12V Heated Blankets / Mattress Pads in RVs

Recently I decided to move from a toy hauler camping trailer to a small pickup truck camper. I purchased a 50 year old “Maine Camper” truck cap type camper and build an entire interior for it. You can read all about that on this web site.

I spend the winters in the desert Southwest, where the temperatures during the day are in the 70s, but at night it can get well below freezing.

In the toy hauler I have a hot air furnace and I also use a WAVE 6 catalytic propane heater with great results. But in this small truck camper the propane heater is a bit too much heat.

Talking with a couple of my friends who are long distance , over the road, truck drivers, they tell me most of these folks use a 12V heated mattress pad from a company called “ElectroWarmth”

So I ordered one directly from the factory, but they are also available on Amazon. Arrived in three days and all in just under $100 (January 2024 price)

Last night was the first time I used it.

The truck drivers suggest that you turn it on about 30 minutes before you turn in for the night to get the bed warm.

I placed it on the mattress, pinned it down as required by the manufacturer so as to not bunch up and cause a fire.

Placed a fitted sheet over it and set the control on #7, The highest setting. On #7 my shunt based battery monitor is showing an amp draw of 7 amps. I left it like this for about 40 minutes.

Once I turned in, it was clear the #7 was way too hot.

The temperature in the camper was 38 degrees.

Climbing into bed I turned it down to #3. At this setting the controller uses PWM to control the heat. Turning the electricity from 3amps to .5amp, back and forth….using a total of about 2 amps.

My camper has two, 100aH, Dr Prepare Lithium batteries in parallel for a total of around 200aH of stored electricity.

I turned on the 1000w inverter. This allowed me to turn on the small TV and the T-Mobile Home Internet Gateway so I could watch a bit of NFL football. I also had an LED ceiling light on and my I-phone charging through a USB outlet I had installed. The TV and Gateway were set to shut off in two hours to conserve battery.

I’m here to tell you, this heated mattress pad is the balls! Feels so darn good on a 71 year old sore back! Like being hugged by your Mama!

I fell asleep instantly, faster than I usually do and had an amazing restful night.

(No other heat source was on. The picture shows a WAVE 6 propane heater that I do not use while sleeping in this tiny camper)

So how did the batteries fare?

It got down to 30.6F degrees during the night.

With all this electronic stuff operating, when I woke at 6am, my battery bank was down to 51.7% as shown on this shunt based battery monitor and battery voltage was at 13.2v. Not bad at all!

To say that I am thrilled with this performance is an understatement. Will be interesting to see how fast the 400 watts of 2P-2S solar panels on the roof recharge the batteries.


I also bought a very inexpensive 12V “electric blanket” from Amazon for around $30. TOHMR Electric Blankets – 12V Electric Car Heating Blanket

This blanket draws less current but in no way is it as effective as the heated mattress pad. It has two settings, Hi-Low. Maybe it would be great to get a bit of 40-50 degree F chill out, but in sub freezing temperatures it might struggle. And, near totally useless when used ABOVE you in bed. Under you, like a heated mattress it is much more effective.

So there you have it…Real world heated mattress pad use.

Thanks for reading.

Be sure to check out other RV and Garage Adventures on my full web page


and my YouTube channel


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