Yeti Tumbler Cups Not Keeping Water Cold: Here’s Why

You may be finding that you Yeti tumbler cup is not keeping water cold for very long like it should be doing. While this issue isn't super common it does happen. Here are the main causes of this issue and what you can do about it.

The main reason a Yeti tumbler cup is not keeping water cold is because the vacuum insulation is compromised and filled with air. This issues is covered under Yeti's 5 Year warranty and you can contact them for a replacement.

Unfortunately it's not possible to fix your Yeti cup and recreate the vacuum unless you have very specialized equipment or a manufacturing plant in your backyard.

However, there are also a few other reasons why your Yeti tumbler cup may not be keeping water cold anymore and it's worth seeing if you can fix these issues before getting in contact with Yeti for a replacement.

First, Understand How Yeti Cups Keep Water Cold

I've previously written an entire article on exactly how Yeti tumbler cups work to keep things cold as well as hot but I will quickly summarize that here to help you identify any potential problems.

Yeti cups are able to insulate so well and keep drinks cold for so long because of one main factor: a vacuum.

Yeti tumbler cups are made from double walled stainless steel. This means they have an inner and outer wall in the gap in the middle they suck out all the air creating a vacuum. They then seal it up so nothing can get into that space.

It's actually the vacuum that does the insulating, not the stainless steel. A vacuum is one of the best insulators out there with an R value of 14-66 according to Wikipedia.

Take styrofoam as an example of another great insulator. It's R value is only 5. Still good but nowhere near as good as the vacuum used in Yeti cups. It's the vacuum that keeps your drink cold or hot for hours at a time.

How Long Should Water Stay Cold In a Yeti?

Yeti claim their cups keep ice cold for 24+ hours and having personally owned both a 10 oz Yeti Lowball as well as my 30 oz Yeti tumbler cup I can say that I do get a full day of ice retention from these cups.

Here are some rough estimated on how long a Yeti cup should keep water cold for. This will vary depending on the size of your Yeti cup and how hot it is outside.

  • Full of ice – 24+ hours
  • Half ice/Half cold water – 12-18 hours
  • Little bit of ice and cold water – 6-12+ hours
  • Cold water – 2-6 hours
  • Room temperature water – 0 hours

See the latest price of Yeti Tumblers at
(or compare prices to Yeti Tumblers at Amazon)

Reasons Your Yeti Cup Is Not Keeping Water Cold

Hello I've listed the six main reasons that people tend to have issues with the yeti cups not keeping water cold or hot for very long anymore.

You can also check out my tips on how to keep ice longer in an insulated cup or bottle if you want to do everything you can to get your drink to stay as cold as possible in your Yeti cup.

1. The Vacuum Insulation is Compromised

If you're experiencing pretty significant performance issues with your kitty cup being able to keep your water cold for an extended period of time then the most likely cause of this happening is the vacuum insulation being compromised.

As we've already talked about yeti cups and bottles have your wall vacuum insulation. Between the inner and outer wall is a vacuum with nearly no particles for heat to transfer through.

While it is possible for your Yeti to stop working overtime this shouldn't happen through regular use alone and generally only happens through damage or a manufacture defect.

Yeti tumbler cups actually backed by a 5-year warranty which covers issues with the vacuum seal

If the vacuum seal is broken because you dropped your Yeti, or dented your Yeti or damaged it significantly in some other way then you won't be covered by the warranty.

But if this just happened on it's own and there was no way you could have caused the loss of the vacuum insulation then you're likely covered.

You can click here to claim your warranty with Yeti.

2. You're Not Using Enough Ice

When you fill up your yeti cup with room temperature water and some ice the ice will immediately begin to melt as it lowers the temperature of the water.

If you don't use enough ice then ice will melt extremely quickly in your Yeti cup. This means your water probably won't stay as cold as you would like for as long as you would like.

This sort of cold water then won't take much energy to warm back up to room temperature.

Semi-cold water warms up to room temperature much faster than freezing cold water with ice in it.

So it's possible the water isn't staying cold for very long in your Yeti tumbler because you just aren't using enough ice in it. Do you want to have a high ice to water ratio with as much ice as possible.

I personally fill up my Yeti cup anywhere from 50-100% with ice and then add cold water from the fridge and it stays cold with ice in it for 24+ hours.

This technique also allows me to add more water to my Yeti tumbler throughout the day and because I still have a lot of ice left a quickly cools down that water. So I can drink more water throughout the day.

3. You're Using Warm Tap Water

If you want to keep water cold in your Yeti and keep ice for longer then you'll want to be filling your Yeti cup with water that is already pre-chilled in your fridge.

If you feel up your yeti cup with water straight from the tap then this will quickly milk whatever I see you have in there and your Yeti won't keep water cold for as long.

So whenever possible always use cold water from the fridge. But remember you shouldn't put your Yeti tumbler cup in the freezer because as water freezes it expands and this can break the vacuum insulation.

4. You're Leaving The Lid Open

When I'm sitting at the desk in my office working on my latest article or video I'll often have my yeti cup right there next to me with the lid off ready to drink.

Now for me this is because my Yeti is going on 5 years old and I've lost the lid for it. I also like drinking out of the metal instead of the plastic, especially when I'm using it for hot tea.

However, leaving the lid off your yeti means more heat can get in and the water will warm up faster. The mouth opening is the main place that heat gets into your Yeti

To keep the water cold or longer do you wanna leave the lid on so you get that extra insulation from the plastic lid.

5. It's Being Exposed To Too Much Heat

While Yeti cups are great at insulating and keeping water cold for a long period of time they aren't perfect. Little bits of heat does get through and warm up your water.

If you're exposing your Yeti cup to a lot of outside heat then this is going to cause the water inside to warm up faster.

Having your Yeti cup in direct sunlight, especially if it has dark paint on the outside like the black color, can cause your water to not stay cold as long.

Light colored Yeti's like the white color reflect more light and heat and thus keep water cold longer. I looked at this in more detail in light vs dark coolers and how long they keep ice.

Having you Yeti cup held up against your warm body, hot computer fan or other warm machinery or even leaving it on the hot ground or a hot surface can also negatively affect how long water will stay cold for.

Keeping your Yeti cup in a hot car vs having it with you in a cooler place will mean it won't keep water cold as long.

So keep your Yeti cup away from direct heat where possible.

6. You're Drinking The Water

The more air space there is in a Yeti cup the quicker the remaining water will warm up.

a 10 oz Yeti tumbler filled with ice and cold water will keep that water cold for a lot longer than a 30 oz Yeti cup that only has 10 oz of ice and water in it.

The empty space fills with warm air and the heat in that air warms up the drink in your Yeti more quickly. The same is also true for Yeti bottles.

So if you have a large Yeti tumbler and it's got a lot of space in it because it's so empty this may be one reason why water isn't staying cold for long in your Yeti.

Time To Update Your Hydro Flask?

Maybe your Yeti tumbler has gotten old like mine has and you've decided it's actually time for a new one.

This could be the perfect excuse to get that color you've been eying off and always wish you'd gotten. Or it could be the time to try out a larger or smaller size.

Or maybe you want to change from a Yeti tumbler to a Yeti water bottle so it's completely leak proof and you can throw it in your bad.

Check out the latest prices of Yeti tumblers and bottles by using the links below.

See the latest price of Yeti Tumblers at
(or compare prices to Yeti Tumblers at Amazon)

See the latest prices of Yeti bottles at
(or compare to prices of Yeti bottles at Amazon)