Stanley Thermos Review

Stanley Thermos

UPDATE: Please read the update and the readers’ comments below. It seems the newer Stanley thermos does not hold up like the one in this review. Since moving their production over to China there seems to be a significant drop in quality.

Old Review:

After being disappointed with other brands of thermoses in the past, I really wasn’t expecting that much from the Stanley Thermos. I heard that they were tough, but I figured it was probably just a marketing gimmick. Boy, was I wrong!

I abuse pretty much all of my gear. From driving off with cameras on my back bumper to dropping gear down the side of a mountain, it was nice to finally have a product that could stand up to my abuse. I was really impressed with the strength of everything from the thermos handle to the handy little cup cap.

I brought a couple of Stanley Thermoses out to Sedona over the weekend, and after using them around the campground I am now a loyal fan! I was so impressed with them that I will be bringing them on all our future trips.

Why We Liked the Classic Stanley Thermos:

  1. Very tough – They stood up to all sorts of falls and even a few tumbles downs some rocks. I can see why people say that these things last a lifetime. The Classic Stanley Thermos stood up to pretty much any abuse that we could throw at it.
  2. Kept everything we put in them very hot. In fact, I filled the thermos up with boiling water at around 9pm and at 8am the next morning it was still hot enough to steep some tea. (The thermos was left out on a table in temperatures around 50 degrees)
  3. Very convenient. It was nice to have Hot water waiting in the morning without having to start the fire.
  4. The Lid is tough and doubles as a drinking cup.
  5. It was nice to see a company that still cares about quality. I have tried many cheap knock-off Thermoses in the past and I will tell you that none of them compared to the Stanley. We highly recommend it to anyone who is thinking about adding thermoses to their camping gear. This is one product that you will not have to worry about replacing anytime soon.

Looking for a Stanley Thermos?

Update: We have had a number or people write in with their own reviews which you can see below. The thermos we reviewed was from a couple of years ago and worked great for us.  Sadly, that doesn’t seem to be the case with newer models — you can read the hundreds of comments below. You can find more Gear Reviews in our Survival Gear Section and our Hiking Gear Section.

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  1. I have always had a Stanley Thermos, because I don’t mind paying for quality and Stanley was alway a quality product. As a truck driver I drink alot of coffee and my new Stanley Thermos is a piece of poop! It will only keep my coffee warm for about 2-3 hours. Shame on you Stanley for taking jobs away from Americans and then charging the same Americans big bucks for such a useless product!!

  2. We have several of the different Stanley thermoses, and have never had a problem. My husband’s tall Classic thermos I can put coffee in it in the morning and when he comes home at night it is still hot. I bought him the 17oz classic food jar and it is the same way, it will stay hot all day long. 1 problem we had was on the food jar it has a rubber seal that had broke. I am not really sure on how this happened, but I wrote to the company and they were really helpful within in 10 days I had a brand new one. The company is all about keeping satisfied customers. I will never buy anything but a Stanley!

    • A year or two ago I bought a Stanley thermos (I own close to 20 for business purposes) new and when I got it home I found it had no rubber seal. When I contacted Stanley about it they said they did not replace the rubber seals (even though mine never had one to begin with) and reluctantly sent me another one after a lengthy email battle. I could really use a few replacements for the ones that have seen the greatest use. I’m glad you had a better experience with them but wish their customer service were more consistent.

  3. I bought a 17oz. Stanley thermos a few years ago and it stopped working. So I called them and they sent me a new one, no questions asked. I used it a few times and now this one doesn’t keep my soup cold after 5 hours. Like someone said above, the whole thing is hot and you can tell it’s losing heat. I even boiled water and put it in for 20 minutes before I put my soup in in the morning and it still doesn’t work!! SO I just called them and they are sending me another…….we’ll see! ):

  4. warning…..DO NOT BUY MADE IN CHINA stanley thermos….they are not what they use to be. they are about half the weight and do not have the charcoal liner in between the layers for the extra insulation.

  5. The consensus here is the Stanley newer models made in China are junk. I had the same problem with a Target bought Stanley Thermos. It lasted less than a month.

    My question is, what’s the consensus here on why Stanley will continue to allow this to go on? I’m perplexed reading all these threads of the same problem. The reason I’m here today is, my wife captured an pre 2002 Vacuum bottle that appears to have the same problem. After reading this, I’m thinking I keep the bottle and try a new stopper. There is no sense in sending it in for a new Chinese made bottle. I hope Stanley gets their collective sh*t together before it’s to late.

    May everyone enjoy hot coffee again someday:)

  6. I bought a Stanley Bolt thermos two weeks ago. It worked fine for a few days but then it just stopped keeping my coffee hot. By morning break it was lukewarm. I noticed the outside would get hot right after I filled it like it was no longer insulating. Called the company and they had me return it to the hardware store. I exchanged it for another model but all they carried was the Stanley brand so I kept the tags & receipt just in case. What a disappointment.

    • Thermos brand and Stanley are junk since they stopped making them in the U.S. I bought a Stanley Bolt food jar that’s supposed to keep food hot for 16 hours, and sitting on the counter in the house, it’s lukewarm by lunchtime. Same with the Thermos. I have an old food jar and coffee thermos,,Stanley brand, and they keep what’s in them hot for a long time. Save yourself the hassle and buy an old one off Ebay. These people that are saying how great the new ones work are full of crap. Doesn’t take a genius to figure out that if 99% of the reviews are bad, then so is the product.

  7. I had the same problems with the new stanleys. I finally found an older 1987 1 quart Stanley with the cooler that it attaches to. I got it from the flea market for 7 bucks for both. Yea they took a little cleaning but man there’s nothing like an old Stanley to keep the coffe hot. There slogan should be ” used to be built to last”

  8. SAME THING! Darned thing is lukewarm in a couple hours. I knew there was a problem when the thermos was hot on the exterior within minutes of pouring in my coffee. LAME!!! I’ll take the extra weight, just make em better Stanley!

  9. I had an old stanley thermos i bought in the 80s and was good until i ran over it with my truck ,so i bought a new one last year ,made in china of course ,and my coffe is cold in 2 hr tops im very dissapointed ,they uste to make a good product i will never buy another stanley

  10. my family and I have a older stanley thermos i put hot tea in it and used it in sub-zero tempatures and the tea was still hot i saw plumes of steam i love that thermos havent tried the new ones yet

  11. I had a stanley thermos for years couldn’t have been happier but then it wouldn’t keep hot I returned it to a stanley thermos supplier,which gave us a brand new one, I was so happy to get another stanley thermos,BUT WHAT HAPPENED,this one wouldn’t keep hot either,,I was given a smaller one it kept hot for a few months but now it doesn’t keep hot either,tried to replace them with the warranty like I did before but I’m told to go directly to the manufacture,hit another brick wall,cant find one in Australia.Could someone please help me out here? Where do I go from here?

    • I want to stay there thermos sucks I have and old one trying to get replaced it’s nothing but a big problem.they wanted to to sent them a the sale ticket where I bought it at with the price and date I done have that from thirty year ago .enjoy buying a product that was made in the USA and now made in China Ser where it’d cheaper to be made at. All I’m saying don’t buy Stanley products they sent all the jobs to China.

  12. I have had my 2 qt. Stanley for about 5 years. It is the made in China one but it worked pretty well for the first few years. I broke the cap, got a replacement and it continued to work OK for about 6 months. Now, my coffee is cold in 3 hours. Could it be the cap??? I hate to get rid of the thermos. This thermos and I have done alot of work together but I can’t/won’t drink cold coffee. Judgeing by the comments on this site Stanley should do the research and fix the problem. I’ll try a new cap and see what happens.

  13. Hi
    I bought a Stanley 1.9ltr thermos flask while on holidays in Victoria in January this year and it worked well for a couple of months but has suddenly just stopped keeping the water hot within 2 hours of filling it. Can anyone tell me a South australian depot where i can send it to claim my warranty as i have searched the internet and can only find a USA contact.thanks

  14. I can’t believe in 2002 they closed the usa plant…to bad they made a good product. Now they’re making them in china with a much lesser quality …Figures… The usa is putting it self in this economical downfall due to outsourcing! No jobs wonder why.. Kinda reminds me of craftsman tools they were going to be outsourced to china people complained and wrote to the company and the tools are still made in the usa… As far as I know.. Shouldn’t we write to whoever owns the stanley name now and provide jobs to needy americans! I’m tired of buying china let’s the little sticker say made in the usa

    • My kid’s soup is cold by lunchtime. I warm up the thermos with boiling water,pour in very hot soup and 3 hrs. later he’s lucky if it is barely lukewarm. I could’ve bought a $3 cheapo to do that. Not like my old Stanley for sure. We need an internet protest and boycott of PMI to bring American jobs and our old quality Stanleys back home. Maybe a group civil lawsuit should be filed for fraud against PMI! 3 doesn’t equal 12.

  15. I thought I was crazy. Now I realize it wasn’t me, it was the product.I purchased a new stanley because I remember as a kid how great they were but couldn’t afford one then. It is absolutely worthless for keeping temperature. I have thrown it away along with the $30 I spent on it.

  16. We also purchased one of these crappy thermos’, we paid $60 and the same thing happened. My husband works in contruction and many of his work mates have had the same problem. Typical Chinese crap (cheap and nasty) but you still pay the same price as before, what a rip off.

  17. My husband also works construction and the same thing is happening to him. After a couple of hours coffee is only luke warm. I will be changing brands because this is the second one i bought for him thinking the first was a defected, but no i was wrong the product is just junk!


    Bring back the factory from china maybe you can save your line of products.


    Yes, Stanley will replace, but what’s the point if the replacement is as worthless as the original. I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER STANLEY. F*@!ing China lovin’ wh*?es.


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