I found that pre-cooling the device on an AC source and using strategies like reflective insulation can also enhance efficiency.

These tips speak volumes about the thought put into this product’s user manual.

Ranging from the selection of power source to the temperature adjustments, the Bodega car refrigerator portable unit proved to be user-friendly and flexible. It’s clear that the Bodega brand has considered the needs of its users, offering various startup voltage options for different power scenarios. Whether it’s plugged into a 12 24V DC outlet on a long drive or connected to a 240V AC power source at a campsite, the fridge promises steady and reliable cooling. Now let’s see if the design lives up to the convenience its setup suggests.

Great for the Outdoors

bodega portable fridge 38qt
Bodega Portable Car Fridge 38 QtA Great Bang for The Buck

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Crafted for Convenience: The Bodega's Design Philosophy

Bodega 38 Qt design

The Bodega car fridge isn’t just a box that keeps things cold; it’s a demonstration of a dynamic brand focused on delivering thoughtful service through friendly design. With an inclination angle that can handle the jostle and tilt of off-road adventures, the fridge is clearly made for the mobile life. And when the sun sets, there’s no fumbling in the dark thanks to the interior LED light, which provides ample illumination to grab a snack or beverage without hassle.

What truly distinguishes the Bodega car refrigerator is its easy mobility. The thoughtfully included features are:

  • Wheels and retractable handle for easy transportation from car trunk to campsite
  • A door with a latch system for easy access to food and drinks
  • Side handles for when you need to carry it.

Clearly, the Bodega cooler is designed considering practical usage scenarios. Even the layout of the cooler’s control panel seems intuitive, with a user-friendly interface that makes adjusting settings a stress-free task.

But what does this mean in terms of actual user experience? Let’s discover.

Navigating the Features: User Experience with Bodega

setting up the portable bodega fridge
Setting up the portable Bodega fridge, starting with the QZsmart app.

‘QZsmart’ mobile app, though occasionally temperamental with connectivity, offers a futuristic touch, providing remote control over temperature and cooling modes, all from the palm of your hand. The app is pretty convenient and enables you to manage the fridge’s cooling temperatures without needing to physically interact with the cooler itself.

Despite the occasional hiccup in Wi-Fi connectivity, the control panel on the fridge itself didn't disappoint. It’s intuitive, displaying current temperature, battery voltage, and even lets you switch between eco-friendly cooling options. I think that safety isn’t overlooked either; the secure locking mechanism ensures the contents remain undisturbed during travel, and the adjustable LED temperature display means no blinding lights during nighttime trips to the fridge.

Added conveniences like the USB socket for charging devices and battery protection settings are thoughtful touches that enhance the overall experience. It’s these features that underscore Bodega’s commitment to not just storing your groceries but enriching your journey.

But what about its core purpose—maintaining low temperatures? Let’s examine the cooling capabilities of the Bodega car fridge.

The Cooling Test: Bodega Under Pressure

When it’s time to put the Bodega 12 volt car fridge to the test, it steps up to the plate with confidence. The fridge impressively chills to 38°F in just 15-20 minutes, while if you want to freeze, it seems to be able to hit a frosty -2°F within an hour or so.

This feature proves its worth, offering flexibility for different cooling requirements, whether keeping beverages cold or freezing the catch of the day.

The Bodega car refrigerator offers a ‘Cooling Mode’ option, where ‘MAX’ mode quickly brings temperatures down, and ‘ECO’ mode is more for power consumption for longer-term efficiency. However, it’s not without its quirks.

Power consumption can fluctuate with the ambient temperature, as the compressor’s duty cycle adjusts to maintain coolness, leading to increased power usage in warmer conditions. It’s a reminder that even the strongest compressor is not immune to the laws of thermodynamics.

A notable tip for those who will use it as a freezer - the fridge's optimal performance is to pre-cool the Bodega before setting off on your adventure. This strategy speaks to the planning required to ensure your freezer is ready when you need it most. It’s a small but critical detail for those who like to be prepared and expect their equipment to keep pace with their plans.

Having passed the cooling test, it is crucial to evaluate how the Bodega fridge will endure over time.

Great for the Outdoors

bodega portable fridge 38qt
Bodega Portable Car Fridge 38 QtA Great Bang for The Buck

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Longevity and Warranty: Trusting the Bodega

The Bodega cooler aims not just to be a short-term travel companion; it’s constructed for durability. With a 24-month warranty on the fridge compressors and a separate coverage for accessories, Bodega Cooler demonstrates confidence in the longevity of its products.

Comparing Bodega’s warranty and support against other brands solidifies its status as a high-quality product. The provided reassurance that, should anything go awry, you’re covered, is invaluable.

Real-World Experience

Taking the Bodega portable fridge out for a spin in the great outdoors was an opportunity for me to witness its capabilities in action. On my multiple fishing trips, the fridge’s temperature plummeted swiftly, keeping the day’s catch perfectly chilled—which prooved the rapid cooling capabilities of this portable freezer car fridge.

During a road trip I took in the end of spring, where I connected my 38qt Bodega car fridge to a DJI Power 1000 power station, the fridge maintained its chill, showing its efficiency and reliability over extended periods.

Even while camping, hooked up to a BougeRV Fort 1000 power station, the Bodega remained steadfast, ensuring meat and beverages stayed refreshingly cold. Its portability was a great asset, with wheels that made transportation a breeze and a size that fit snugly in the vehicle’s trunk, offering ample space for provisions. Practicality met convenience, and the Bodega cooler didn’t just keep up with the journey—it enhanced it.

In terms of noise level, the Bodega’s operation was commendably quiet. The cooler’s sound emissions were greatly reduced, allowing for a peaceful outdoor experience without the constant hum of machinery in the background. This low noise level, combined with the fridge’s mobility and ample storage, underscored its suitability for all-around use, whether I was fishing, camping, or simply enjoying a picnic.

Nonetheless, it does present some constraints. While the max mode provided quick chilling—sometimes it required a bit of planning to optimize space and temperature control. That being mentioned earlier, this wasn’t a significant impediment; rather, it was a learning curve in managing the contents to achieve the desired results and starting the chilling process a bit earlier.

I think that the real-world tests of the Bodega 38Qt car fridge revealed a product that lives up to its promises, offering a blend of performance and convenience that stands up to the demands of outdoor communities. I've tested a few of these fridges and Bodega seems to know what they're doing. And however weird it will sound - don't underestimate how much a pair of wheels can help when you're dealing with a full car fridge. I'm talking to you, BougeRV car fridge!

Great for the Outdoors

bodega portable fridge 38qt
Bodega Portable Car Fridge 38 QtA Great Bang for The Buck

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Is the Cool Worth the Cash?

In assessing the Bodega portable fridge, the comparison of features against price strongly suggests a sound investment. The fridge’s price tag, sitting comfortably in the mid-range of the market, is justified by a robust array of features like WIFI connectivity—a significant draw for those who value tech integration in their outdoor gear.

The Bodega’s features include:

  • Solid cooling performance, maintaining temperatures as low as 32℉
  • Portable design
  • Substantial storage capacity, capable of holding up to 41 cans of cola
  • Energy-efficient compressor, promising potential savings on electricity bills over time

These features, in my humble opinion, showcase it's worth the money you spend on it.

Bodega 38 Qt portable car fridge 1

Frequently Asked Questions

How much can the Bodega portable fridge hold?

The Bodega portable car fridge can hold up to 36 liters or 38 quarts, which is equivalent to 41 cans of cola, 21 bottles of water, or 13 bottles of red wine. Cheers to that!

Is the Bodega fridge easy to move around?

Yes, the Bodega fridge is easy to move around with its wheels and retractable handle, making transport a breeze.

Can I control the Bodega fridge remotely?

Yes, you can control the Bodega fridge remotely through WIFI connection and app control on both Android and iOS devices. Enjoy the convenience of managing temperature settings from anywhere.

What is the warranty coverage for the Bodega fridge?

The Bodega fridge comes with a 24-month warranty for the compressor and separate coverage for accessories, and the claim process is user-friendly.

How does the Bodega fridge perform in terms of energy efficiency?

The Bodega fridge is energy efficient, thanks to its energy-saving 'Cooling Mode' and an energy-efficient compressor. However, power consumption can vary depending on the ambient temperature.

Are there bigger options for Bodega fridges?

Bodega makes different sized car fridges. If you need a bigger one, checkk out the 48 Qt Bodega car fridge review.

Great for the Outdoors

bodega portable fridge 38qt
Bodega Portable Car Fridge 38 QtA Great Bang for The Buck

Donec interdum orci at metus tincidunt rutrum. Nunc euismod venenatis ante a semper. Praesent mollis commodo urna sed viverra.