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The essential guide to buying an electric blanket

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Feeling the chill but unsure whether to ditch the trusty hot water bottle for a cosy electric blanket? We've rummaged through the forums to find out what you should look for, and to answer all those pressing questions: under or over blanket? Are they safe? What if you spill a cup of tea in bed while it's switched on? And finally, what are the best electric blankets?

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Safety first

"You can take your electric blanket down to the local fire station and they'll give it a basic electrical safety test. The snag is that if it fails, they bin it there and then!" 

The Fire Service offers great advice on what to look for when purchasing a new electric blanket, how to store it and telltale signs that your 20-year-old blanket has probably had its day. 

For those with pacemakers or diabetes, be sure to check with your GP and the manufacturer's guidelines before making a purchase.

All verified electric blankets purchased from reputable retailers in the UK should have a UK Safety Standards mark on them. 

What to look for

"The electric blanket has dual controls so that I don't have to have my side on just because he does... Also has a timer control but I always switch mine off as soon as I get in, but you can fall asleep and it will switch off after the set time."

"Go upstairs, turn on blanket, clean teeth, after five minutes on full power the bed is lovely and cosy… Beats the hell out of trying to persuade a husband to go to bed an hour early to warm up the bed!" 

Electric blankets have come a long way, and now have all kinds of functionalities such as temperature settings including pre-heating and dual controllers for flexibility. 

And yes, some electric blankets are even safe for washing and tumble drying!

Ties versus skirts

"We only have an ordinary one with ties and it does slip around a bit - I just settle it right when I change the bed." 

"Yes, the ones with a skirt are great. Mine though is just a tad narrower than the mattress and so often 'pops off' one corner in the night, which is annoying. Perhaps measure up more carefully than I did! Lesson learned. Maybe!" 

Whether you go for ties or skirts when choosing a new electric blanket - remember to get one that will fit your bed!


Running costs

When you consider how little time you'd actually run one each day, the electricity costs are kept to a minimum. For example,testing by Which found that the most energy-efficient blanket, if run for two hours a day, every day of the year, would cost just £2.99 a year, and the less-efficient around £8.06 for the same duration.

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Great electric blankets on the high street


dreamland intelliheat blanket amazon intelliheat electric blanket

Dreamland Intelliheat Heated Fleecy Double Dual Mattress Protector

Dreamland Relaxwell Luxury Heated Throw, Black

A great price for double the heat, this clever mattress protector responds to temperature changes and has a five-min pre-heat button. The elasticated skirt fits mattresses up to 30cm deep.

A touch of luxury when you're getting comfy on the sofa. This blanket will heat up in just ten minutes with Dreamland's Ready for Bed technology and has six temperature settings. 

Buy: £59.99, Amazon

Buy: £49.99, John Lewis


Silentnight Comfort Control Electric Blanket 

Beurer Double Heated Underblanket


The Silentnight Comfort control electric blanket has three heat settings and warms up in minutes for a snug night's sleep. The ivory coloured double heated under blanket is suitable for all night use, includes an overnight protection mechanism and is fully BEAB approved. 

This cosy double underblanket from Beurer provides you with six heat levels, eight-min heat up time and HHL technology allergy protection. Oh, and it only costs around 2p per eight-hour night!

Buy: £29, Amazon

Buy: £55.99, Tesco 


morphy richards heated blanket
Snug Heated Underblanket - Small Double Double Washable Heated Underblanket

This great value underblanket will heat your bed up in under 15 minutes and has three different settings to suit your mood. Secure it to your mattress with ties and rest assured that it has all-important extra safe overheating protection. 

This machine washable and tumble dry-safe heated underblanket has four heat settings which automatically shut off if the temperature gets too high. It even has extra foot warmth to keep you toasty on those chilly nights!

Buy: £19.99, Argos

Buy: £19.99, Morphy Richards



  Images: Shutterstock

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Images: Shutterstock