Keep Yourself Warm When RV/Tent Camping With A Portable Electric Heated Blanket
Camping has always been a big part of my life.
My earliest memory of RV camping is when I went on a trip with my grandparents. Back then, I only went camping during the summer when it was warm.
Now I travel full time in my travel trailer and have to deal with cold winter nights in the camper.
Related Product: Stay warm inside or outside your RV using a portable propane heater like the popular Mr. Heater Buddy (click to view on Amazon)
Since I boondock/dry camp 95% of the time, I can’t run the furnace all night since it would kill my trailer batteries within a couple of hours.
I bought a portable heated blanket that can keep both my wife and me warm in the camper when it’s cold.
Today I am going to share the knowledge I gained about heated blankets because I did a lot of research and figured I could help other campers out there as well.
I’m also going to share how you can power a heated blanket with a solar charged power station.
If you already have a portable battery, make sure it has a pure sine wave inverter before plugging in your blanket.
If you have questions, please leave a comment and I will do my best to help you out, now let’s get cozy with a heated blanket.
Summary (links to Amazon)
- 12 Volt Option – Stalwart 12V Electric Car Blanket
- Battery Powered – The Cozee Battery Operated Heated Blanket
- Air Activated – ThermaFur Air Activated Heat Blanket
- Best Overall – Vremi Electric Heated Blanket
Last update on 2023-02-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Best Portable Heated Blankets Review
A popular little 12V heated blanket is this one by Stalwart. It’s a fleece throw travel blanket that comes in a couple of different colors.
They’re all the same size, 59 by 43 inches, so it’s not a massive blanket but will still be large enough for a medium-sized adult.
Since it’s a 12V electric blanket, it has a cigarette plug on the end, which makes it easy to use in a car, van, or RV.
It only uses up to 50W, so it won’t be a problem for the alternator.
The power cord is 96 inches long.
The low wattage also makes it compatible with a lot of small portable power stations. It also doesn’t require an inverter since it uses 12 volt power.
That means you can power it using a small power station or directly from a 12 volt battery using a cigarette lighter socket with alligator clamps (click to view on Amazon).
Many RVs already have a cigarette lighter socket directly connected to the battery. So you can use it when you’re boondocking/dry camping.
While the Stalwart blanket only has one heating setting, the one setting it has is very warm, so it will keep you comfortable when it’s cold inside your RV camper or tent.
The Stalwart is not machine washable, and should only be spot cleaned.
Overall, the Stalwart 12V Electric Car Blanket is an affordable heated blanket that doesn’t have any frills. It will heat and stay warm until you unplug it.
It doesn’t have any heat settings or an automatic turnoff. The power cord is long with a 12V cigarette plug at the end.
The 12 volt power makes it one of the more versatile electric travel blankets in this review.
- Uses 12 Volt Power
- 12V Cigarette Plug
- Can Be Powered By Any 12V Outlet
- Gets Hot
- 8 Foot Power Cord
- Only 50W Power Usage
- Only 1 Setting
- Not Machine Washable
- Only 1 Size Option
- No Auto Shut Off
If you want a truly portable heated blanket for camping that is battery powered, the Cozee is one of the few options that actually uses its own battery.
This heated blanket comes with a 96.2 watt-hour lithium battery that powers not only the blanket, but two USB ports as well so you can keep electronics charged.
Being 96Wh means you can bring it on an airplane (TSA’s limit is 100Wh) which makes it perfect for travelers.
So how long does the battery last? About five hours.
It can be charged either with the AC wall plug or the included 12V car charger.
It will also stay on longer than five hours if you leave it plugged in.
There are three heat levels: low, medium, and high.
The blanket measures 60 by 60 inches, so it’s large enough to keep an adult warm and cozy, while also being small enough to be portable.
Perfect for the colder evening and nights out by the campfire.
Cozee offers a 1-year warranty and advertises that you can remove the battery and wash the blanket in a machine.
It is water-resistant so you can feel safe taking it outdoors. Just like most other blankets above, there is a safety shutoff.
So is the the Cozee the portable heated blanket for you?
Well, it’s the most portable heated blanket in this review. It also comes with some good extra features, like USB ports, a 96.2Wh lithium battery, and a cozy micro-fleece interior.
It’s great not only for camping but for those outdoor sporting events on a cold fall evening, or wherever you find yourself freezing and wishing for a battery-powered blanket.
- Wall, car charger included
- 3 heat settings
- Auto shutoff
- Battery-powered (96.2Wh lithium battery)
- USB ports on the battery
- Cozy micro-fleece interior
- Truly Portable
- Doesn’t Get Super Warm
- Only 1 Size Option
The ThermaFur has a much different take on the portable heated blanket idea.
When you think “heated blanket” the first thing that normally comes to mind is something that uses electricity.
And making an electric blanket portable for camping and travel normally means having a small battery you can charge it with, or at least a 12 volt plug.
The ThermaFur portable heated blanket uses none of these ideas. Instead, it uses a heat source that requires no electricity at all, air activated hand warmers.
The blanket part is very simple. It’s made of 100% fleece with a hemmed border.
There are 8 pockets sewn throughout the blanket.
The pockets are around 5 inches long and 3.5 inches wide. The perfect size for the larger hand warmers, also called body warmers.
Each pocket has a flap that will hold the inserted hand/body warmers securely so you can use the blanket without worrying about them falling out.
If you want to adjust the temperature, add or remove hand warmers.
It’s an incredibly simple design, but for camping and portability, it’s a fantastic idea.
Many of the portable heated blankets on the market today that use a small included battery to power them don’t really get very warm.
Especially when you compare them to the AC powered heated travel blankets reviewed below.
Small portable batteries just don’t output as much power, and heaters require a decent amount of electricity to work well.
That’s why we recommend using a portable power bank with AC outlets if possible.
Regular electric blankets work better and longer than battery powered options.
But if you don’t have the space for a portable power station, and you want a heated blanket that’s truly portable, the ThermaFur Air Activated Heat Blanket is one of the best options out there today.
There are 8 body warmers included with purchase, so you can start using it right when you get it.
Large body warmers last for around 15 hours, which is plenty to get you through a chilly day or night of camping.
When the warmers run out of charge, throw them away and put new ones in.
The top recommended replacements are Body Super Warmers by Hot Hands (click to view on Amazon).
There’s even a way to still technically make this a battery powered heated blanket if you use rechargeable hand warmers like these (click to view on Amazon).
- 100% Portable
- No Power or Batteries Required
- Can Adjust Heat By Adding or Removing Warmers
- Thin Blanket Material
- Included Hand Warmers Not Reusable
- Only 1 Size Option
This reversible heated blanket by Serta is a popular option because it’s so soft.
The brushed micro plush reverses to a plush sherpa lining, so you can stay cozy with either side.
It has five heat settings, so depending on how cold or warm you are, your blanket will adjust and let you feel just the perfect amount of warmth.
You can choose between six different colors, but there are no size options. All of them are 50 by 60 inches, and large enough for an adult.
This is not a 12V powered blanket with a cigarette plug, but with a regular AC plug.
The power cord is 8.5 ft long, so you don’t have to sit right by the outlet to keep this blanket warm.
Something I really like about this Serta blanket is the fact that it’s machine washable and comes with a three-year warranty.
I like to wash my blankets pretty often since it gets dirty so easily in the camper, and nothing cleans a blanket like a washing machine.
Serta has put a 4-hour automatic shut off feature in the blanket for safety and power savings reasons.
With an automatic shut off like this, you never have to worry about leaving your home or RV and realizing that you didn’t turn off the heated blanket.
Overall, I recommend the Serta reversible heated blanket because of the high-quality materials and features.
Serta stands behind its product with the 3-year warranty, and that’s something that can’t be said about every heated blanket out there.
The size is perfect for a camper and it’s small enough to be used outdoors, on the couch, and on the bed.
Since it only uses around 100 watts, you can easily combine it with a small portable power station, and it becomes a heated blanket you can use anywhere.
- Reversible Sherpa/Fleece
- 5 Heat Settings
- 3-year Warranty
- Machine Washable
- 8.5 ft Power Cord
- Automatic Shut Off
- Uses AC Power (Need Inverter for Battery)
- Only 1 Size Option
If you want a heated blanket with even more features than the Serta, this one from Vremi might impress you.
There are two size options; 50 by 60 inches and 62 by 84 inches.
It doesn’t come in any other colors, but let me tell you what it can do.
It has an LCD display so you can easily monitor what settings the blanket is set to, and four buttons that let you control it.
Six heat settings and eight timer settings make it a versatile choice for a lot of different situations and places.
The heat settings can heat the blanket up from 85 to 110 degrees.
The timer settings will let you choose when the blanket should turn off, or it will turn itself off after 10 hours.
It has a 10-foot power cord that can be removed when it’s time to wash it because it is machine washable.
The Vremi blanket uses up to 100 watts, which is not bad for the amount of heat it can generate.
It makes it compatible with a lot of portable power stations as long as it has a pure sine wave inverter.
Vremi offers a 1-year warranty.
If you’re looking for a lot of features, the Vremi electric heated blanket is a strong contender for the ultimate heated camping blanket title.
It’s easy to control with the remote, has a lot of heat and timer settings, and will turn itself off after 10 hours for safety reasons.
The downside is the short 1-year warranty.
- LCD Display
- 6 Heat Settings
- Machine Washable
- 10 ft Power Cord
- Automatic Shut Off
- 2 Size Options
- Uses AC Power (Need Inverter for Battery)
If you would rather have a heated mattress pad in your RV camper than a heated blanket, the Electrowarmth M60Fd is the one.
It comes in several sizes, but the one I am reviewing is the short queen with dual control.
Most campers come with short queen beds (also called camper queens). You can choose the size depending on what mattress is in your RV.
What’s impressive about this product is the low watt usage.
It only uses 126 Watts at most, with both sides turned on the highest heat setting.
Each controller has ten heat levels, and for safety, they both turn off after 10 hours of use.
The controller lets you turn it on and off, and up/down the heating levels.
Electrowarmth offers a 1-year warranty with this mattress pad. You can both machine wash and dry the pad.
The Electrowarmth M60Fd is a fantastic option for alternative ways to stay warm while camping.
I can see myself having it permanently in my trailer. The mattress is always cold because of the air coming in through the outer storage compartment underneath.
Because of the ease of use and low wattage, it’s almost a better option than a heated travel blanket if you are looking for something to keep your bed warm when camping.
I don’t like the look of the outdated controllers, but the functionality of a great heated camping mattress pad is there, which is why I still recommend it.
- 100% Polyester
- Low Wattage
- Multiple Sizes
- ETL Certification
- 10 Heat Levels
- 10 Hour Auto-Off
- Dryer Safe
- Not As Portable As A Blanket
- Uses AC Power (Need Inverter for Battery
Conclusion & Heated Blanket Recommendations
After looking at four heated blankets and one heating pad, I’ve realized that this is a product category where it comes down to preference.
Do you want to choose between ten heat levels, or is it more important that you can program when the blanket should turn off automatically?
Do you need a blanket that covers the entire bed, just your side, or just your feet?
No matter what your answer is to these questions, I hope that you’ve found what you’re looking for by now.
Here are my recommendations for heated blankets and pads:
Best Electric Heated Blanket – Serta Reversible Sherpa/Fleece Heated Blanket:
The Serta reversible blanket has the features most people are looking for in a heated blanket and is the perfect size at 50 by 60 inches.
The remote is easy to use, has a built-in automatic shutoff, and Serta offers a 3-year warranty. Perfect for cold camping nights.
Best Heated Travel Blanket – Stalwart 12V Electric Car Blanket
Every vehicle has a 12 volt outlet that can power this small heated blanket.
You can take it on any road trip to stay warm and since most RVs have a 12 volt outlet that’s directly connected to the battery, you can use it while camping as well.
If you don’t have a car or RV, you can power it using a small portable power station since it only uses 50 watts and you don’t need an inverter to power it.
Best Battery Powered Heated Blanket – The Cozee Battery Operated Heated Blanket
The Cozee is the most portable heated blanket out there since it runs on a battery.
Its battery is large but small enough that you can bring it on an airplane.
If you want to use your blanket outdoors a lot, the Cozee is the best choice.
Portable Power Stations To Use With Electric Heated Blankets
Solar powered generators are becoming more and more popular because they let you use electricity and recharge no matter where you are.
They’re basically portable lithium batteries that you can plug solar panels into to recharge them.
When powering a heated blanket with one of these power stations, you need to make sure it has a pure Sine Wave Inverter. Not a Modified Sine Wave Inverter.
This is really important to pay attention to since a modified sine wave inverter might destroy both your blanket and the power station.
Again, make sure the power station you buy has a Pure Sine Wave Inverter, and if you’re not sure you should ask the manufacturer.
Here are four power stations that I recommend: (click on any of the links to see them on Amazon)
Jackery makes power stations in all different sizes. This one has a battery capacity of 240 watt-hours, so it will run a 60W blanket for 3-4 hours.
It has a screen that shows you how many watts are going in and out, and you can recharge it with a solar panel like the SolarSaga 60W.
One of the more feature-packed power stations out there right now.
It has three AC outlets, a screen that tells you everything you need to know, USB C, 720Wh battery capacity, and a regulated 12V output.
And it can be controlled and monitored with your phone.
Very similar to the Explorer 240 above, but with more battery capacity and ports.
The largest power station Jackery makes. With a 1002 watt-hour battery capacity, three AC ports, USB C, and two inputs.
These power stations advertise their battery capacity in watt hours.
A heated blanket that draws 100W is going to use around 100 watt-hours per hour, so if you know the blanket wattage and the power station battery capacity, you can calculate how long it will run.
They don’t include solar panels, but most include an AC wall charger and a car charger.
To charge them with solar panels, you need to make sure it has a compatible connector, and that the solar panel doesn’t have a solar charge controller, since the power stations already have charge controllers built-in.
I can help you find compatible solar panels and tell you how to connect them if you leave a comment and tell me which power station you have.
What to Look for in a Portable Heated Blanket for Camping
Whether you are powering a portable heated blanket with a 12 volt RV battery, car battery, portable power station, or even a battery that was included with the blanket, power usage matters.
The amount of watts a heated blanket uses every hour tells you how long the power source will last.
If you are going to be using a portable power station, you need to make sure the max watts the blanket will use aren’t too much for the inverter to handle.
Luckily, none of the portable heated blankets in this review use over 150 watts.
That’s pretty low and most power stations and solar generators that have inverters can handle it.
If you are using a heated travel blanket that can be powered with a 12 volt outlet, you need to make sure you don’t use it too much when the vehicle isn’t running.
Car batteries don’t have as much storage for electricity as large RV batteries and you could end up with a dead battery if you leave your heated blanket plugged in for too long.
Truly portable heated blankets that actually work can be pretty hard to find.
Heating elements require a decent power source to work properly, and super small portable batteries that can fit in your pocket don’t always have the strength to really heat a blanket.
That doesn’t mean a battery powered heated blanket won’t work. Just don’t expect it to be as warm as the kind you can plug into an outlet.
We are using the term “portability” in a few different ways in this review.
Portability can mean being able to use a common 12 volt power source, a small battery, portable hand warmers, or portable power stations.
Some of the heated blankets in this review are more portable than others.
Your travel and camping style is the thing that will decide how portable the blanket needs to be.
Blanket Fabric & Quality
Naturally, a blanket that’s made with extra warm fabrics and materials will feel warmer than one that is thin and lightweight.
The travel heated blankets in this review are made of thinner material because they are meant to take up less space.
The ones that can be powered using portable power stations are a little thicker and made with heavier fabrics.
The heated mattress pad is the largest and least portable option.
Some of these options are going to be better when paired with other camping blankets.
For instance, the 12 volt option is pretty thin, but it will fit perfectly inside a sleeping bag or under a quilt in an RV.
It’s common for heated blankets to only have one size option.
If you want a portable blanket, you can wrap around your shoulders and take with you anywhere, a small 48 x 60 inch size will be perfect.
If you want the heated blanket to cover the bed in the RV or van, you might need something that’s full or queen sized.
Finally, safety is a big deal with any electronic, especially the kinds that output heat right next to your body.
The most common safety feature on heated blankets is an auto-off.
It turns off the blanket after a set number of hours, just in case you left it on unattended or to stop your body from getting too warm.
The 12 volt blanket is the only option in this review that doesn’t have an auto-off.
That means if left plugged in it could easily drain the battery you are powering it with.
Frequently Asked Questions About Heated Blankets
Why should I get a heated blanket instead of running the furnace?
To save propane and energy. It takes some electricity to run the fan in your furnace.
I believe it’s smarter to heat the space you’re in instead of heating the whole house or trailer.
Are heated blankets safe?
As with all electronics, especially ones in the heating category, you should be very careful and follow the recommended guidelines.
If your blanket has cracked or is worn, throw it away.
Even if your 10-year-old blanket hasn’t broken, you should throw it away as old blankets account for 99 percent of all heated blanket fires.
I recommend buying an electric blanket that has been UL certified, which shows that the product has been tested for safety.
The most important thing to do when you’ve got a heated blanket is never to leave it on when you’re not there.
What are the benefits of using a heated blanket in a residential home?
If you can stay warm by turning on a heated blanket instead of heating the entire house, you’ll quickly start saving money.
Heating bills are high in the winter and can be reduced by heating the house less, dressing warmer, or using a heater blanket.
Have any more questions about portable heated blankets or how to power electric blankets while camping? Leave a comment below.