Coleman Cooler Hinges 3: An Improved Idea!

Our first fix to our ice chest inspired John Trumbull.

ImprovementHis improved idea is what we call “Coleman Cooler Hinges 3.”

John, thanks ever so much for encouraging us by sharing your story and your photo.

We’re dedicating this page to you.

Readers, that’s what this website — written by professional drivers for professional drivers — is all about.

When we share what each of us has learned about saving money, all of us are helped. (You can even earn money from writing articles and reviews.)

OK, let’s take a brief look back.

We noted that we used regular jumbo paper clips as a temporary fix under the broken hinge of our Coleman ice chest.

After just so much use, they broke.

We replaced those with a large brass hinge.

When the second plastic hinge broke, we replaced it with a brass hinge too.

However, we noted that the screws didn’t stay in place too well where they weren’t originally drilled.


Coleman Cooler Hinges 3: Stating the Improvement

John wrote:

I broke a hinge on a Coleman ice chest and saw your fix while surfing.  I was kinda in a pinch and started tooking for paperclips when I found two spring loaded ball paperclips.  The black ones that come in many sizes.  Anyway I found one that fit perfectly. “And” it provided support and tension to hold the lid. This will work until I can make a permanent fix.  Thanks, never would have thought of it unless I saw your website.  Good job!

Vicki responded by thanking John for writing, saying that his email really encouraged us, and asked if the “spring-loaded paperclips” were the same thing as metal binder clips available through a particular office supply store

Then she asked him if he would take a photo and send it.


Coleman Cooler Hinges 3: Photographing the Improvement

John replied that indeed the metal binder clips were what he used and he sent this…

The fix to a Coleman cooler hinge using spring-loaded paperclips or metal binder clips by John TrumbullThe photo at left was submitted to us by John Trumbull, showing the fix he made to his
Coleman cooler hinge using “spring-loaded paper clips” or metal binder clips, which are available in many office supply stores or online.


The following is a link to a package of assorted binder clips for sale on, with whom we have an affiliate relationships.


Coleman Cooler Hinges 3: Why the Improvement Works

This is a definite improvement over the temporary fix we had used with regular jumbo paper clips because they have a built in hinge (bending point) in them.

Not only does the improvement of the hardware work, but since John is able to continue using the same holes that were originally drilled for the hinge, these may last longer than the connection point we have used to install a better hinge.

It’s the old “build a better mousetrap” situation where someone takes an “OK” idea and dramatically improves it.

We never thought of using binder clips on our cooler. But John did and we’ll be interested in learning how this fix works for him over time.


truck drivers money saving tip iconRoadPro binder clips on sale at a truck stop.Money saving tip: The package of assorted binder clips shown above cost $10.49 (as of the time this page was originally written).

With 60 clips in the package, that is an average cost per clip of about 17.5 cents.

So, John spent somewhere in the neighborhood of $0.35 to repair (at least temporarily)
his ice chest.

That’s even cheaper than what we spent for a brass hinge!

Even if he has to replace the binder clips a few times, that sure beats the cost of spending big bucks to keep replacing the plastic hinges available from Coleman (which will keep breaking).

Also, it is possible to buy binder clips at a truck stop, but don’t count on them being priced the same as or
less than you can find them for in an office supply store or discount department store.

The photo here shows a package of RoadPro binder clips — just 3 — on sale at a truck stop for $1.99.

Let the buyer beware.


Return from Coleman Cooler Hinges 3: An Improved Idea! to our Meal Preparation page or our Truck Drivers Money Saving Tips home page.