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Old 11-30-2010, 03:33 PM   #1
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Electric Mattress Pad

okay friends,

we just replaced the original mattress [yuck] with a memory foam one [part heavy dense foam part memory foam]. what a difference!

btw, it was a snap to 'cut to fit' the foam with a battery powered electric knife. just make sure you unroll the mattress and let it fully expand before you do any cutting.

question - what kind of electric mattress pad would work best when dry camping?

is it even possible to use one while dry camping and not drain the battery?

a year ago we used our propane furnace while dry camping and the propane lasted but the blower drained the battery.

are there 12v pads that would work for us?

we don't go anywhere the temps are way below freezing. we were just camping in mid-AZ and the evening temps got down around 30.

we have used an electric blanket with hook-ups but feel the blanket would drain the battery too fast.

has anyone used one while dry camping?

i saw a 12v system advertised by ElectroWarmth for use in RV and trucks.

any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

[we tried using our dog but she is pretty small and we would have to share her].

thanks
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:08 PM   #2
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I have been happier with electric blankets (still use one) than I have been with electric mattress pads. I found that I still lost a lot of warmth out the covers when using an electric mattress pad requiring heavy covers to stay warm, but an electric blanket keeps me warm without a lot of extra covers (and weight).

A Google search turned up lots of 12 volt electric blankets.
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:19 PM   #3
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We put a memory foam mattress in our trailer just prior to doing a western trip in late AUG/SEPT...the bed is so warm we never ran the heater and even left the windows open several nights. It was down in the low 30's several times during the trip.

Try it out one night, I'd bet that with some blankets you will find out you don't need an electric pad!
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:35 PM   #4
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The 12v mattress warmer works great . Turn it on just before bedtime , jump into warm bed , turn it off , with proper covers body heat will take over . Electric blankets waste too much heat into the atmosphere for dry camping , thus using more battery power.
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:46 PM   #5
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Agree on the memory foam, you sink down into it, which keeps more of your body insulated and self heating. You don't need any other mechanical method to keep warm. I tried one and found it TOO warm for here in southern coastal VA. Now up in the mountains maybe.

An ordinary foam mattress is warmer than any innerspring - especially the crappy ones Airstream is using now.

I'm a fan of "down alternative" quilts if you need more than a blanket or lightly quilted bedspread. Even if you pay top dollar for eider, tiny bits of featherlets eventually make it outside of the fabric and it's a mess that tracks all over your whole Airstream in minutes.
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Old 11-30-2010, 05:39 PM   #6
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electric mattress pad

thanks to all for the info.

so - you only need to run the pad for a little while and then turn it off?
will the heating effect last 6-8 hours?

sounds like you can get away with using it while dry camping. yes?

i really don't want to drain the battery on a cold night.

our 22' AS ccd has both a regular electric plug near the bed and what appears to be a 12v socket similar to the lighter socket found in cars.

do your pads plug directly into the wall plug and come with a 12v converter?

thanks
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Old 11-30-2010, 05:53 PM   #7
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electric mattress pads

I would limit the use of any electric mattress pads because of electromagnetic radiation that is given off by the electricity flowing near your body. You are getting "zapped" constantly because you are right on top of or underneath the wires. If you must use them use them to heat the bed and then shut off when sleeping ( Make sure your pet doesn't pee on the blanket, it could cause a fire.)

I can't see that a 12 volt pad can give much heat over a large bed.
Power ( watts) = current ( amps) squared times the resistance (ohms). The more the current the more the heat and the faster you would drain the battery especially if you are heating a large area.
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Old 11-30-2010, 06:19 PM   #8
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I would suggest a nice down comforter. It is chilly when you first jump in, but then body heat takes over, and it is a very pleasant nights sleep. You have the added benefit of not draining your batteries. I know a toasty bed is nice, but I have been comfortable under down when I could see my breath in the room.
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by az-streamer View Post
...[we tried using our dog but she is pretty small and we would have to share her].

thanks
I find that TWO dogs do the trick. Especially the 80 lb greyhound! No drain on the battery...

Laura
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:37 PM   #10
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I agree with Aviator...I just bought a new down comforter after considering that or an electric blanket...one night in and im not regretting it yet.

I have yet to turn on the furnace, so it takes a lot of willpower to leave the bed in the morning...
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:43 PM   #11
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I used an electric mattress pad while boondocking in winter. We had a generator, though. I had never used an electric mattress pad before & I nearly cooked myself alive! I woke up absolutely cooking & had to fluff my bed for a while because it was so HOT! (the pads came with our trailer from the PO). I prefer an electric blanket (if you have to have a preference). At least you can hang your leg out or toss it off of you!
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:04 PM   #12
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Hey you two! We recently got a memory foam topper for our mattress and we are liking it a lot. It does seem warmer, too...body heat really makes it warm. When camping with shore power we use a small ceramic electric heater set really low to keep the Bambi warm, but it is on very low...and when we are dry camping we use a small propane catalytic heater to warm up the trailer before going to bed, then turn it off...and then fire it up in the AM to take the chill off...works for us... Haven't even thought about an electric mattress pad or blanket... I usually get too warm before I get too cold. In fact, we usually have a vent open to bring in some nice fresh, cool air...even in the winter...
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:35 PM   #13
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Quote:
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I find that TWO dogs do the trick. Especially the 80 lb greyhound! No drain on the battery...

Laura
"Three Dog Night" took their name from Australian natives who described the coldness of evening weather by the number of dogs it took to keep them warm... A three dog night equals extreme cold.

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Old 11-30-2010, 09:58 PM   #14
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If anybody is looking for a foam bed you might try IKEA. We bought one there and really like it. We took the cover off and cut the foam to match the curves in our A/S. It was fairly inexpensive. Also, if you have a pacemaker or ICD watch those electric blankets. Electrical current can effect them. It might end up being a "shocking" experience!!!
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