Latch Repair for Igloo Playmate Elite

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About: Create, Invent, Make, Have Fun

Igloo makes a popular lunch pail cooler called Playmate.

Popular with construction workers, truckers, beach goers and Bellarmine's water polo players. Go Bells!

The elite line features a simple push button latch that lets you swing the lid in either direction to access your cooler's contents.

Sometimes the latch will get stuck. Stuck on what to do? Read on.

Step 1: Verify the Problem Is the Latch

Has the latch on your Igloo Playmate Cooler stopped working?

Do you press the button and nothing happens?

Has your button lost its "springy" feel and not pop back up?

Is your lunch pal cooler locked so that you can't open it?

Does your lunch cooler swing wildly open and dump out of the cooler onto the ground because the latch failed to lock?

Well the answer may be as simple as a Philips screw driver and a few minutes of your time.

Step 2: Remove Screw Covers

On both sides of your lid you'll see two rounded circles.

Carefully take your finger nail or flat head screw driver and pop the cap covers off from their bottom. The are hinged at the top and should swing out for you to remove.

Step 3: Remove the Screws

Use your Philips screw driver to remove the screws from both sides of the lid.

Take care to unscrew the other side by 50% before unscrewing the screw on your side.

Step 4: Pull Off the Lid

When both screws are out you should be able to flex the lid over the screw mounts and use the handle to pull the lid off from the cooler body.

Take special note of which side the latch is on since you'll need to put it back on the same side of the cooler (notch on the side).

Step 5: Under the Latch

Examine how the latch works.

It is a simple no spring design that uses the natural tension of the plastic strip.

Notice that the strip should fit into the grooved track on the inside of the lid.

With the lid removed from the bottom the latch should be easy to access and should now work smoothly (i.e. Press latch button and it springs back up).

Step 6: Reassemble

You'll want to make sure the latch is up. The plastic tension strip is inside the groves track. And that the lid is carefully put back on.

Make sure the latch is on the same side as the notch on the side of the cooler's rim. This is how the latch locks the plastic strap so that your top doesn't accidentally swing open.

Carefully put the side screws back in 50% of the way before switching to the other side. Take care to keep your Philips screwdriver and screw straight. Plastic is a soft material so you need to minimize wear and tear by getting the screw installed correctly. Do not under or over tighten.

Test the dual swinging of the lid where pressing the latch moves the strip into the track allowing it to leave the notch on the side.

If one side of the cooler is rubbing you'll need to loosen the screw in that side.

If the cooler won't stay locked you may need to tighten the screw in that side or readjust the plastic strip.

If all is good reattach the cover caps by hooking the hinge at the top, swinging cover in and then pressing it until it clicks in place.

If you are still having trouble contact Igloos customer service for in/out of warranty repair.

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    6 Discussions

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    56pickup

    7 months ago

    I haven't been able to find the latch strap anywhere

    1 reply
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    adam.kahler56pickup

    Reply 7 weeks ago

    See my comment above, if you have access to a 3D printer (try local university maybe) you can print your own replacement

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    adam.kahler

    7 weeks ago

    Hello all! I too had a broken latch and couldn't find a replacement. I resorted to designing one and 3D printing it. It works great and is way more durable than the injection molded original. Here's the link to the piece on Thingiverse to download and print yourself: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3441822
    Please note, this was made for the "Little Playmate" and I don't know if it will work on the bigger cooler.

    EDIT: I ended up finding a better model of the latch on Thingiverse that looks like it's made specifically for the bigger playmate cooler. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2644028

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