You are looking for a way to stay warm at night. Maybe an extra blanket isn’t helping and a hot water bottle won’t cut it.
You still have two more options: a space heater or an electric blanket.
Both provide even heating, you can control the precise temperature and they are relatively inexpensive. But which one is the best in terms of cost, energy efficiency, heating effectiveness and ease of use?
Let’s find out.
Both electric blankets and space heaters are affordable heating options. With £50 or less, you can get a good quality 1500W space heater and a decent Queen size electric blanket.
Of course prices for each vary a lot based on size, heating capacity and extra features.
For space heaters, there are small £10 heaters with a capacity of just 500W. These are good for much smaller rooms.
On the pricey end of the scale, you’ll come across £80+ heaters with wattage of 2000W or more.
As for electric blankets, price varies mostly with size. Double size blankets can cost as little as £20 while King sized blankets go for £60 or more.
Generally, in terms of price, there isn’t much difference between these two options. So let’s move on to the other important factor.
The simple question here is: how well and quickly does each warm you up?
The answer is easily an electric blanket.
The main downside of a space heater is exactly that…it has to heat an entire space. This takes time compared to an electric blanket which only has to warm the bed.
It’s even slower if you get a heater that is too small for the size of the bedroom.
An electric blanket will warm up the bed in just a few minutes and keep it warm even after you turn it off.
One other thing I love about electric blankets is that they are better able to maintain a specific temperature.
Some even have dual control where you set a different temperature for each side of the bed. That’s great for couples who can’t agree how warm or cool the bed should be.
Energy and Cost efficiency
Electric blanket wins again. It is much more energy-efficient compared to a space heater.
An electric blanket uses very little energy to warm up the bed. After all, it doesn’t have to warm an entire room.
Most electric blankets consume no more than 200 watts per hour of electricity on the highest setting.
Assuming you use the blanket for 5 hours a night, that’s 0.2kWh (200W/1000) * 5 which comes to 1kWh per day.
Assuming your electricity provider charges you 14 pence per kWh, that comes to a total running cost of 14 pence per day and around £4.20 per month.
In a year, you’ll spend around £50.
A 750W space heater on the other hand will use 3.75kWh daily when run for the same amount of time as the blanket (750W/1000 * 5hrs). The daily running cost is 3.75kWh * 14 pence which comes to 52 pence.
The monthly running cost is approximately £15 and the yearly bill comes to around £180.
The energy costs of a space heater go up the more powerful the heater is. So a 1500W or 2000W heater run for 5 hours daily is going to cost you even more.
This one is an easy win by space heater.
You can only use an electric blanket in the bed. It doesn’t warm up any other area of the room and you cannot easily move around with it.
An electric heater on the other hand is much more versatile. It can warm you while in bed, while reading on the desk and you can easily move it to another room.
Which one should I get?
Buy an electric blanket if:
- You tend to feel really chilly in bed and need something to warm you up quickly and evenly.
- You have varying sleep temperature preferences from your partner. A dual control electric blanket can help.
- You are looking for a solution that will not shoot up your bills.
Buy a space heater if:
- You want something that will heat the entire room rather than just the bed.
- You want something that will keep you warm around the house even when you are not in bed.