Do you know how safe your electric blanket is?

Here are some things to check before you turn the heat up

As we all look to keep our energy bills down whilst trying to keep warm this winter, some of us may be either digging out an old and pre-loved electric blanket or seeking to buy a new one. But do you know how safe it is? Here are some safety tips to consider.

New electric blankets

When looking to buy an electric blanket it's important to buy from a reputable retailer. Ensure the blanket carries a recognised approvals mark, such as the British Electrotechnical Approvals Board (BEAB) mark, or the International Standard number EN 60967.

The blanket must also be CE or UKCA marked. Don't buy a second-hand electric blanket.

Using your blanket safely

  1. Before using the blanket, read and follow the manufacturer's instructions. Some can be used under the person in the bed others go over the top.
  2. Check the electric blanket frequently for detached tie tapes, frayed edges, scorch marks and damaged or loose electrical connections and that the connector isn't over-heating. Also make sure that the control doesn't make a buzzing noise or give off a scorching smell.
  3. Never use a hot water bottle in the same bed as an electric blanket, even if the blanket is switched off.
  4. Unplug blankets before you get into bed unless they have a thermostat control for safe all-night use.
  5. When storing an electric blanket, don't fold it as this may damage the internal wiring. Store flat or rolled up.
  6. Get your blanket tested by a qualified electrician at least every three years.
  7. If your blanket is more than 10 years old, you should consider disposing of it and buying a new one. Blankets being disposed of should be taken to a recycling facility which accepts electric and electronic appliances.

We can test your blanket

Trading Standards will be doing some drop-in sessions in November with our approved tester to test resident's electric blankets. It is quick and easy to do, so bring them along to get tested for free and get a new one courtesy of Dreams if your blanket fails.

The locations are:

  • Wednesday 1 November at St Martin's Church, Camberley 10am to 11.30am
  • Wednesday 1 November at Camberley Library 1pm to 4pm
  • Thursday 2 November at The Lighthouse, Woking 10am to 2pm
  • Friday 3 November at Horley Community Centre 10am to 4pm

Testing will also take place in Buckinghamshire on Monday 30 October in Chesham Library and Tuesday 31 October in Burnham Library, both from 10am to 4pm.

Any electric blankets that are shown to be unsafe will be disposed of on behalf residents at a Community Recycling Centre in the appropriate way for electrical items.

More from community matters