YETI water bottles

Yeti vs Hydro Flask Review

Who would say that two reusable bottle brands can stir up such a debate? But, Yeti vs Hydro Flask does exactly that. Both promise to be your life-long companions, but you only need one. And, you may indeed need one or the other if you are an avid trekker that wants to stay properly hydrated.

In my tests, the Yeti Rambler won. Though I believe reading the whole review will help you decide what is right for your use.

Why Use a Reusable Water Bottle?

Yeti water bottles

Vacuum insulated water bottles are much better for the environment than disposable plastic bottles. There are countless reasons why, but the fact that it takes more water to produce a disposable plastic bottle than the bottle itself can hold should be enough to end the debate. In fact, It takes 22 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of plastic.

Most disposable plastic bottles gradually release bisphenol-A (BPA) into the water. You don’t need to be a chemist to know that a chemical with a weird name cannot be good for your health.

Stainless steel, which is used in vacuum insulated water bottles, on the other hand, is completely safe to use for as long as you want. A reusable water bottle is a one-time purchase. You’ll save tons of money down the line. Read all the water bottle reviews here.

YETI Rambler 26 Review

YETI Rambler 26

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 0.25” x 3.5” x 3.5”
  • Color: Peak Purple
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Weight: 18.5 oz

 

Check Price on Amazon

Pros

  • Wide mouth for easy cleaning
  • Easy to carry
  • Durable
  • Great insulation
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Leak-proof

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Pricey

The Yeti Rambler bottle 26 comes with an ergonomic carrying handle and an extra-wide mouth (for ease of cleaning and drinking). In addition, the Yeti bottle vacuum insulated stainless steel construction will keep your water cold or your coffee hot. Although it’s a bit on the heavier side, Yeti’s properties and features make up for its weight. See here for alternatives to the Yeti bottle.

Hydro Flask Bottle Review

Hydro Flask

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 2.9” x 2.9” x 9.1”
  • Color: Cobalt
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Weight: 10.6 oz

 

Check Price on Amazon

Pros

  • Easy to Clean
  • Leak-proof
  • Durable
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Attractive design
  • Great Insulation

Cons

  • Not Dishwasher Safe
  • Pricey

Chances are you’ve seen a Hydro Flask bottle at your local gym. The Hydro Flask model has been dominating the reusable bottle market for quite some time. Although Hydro Flask has more and more competitors each year, its simplicity, style, and top-notch vacuum insulated water bottles made from stainless steel will always make it the first choice of many users.

Similarities Between Yeti Tumbler and Hydro Flask

Hydro Flask Water Bottle

Both models use top of the line materials (18/8 pro-grade stainless steel) and technology. But, both are a bit on the pricier side as well. However, considering that both models are leaders in the insulated water bottle market, they have the potential to be your lifetime companions, the prices are fair.

Each model is virtually indestructible. No matter which one you go for, rust or punctures won’t be a problem. You may dent or scratch them a bit, but both will survive almost anything you put them through.

Aside from lending strength and durability to the water bottle, stainless steel is highly resistant to bacteria and odors. And it does not affect the taste of your drinks.

Each model features double-wall vacuum insulation. This technology prevents the exterior temperature from affecting the temperature of the liquid inside. If you pour cold water inside, it will stay cold for an extended period of time. If you pour hot coffee inside, it will stay hot for up to 6 hours on average.

The vacuum insulated stainless steel prevents sweat from forming to ensure a dry and comfortable grip. Both models are leak-proof as well. Each model also has a powder coat exterior that protects against cracking, fading, or peeling. Finally, if you get tired of the basic lid, there’s a wide variety of accessories you can buy for both YETI and Hydro Flask.

Differences Between Hydro Flask vs Yeti

The Price

Even though the Hydro Flask water bottle and the Yeti rambler bottle have the same retail price, YETI’s interior volume is 8 oz larger (Hydro Flask—18 oz; Yeti— 26 oz). Both models come in larger sizes, but those are more expensive. Therefore, we used the smallest models for our comparison. So, judging by the size, the Yeti Rambler bottle is a more cost-efficient purchase. If you want something better priced check out this post on Takeya vs Yeti.

The Exterior

While each model has a powder coat exterior, Hydro Flask offers a larger selection of shades you can choose from. For example, the Hydro Flask comes in 20 colors, while the YETI Rambler comes in 11 colors.

Cleaning

The Yeti bottles are dishwasher safe, unlike the Hydro Flask bottles. While you may be able to wash the Hydro Flask in a dishwasher, its powder coating will strip away if you do that. Older YETI models are not considered to be dishwasher safe.

The model’s design hasn’t changed much—the company just started labeling new models as dishwasher safe. The change is more likely due to poor initial product testing rather than updated technology.

Still, be sure to buy a new model that’s labeled as dishwasher safe. While you may be able to wash the older model in a dishwasher, you’ll also probably ‘wash away’ its warranty, so make sure you’re buying the latest model if you opt for YETI.

Warranty

The YETI comes with a 5-year warranty, while the Hydro Flask comes with a lifetime warranty. However, this doesn’t necessarily make the Hydro Flask more durable. Nevertheless, the Hydro Flask is the clear winner here.

Durability

Both products are advertised as highly durable. To make sure of it, we put both of them to the test. Since they are made of the same materials, we threw the bottles around to see which model is more durable.

We dropped each bottle 4 times: full on the bottom, full on the lid, empty on the bottom, empty on the lid. Both models dented during the test. However, the dents on the Hydro Flask were significantly bigger.

The Hydro Flask lid even flew off when we dropped it full on the lid. Finally, we realized that the YETI lid is stronger because it has more threading.

But, even though its lid didn’t come off, the handle on the YETI cracked when we dropped it on its lid. We’d say a spill is worse than a crack, so YETI is the winner here. In a situation like this, you really wouldn’t have much use for Hydro Flask’s lifetime warranty.

But, neither model did well in our scratch test. We used a pair of keys to scratch them and see how well the coating will hold up. Both the YETI and Hydro Flash scratched easily. But, even though there was some damage on the surface, both bottles retained their usability. Considering that both products are designed to last for quite a while, that’s all that matters, really.

Cold Water Test Insulation

We filled each bottle with near-boiling water (208° F). Next, we closed the lids and placed the bottles in a 76° F room. Over a period of 8 hours, the temperature of the water in the YETI dropped to 132.8° while the water temperature in the Hydro Flask dropped to 125.6°F.

In the cold water test, we filled both bottles with ice-cold, refrigerated water. And, again, we sealed the lids and placed them in a 76° F room.

Over a period of 8 hours, the water temperature in the Hydro Flask rose to 55.9°F, while the temperature of the water in the Yeti rose to 54.5°F. Thus, both products did quite well in this test, but the YETI did a bit better, so the YETI Rambler wins again.

The Cap

Hydro Flask’s cap doesn’t seem to be as firm as YETI’s TripleHaul cap. When compared to YETI’s cap, it seems a bit flimsy. YETI’s 3-finger grip technology makes it the winner in this category.

So Which is Better, YETI vs Hydro Flask?

Even though the Hydro Flask bottle is the industry leader, the YETI Rambler bottle is the winner here, but not by a long shot. YETI bottles perform slightly better in key areas. And, although they cost almost the same, the YETI Rambler bottles offer a higher volume at the same price. So, in my opinion, the fight between Yeti vs Hydro Flask – Yeti is currently winning.

However, buying a Hydro Flask reusable bottle is by no means a mistake. We encourage you to wage the pros and cons of each model by yourself and pick the one that best suits your needs and preferences.

Water Bottle Maintenance and Care

No matter which bottle you choose, you need to take good care of it if you want it to last for a while. Cleaning a vacuum insulated stainless steel bottle by hand is easy. And, even though you can put the Rambler in a dishwasher, it should last longer if you wash it by hand.

It’s best to use a bottle brush, and this Oxo Good Grips Water Bottle Cleaning Set is a good choice. If you don’t have a brush specifically made for your model, you can use a standard baby bottle brush. Wash the removable pieces with hot, soapy water.

Make sure to wash the drinking spout thoroughly. Don’t soak the lid. To clean the bottle, fill it halfway with warm soap and water, put the lid back on, and shake it up a bit. Use your bottle brush for those more stubborn stains.

If you are having difficulty cleaning some stains, you can try vinegar or baking soda instead of soap. Hydro Flask even recommends using vinegar and baking soda in such cases.

You only need half a cup of vinegar. Gently swirl the vinegar in the bottle and then let it sit for a couple of minutes. Rinse and repeat if necessary.

If you want to use baking soda, you’ll only need 2 to 3 tablespoons. Pour a bit of warm water and baking soda to form a scrubbing paste. Work the paste into the affected area by using your bottle brush. Repeat the process if necessary.

7 thoughts on “Yeti vs Hydro Flask Review”

    1. I was thinking the same thing! So I kept re-reading that paragraph over and over and just gave up in trying to understand their logic why Yeti was better when Hydro Flask kept the water at a lower temperature (which equals colder)!

  1. Both are excellent bottles. Can’t go wrong with either one. It all comes down to your personal preference. If you really can’t decide, then perhaps over time you could own one of each and have best of both worlds. This is the way I’ve been doing it. My Hydro Flask is for water only, however my Yeti is also used for other liquids such as coffee, tea, or mixed sports drinks. Lots of colors to choose from for both brands.

    1. I frequently see Hydro Flasks at Marshalls and TJMaxx for as much as half off the MSRP. The only Yetis I’ve ever seem marked down was when they discontinued a color and they’ll drop the price 5-10% at best. I have a Rambler and it’s great. I also have a Hydro Flask that I enjoy, but if price is the driving factor Hydro Flask is the way to go.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top