For all the talk about heated clothing, there’s often one point of contention from would-be buyers. There either isn’t enough apparel around, or it’s just too expensive to justify another coat purchase. The company behind a new Indiegogo campaign is trying to turn that logic on its ear. If their product gets funded, which looks likely, the Torch Universal Coat Heater will let you turn any jacket or top into a heated piece of clothing.
Torch’s Indiegogo campaign shows some impressive metrics in terms of warmth. Like other heated clothing, the warmth comes from coils powered by a rechargeable battery pack and lasts several hours. However, where other companies’ heated clothing often comes in a single form factor, the Torch Universal Coat Heater is a removable accessory that can go into just about any jacket you own.
The company claims that removing the elements from the coat and putting the pads closer to your body “means less waste and more heat for you.” I haven’t tried this personally, but the logic seems sound. More important, though, is that the “detachable heating pad” concept means every piece of upper-body apparel you own can potentially turn into cold-weather gear.
According to the campaign’s marketing page, the Torch Universal Coat Heater “can be installed in a coat made for Everest and a jacket that will travel thousands of miles through intense wind, but also your pea coat, your camouflage hunting jacket or even your suit coat.”
The accessory is comprised of several key components. First is a back heater, followed by two chest heaters to keep your front warm. The temperature range of these heaters is 90-135 degrees Fahrenheit, which is on par with other heated-clothing companies’ range. According to Torch, these heating pads can go for up to five hours before needing to be recharged.
The second key component is a Velcro patch for attaching the pads to your coat. It’s unclear from the video (above) how removable the Velcro is, or whether the patches essentially become permanent fixtures in your coats lest you risk damaging them.
Third, a 7.4v 2600mah lithion-ion battery pack makes the magic happen, with a wired remote control that lets the wearer choose from four different heat settings. The pack can be recharged up to 500 times, an impressive yet standard number when compared to new handwarmers from the likes of ThermaCell.
In spite of all the embedded electronics, the Torch Universal Coat Heater is machine washable and safe to take out into the elements. So, if all of this has your attention, check out the Indiegogo campaign, which concludes at the end of February. With 16 days to go, the campaign’s already 90% funded, so it’s likely to see the light of day.