Pastel-colored tumblers on beige background

Insulated Tumbler: Why You Should Pre-Chill Before Use

Whether you’re at home or on the move, an insulated tumbler is always a good thing to have with you. Able to keep drinks icy cold (or even piping hot) for hours on end, these speciality cups owe their success to, well, their insulation. Yet, despite their effectiveness, even the highest quality tumblers can perform poorly when used improperly. To ensure insulated tumblers behave exactly as they should, don’t forget to pre-chill them for cold beverages.

Pre-chilling, or priming, an insulated tumbler is guaranteed to keep your favorite beverage crisp and cold throughout the day. The reason why is rooted in science, or more aptly, thermodynamics. Essentially, all insulated tumblers have a vacuum-sealed gap in between their inner and outer layers. This gap acts as a barrier that slows down the transfer of heat, and allows liquids to remain frosty. However, unless a tumbler has been chilled before a beverage is added, this layer of insulation can actually hold onto warmth and raise the temperature of your drink. Pre-chilling works to prevent this from happening.

To prime an insulated tumbler, all you need to do is fill it with ice cubes and very cold water, and set it aside. After a few minutes, the chilled cup can be emptied and filled with your beverage of choice.

To maintain chilled temperatures, follow these tips

Hand holding yellow tumbler

The first step in encouraging cool temperatures is to select the right tumbler. Along with evaluating material and durability, consider aesthetics. Since dark colors absorb light easily, choosing a white or pastel-colored tumbler could act as a precaution to keep drinks icy. Likewise, steer clear of anything dented. Aside from being visually unpleasant, major dents can cause insulation issues.

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When it comes to filling insulated tumblers, start with a cold beverage. Even if you pre-chill the cup beforehand, pouring in a just-barely chilled liquid will only lead to a lukewarm result that much faster. Additionally, it couldn’t hurt to toss some ice cubes (preferably large ones) into the tumbler. There’s no need to worry about dilution as a high quality tumbler will prevent this from happening, guaranteeing the frostiest and most flavorful drink possible. Lastly, be mindful of how you enjoy your chilled beverages. Avoid removing lids frequently or for extended periods of time as this can invite heat into the cup. That said, by priming a tumbler, cold drinks are likely to be positively affected anyway. What can we say? A quick pre-chill really does go a long way!

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