Dry Ice

Dry Ice is frozen carbon dioxide, a normal part of our earth’s atmosphere. It is the gas that we exhale during breathing and the gas that plants use in photosynthesis. It is also the same gas commonly added to water to make soda water. Dry Ice is particularly useful for freezing, and keeping things frozen because of its very cold temperature:-109.3˚F or -78.5˚C. Dry Ice is widely used because it is simple to freeze and easy to handle using insulated gloves. Dry Ice changes directly from a solid to a gas - sublimation- in normal atmospheric conditions without going through a wet liquid stage. Therefore it gets the name “dry ice.”

As a general rule, Dry Ice will sublimate at a rate of five to ten pounds every 24 hours in a typical ice chest. This sublimation continues from the time of purchase; therefore, pick up Dry Ice as close to the time needed as possible. Bring an ice chest or some other insulated container to hold the Dry Ice and slow the sublimation rate. Dry Ice sublimates faster than regular ice melts but will extend the life of regular ice.

Table of average amounts of dry ice for packing frozen goods

Weight of
Frozen Food
Time  In Transit
4 Hours 12 Hours 24 Hours 2 Days
2 LB 2 LB
Dry Ice
3 LB
Dry Ice
5 LB
Dry Ice
10 LB
Dry Ice
5 LB 3 LB
Dry Ice
4 LB
Dry Ice
8 LB
Dry Ice
15 LB
Dry Ice
10 LB 4 LB
Dry Ice
5 LB
Dry Ice
10 LB
Dry Ice
20 LB
Dry Ice
20 LB 5 LB
Dry Ice
8 LB
Dry Ice
15 LB
Dry Ice
25 LB
Dry Ice
50 LB 10 LB
Dry Ice
15 LB
Dry Ice
20 LB
Dry Ice
30 LB
Dry Ice
For each additional day add 8  to 15 pounds.