Energy bills are a real worry at the moment, so it’s no surprise that so many of us are looking for ways to cut costs without sacrificing warmth.
One of the most popular items people are turning to are electric blankets, so they can keep themselves warm without turning on the heating, but with so many on offer, it can be hard to know where to start.
We’ve rounded up some of the best heated blankets and other wearable warmers to help you find the best one for you.
Tips for choosing your electric blanket
Heated blankets and electric throws are in high demand at the moment, but they don’t come cheap. So before you spend anything, you might want to think about the following:
When will you use it?
The time and the place you’re planning to use your heated item will make a difference to what you might need. Here are the most common types of blankets and when you might want to use them:
Electric under blankets
This type of electric blanket is essentially a mattress topper. It’s designed to go underneath your mattress cover or fitted sheet, to either warm up your bed before you get into it or keep you toasty while you sleep. Many will have multiple heat settings and normally come with timers that switch off after a few hours, with most going up to 8 hours. Electric under blankets should never be used as anything other than a mattress topper.
If you have a memory foam mattress before you buy a heated blanket or under-blanket to use in bed, you’ll need to check with your mattress manufacturer whether you can use them with your mattress.
Memory foam responds to your body heat and pressure, so if you add an electric blanket into the mix it could affect the level of support your mattress provides. Some brands say it’s fine, while others suggest not using them, so check with your manufacturer to be sure.
Electric over blankets and throws
If you want to cosy up on the sofa or wrap yourself up in a heated blanket then you’ll want an electric over blanket or throw. These come in a variety of sizes and with different power sources. Some smaller ones can be powered by a USB cable so you can plug them into your laptop, which could be useful while working from home, whereas others will need to be plugged into a regular socket. Many have multiple heat settings as well as timers, but these tend to allow you to leave them on for shorter periods than under blankets, typically from one to three hours.
What’s your budget?
There are a huge array of blankets on the market at varying prices, but having a good idea of your budget will help deter you from spending more than you can afford. Remember too that paying more doesn’t always mean you’re getting a better product.
One incredibly important thing to remember is that even though the price of second-hand blankets might be tempting, it’s not a good idea to buy one. Second-hand electric blankets can be a fire risk, and you won’t know their history or whether they might have developed a fault. With 43 fires started by faulty electric blankets each year, according to gov.uk, most fire brigades across the UK recommend buying a new blanket, with the advice that it’s cheaper to buy a new electric blanket than a new home.
How much will it cost to use?
If your aim for buying a heated blanket is to keep costs down, then it’s important to consider how much it will cost you to run the one you choose.
The amount a blanket costs to run will usually depend on its size, with larger blankets and items unsurprisingly costing more than smaller ones.
To check how much your blanket might cost you to run, you’ll need to check its wattage. Most blankets will be 50 to 150 watts, which could cost you the following. These costs are calculated using the current energy price cap of £0.27 per kWh of electricity:
|Watts||Cost per minute||Cost for 8 hours|
Annual running cost
Best smaller electric blankets
Single Silentnight Comfort Control Electric Under-Blanket - £30.00
One of the cheapest under blankets to buy, the Silentnight Comfort Control Electric blanket costs just 10p to run a single blanket for eight hours. It is one of the most popular ones we could find with over 26,500 five-star reviews on Amazon. This under-blanket comes with three heat settings and an overheat protection feature so you can sleep peacefully.
The amount of energy needed to power this under-blanket depends on the size you choose. The single is 40w, the double is 70w, and the king size is 90. This will cost you between 0.02p and 0.03p per minute to run, so it could cost between 8p and 15p to run for eight hours.
Monhouse Heated Throw - £59.95
The Monhouse Heated Throw has over 1,500 five-star reviews on Amazon, and with nine heat settings, a nine-hour timer, 10 colours and two different styles to choose from, it’s one of the most popular smaller blankets.
It comes in either a single or double size, and you can save money if you buy two at the same time. It has 120w of power so will cost you around 0.05p a minute to run, or if you had it on for eight hours, it would set you back just over 25p.
Best larger electric blankets
Dreamcatcher Double Electric Heated Blanket - £49.99
The Dreamcatcher Double Electric Heated Blanket is a great option for warming your bed without a hefty price tag. It comes with three heat settings and two temperature zones, so you can heat one part of your bed and not the other if you want.
The Dreamcatcher blanket comes in a number of different sizes from single all the way up to super king. The double has between 22w and 130w of power, which could cost you anywhere from 4p up to 27p if you used it for eight hours.
Minky Luxury Heated Throw - £59.99
This is the largest heated blanket we could find, measuring 180 x 180cm, and coming in two different colours (grey and cream), although there is a price difference between the two. It has a number of useful features including 10 heat settings and a 10-hour timer. It also has an overheat protection feature and is machine washable at 40°C.
As it is one of the largest blankets, it uses the most energy and is more expensive to run. It has 160w of power and costs around 0.07p a minute to use, or around 33p if you have it on for eight hours.
Best luxury electric blankets
Homefront Dual Control Premium Fleece Electric Blanket - £86.99
At the higher end of the blankets we’ve outlined here, this under-blanket is all-singing all-dancing, with dual controls so two people can each control their sides individually. It has four heat zones and nine different temperatures so if you get cold feet in the night but your bedfellow doesn’t, you can turn on the lower heat zone on your side and they can leave theirs off. It’s machine washable and comes with a fully fitted, deep elasticated skirt so it should fit your mattress with no trailing wires.
This blanket has 60w of power on each side, so would cost you 0.05p per hour to run if you’re using both sides, or 25p if you used them for eight hours overnight.
Dreamland Intelliheat Deluxe Alaskan Husky Heated Faux Fur Throw - £99.99
If you’re looking for an electric blanket that you can snuggle up under, but is attractive enough to leave out in your sitting room, then look no further. The Dreamland Intelliheat Deluxe Alaskan Husky Heated Faux Fur Throw, is one of the best-reviewed luxury electric blankets. It has a fast heat-up function, six temperature settings, timers for one, three or nine hours, is machine washable and tumble dryer safe, and comes with a two-year guarantee.
The Dreamland throw has 150w of power so will cost you 0.07p per minute to use or 31p for eight hours.
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