Close this search box.
HomeTentsComparing TentsOzark Trail vs Coleman Tents – Which Brand Is Better?

Ozark Trail vs Coleman Tents – Which Brand Is Better?

Coleman Vs. Ozark Trail Tents

Wilderness Times may receive commissions for links included in articles to Amazon and other affiliate partners. We take pride in our testing and research, and recommendations are not given out lightly.

There are many affordable tent brands out there.

Coleman and Ozark Trail are both tent companies that are worth consideration. But which one is better?

Coleman makes a better overall tent than Ozark Trail.

Of course, it depends on what you’re looking for – tents from both brands have their pros and cons. Regardless, you’ll still want to look at each tent compared to an equivalent tent for the other brand to make your final determination. 

But with higher average scores and a slight advantage with weather resistance, quality & durability, and favorable user reviews, Coleman is the clear winner of this battle:


Ozark Trail

Best For

Budget Tents

Extra Large Tents





2 to 12

4 to 20


1 Year (Limited)

6 months (Limited)

Average Tent Score



Space & Comfort

Quality & Durability

Weather Resistance

Tent Variety


Ease of Use

User Reviews

Coleman Vs. Ozark Trail Tents

Alright, let’s see how Ozark Trail and Coleman compare one against another.

We’ll look at them on a variety of metrics and declare a winner for each section.

Design Innovations & Unique Features

Design Innovations & Unique Features

Generally, unique features and innovative technology are expected from high-end products.

For that reason, it’s quite surprising (and refreshing) to see some of that on more budget-friendly tents, like the ones by Coleman and Ozark Trail.

Coleman Features

Coleman has a huge range of tents, and many of them include certain features unique to the tent series.

So for instance, the OneSource line features an airflow system, which is an integrated fan that works on batteries.

The fan pushes hot air out through a top vent six times per hour to reduce humidity inside the tent.

The batteries not only power the fan but also LED lighting that shines warm diffused overhead light throughout the tent.

One of my absolute favorite features on larger Coleman tents is the hinged D-door. This system has two poles running around the tent to create the door function.

One pole is straight and serves as an axis for the door to swing open, and the other one is curved and goes around the door perimeter.

What’s great about this kind of door is its ease of use. While there’s a zipper running along the perimeter, you don’t have to use it every time you’re getting in and out of the tent.

Another great feature found on larger Coleman models is the room divider.

If you’re camping with friends or family, attaching a room divider allows you to enjoy some privacy while sharing the tent with the rest of the crew.

Ozark Trail Features

Larger tents by Ozark Trail also include room dividers, although they don’t come with a zipper like Coleman’s. But since they’re removable, that’s not an issue.

Just like Coleman, Ozark Trail offers some unique tent features. For instance, a built-in mud mat is a simple but very useful feature to have, as it keeps your tent clean of dirt and debris.

Certain models also feature a footlocker to the side of the entrance. This is a great palace for storing your shoes, and you can access it from both inside and outside.

Ozark Trail emphasizes keeping your tent interior tidy. Wall organizers and built-in closets with hanging organizers are popular features in Ozark Trail tents.

One feature pretty much every Ozark Trail tent has is the electric cord port.

While not a necessity, this feature allows you to fit the cord without having to leave any room for bugs to get inside the tent.

Verdict: Tie! Both brands have unique selling points. 

Tent Materials & Durability

The materials affect the overall durability of a tent, so they’re worth a mention.

In this section, we’ll go into detail on the materials and how they affect the ruggedness of the tents.

Material Types Used By Coleman & Ozark Trail

Material Types Used By Coleman & Ozark Trail

Both Coleman and Ozark Trail focus on making budget-friendly tents. So, it’s safe to assume the materials they use for making them are on the more affordable side.

And that’s correct. Both brands mainly use polyester, which is arguably one of the most inexpensive options out there.

Of course, that doesn’t mean polyester is a bad choice. This type of fabric is generally a great choice for tents due to its durability, low stretchiness, and natural resistance to water and UV rays.

Polyester threads are waterproof because they’re made of plastic. However, polyester tents aren’t waterproof because the holes between the threads will let water pass through.

For that reason, the tent fabric is additionally treated for better water resistance.

Denier Ratings & Thread Counts

When it comes to Ozark Trail tents, the brand is not always transparent about the materials it uses. In most cases, the packaging only says “polyester.”

However, due to the thickness of the fabric, we can safely assume that polyester used for most Ozark Trail tents has a denier rating of 68D to 75D.

In case you don’t know, denier is a metric indicating the thickness of individual fibers that make up the threads of a fabric. Basically, the higher the denier, the thicker and more durable the fabric.

Polyester with a denier rating ranging between 68D-75D is pretty common for tents designated for short trips. Many Coleman tents are also made of the same fabric.

Of course, both brands have exceptions. In the case of Ozark Trail tents, many of the larger models feature bodies made of 185T poly taffeta.

The ‘T’ stands for “thread count”, which indicates the number of woven threads per square inch of fabric. This is a whole different type of metric compared to denier, so they’re not comparable.

Still, thread count can give us a rough estimation of the fabric’s denier. And in the case of 185T polyester, it’s safe to assume that the fabric’s denier rating is also somewhere between 68D and 75D.

In other words, there isn’t much difference between fabrics across all Ozark Trail tents.

As for Coleman, single-walled tents have a slightly thicker fabric: 150D polyester. It’s thicker, heavier, and stronger, so it’s a great option for tents that don’t have a separate rain fly.

Tent Flooring & Poles

When it comes to tent floor materials, both brands use polyethylene, which is rugged and waterproof.

Finally, we can’t forget about the tent poles. And in this case, the two brands are made equal.

Both brands’ instant tents have steel poles connected to a plastic hub, while their non-instant models use fiberglass poles.

Verdict: The tent materials used in both tents are comparable. Tie!


Coleman Vs. Ozark Trail Tents: Weatherproofing/Flooring

As we already mentioned, polyester threads are naturally waterproof. But since they’re woven into the fabric, all those tiny holes are spaces for water to pass through.

This is why the fabric is additionally coated with a layer of polyurethane for better water resistance.

The PU rating measures how much water pressure the fabric can withstand before it starts leaking. PU rating generally ranges between 500mm and 10,000mm.

As we already established, Ozark Trail is not very precise when stating tent materials.

But when the brand does mention the PU ratings, it’s usually 600mm for smaller, lighter models and 1,200mm for most family tents.

In practice, that means Ozark Trail tents can withstand light rain, but they’ll inevitably leak in heavier pours.

When it comes to Coleman, you can expect a much higher PU rating. Even the “least” water-resistant tent from the brand’s range has a PU rating of 2,000mm.

This means it should be able to withstand heavy rainfall without a problem.

At the other end of the spectrum, Coleman has a range of tents designed for 4-season camping.

These tents have a PU rating of 6,000mm. That means the fabric should be able to withstand the South Pole weather without an issue.

Since we’re on the subject of weatherproofing, we must mention flooring, too. In the case of rain, the puddles may form around (or even below) the tent.

To avoid getting all that water inside, many brands make tents with bathtub floors. The fabric of the floor extends several inches to the side, thus keeping water out.

All Coleman tents feature this floor design, so you don’t have to worry about water getting inside the tent from the bottom.

As for Ozark Trail tents, only a portion of the brand’s tent range features bathtub floors.

Verdict: Coleman’s weatherproofing is slightly better. 

Blackout Tent Material

Blackout Tent Material

If you’re one of those campers who like to sleep in late, then a blackout tent is just what you need.

Coleman is well-known for its BlackOut Bedroom® technology which is included in several tent series.

To make the tent as dark as possible, Coleman uses a black, breathable fabric for the interior.

Of course, light can easily pass through the fabric. This is why the brand also coats the underside of the rain fly with a dark PU layer to block light from getting inside the tent.

Ozark Trail uses similar technology, Dark Rest. It involves triple layering: interior blackout panels, mesh roof, and the outer rain fly.

Essentially the tent features a mesh roof with blackout panels that can be zipped up or down to adjust the amount of light getting inside the tent.

Then, the rain fly goes on top of that, marking the interior even darker.

Be sure to check out reviews of both types of blackout fabric: 

Verdict: Both brands make similar blackout tent fabric. 

Quality & Durability

Both Coleman and Ozark Trail generally use the same materials for their tents.

However, when we’re talking about quality and durability, the fabrics themselves aren’t the only important factor to consider.

Unless you’re rather careless with how and where you use your tent, ripping or tearing the tent fabric shouldn’t be a worry.

But what you should care about are the stitches. In fact, the stitches will show the overall quality of a product.

With Ozark Trail tents, you can almost always see loose threads and uneven seams.

These are all the “weak spots,” as the seams can more easily be pulled apart, which will inevitably happen with use.

When it comes to Coleman, you may encounter a loose thread here and there, but that’s not something you find on every model. Furthermore, the seams are more even and feature smaller needle holes.

Another factor that determines the overall quality and durability of a tent is zipper quality. Both Ozark Trail and Coleman use non-branded zippers, which is expected from budget brands.

Coleman zippers may snag on the fabric, but that’s rarely an issue. However, you need to be careful when zipping and unzipping doors on Ozark Trail, as the zippers easily snag on the tent material.

Of course, we have had issues with Coleman tent poles snapping, and their overall quality isn’t super great compared to high-end brands, but Ozark Trail tends to have more issues overall.

Verdict: Coleman has its issues with quality, but we give it the nod here. 


Warranty Information: Coleman Vs. Ozark Trail

Given that both brands make affordable outdoor equipment, we can’t really expect a long warranty period.

Coleman offers a 1-year warranty on all tents. The warranty is limited and covers defects in materials and workmanship.

What it doesn’t cover is normal wear and tear, as well as damage caused by tent misuse or intentional damage.

As for Ozark Trail, the limited warranty works on the same principle as the one Coleman offers.

The only difference is the length, which is just six months from the date of purchase.

Verdict: Coleman has an extra 6 months of their warranty. Clearly, that is a win!

Weather Resistance Comparison

Earlier in the article, we talked about tent fabrics and weatherproofing. But there’s much more to say on the subject.

In this section, we’ll do an in-depth comparison of these brands in the weather resistance category.

Weather Resistance In Coleman Tents

Weather Resistance In Coleman Tents

Coleman uses the WeatherTec™ system in each of its tents. This technology includes different weatherproofing features:

  • Weather-resistant fabric
  • Protected seams
  • Wind-strong frame
  • Zipper protection
  • Waterproof floors

As we already established, Coleman tents are made of polyester, which naturally has a decent water resistance.

The fabric is also coated with a PU layer to further increase the tent’s ability to resist the elements. Coleman is really generous with coating, as all tents have a PU rating of 2,000mm or more.

Coleman tents feature inverted seams, which means they’re sewn inside the tent rather than outside of it. As a result, there’s less chance for rain to get in contact with the seams.

However, inverted seams still have holes where water can get inside. This is why the seams are often heat-sealed, which makes them completely waterproof.

But that’s not the case with Coleman. Now, inverted seams should be fine in the rain, unless the weather is also windy.

In the case of almost vertical rain, you can rest assured the water drops will pass through the inverted seams.

When speaking about weatherproofing, we can’t forget the zippers, as water and air can pass through the zipper teeth.

To prevent that from happening, Coleman tents feature zipper cuffs that keep the elements out.

Finally, we have the flooring. As we already mentioned, Coleman uses a bathtub design to keep the water on the ground from getting inside the tent.

What’s also worth mentioning is that the corners are welded, which eliminates the need to use needles, which create more holes.

Weather Resistance In Ozark Trail Tents

Weather Resistance In Ozark Trail Tents

Regardless of the model, Ozark Trail tents have a generally low PU rating, which means they’re mainly designed for use in nice weather.

Just like Coleman tents, Ozark Trail tents also have inverted seams, which hide the needle holes inside the tent. However, the seams aren’t taped or sealed, so they could potentially leak water in case it’s raining at an angle.

Now, the wind resistance of Ozark Trail tents is generally not bad, especially with dome-shaped tents.

Of course, large cabin tents aren’t designed to be used in high winds. Regardless, even the cabin tents have rather sturdy frames, so they’re very stable in a light breeze.

Verdict: Coleman performs much better overall when it comes to weather resistance. 



Ventilation is an important feature to consider in a tent. Proper ventilation ensures your tent doesn’t turn into a sauna and reduces condensation.

Both Ozark Trail and Coleman feature mesh panels on all of their windows and doors, which provide decent airflow inside the tent.

However, during rain, you have to keep them closed to prevent water from getting inside. This is where ground vents come in handy, as they let chilled air in while keeping rain out.

Unfortunately, bottom vents aren’t that common with either brand. Generally, they’re only found on more expensive models from both Ozark Trail and Coleman.

Verdict: Tie – neither brand does a great job.

Price Comparison

Price Comparison

Both Ozark Trail and Coleman are among the most affordable tent brands on the market.

But how do they compare against each other? Let’s see.

Average Price Range For Coleman Tents

Coleman makes a variety of tents, from 2-person backpacking tents to 12-person family shelters. In other words, there’s a suitable model for everyone’s needs.

If you’re looking for a small, affordable tent for one or two people, Coleman has a range of tents in that category and all are quite affordable.

The cheapest Coleman tent is just around $60.

If you want something fancy, you can find that as well. Large cabin tents can cost up to $570, depending on the size and the features it includes.

Still, most tents from Coleman fall somewhere in between. Overall, the average price range for tents from this brand is roughly $100-$300.

SEEThe 10 Best Coleman Tents of (By Size, Type, & Performance)

Average Price Range For Ozark Trail Tents

If you thought that Coleman is affordable, wait until you see the price tags of Ozark Trail tents!

Ozark Trail offers a couple of tents with price tags around just $50. But what’s insane is that those aren’t just tiny tents – the brand offers one 4-person tent within that range!

What’s also impressive is that you can find some family-sized tents under $100.

Of course, if you want a large cabin tent with a bunch of bells and whistles, you have to pay more.

But with the most expensive Ozark Trail tent being under $400, you definitely won’t break the bank.

SEE10 Best Ozark Trail Tents (ALL Sizes Rated & Reviewed)

Value For Money Analysis

Just by looking at the prices of both Coleman and Ozark Trail tents, it’s clear that the latter offers more affordable models.

But with both brands, you get what you pay for.

Sure, you can find a 6-person Ozark Trail tent at maybe half the cost of a Coleman tent. But that doesn’t mean it will give you a better value for money.

Ozark Trail tents generally have rather weak weather resistance, so they’re mainly suitable for camping in nice, dry weather.

That may work if you live and camp in California, for example. But if you’re camping in Montana, there’s only a month or two a year you can use that tent.

Generally, we can say that Coleman tents give you better bang for your buck compared to Ozark Trail tents.

This is not to say that there aren’t exceptions. For those who camp only occasionally and in nice weather, Ozark Trail may give you more value for money.

Verdict: It’s close enough that we can call it a tie, but Coleman generally will give you a bit more bang for your buck.

Customer Reviews & Reputation

You can read all the tent properties online. But what matters is how those characteristics perform in practice.

So, let’s look at what users of both brands have to say about the tents.

Overview Of Coleman Tent Reviews

Overview Of Coleman Tent Reviews

Many customers who bought Coleman tents found the price to be an important factor in choosing the right model.

However, a good portion of them seem to be quite satisfied with the overall performance of the tent.

First of all, Coleman tents are extremely easy to set up, which most casual campers value. From color-coded poles to instant hubs, I don’t think there’s a Coleman tent that can’t be pitched within just a few minutes.

Some may have issues with zippers snagging onto the tent fabric, but that’s not a very common problem.

The most common “issue” customers have with Coleman tents is their basic design.

By basic, I mean they don’t usually have a bunch of unique features that make them stand out from other, more expensive brands.

For instance, smaller tents typically only have one storage pocket inside. That’s not too big of an issue, especially for a tent in this price range.

Coleman has an average user rating of 4.3.

Overview Of Ozark Trail Tent Reviews

Overview Of Ozark Trail Tent Reviews

Most people who choose Ozark Trail over other brands are looking for a budget-friendly tent.

To achieve a low price, the brand has to cut corners and save on certain features. And that’s okay.

You can’t expect a tent that costs just a fraction of a high-end model to last as long. So while a Big Agnes tent may be something you pass down to your kids, Ozark Trail tent definitely won’t be.

However, many customers seem to forget that when buying a tent, as many are dissatisfied with the tent’s short life.

But while that’s an invalid reason to negatively review an Ozark Trail tent, there are a few things that are worth mentioning.

Things Ozark Trail users complain about are large needle holes where the guylines connect to the tent body and poor water resistance.

Simply, there are numerous ways water can get inside the tent, especially during heavier downpours.

Ozark Trail has an average user rating of 4.15.

Verdict: Coleman has better average user reviews coming in at 4.3 vs 4.15. This is largely because they have better overall weather protection and a slightly better overall quality backed by their longer 1-year limited warranty. 


What’s The Best Coleman Tent?

Arguably, the Coleman Sundome Tent is Coleman’s best and most loved tent. After years on the market, it continues to be a best seller.

It has great weather resistance, it’s a breeze to set up, and it comes in several capacities and variations (such as offering a blackout fabric).

What’s The Best Ozark Trail Tent?

The Ozark Trail 8-Person Instant Cabin with LED Lighted Poles is our top-rated Ozark Trail Tent.

It’s ample, easy to set up, and even features LED lighted poles and a Bluetooth speaker for an even better camping experience.

Who Makes Coleman Tents?

Coleman is a brand that’s been around for a while. To be precise, it was founded by Willian Coffin Coleman in 1900, which makes it an over 100-year-old brand!

However, Coleman didn’t make tents at first – in the early years, the brand was focused on camping stoves and lamps. But with the ever-growing interest in camping, adding tents to the line of products was bound to happen.

Coleman’s headquarters are in Chicago, while the brand’s US manufacturing facilities are located in Kansas and in Texas.

However, tents and tent parts are mainly produced abroad – most often in Bangladesh.

Who Makes Ozark Trail Tents?

Ozark Trail is a private-label brand name owned by Walmart, like Sam’s Choice or Great Value.

The name comes from the Ozark mountains, where Walmart’s headquarters are located.

Ozark Trail Outdoor Equipment was founded in 1993. Then, it established its reputation as an affordable outdoor retail brand over the following two decades.

However, it’s worth knowing that although Walmart owns the Ozark Trail, it doesn’t manufacture the brand’s products directly.

Like Coleman, Ozark Trail also makes most of its camping equipment – including tents – in China or Bangladesh.

Are Coleman Tents Better Than Ozark Trail Tents?

Generally, Coleman tents are more durable and have better weather resistance compared to Ozark Trail tents.

Regardless of the model, you can expect a Coleman tent to keep you dry.

Are Ozark Trail Tents Better Than Coleman Tents?

While there are categories where Coleman wins, Ozark Trail is better in terms of price range.

Even the biggest tent on the market, a 20-person tent by this brand costs just a few hundred bucks.

Can Coleman & Ozark Trail Tents Withstand High Winds?

Dome tents from both brands have excellent wind resistance.

When it comes to cabin tents, although sturdy, they’re not designed for high winds.

What’s The Lifespan Of Ozark Trail Vs. Coleman Tents?

That depends on how well you take care of it.

Generally, Ozark Trail tents should last up to two years (depending on usage) before they start showing signs of damage.

Coleman tents should last a few years longer.

Also see: How Long Do Tents Last? What To Expect from Your Tent’s Lifespan

Are Replacement Parts Available For Both Brands?

Yes, both brands offer replacement parts for their tents.

These include mostly canopies and connector corners for pole systems.

To Sum Things Up

While these two brands are both known for their affordable price, there are many key differences between them.

Of course, no brand wins in every single category.

Coleman tents win the overall battle as they have excellent weather resistance, better quality & durability, and users enjoy their tents more:


Ozark Trail

Best For

Budget Tents

Extra Large Tents





2 to 12

4 to 20


1 Year (Limited)

6 months (Limited)

Average Tent Score



Space & Comfort

Quality & Durability

Weather Resistance

Tent Variety


Ease of Use

User Reviews

But Ozark Trail tents have some cool features and huge capacities. If you are looking for a huge tent, Ozark Trail is your brand!

More About Coleman & Ozark Trail Tents Here! 

Leave a Comment