AllJoy Heat Pad G1
- Six heat settings and three time settings.
- Can be used to apply wet heat.
- Machine-washable with removable cord.
- Long, 10-foot cord and LCD screen controls.
- Not stiff enough to prop vertically.
- Not as hot as you might like.
Whether you’re an athlete or an office worker, muscle cramps and other aches and pains can negatively impact your day. This is most obvious if you lead an active lifestyle. Spend a day lifting weights, and you’re going to be sore the next morning! But even if your lifestyle is less active, you’re liable to cramp up from time to time.
Let’s say you work in a desk chair. You’re probably sitting in the same position for several hours a day. Lack of movement can cause muscles to become stiff and sore. Not only that, but stiff muscles can cause you to injure yourself later. Go to the gym after a period of inactivity, and it’s easier to pull a muscle.
So, what do you do? Engage only in light exercise and never sit still? Obviously, that would be impractical. Instead, you can find ways to relax stiff muscles and loosen up cramped ones. Massage is a good example, and it’s no coincidence that most gyms have massage tables for after your workout.
Another good example is heat. A hot shower can do wonders for sore muscles, and relax your entire body. And if you want to turn things up a notch, a hot tub can provide even more relief. But what if you want to relax on your sofa, or in your bed? In that case, a heating pad can be a better option.
AllJoy Large Heat Pad G1
We’re about to review the AllJoy Large Heat Pad G1. This is a soft flannel heating pad with six heat levels and a built-in timer. It’s also made from soft flannel, which is machine-washable, and can even be used wet.
But to understand how well it actually performs, we’re going to need to take a closer look. We’ll have to look at the comfort and ergonomics. We’ll need to examine the control scheme, and see how easy it is to use. And of course, we’ll have to investigate the quality of the heating function itself. After we’ve done all that, we’ll have a clearer idea of what we’re dealing with. Let’s begin!
The AllJoy Large Heat Pad G1 measures 12 inches wide by 24 inches long. This makes it big enough to cover your whole lower back, cross over your shoulders, or cover your stomach. At the same time, it’s not an enormous pad that will cover your entire back.
It’s attractive to the eye, with either a blue or a grey outer shell. It’s comfortable to use, and it’s flexible and easy to position. If you want to wrap it around your leg, for example, you’ll be able to. On the downside, it’s a bit too flexible. If it were a touch stiffer, you could prop it up behind your back. As it stands, any kind of vertical usage is a bit challenging.
The main heating pad unit is made from a flannel material. This is extremely soft, as well as absorbent, and it’s comfortable on your skin. Not only that, but it can be removed and machine-washed. There’s a plug on the corner that connects to the power cord. Just disconnect the power cord, and throw the pad into your washer. If you spill on it or get it covered in sweat stains, it’s no big deal. Wash it, dry it, reconnect it, and it will be as good as news.
The G1’s power cord is 10 feet long, which gives you plenty of reach. Even if you’re not sitting right next to an outlet, you should still be able to plug in somewhere in the room. Close to the pad end of the cord, you’ll find an in-line control unit. The bottom is curved for a comfortable grip, so it’s easy to hold onto and operate.
At the bottom half, there’s a set of four buttons, arranged in a circular pattern. The two on the left are marked with “+” and “-“ signs, and are used to control the heat level. The top right button with the clock icon is used to set the timer. The bottom right button with the power symbol turns the pad on and off. Above these buttons, you’ll see an LCD display screen. This shows the current pad temperature, and the time remaining on the timer.
This heating pad is backed by a 30-day money back guarantee. To be fair, that’s not as reassuring as a proper warranty. But at least you get a chance to try it out before it becomes non-returnable. If you’re not happy with the performance, all you have to do is return it before the month runs out.
A heating pad is great for relaxation and stress relief around the house. But what if you want something you can take with you? In that case, check out our look at the best heated scarves. They’re not as warm as a heating pad, but they’re far more portable. They also help keep you warmer in cold weather.
The AllJoy G1 heat pad offers six different temperature levels. When you first turn it on, it will be at the lowest temperature by default: 105 degrees Fahrenheit. Pressing the “+” button will increase the temperature by 10 degrees with each press.
In total, you can increase the temperature to 115, 125, 135, 145, or 155 degrees. This is theoretically a very hot pad, but it doesn’t feel as warm as the stated temperature. If you prefer a very high temperature, you might be underwhelmed by even the highest setting. Then again, a lot of this is due to heat dissipation through the heavy flannel material. This in turn makes it harder to burn yourself by mistake.
There’s also a default timer setting: 30 minutes. But by pressing the clock button, you can add 30 minutes at a time, up to a total of 90 minutes. After that, it will shut off, which is an important safety feature in case you fall asleep. If you want to keep things going, just keep adding time periodically.
One thing we very much liked about the G1 was the ability to apply wet heat. It’s actually safe to wet down the flannel before using it. This results in better, more efficient heat transfer and increased relaxation.
To wet down the fabric, you don’t want to immerse it in water. This could cause it to drip down over the electrical connections and cause a short. Instead, use a spray bottle to mist down the fabric until it’s damp, but not soaking wet. This will provide a pleasant heating experience without posing a safety risk.
Speaking of safety, the G1 has a set of internal temperature-monitoring sensors. If the temperature starts climbing to an unsafe level, the pad will automatically shut off. At the same time, the heating process is fast and efficient. Even at the highest setting, the pad comes up to temperature in only a few seconds.
But why limit yourself to heating your body? If you’re on the go in cold weather, you lose a ton of heat through your head. In that scenario, an electric heated beanie can keep your ears and the rest of your head nice and toasty.
Why Use a Heating Pad?
Heating pads have a number of therapeutic benefits. But how do they actually work? When you apply heat to an area of your body, it boosts circulation to that area. With that extra blood flow comes oxygen and essential nutrients that your muscles need. If you’re recovering from a workout, your muscles will rebuild faster. If you’re cramping, the blood flow will help the muscles to relax. Extra circulation also helps your muscles to flush out lactic acid, a major cause of cramping.
To be fair, this heat doesn’t have to come from a pad. It can also come from a hot tub or a bath. This is theoretically more effective, since water transfers heat very efficiently. However, it’s not always practical at home. It’s much easier to regulate the temperature of a heating pad than to keep a tub at a consistent temperature.
Incidentally, AllJoy is known for more than just heating pads. We recently reviewed the AllJoy Eye Massager G1. It massages the area around your eyes and temples, providing more general stress relief. It even has a built-in heater, which has a similar effect as a standard pad.
How to Use a Heating Pad
To use a heating pad, first start out on the lowest setting. This isn’t necessary if you’ve used the pad a lot and you’re familiar with the temperature settings. But particularly when you first use one, be careful. You don’t know how hot the top setting is, and it could be easy to burn yourself. You can always turn the heat up later, as needed.
In terms of time duration, there’s no hard and fast limit. You should be careful if you’re using the pad on high. It’s possible to burn yourself by leaving the pad on too long. At lower temperatures, you can use a heating pad almost indefinitely. But use common sense; if you’re feeling uncomfortable, take the pad off.
Pregnant women should exercise particular care. While heating pads are safe to use, prolonged use can cause complications and even birth defects. For this reason, doctors generally advise pregnant patients to avoid hot tubs and saunas. Go ahead and use your heating pad. But if it’s anywhere near your belly, keep the temperature on a lower setting.
The AllJoy Large Heat Pad G1 is one of the better heating pads on today’s market. It’s big enough for most jobs, and you get a ton of control over the temperature and timer. Not only that, but it can be used wet, which further enhances the relaxation and stress relief. And with a machine-washable design, you don’t have to worry about sweat, spills, and other stains.