Hydro Flask vs Yeti [2020]: Which Insulated Water Bottle?

The Hydro Flask and Yeti bottles rank amongst the best water bottles in the world, surpassing Nalgenes and Camelbacks with ease.

Yet their unrivaled success only warrants one question: which is better? Hydro flask vs Yeti: Let the comparison begin!

We’ll walk you through each bottle’s features, comparing and contrasting the models to determine which bottle is better for you.

Bottom Line Up Front Summary: After comparing the minutia of each bottle, it looks as though they’re even. If price is your selling point, we recommend purchasing the Hydro Flask available here where they frequently have discounts. However, If money is irrelevant here, then sink your teeth into the Yeti here for a slightly better product overall.

Main Differences Between the Hydro Flask and Yeti

The main differences between the Hydro Flask and Yeti are:

  • The Yeti bottle has a wider standard mouth than Hydro Flask
  • The Hydro Flask has an optimized groove for lip placement
  • The Yeti offers a full handle grip, while the Hydro Flask is optimally gripped as a bottle
  • The Hydro Flask is generally less expensive than comparable Yeti bottles
  • The Hydro Flask has many more color customization options
I Personally Prefer the YETI Rambler
I love my Hydro Flask's, don't get me wrong. BUT the new YETI Rambler series is a game-changer in many subtle ways. More durable, easier to grip, and a wider mouth for optimal pour. If I had to pick another... it would be this Rambler.
Go With the Rambler Learn More
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Hydro Flask vs Yeti: The Technology Comparison

For starters, both water bottles utilize a double-wall vacuum insulation design (double wall insulation insulated water bottle). This long-winded technology, originally created in 1982 by Scotish physicist and chemist James Dewar, simply means that each bottle is built with two protective walls that do not touch. This vacuum insulated water bottle is the difference between your coffee being hot or lukewarm in temperature.

The air-gap between the heat transfer, thus keeping your liquids hot or drinks cold for a much longer time. These bottles only lose their internal temperature via the cap, which by virtue cannot be vacuum insulated. Let’s just say both of these are more than just your typical water bottle.

Each bottle keeps both hot beverages (hot water tea, coffee, etc…) and cold liquids (cold water or ice cubes, and other cold drink options) at their respective temperatures for a solid four to six hours. After six hours, your coffee’s temperature might drop a few degrees. Around 12 hours, your coffee may begin to feel lukewarm, however, it will still retain some of its heat. Of course, this is all due to the vacuum insulated bottle technology that both of these have.

Most people claim that the initial temperature, whether it be boiling or freezing, will not fully dissipate until 24 hours later. Cold beverages also tend to last much longer when it comes to temperature retention. Finding a decent insulated water bottle for your travels shouldn’t be hard. Let’s go through the parts that compose these two insulated water bottles and start the comparison.

The Cap (Water Bottle Lid)

The Yeti definitely outranks the Hyrdoflask cap in design. With a larger handle, the Yeti allows users to comfortably slip three fingers through for grip —the Hydroflask tends to permit only two and in an awkward fashion. The Yeti’s extra finger hold might not seem like much, but it goes a long way when hauling around your bottle to class or sipping refreshments on the beach.

Fortunately, Hydroflask does have a solution to their cap limitations as they offer users the freedom to customize their cap. With countless different models, users can outfit their Hydroflask with a larger cap or even a sippy-cup style cap.

The Yeti lid surpasses Hydroflask when it comes to cap width as well. Yeti caps stretch an impressive 2.75 inches. This design places the upper rim of the bottle well over your nose. Yeti claims that this allows you to both soak in the smell of your beverage and drink it at the same time.

On the flip side, the Hydroflask mouth opening only stretches 2.28 inches . Depending upon the size of your face, the upper rim usually falls along the bridge of your nose.

Now, you’ll most likely never notice this difference, but if you’re jogging and attempt to drink, you might suffer a larger splash back from the Hydroflask bottle than the Yeti. Still, the wide mouth bottle version of hydro flask is worth checking out here.

Although the Hydroflask cap lacks width, the cap does cover where you would drink from. To elaborate, the hydro flask cap screws onto a protruding neck of the bottle, thus cutting out any unwanted germs. When you take a drink, your lips fall onto a metal portion that has otherwise been protected from the outside world.

The Yeti cap, however, screws onto the inside of the bottle, therefore forcing you to place your lips against the cold, exposed metal every time you take a drink. This might not pose a threat to your value system, but if you’re overly-conscious of germs then the difference is definitely something to consider.

Note: neither of these bottles have a flip lid, only screw on caps.

Why I LOVE Hydro Flask
Reliability, durable, affordable, customizable. Easily clips on a carabiner, but doesn't have to. That's why Hydro Flask is the TOP recommended outdoor water bottle by our Editorial Team here at AOG.
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The Water Bottle Grip

The Yeti bottle is built with 18/8 stainless steel, a key component to reducing heat transfer. This outer surface is not coated with any material. This means that you can place your Yeti bottle in the dishwasher without any ramifications.

The Hydroflask bottle, also built with stainless steel, is, however, covered in a powdered coating. The thin coating improves the bottle’s grip; however, the coating also prevents dishwasher use as it might rub off in the process.

Water Bottle Durability:

Both the Hydroflask and Yeti Rambler bottles exhibit high durability, but reviews suggest that the Yeti might prove slightly more durable. While you may see slight dents after dropping the Yeti, you might also see chipped color when dropping the Hydroflask.

Both of these insulated water bottles are dishwasher safe but you shouldn’t put them in the dishwasher if you can avoid it. A quick clean is all you’ll need. I wouldn’t trust the dishwasher safe label when it comes to these types of water bottles anyway.

Water Bottle Extra Customization

While it plays no role in the bottle’s performance, when you buy your Yeti bottle, you may pick from an array of symbols to paste across your Yeti’s outer shell.

Hydroflask does not offer this feature, however, they do offer a color customization option. Hydroflask owners can pick their own boot, strap and bottle colors.

Both companies also offer a variety of sizes and related cups like the Yeti tumbler (insulated tumbler) and Hydro Flask tumbler if you are looking to make a complete set or kit. 

Price Comparison: Hydro Flask vs Yeti Rambler Insulated Bottle

Price falls in Hydroflask’s favor as their products cost far less than Yeti products.

Capacity in ounces: To compare, the 36 oz. Yeti Rambler bottle clocks in at $49.99 (check this listing for the latest live prices)] whereas the larger, 40 oz. Hydroflask bottle only costs $42.95 (check this listing for the latest live prices).

Of course, you have to consider that the Hydroflask also offers supplemental purchasing while the Yeti does not, so you may end up spending the same price.

 Hydro FlaskYeti Rambler Bottle
Cap Width+
Lip Placement+
Handle Grip+
Bottle Grip+
Dishwasher Ready+
Price+
CustomizationColorArtwork

*Note: Both also offer a lifetime warranty, should something break and need to be fully replaced.

I Personally Prefer the YETI Rambler
I love my Hydro Flask's, don't get me wrong. BUT the new YETI Rambler series is a game-changer in many subtle ways. More durable, easier to grip, and a wider mouth for optimal pour. If I had to pick another... it would be this Rambler.
Go With the Rambler Learn More
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.

FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions About Yeti and Hydro Flask

We frequently get questions from readers, so I created this little section for the benefit of all:

Question: Is Hydro Flask as good as Yeti Rambler bottle?

Answer: The truth is that they are VERY similar. Yeti may have the slight edge when it comes to durability, being more resistant to dents and scrapes. The only other difference is really the handle vs strap preference and slightly different lids. For the price, Hydro Flask is a great option, but Yeti water bottle has the edge if we remove price completely from the equation.

Question: Do Yeti lids fit Hydro Flask?

Answer: No, at least not the ones that I’ve tried. 

Other Hydro Flask Water Bottle Comparisons

We’ve been covering the Hydro Flask for a while as the stainless steel insulated water bottle race heats up! Here are some of our recent comps including Klean Kanteen, RTIC, Fifty Fifty, Swig, Eco Vessel, Simple Modern, Takeya and S’well:

Results: Yeti vs Hydro Flask Bottle

Final Recommendation: So, after comparing the minutia of each bottle, it looks as though they’re even. If price is your selling point, we recommend purchasing the Hydro Flask available here where they frequently have discounts.

BUT: If money is irrelevant, then sink your teeth into the Yeti Rambler bottle here for a slightly better product overall.

Either way, you won’t be upset with your choice. Each bottle is proven to insulate your drinks far better than any competing stainless steel model.

I Personally Prefer the YETI Rambler
I love my Hydro Flask's, don't get me wrong. BUT the new YETI Rambler series is a game-changer in many subtle ways. More durable, easier to grip, and a wider mouth for optimal pour. If I had to pick another... it would be this Rambler.
Go With the Rambler Learn More
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.

For Further Reading on Stainless Steel Water Bottle Options:

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