Electric Blankets and Mattress Pads
14 Good Safety Rules
All brands of warming bedding contain recommendations for safe use of their
product. Most of them are quite similar to those found below because a rather extensive list of safety recommendations must be issued with each product in order to conform to the UL standard. UL (Underwriters Laboratories®) is a safety certification organization that has been testing products and writing standards for safety for over 100 years. They evaluate almost 20,000 types of products each year and their worldwide companies serve over 100 countries.
Good Safety Practices for Electric Bedding:
- Do not use warming bedding with infants or very small children, people with disabilities, anyone who is immobile or cannot operate the controls properly, anyone insensitive to heat or anyone who cannot understand these directions.
- Never run the control cords between the mattress and the box springs. (This advice is similar to the advice about never running an appliance or lamp cord under a rug.) The cord could become damaged by friction or the heat from the electricity in the cord could be trapped there with no place to escape eventually becoming a fire hazard.
- Never pinch any of the heating wires or the control cords in any way. Therefore do not use automatic bedding with adjustable beds, Murphy beds, pull-out sofas, or reclining chairs where any electrical cords or heater wires could become pinched in the mechanisms.
- Do not use heated bedding on a "hospital" type adjustable bed where the heated wires could become entrapped in the "fold" which would lead to overheating and could become a fire hazard.
- Do not use a heated blanket and a heated mattress pad at the same time. Overheating could result.
- Wrapping the cord around the controls may damage the cord. Loop loosely when storing.
- The heated area of any warming bedding should always lie flat. That is, it should never be bunched up, folded or balled up (e.g. between the mattress and the footboard) such that the heat generated in the middle of that ball has no place to escape.
- Do not allow pets to be around your warming bedding. A sharp claw or a tooth may puncture the wire insulation or damage the wiring itself.
- Do not use pins around warming bedding. They can puncture the heater wire insulation.
- Turn off the bedding appliance when not in use.
- Never iron your electric blanket or electric mattress pad. Ironing may melt the heating wire insulation.
- Never dry clean or use cleaning fluid on your product. Dry cleaning solvents may damage the heater wire insulation.
- Do not use an electric blanket or electric mattress pad on a waterbed.
- Finally if you observe your electric blanket or electric mattress pad operating unusually or improperly (e.g. seems too hot in one area or you see a scorch mark) call the manufacturer. All of them provide customer service centers with toll free numbers to answer questions about their products (see our Contact Information page).
It may seem that there are many rules for using these appliances but they are mostly common sense. If you follow these general rules, there will be little chance of anything going wrong with your product.