Review: ThermaCELL Heat Packs Electric Hand and Body Warmers
Russ Chastain 11.15.16
I’ve always had trouble keeping my hands and feet warm, and especially my hands. I have learned that using glomitts, a.k.a. pop-top gloves, works better for me than typical gloves, and I often need to use some sort of external heat source when the temperature drops into the 30s or below.
I’ve used plenty of those air-activated warmers, and they are great–when they work. But they can stop warming unless they get enough air, and that’s a bummer.
I’ve also used a small warmer that requires lighter fluid and a flame, but they, too, can stop warming due to lack of air (and the lighter fluid has a strong odor, which isn’t great for a hunter).
Over the past couple of years, I’ve seen more and more battery-operated electric warmers, and I was glad to try these Heat Packs from ThermaCELL. They are small rectangular units made mostly of hard black plastic, with a soft orange silicone insert on one side, and that’s the part that gets hot.
They heat up well and last for a good long time. Sometimes when I’m sitting on a deer stand, I’ll fire them up and place one under a thigh and put another in an inside shirt pocket.
It’s nice that only one side of each unit gets warm, because that means there’s no wasted energy. Place the silicone side towards the part of your body that you wish to warm up, and all the heat goes in that direction.
A small wall charger with folding plug tines is included, which has two USB outlets. Oddly, they have different outputs. But that makes it a suitable charger for a smart phone or tablet–or both at the same time. Two charging cords are included, so both heat packs can be charged simultaneously.
Any micro USB cord can be used to charge a warmer; the light illuminates red while charging, and changes to green when it’s charged.
You get three power settings, and cycle through them via a single pushbutton. This can be a problem at times, because the slightly-protruding button can be accidentally pushed in the pack or pocket. That said, I have yet to find one dead as a result of accidentally being turned on.
All in all, I like them a lot. If they last, I will come to love them. The price isn’t cheap, but you can spend a lot on other warmers that don’t work nearly as well.
From the manufacturer:
ThermaCELL Hand Warmers are small, battery-operated warmers that aren’t just for your hands. These durable packs can fit easily in pockets, jackets, pants and gloves for up to 6 hours of constant heat per charge.
Charge your Hand Warmers between uses to keep it ready for the next time you need to control the cold.
2 Hand Warmers equipped with integrated rechargeable lithium-ion polymer batteries, 1 USB wall charger, 2 USB cords and an instruction booklet.
- Charges in 4 hours or less
- Thin and lightweight
- Easily turn off at the touch of a button
- Three temperature settings reaching up to 116°F
- Recharges over 500 times
- Also available in a larger Pocket Warmer size
- MSRP: $84.99