How to choose the best thermos?
Thermos, without exaggeration, is a unique invention of mankind, which solves a huge number of problems associated with the storage of drinks and ready meals. Hot in it remains hot for a long time, and cold - cold. The high popularity of these universal containers is due to the convenience and ease of use, high functionality and wide consumer availability.
Features and Purpose
The first thermos was invented by the Scottish physicist James Dewar back in the 19th century, but its purpose was to prevent the evaporation of the fluid contained inside. The glass box for the storage of gases was taken as the basis of the design, which was somewhat modified and improved. The new container was a bulb-shaped vessel with a narrow neck and double walls, between which there was a vacuum.
However, such a vessel was not intended for food storage and was used exclusively for scientific purposes. A little later, the student of the Dewar Reinhold Burger realized that the container can be used for domestic purposes. He modified the vessel, replacing the outer glass shell with a metal one, and equipped it with a sealed cork and a glass lid. Since then, the design of the thermos has not undergone fundamental changes and until now has been working according to the old principle developed more than 120 years ago.
The modern thermos, like its distant ancestor, consists of two shells - external and internal. The outer one is a durable shockproof case made of plastic or metal, and the inside is called a bulb and can be made of steel or glass.
The intershell space is filled with a stopper or vacuum and hermetically sealed. The flask, in turn, is equipped with a stopper that enters the neck according to the principle of a plug or has a threaded connection with it. The second option is preferable, as it guarantees complete tightness of the vessel and eliminates the risk of leakage.
The scope of the thermos is quite diverse. It is an indispensable thing in hiking, road trips and walking, it helps to keep lunch hot where there is no possibility of heating food, and also does not allow warm drinks to warm up in the heat.
Thermoses are simply necessary for fishermen, travelers, rescuers, hunters, athletes, office workers and builders, that is, people who are unable to eat hot food during the day in stationary conditions. Using a thermos not only allows you to enjoy a hot lunch on time, but also significantly saves the budget, since for many people visiting cafes and dining rooms is simply not affordable. Besides, true connoisseurs of natural aromas have long adapted a thermos for brewing various herbs and herbs.
Thermoses are classified according to such features as filling the inter-shell space and functional purpose. According to the first criterion, vacuum models and products are distinguished, in which instead of vacuum there is a solid heat-insulating material - cork or foam. Vacuum flasks are considered the most preferred, since they retain heat and cold much longer than models with solid filling.
The vacuum group includes most universal thermoses for liquids and prepared foods, while the second group includes mainly thermomugs, thermobags and thermal containers. Sometimes, instead of a vacuum and a heat insulator, a regular air gap is located between the bulb and the body. Such models belong to the most budgetary category of thermoses; they are able to hold the desired temperature for no more than 2-3 hours.
On the second basis - functional purpose, thermoses are divided into several types.
- For drinks. An elongated vessel with a narrow throat and more often a screw cap. The space between the walls in such models is filled with vacuum, which allows them to maintain the desired temperature for 24 hours. The lid is made in the form of a glass and is made of heat-insulating materials that do not allow it to heat up from hot drinks. More expensive models are equipped with a retractable side handle, thanks to which it becomes the most convenient and safe to pour liquid.
- For soup and main dishes. It features a wide neck, which freely includes a spoon-scoop, often coming in the kit. The cork often has a screw thread, although in more budget options it can be closed according to the principle of a plug. The top cover is made of food thermoplastic and is used as a cup. Soup thermoses are often equipped with a convenient top handle, which has a folding structure and in the folded position practically does not protrude beyond the limits of the thermos.
- Pump model Designed for home use and very convenient to operate. Such thermoses keep heat well, since they do not require opening the lid for pouring liquid. It's all about the presence of a special mechanism - a pneumatic pump that delivers a drink through the spout after pressing a button. Pump models are often large in volume and equipped with a top handle.
- Sudokovy thermos It is a capacious container containing several containers of different volumes, each of which has its own airtight lid. To facilitate the design, such models are made of heat-resistant plastic.
- Thermo mug It is intended for storage of a small amount of liquid and in its working qualities loses significantly to a classic thermos. This is due to the absence of a vacuum layer between the walls of the housing and the bulb, as well as not too tight covers. However, for a short trip, such a thing fits perfectly and eliminates the need to take a large thermos with you.
There are not so many enterprises producing thermoses in the territory of our country. Therefore, the rating of the best Russian companies turned out to be quite short and includes only three domestic manufacturers.
The Arktika company, which is known for its products not only in Russia but also in neighboring countries, is confidently in the first place. The company produces high-quality thermoses, thermo mugs and thermo containers, using only certified and safe materials. The case of models designed for ready-made food and drinks is made of durable stainless steel and has a modern design, and the most effective vacuum is achieved through the use of Arctica Storm's proprietary technology innovation.
All products of the enterprise are divided into several series, which include thermoses of various forms. For example, models of the 101-110 series are containers for drinks and are available in volumes from 350 to 2200 ml. Series 201 to 412 represented by models with wide necks intended for storing first and second courses.
Thermoses 501 series equipped with a pneumatic pump and are available in volumes from 2 to 3.5 liters. 702 Series represented by models called Cityterm, which are equipped with a drinking bowl and designed for people who have been in motion for a long time and who are not able to drink from a mug. And finally, the company's new product - thermoses 901 series having an unusual design and made in the shape of a jar, they will be a wonderful gift for a hunter and fisherman and will pleasantly surprise him with their convenience and functionality.
The advantages of the Arctic models are their attractive appearance, the ability to maintain the temperature of the contents for a long time and an acceptable cost. The conditional disadvantages include the Chinese assembly, which in no way affects the quality of the products, although it causes a biased attitude of some consumers.
Biostal is also a well-known Russian brand, which successfully competes in the global market. The company produces universal thermoses for drinks and ready meals, and also produces high-quality thermo mugs. The company's products are presented in the following series:
- "Classic" - classic silver-colored models used for storing liquids;
- "Auto" - compact products that easily fit in the glove compartment of the car and can be used for tea, coffee and soft drinks;
- "Sport" - models of bright colors, equipped with a convenient carrying strap on the shoulder and side pull-out handle;
- "Hunting" - Extra strong thermoses, coated with a special varnish that does not allow hands to freeze to metal;
- Fleler - A series of thermos bottles of original design, which are equipped with a silicone insert for greater ease of use.
The advantages of Biostal models are their low cost, durability and excellent thermal insulation properties. The minuses include the Chinese assembly and the cork's ability to nourish odors, which is why it needs to be thoroughly washed immediately after use.
The company "Amet", unlike the two previous domestic brands, manufactures its products in Russia. The production facilities of the enterprise are located in the Chelyabinsk region at the Ashinsky Metallurgical Plant. The manufacturer produces the following series of thermoses:
- "Picnic" - classic models equipped with a handle and having a volume of 1 and 1.5 liters;
- "Road" - thermoses with a carrying strap and not afraid of shock and vibration;
- Premier - quite compact models designed to store drinks, and having a volume of 0.5 and 0.33 liters;
- "Express" - ship's thermos flasks, including several sealed containers for ready-made meals;
- "Tourist" - the largest group, consisting of thermoses with both narrow and wide-necked volumes from 1 to 1.5 liters;
- "Spring" - models with a narrow throat and a spout for supplying fluid from 2 to 3 liters;
- Geyser - thermos equipped with a pneumatic pump and having a volume of up to 3 liters.
The advantages of Amet products are reasonable cost, a wide range and ease of use. The disadvantages include the ability to store second courses for no more than 6 hours, as food cools down during longer storage.
Top foreign brands
Currently, more than half of the thermos present on the shelves are of Chinese origin, the names of most of them are simply not known to anyone. Therefore, when choosing a thermos it is better to focus on eminent brands that use only safe raw materials in production and value their reputation. Below is an overview of the most popular models from the largest foreign companies present on the market for more than a decade.
- Thermos is well known all over the world. It produces high-quality and durable products. The assortment of the enterprise is represented by models with both glass and metal flasks, which allows you to choose a product for every taste. The high thermal insulation properties of all Thermos models without exception are due to the use of modern Ther Max technology, which provides deep vacuumization and contributes to the long-term preservation of cold and heat. The company produces over 100 models of thermos designed for both drinks and ready-made food.
The advantages of this brand's products include high quality and a long service life, and minuses include too high a cost of 5 thousand rubles or more.
- Japanese company Zojirushi It has been operating since 1918 and specializes in the production of thermoses for food. Models are made of stainless steel and are lightweight and concise in appearance. The company's products are perfectly adapted to shock and weight loads, which is why it has gained immense popularity among fans of extreme recreation, hunters and fishermen. A distinctive feature of the design of Zojirushi thermoses is the minimum gap between the flask and the body, which is only 1 mm, as well as the Teflon coating of the flasks, eliminating the appearance of a metallic taste in food and drinks.
The production facilities of the enterprise are located in Thailand, and the cost of the budget model itself starts from 3 thousand rubles.
- Company from Germany LaPlaya It has been operating since 1953 and is engaged in the development and production of portable refrigeration equipment and thermoses. The design of models and the development of innovative production technologies are carried out by German and Czech specialists, and China produces products. Modern developments, combined with cheap labor, have made it possible to achieve an optimal combination of price and quality, putting LaPlaya products on a par with such eminent brands as Thermos and Zojirushi. The range of the company includes more than 60 items, among which there are both large universal models for food and drinks, and miniature thermo mugs.
The advantages of LaPlaya products include quality materials and affordable prices, and among the minuses, a not very convenient cover is noted.
- American company Stanley produces thermoses of an average price category with a high-quality steel flask. A distinctive feature of the brand is a lifetime warranty, which the manufacturer gives for all its products, which is 100 years old. However, due to the deployment of part of the production capacity in China, the quality of the products has deteriorated somewhat. Nevertheless, Stanley thermoses are still considered one of the most reliable and effective. The company holds its warranty and unconditionally changes the defective product to a new one.
The advantages of the products of the American brand include good quality materials, and the disadvantages are the Chinese assembly and the heavy weight of some models. The average cost of a Stanley budget thermos is about 2.8 thousand rubles.
- Kovea from South Korea is a well-known manufacturer of thermoses and produces high-quality models with a steel flask. In fairness, it is worth noting that the range of the company is not very wide, but despite this, consumers often choose this particular brand and completely trust it. The company manufactures several universal models that can be used for both ready-made meals and drinks.
The advantages of Kovea thermoses include the optimal ratio of price and quality and low weight, and among the minuses, too odorous plastic is noted. The most budgetary model for drinks with a volume of 500 ml can be purchased for 800 rubles.
For the production of thermos flasks, materials such as glass, plastic and stainless steel are used. All materials have different performance characteristics, so when choosing a particular model must be guided by the conditions in which it will be operated.
- If you plan to take a thermos with you on hikes, hunting, winter fishing or a long road trip, then products with a metal flask will be the best choice. Such a flask is made of stainless steel, perfectly holds the temperature and does not absorb odors.The disadvantage of metal flasks is their heavy weight, which significantly complicates the finished product, and the metallic taste characteristic of cheap models.
- If the thermos is supposed to be taken to work or used for leisurely walks in the park, then the best option would be a product with a glass flask. Such flasks do not react with food; they retain heat better and wash easily. The disadvantages include the excessive fragility of the glass, the high probability of its breakage when the thermos falls. In addition, cold water cannot be poured into the flask in which the boiling water has just been located, as this may burst the glass.
- A thermos with a plastic flask can be used either for boiling water, or for any one drink - tea or coffee. This is due to the ability of the plastic to absorb odor, and when reheated, give it back. Therefore, a new drink can acquire a taste and aroma of the previous one, which, of course, cannot be allowed. But in comparison with glass and metal analogues, plastic flasks do not weigh down the total weight of the product and do not break.
As for the choice of material for the case, it also depends on the operating conditions of the thermos. For extreme recreation and as a hiking option, the metal model is the best fit, and for calmer events, you can be content with the plastic one.
How much to choose?
When choosing a thermos, it is important to correctly determine the volume, which will help not to spend extra money and not to transfer air into the flask. Fortunately, modern manufacturers offer volumes from 250 ml to 40 liters, which makes it easy to choose the right option. It should be remembered that the larger the volume of the thermos, the better it holds the temperature. Conventionally, all models are divided into three groups: small containers with a capacity of 250-1000 ml, medium ones that can hold from 1 to 3 liters, and large ones designed for 3-40 liters.
If the thermos is purchased exclusively for individual use and will be used to carry hot drinks at work, then you can limit yourself to a compact thermomug with a capacity of 250-330 ml. For picnic trips or family outings, the two-liter model will be the best option, and for home use, a thermos with a volume of over 3 liters equipped with an air pump is a good option.
For hiking, hunting and fishing, the volume of the thermos is selected based on the number of people who will use it. It is necessary to calculate the total volume so that per person has at least 250-300 ml of drink.
Choosing a thermos is a responsible business, so before you make a purchase, It is necessary to pay attention to a number of important points.
- You should carefully consider the packaging of the selected model and find information about the manufacturer. Reliable and responsible companies must indicate the address of their website or hotline number, to which they can send their complaints and require replacement of the model in the event of a factory defect. In addition, the box should clearly state what materials the thermos is made of and what products it is intended for storage.
- Next, you should remove the product from the packaging and check it for dents and scratches. This is especially important for thermoses with painted bodies. It happens that, in order to save money, ordinary steel is used for their production, which does not have anti-corrosion properties, if there is damage to the protective layer, the metal will begin to rust over time.
- After visual inspection, it is recommended to shake the thermos and make sure that there are no extraneous knocks. Their presence indicates a poor fastening of the flask to the body or its breakdown.
- The plug should also be checked: it should spin freely until it stops, do not scroll or hang around the neck. And also you should smell the cork itself and the neck, make sure there are no extraneous odors. Their presence indicates the use of low-quality materials and serves as a clear signal that warns against buying such a thermos.
- If the model is purchased for home use, and even more so for brewing herbal teas, then only models with a glass flask should be purchased.
- For short-term storage of hot dishes for 1-2 hours, instead of a thermos, you can purchase a thermal container or a thermal bag.
- When choosing a model for fishing, it is better to purchase non-current specimens equipped with rubber or silicone inserts.
In general, most consumers are satisfied with their thermoses and appreciate them operational properties. However, more often this applies. to models of well-known brands that value their reputation and produce high-quality products.
Among the products of little-known or young companies, there are frankly weak models that require careful refinement. So, the owners of Tatonka thermoses complain about turning lids and corks, although there have not yet been any incidents with wet things, this fact is somewhat alarming. The owners of Amet thermoses have no special complaints against them, only some bulkiness of models and a lot of weight are noted.
There are a lot of good reviews about Penguin models, in which the instructions have a table indicating how many hours a particular displacement is able to keep the temperature. Among the most common complaints are the smell of cork and poor heat retention. In addition, owners of budget vacuum flasks with a pneumatic pump often complain that over time the valve begins to leak, and one of the users writes about the "flood" because of a teapot caught in the mechanism.
However, for the sake of justice, it is worth noting that this applies to models of little-known companies that are just starting their career path. Owners of branded products have no special complaints against the manufacturer and have been using their thermoses for many years.
See how to pick up a thermos.