It’s hard to describe in words how good the feeling of a warm bed in winter really is. Of course, if you own an electric blanket, you probably already know that feeling! They’re a great convenience, but questions of safety around them do tend to pop up every winter, and rightly so. Comfort is lovely but there’s nothing more important than safety!
Standards of Electric Blanket Safety in Australia
In Australia, we have certain standards that all electric blankets and pads need to conform to in order to be considered safe. That standard has a long and complicated number attached to it (3350.2.17:2000), but it’s important to look for this before making a purchase.
These standards have evolved over the years, and as such, many older products may no longer meet them. This is particularly pertinent for anyone who has owned an electric blanket for many years, and may continue to use it.
The thing is, just because it still works, that doesn’t make it safe.
Electric blankets that don’t meet current safety standards can run the risk of anything from electric shocks to fires.
Sunbeam Sleep Perfect™ Queen Bed Quilted Heated Blanket
Blankets Over Time
While most people are accustomed to keeping their appliances for as long as they work, that’s not necessarily the safest practice. As mentioned above, older blankets may not meet current standards, but even a blanket bought recently may be superseded in coming years. Additionally, blankets can fray or crack over the years of use. Always check them before using!
Who’s Using Them?
Like the beds they cover, electric blankets are definitely not one-size-fits-all. Some manufacturers advise against certain people using them, sometimes including the elderly, pregnant women, or those insensitive to heat.
Electric Blanket Tips
- Always read the manufacturer’s instructions. This might not be the most interesting few minutes of your life, but it’s essential to understanding your new blanket.
- Like any electrical product, an electric blanket should never be used when wet. For extra peace of mind, there are waterproof models available.
- Don’t pile up any items – like clothes or washing – on the blanket while it’s hot. This can cause overheating.
- Blankets are designed for either ‘over’ or ‘under’ use. You should never drape a sheet or tie-down blanket over you, and likewise not lay on top of a throw.