One of the most underrated life comforts is keeping warm during the cold season. And for most people, heating blankets plus a cup of coffee do the trick. But, there’s just one challenge: while your warmth and comfort are guaranteed, many do not consider their safety. So, what should you know about using heating blankets and extension cords?
With heating blankets and extension cords, the must-dos often follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. You should also avoid using extension cords with blankets and keep them away from flammable items. Most importantly, go for high-quality, preferably one that’s UL tested and certified.
Here’s all you need to know about heating blankets and extension cords!
What is the Safest Way to Connect a Heating Blanket?
The safest way to connect a heating blanket is directly into a wall socket.
Although there are other connection methods, they are not safe. For instance, connecting a heating blanket with an extension cord may lead to overheating, thus becoming a fire hazard.
Pro tip: Before connecting your heating blanket, first read the label. This should tell you how many watts the model uses and what type of power outlet it requires. If your home has outlets that match the specifications on your blanket, then you can connect. Otherwise, switch to another device so you can avoid potential hazards.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Owning a Heating Blanket
When it comes to heating blankets and extension cords, there are a few rules that you should follow to guarantee your safety and that of others around you.
Here’s a quick overview of the dos:
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for usage
- Keep the blanket far from anything that can catch fire, such as papers or clothes
- Choose a blanket that is UL tested and certified
- Keep pets and children away from the blanket while it’s in use
- When storing the blanket, loosely wrap the cords around it
- Turn off the blanket when not in use
- If you see smoke or smell a burning smell, unplug your blanket immediately.
- Plug your blanket directly into a wall socket.
- Always inspect the equipment for cracks, loose ends, or broken plugs
And now, here are the don’ts, which are equally important.
- Don’t fold an electric blanket when it is in use
- Don’t use an electric blanket on a water bed
- Don’t combine an electric blanket and a heated mattress
- Don’t twist the eclectic cords
- Don’t place electric blankets on tables, furniture, or carpets where they are likely to cause a fire in case of overheating.
- Don’t use the blanket in frayed or charred spots.
- Don’t use a heating blanket with pets, people with disabilities, children, or anyone who cannot operate the blanket by themselves.
- Don’t run the power cords under the mattress.
- Don’t use an extension cord that isn’t rated for the heating blanket
- Don’t leave a heating blanket unattended while you sleep
Which Brands of Heating Blankets Are Safest?
When buying a heating blanket, looking for brands certified as safe by reputable organizations is essential.
Some of the best brands in the market include:
Lomitech Outdoor Heated Blanket
The Lomitech Outdoor Heated Blanket (on Amazon) is one of the best blankets for camping or other outdoor activities. It is made from water-resistant polyester material and has a 55 by 43-inch size. Additionally, it has an auto-shutoff system which enhances safety for you and your family.
Other features you will love about this blanket include:
- It is affordable
- It is water-resistant
- It has a rechargeable lithium-ion battery
- It is easily portable
- It is compact
You should, however, note that this blanket is relatively small, not machine washable, and shuts off after 45 minutes.
Hyde Lane Plush Sherpa Heated Blanket
If you are looking for a reasonably priced and quality blanket, Hyde Lane (on Amazon) is the ultimate choice. This blanket has plush linens and measures 60 by 70. Additionally, it is relatively large and has a 2-hour shut-off timer. It is also machine washable, which is ideal for individuals who are always busy.
These features make it ideal if you’re looking for a high-quality blanket but are on a budget. However, its major downside is the relatively low auto-shutoff timer.
MP2 Heated Plush Sherpa Throw
If softness is your top factor in blanket choice, the MP2 Sherpa (on Amazon) will perfectly fit this bill. It is an incredibly soft blanket such that you can’t feel the internal coils.
It is practical, durable, easy to clean, and has soft material. The blanket is also UL-certified and comes with a five-year warranty; although it shuts off after two hours is not ideal as compared with other blankets.
Micro-Plush Electric Heated Blanket Throw
Developed by Degrees of Comfort, the soft plush heated blanket (on Amazon) is one of the best blankets for cold feet. It is wallet-friendly, while its foot pocket design is easy to use even when working at your desk.
Like its MP2 counterpart, it has a micro-plush polyester material, a five-year warranty, and a UL safety certification. However, it is prone to shedding, and its automatic shutoff feature is set at 2 hours.
Beautyrest Electric Ribbed MicroFleece Luxury Soft Heated Blanket
The Beautyrest heated blanket (on Amazon) is one of the blankets with dual controls. It is highly effective, has a five-year warranty, and is certified by the relevant safety institutions.
This blanket comes in twin, full, queen, and king sizes, while its material is polyester micro plush and microfleece, which is soft and cozy. It also has a preheat feature which allows you to preheat it before jumping to bed.
Bedsure Heated Blanket Electric Throw
The Bedsure electric throw blanket (on Amazon) is one of the most affordable heated blankets compared to the average ones. It is, therefore, a great option if you’re on a budget.
This blanket is exceptionally soft due to its micro plush and microfleece material. It also has a throw, and its sizes are machine washable, although not dryer friendly. Another downside is that it has a 3-hour auto-shut feature which may not be ideal for sleeping.
True North Heated Blanket
Manufactured by Sleep Philosophy, the true north heated blanket (on Amazon) is arguably one of the best in the market. Its fabric is teddy bear soft due to the polyester micro velour and Berber fleece.
This blanket has dual controls, is available in different colors, and comes in king, queen, full, and twin sizes. Additionally, it is UL-certified and has a five-year warranty. It is also energy efficient and has a 10-hour automatic shut-off system and negligible EMF emissions, thus keeping you safe from radiation.
However, it is relatively expensive, and the two controls need a double outlet.
Woolrich Heated Plush to Berber Electric Blanket
If you need an all-around electric blanket, Woolrich electric blanket (on Amazon) is a must-have. It has a fantastic design, is durable, and is made from excellent material. In addition, this blanket is machine washable and dryer friendly, while its micro plush material gives it a tender, soft feel.
It comes in all five sizes, has 20 temperature settings, and has a five-year warranty. However, its major con is that it is expensive compared to other brands and prone to minor shedding.
What to Keep in Mind Before Purchasing a Heating Blanket
Before you settle on your ideal blanket, here are the key factors that you should consider:
Due to safety concerns, it is essential to choose a reputable brand that guarantees safety. In addition, reputable brands pass their products through various certifications, ensuring the blankets are of high quality.
When purchasing an electric blanket, inspect its condition. Look at its cords and get it tested before leaving the store. If you opt to make a purchase online, ensure it has a warranty before you make payment.
The size of the blanket you go for highly depends on the use. A smaller one will do if you need one for your legs while at the desk or on the couch. But if you need a heating blanket for your bed, you should go for larger sizes.
Despite being designed for warmth, an electric blanket needs to be soft, too, making it cozier. So, always check its material, and have a feel of it if possible.
Automatic Shutoff Feature
The new trend of electric blankets is the automatic shut-off feature. This feature enhances safety if you forget to switch off the power source. Most heating blankets have a 45-minute, 2-hour, or 10-hour timer.
Plug-ins vs. Rechargeable Battery
When choosing an electric blanket, this is a significant factor as it affects the convenience of use. If you need an outdoor blanket, the rechargeable is the best option. But if it is for indoor use, you can opt for any.