Electric blanket?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by sheila, Feb 26, 2004.

  1. sheila

    sheila New Member

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    hello!
    OK, so this seems like a bad idea, but then again, maybe not...

    If I were sleeping in the car in cold weather and had an electric blanket plugged in, and left the car in "ready", would it heat the blanket and kick on the engine like a generator when the battery got low? maybe the engine would be running too much. would setting the auto/air to something like 67F work?

    is there danger or horrid wastefullness going on if the car is "ready" for long periods of time and not moving?
     
  2. efusco

    efusco Moderator Emeritus
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    Depends on how 'green' the tree-hugger you're asking is I think.

    Some will argue that it's incredibly wasteful. I think it's a little wasteful and polluting, but depending on the circumstances it probably isn't as wasteful or polluting as sleeping alone in a 3000 sq ft home heated to 72 degrees.

    It probably would make more sense just to use a good sleeping bag, leave the car off, and warm it up only in extreme weather situations.
     
  3. sheila

    sheila New Member

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    I do plenty of sleeping bag on the ground, sometimes even with a tent. i don't have a 4-season tent, but have been snowcamping with people who do. it's harder to heat the shelter with one body. i think i'm a little odd in that i'm always looking for another way to do things. it occurred to me that this car may have the unique capability to act like a mini-motor home with a generator. my guess is that the engine would come on too soon and too often for me to stomach, but i don't know and don't want to try if i think it will be bad for the car. maybe i would plug in, and warm up during dark, but awake time (6-9pm) and see how it goes. i could then crawl in the sleeping bag and turn stuff off. If anyone is interested, i can come back and post how it went.
     
  4. cybele

    cybele New Member

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    I do recall reading someone's account on a website years ago who had a classic prius and regularly left their dog in it with the ignition on. The car just cycled on and off to maintain the AC for the dog on hot summer days.

    He made mention of his mileage and accounted for those periods (which I think were rather regular). I recall that his mileage didn't suffer too much with this practice.

    I've been looking on the net through google for the past few weeks (trying different keyword combos) to find it, but that site may be long gone.

    Does anyone else have a recollection of this?
     
  5. plusaf

    plusaf plusaf

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    they make 12-v electric blankets!? or would you use a power converter to up the 12v plug to 110v for the blanket? doing that would use some extra energy, though the inverter's heat loss would help warm the interior of the car....
    i'd recommend a good sleeping bag, rated to the temperature you expect, and a few test runs. i sleep warm and almost any sleeping bag keeps me warmer than i need for cold-weather camping, down to freezing, at least.
    and don't forget to crack a window or get some fresh air circulation into the car, too!
    happy camping!
     
  6. sheila

    sheila New Member

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    I have discovered (ah the internet!) that there are 12v electric blankets. there are actually an obscene number of appliances that plug in to lighter sockets. bizarrre. i saw a 'pizza maker' in the list. that seems a bit overboard, but, the thermos was tempting! but i will resist. they claim the blanket won't deplete 'your cars' battery because it's just 4 amps, but that would be normal cars, not our hero, the prius!! the temp of the blanket is 75F, so it's almost as good as having a hot human in the car too. the sleeping bag is still the preferred choice for actual sleeping time. it's those few hours when you aren't yet ready to be stuffed in your nocturnal coffin. it's ok for me when i have company because you lay around in your bags talking. still, you can be pretty stiff in the morning after lots of hours in the sack. By the way, I just have to say that I love coming back from a hike to this car. the back end is just perfect to plop down and get the boots off. it's a perfect chair. dreamy.
     
  7. JBCIII

    JBCIII Junior Member

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    Some of the appliances may not be intended for use in cars.
    People with PV/wind systems on their houses may be using
    12 Volt power in their homes.
     
  8. SpartanPrius

    SpartanPrius New Member

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    Just a quick safety thought:

    Sleeping in or near an internal combustion engine, no matter how clean or intermittent, does raise a carbon monoxide concern. Even moderately elevated carbon monoxide levels can lead to a systemic build up. Do plan your experimentation accordingly. Perhaps a suitably designed exhaust extension hose would be helpful.
     
  9. amylase

    amylase New Member

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    Good point SpartanPrius that's exactly what I was thinking when people say they leave the engine running overnight. Once you are asleep and then poisoned, you can't even get up to save yourself.
     
  10. M8s

    M8s Retired and Lovin' It

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    When I rode motorcycles, I had a Widder electric vest that ran off a 12 volt connection. It worked great even with the whimpy batteries and alternators (aka "stators") they put in motorcycles. That and heated grips kept me toasty on the annual "Elephant Ride" up to the 11,000+ foot summit of Guanella Pass in early February each year.

    If you wore one of those, or even just laid it out in (or under) your sleeping bag, I bet it would keep you warm as all get out. I'm pretty sure Widder also makes electric sleeves and chaps that snap onto the vest to keep the rest of you warm. However, I've found that if you keep your "core" warm, your hands and feet stay warm even without electric sleeves and chaps.
     
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