The Best Heated Vests in 2023: Stay Warm With No Restrictions

Sometimes a heated jacket is a little too much.

byHank O'Hop| PUBLISHED Jan 6, 2023 3:01 PM
The Best Heated Vests in 2023: Stay Warm With No Restrictions
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BYHank O'Hop/ LAST UPDATED ON January 9, 2023

Heated jackets are a game-changer for anyone who spends time out in the garage or elsewhere, as even the best gear can fail to deliver on bitter winter days, and having a jacket that can heat your core makes all the difference in the world. The problem is that if you're working in tight spaces, bulky sleeves might be something you've got to leave behind. That doesn't mean you're out of luck when it comes to a little extra warmth. Heated vests are a real thing, and some of the biggest names in the working world offer them. That doesn't mean you should just run home with the first option you find. You just might miss out on the perfect fit for your needs if you don't look around. You don't need to waste your time sifting through the pile, though. We've already got the best-of-the-best rounded up for you. 

Best Overall
Milwaukee M12 12-Volt Lithium-Ion Cordless AXIS Black Heated Vest

Milwaukee M12 12-Volt Lithium-Ion Cordless AXIS Black Heated Vest

Summary
The vest you need to tackle anything. This durable piece shares a compact battery with Milwaukee's M12 power tools, making it the premier choice for those with an appropriate arsenal.
Pros
  • Good battery life 
  • Shares compact batteries with popular power tools
  • Quality materials used 
  • Battery pack doubles as power bank
Cons
  • Expensive 
  • No batteries included
Best Value

Ororo Men's Lightweight Heated Vest

Summary
An affordable yet effective solution for anyone looking to heat up on a budget. Despite the low price, it's sure to keep you warm for hours on end.
Pros
  • Affordable 
  • Batteries included 
  • Great battery life
Cons
  • Relatively delicate
  • Tight fit for some body types
Honorable Mention

DeWalt Heated Reversible Vest

Summary
The perfect way to build off your DeWalt power tool collection. This vest shares batteries with legendary equipment, and is built to endure any environment. 
Pros
  • Shares batteries with popular power tools
  • Quality materials used 
  • Battery pack doubles as power bank
  • Battery included
Cons
  • Expensive 
  • Uses bulky battery

Summary List

Methodology

Why Trust Us

Our reviews are driven by a combination of hands-on testing, expert input, “wisdom of the crowd” assessments from actual buyers, and our own expertise. We always aim to offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.

Learn more

Workwear is a big part of our lives. We might make a living behind a keyboard, but most of our free time is spent turning wrenches in one form or another. We understand the value of something like a heated vest. We also know from personal experience which brands are actually worth trusting. We also appreciate the fact that our experiences are just that, and back our selection up with research, and read into what others have to say about leading products before recommending anything to you.

Reviews & Recommendations

Specs

  • Manufacturer:Milwaukee
  • Part Number:305B-20L
  • Batteries Included:No

Pros

  • Good battery life
  • Shares compact batteries with popular power tools
  • Quality materials used
  • Battery pack doubles as power bank

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No batteries included

There are a few reasons the Milwaukee M12 heated vest is the top pick. Starting with my experience with the M12 heated jacket, I know first-hand that Milwaukee's clothing is more than capable of handling harsh conditions and will keep you warm even without any of the three heat levels in use. It does share batteries with Milwaukee's M12 line, which is another huge bonus, and the battery can double as a power pack if you decide not to put the heating elements to use. The biggest problem with this entry from Milwaukee is the price. The vest itself might not be that expensive, but that doesn't include the batteries it requires. The cost of the batteries and a charger easily makes this one of the most expensive options for the average person.

Specs

  • Manufacturer:Ororo
  • Part Number:ORORO-18650
  • Batteries Included:Yes

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Batteries included
  • Great battery life

Cons

  • Relatively delicate
  • Tight fit for some body types

Ororo's heated vest is an excellent choice if you're after an affordable heated vest that you can actually count on. The listed price does include the batteries, making it around half the price of premium options. That battery delivers an impressive battery life of up to 10 hours. The vest also features four heating zones and is sure to keep you as warm as any other heated vest because of it. As for the downsides, this isn't the best option if you intend to use it for work. It's rather delicate in comparison to dedicated workwear and will tear quickly in adverse conditions. Also, reports of a tight fit for some body types make it essential to read reviews from similar body types to yours to find the proper size.

Specs

  • Manufacturer:DeWalt
  • Part Number:DCHV086BD1-L
  • Batteries Included:Yes

Pros

  • Shares batteries with popular power tools
  • Quality materials used
  • Battery pack doubles as power bank
  • Battery included

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Uses bulky battery

DeWalt's heated vest is another excellent choice for those seeking workwear. It's built with materials that are as comfortable as they are durable. It's also reversible, so you can quickly make yourself presentable if you forget about that important meeting. Perhaps the biggest draw is the fact that it shares batteries with DeWalt's line of full-size power tools and even includes the battery to get you started. That battery also doubles as a power pack to keep devices charged when the heating elements aren't in use. The only real issue you might run into on the job site is the awkward, bulky battery. This is a problem for any heated clothing, but especially so when you're wearing a full-size power tool battery. The other problem many have is the relatively high price, which is hard to justify if you don’t use DeWalt power tools.

Specs

  • Manufacturer:Gerbing
  • Part Number:GER-VL
  • Batteries Included:Yes

Pros

  • Can easily be worn under other layers
  • Lightweight
  • Good battery life
  • Battery included

Cons

  • Fits tight, bigger size than usual required
  • Outperformed by other options

Gerbing's heated vest liner is the perfect solution for those who love layers without bulk. It's designed to be worn as an insulating layer beneath other articles of clothing. The lightweight but effective design is perfect for many situations in which traditional heated vests fail to deliver. The minimalist layout is no indication of lack of inclusion, though, as this liner does include the battery and can deliver hours of operation. Most wearers complain that the sizing is off, with most recommending going with a size or two larger than you normally wear. It's also important to note that this will not keep you as warm as a dedicated vest on its own, and its effectiveness will depend on layering it properly.

Specs

  • Manufacturer:ActionHeat
  • Part Number:AH-VST-5V-01-L
  • Batteries Included:Yes

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Versatile battery
  • Easy to wear under other layers
  • Battery included

Cons

  • Battery life can see improvement
  • Tight fit on shoulders

The ActionHeat heated vest is another great option for those looking for a great value. This heated vest comes with a 5-volt battery but can be matched with any similar power source, giving the owner flexibility with power solutions. That's not where the versatility of this vest ends, though. It can easily be worn as an outer or underlayer, making it an excellent choice for any situation. Despite all it can do, it still retains an easily justifiable price point. Reviewers indicate that battery life is a bit of a concern with the supplied battery. Users also complain about a tight fit in the shoulder area for those with broad builds, making it important to think over size selection before going with what you normally wear.

What to Consider When Choosing a Heated Vest

Those of you looking to make an educated decision won't blindly pick from any list. You're going to think things over and make the pick that truly fits best into your life, just like anyone should. You might just need some pointers on how to do that. Thankfully, heated vests are really simple, and you can base your decision on a few key aspects. 

Key Features

Fit 

Fit is perhaps the most important aspect of your heated vest. You need to find something that fits you comfortably. It's worth doing a little research into reviews and what others have to say about the fit and whether or not it's true to size for you. Don't just think about how it fits your body, though. Think about how it'll fit over or under other layers you intend to wear with your vest.

Power Source 

Both Milwaukee and DeWalt made our list of recommendations. Both of their respective vests share batteries with their power tool lines, and that's a major deal if you're an owner of tools from either brand as you can use the batteries across a tool ecosystem and save money. Other vests on the market also rely on battery sources that can be used as power packs or for other purposes. Obviously, there's a most attractive option for you, and you really want to take your time to consider which power source makes the most sense for you. It’s also worth noting that the type of battery used directly relates to how long you can run the heating elements on a single charge. 

Durability 

Durability is always a concern for workwear. You don't want to waste your money on something that's going to get torn up within a few minutes of exposure to the environment you typically expose yourself to. That's especially true when there's even the slightest chance of electrical components failing. Reading into what materials used is a great help when determining what a jacket will handle. However, customer reviews are generally the best way to gage the durability of any kind of work or outerwear. 

FAQs 

You have questions. The Drive has answers. 

Q: Can you wear a heated vest under a jacket?

A: Yes. Some are even designed specifically to be worn under other layers and should be considered if you prefer to do so. 

Q: How are heated vests powered?

A: Heated vests are battery-powered, and the manufacturer determines what type of battery is used. Some use battery packs that double as power banks, while others share batteries with power tools.

Q: How long does a battery last in a heated jacket?

A: That depends on two many factors to make a blanket statement. Many options allow you to work with different battery sizes and offer different heating levels, which directly impact how long the batteries will last. 

Q: Should a heated vest fit tight or loose? 

A: You want heated wear to hug to fit relatively snugly. Otherwise, it's possible for drafts to hinder the performance of the heating elements. 

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