Top critical review
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Good for a couple of years - but beware of fault with connector.
on 9 December 2012
Here are some answers to questions that you may have about this product:
Is it easy to fit and assemble ? Couldn't be easier. It's elasticated so goes on just like a fitted sheet. No annoying straps. 2 connectors simply plug in at either sides of the blanket.
Is it for a double bed ? Yes. It's like having 2 single electric blankets joined together, each having their own controls. Which basically means if you are a solo sleeper you have a choice of just heating up one side of the bed and sleeping on that side or as I do, heating up both sides anyway as it's cheap to use and you then have the whole bed heated up to spread out as you wish. If you are a couple it means you can use it as you wish for your side of the bed without affecting your partner.
Can you feel the wires and connection points ? Well, if you put your hand on the blanket you can feel the wires but not majorly so (this is probably the same for most electric blankets) and to be honest, I personally cannot feel them on my body and I am not aware of them when laying down. As I said, it's only if I consciously feel the blanket with the palm of my hand that I can make them out. As for the connectors, you can feel them but they sit either side of the blanket so for a solo person it's not a problem. For a couple sharing a double bed I guess it depends on how close to the edge you sleep and whether they would bother you or not. For some guidance, they are located either side of the blanket about 2 inches in from the edge of the mattress, about chest level.
Controls ? Has 2 individual controls which are simple to use. As in the description has 6 heat levels and 2 timer settings. I don't have any use for the lower settings but I don't run the blanket all night. I use the top level (6) as a quick warm up and if I want it on after the 1 hour I will use level 5. The lower levels are a very low heat so may not be used by many people. The timer is for 1 hour or 9 hours which basically equates to either having the blanket on to warm the bed up and for first use before you go to sleep or having it running all night. I personally would not want it running all night as the bed is warm enough by then. You can use the control when you are in the bed so can change it as you wish, ie: adjust heat levels or even turn it off as you are about to drop off. The memory setting is a good feature because if you want the same thing each night as I do (1 hour warm up on level 6) it will automatically remember this when you turn it on.
Does the rapid heat up work ? Absolutely. One of the best things about the product. Turn on 10 mins before you get in and the bed is toasty warm for you - lovely !
Length of the leads ? The leads which run from the connection points to the plug sockets are 2 metres long. Bear in mind if you are using both sides of the blanket you will have 2 leads coming from both sides of the bed which will both have to be plugged in. The leads should not be a problem, an extension lead placed under the bed should sort out any issues, you could even run both leads into one extension lead which can then go into one power point.
Cost to run ? It states that it costs 1p to run all night. I'm not sure about that, it's a big claim. What I will say is this: I use my blanket on full power for 1 hour. I have done a check on my electricity usage and it is minimal. So the running costs really shouldn't be a concern.
Memory Foam Mattress ? There is an issue as to whether or not you can use an electric blanket with a memory foam mattress. Some say yes, some say no. Some say check with your mattress manufacturer. For me, I did some research and I went with the Which Report which stated that it is okay as long as you don't run it all night. But don't take my word on this, use your own judgement and do your own research. One thing I did do which might help is this: On top of my mattress I have a standard fitted sheet. On top of this I have a mattress protector which is elasticated and fits over the mattress just like a fitted sheet. The electric blanket then goes over the mattress protector. I've even put another fitted sheet over the electric blanket. It sounds like a lot to do but it really is simple and works without any problems, and it gives peace of mind that you have a protector in between the mattress and the electric blanket. Just make sure that your mattress protector is not to thick and is elasticated around the sides. The one I got from Amazon was perfect for this and was under a tenner (see my reviews).
Okay. here is the negative. The controller stops working after a few years use, depending on how much you have used the blanket. Or at least you think it's the controller - the fault is actually coming from the blanket connector. When the controller fails to work (when you turn it on the setting keeps going back to zero) the logical thing that you do is test to see if the fault is with the controller or the blanket. So you try the controller from the other side (the one that is still working) and discover that it works, so naturally you assume that the fault is with the controller. What you don't realise is that if you continued using the good controller in the same connector then this too would stop working. So basically what is happening is that the controller is developing a fault, but the fault is being caused by the blanket connector (usually the left side). So if you assume that it is just the connector at fault you may do as I did and buy a new controller (£30). Unfortunately this will also pack up after a few months because the blanket connector will cause it to fail. So unless you change the blanket itself you will continue to plug in new controllers which will all fail. This is why if you report a faulty controller to Dreamland they do not simply ask you to send them the faulty controller which is what you would expect, they instruct you to send them everything, blanket and all, because they know that it is the blanket this is probably at fault and not the controller. The problem here is that sending the whole caboodle to them is expensive, and Dreamland tell you that you have to pay these costs - even if your blanket is still under guarantee (3 years).
Overall Conclusion. A great blanket whilst it works but limited life and poor Customer Service from Dreamland let it down. Two years use of a great blanket may be a worthwhile purchase for you. You then (currently) have the option of either keeping the thing going with additional outlay when it does pack up, or just to throw it away and buy a new blanket.