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Customer Review

34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No longer using the tumbler (Old title: Better than most but not perfect), March 31, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Contigo AUTOSEAL Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Tumbler, 16 Ounces, Blue (Kitchen)
I got the Contigo Autoseal Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Tumbler because of all the good reviews. I was initially impressed for a few days but noticed some annoyances.

1) Because of the vacuum function, whenever I press the tab to open the lid for the first time after pouring some coffee, the pressure releases and some of the coffee/steam inside will spit out a bit. This however is expected and to an extent, mentioned in the instructions.

2) After several uses, I've noticed that it does not keep the coffee very hot even if I don't open the lid at all. The hot coffee I would pour in would turn warm within two hours.

3) The last thing I noticed was that there would be some condensation forming at the bottom of the cup. I've taken care of the cup and don't recall damaging it so I don't think its due to mishandling of the cup or anything like that.

4) A lot of people have talked about the lid smelling after some use and I agree. What I've done that helps is to put a few drops of apple cider vinegar (I would guess white vinegar would work too) into a measuring cup, put the Contigo lid in and then pour some water into the measuring cup until it covers the lid. I typically let the lid soak overnight and by morning, the smell is gone, at least to my sense of smell.

If these small annoyances don't bother you, then this would probably be a worthwhile product. I found them to be enough of a hassle so I couldn't give the product 5 stars (perfect) or 4 stars (a slight imperfection). If I could, I'd give it 3.5 stars since it's a nice product and better than what you would find at any given store.

Update, 4/10/12: I started to notice a weird taste/smell whenever I drink through the mug. Almost like melted plastic or something strange and difficult to describe. If I pour the contents onto another cup/mug, it's not a problem. It looks like some other users have commented on this smell concern so I guess I'm not the only one. I've been washing the mug carefully but maybe I'll take more time to thoroughly wash it and then post another update if I notice any changes.

Update, 4/28/12: The smell still hasn't gone away after countless washes and attempts to clean it. This might be a coincidence but I tend to drink my coffee black and I also prefer dark/strong coffee - I wonder if this has anything to do with the smell. If the smell doesn't go away after I give this a more thorough cleaning, I may have to bump the rating down to 2 stars.

Update, 5/19/12: After many washes, still no change. In fact, I've washed it many times without even putting any coffee in it (but testing out by drinking water) but the smell still persists. Since I've stopped using this product now (replaced with an old plastic coffee mug), I'm bumping this down to 2 stars.

Update, 12/26/12: Updated title to reflect changes in my star rating.
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 23, 2012 10:58:00 AM PDT
We're constantly looking to improve our customer service and we apologize in our delay of response, but we're concerned about the low rating you've given your travel mug. We're sorry for your experience and find that this can be caused by not following our recommended Care and Use instructions. We value you as a Contigo customer, want your feedback and want to take care of you! Please connect with us as an Amazon Contigo customer at or call 1-888-262-0622.

Contigo Customer Service

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 24, 2012 6:58:41 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 28, 2012 4:48:48 PM PDT
Big Sandwich says:
I appreciate the comment though I am not sure how this adds to the discussion. I would like to note a few things. This generic message (that appears in some other review posts) suggests that I somehow contacted and was waiting for a response; that is not true as I merely provided a review and did not request any follow-up. I also find it concerning that "customer service" is suggesting that a negative experience is due to the reviewer not following recommended care/use instructions. I was not at all impressed by how this comment was slipped in as part of the reply before saying Contigo wants "feedback." After seeing this reply, however, I did contact Contigo (around 9:45pm, on 8/24/12) since I was curious as to why they wanted this reviewer (me) to "connect" with them. I will continue to post updates as I get them.

Update, 8/28/12:
I received the following message after I inquired and got this reply. I will leave it up to readers of these reviews and comments to determine the helpfulness of the correspondence.

"We're constantly looking to improve our customer service and we apologize in our delay of response. We do value you as a customer and we are focused on creating everlasting consumer relationships.

Contigo(r) Consumer Care"

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 23, 2012 6:35:28 PM PST
stufftoread says:
Thanks to your review (and others mentioning the lid's odor), I won't be forming an "everlasting consumer relationship" with Contigo Customer Care. Sounds like they and the cup have one big thing in common: they stink.

Posted on Dec 23, 2012 7:12:52 PM PST
Lilly Jo says:
I had this mug about a year and kept it washed and clean yet got a terrible musty odor and taste so let it set in a bleach water overnight and after shaking the water through it got a lot of thick hard black stuff out of it that had lines from the cover imbedded in it...yukkkk threw out my three mugs so I say good luck if you have one just be very carefull as you can not get a bottle brush into the small crevises that can carry bacteria.....

Posted on Dec 26, 2012 7:07:23 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 26, 2012 7:08:12 AM PST
Pentel says:
Thank you for your painstakingly detailed review, which also includes a follow-up regarding the manufacturer's lame response to your concerns. I just ordered this travel mug as a lightening deal special, but now as a result of reading your review, will now be canceling my order before the mug is shipped. Life is hard enough without having to deal with annoying little things that come with making a bad purchase.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 26, 2012 5:24:19 PM PST
Big Sandwich says:
Sure thing - glad I could be of help. I guess as of now, the best use for me would be as a non-microwaveable mug and not a tumbler :)

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 26, 2012 5:26:23 PM PST
Big Sandwich says:
Glad my review was helpful! Now looking back, I can laugh at this experience but overall a frustrating experience.
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