Reviews

Best Heated Jackets: Warm Up Quickly in Style

Stay warm on the go in wind, rain, snow, and freezing temperatures with these heated jackets

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BY Daniel Rika , Mike Knott , Scott Roepel / LAST UPDATED ON December 19, 2019

During the winter, you can wear a large, heavy coat to stay warm in the cold weather. The downside is these jackets tend to be bulky, heavy, and difficult to move around in. Another option is a heated jacket. They are lightweight and come with a built-in heater. They are versatile and don’t leave you bundled up under layers of clothes. If you’re in need of a new jacket, consider our list featuring some of the best.

Best Overall
Milwaukee Jacket KIT M12
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Summary
Summary

A stylish and modern-looking heated jacket developed out of a strong and reliable polyester.

Pros
Pros
  • Five-times longer life material
  • Wind and water resistant
  • Easy to move around in
  • Washer and dryer safe
  • Excellent insulation that traps heat
  • Outer and inner zippered pockets.
  • Easy to control
  • Chest and upper back heating
Cons
Cons
  • The placement of the battery can be annoying, and it can jab into your hip
  • A bit bulky
  • No lower back heat
  • No hood
Best Overall
Milwaukee Jacket KIT M12
Best Value
ORORO Soft Shell Heated Jacket
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Summary
Summary

A lightweight 100-percent polyester heated jacket designed out of a durable softshell fabric.

Pros
Pros
  • Interior fleece lining is soft on skin
  • Captures and retains heat nicely
  • Detachable hood
  • Water and wind resistant
  • Three carbon fiber heating elements to generate heat
  • Chest and mid back heating
  • Heats up quickly
Cons
Cons
  • May run small
  • Snug fit
  • Flimsy and difficult to manage zippers
  • Battery pocket is small
  • Jacket may be stiff at first
Best Value
ORORO Soft Shell Heated Jacket
Honorable Mention
Gerbing Heated Jacket Liner
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Summary
Summary

A lightweight, wind-resistant jacket liner with multiple heating zones to keep you warm during outdoor activities.

Pros
Pros
  • Equipped with seven heating zones, including one in the collar
  • Super lightweight material
  • Microwave-powered heat zones get hot quickly
  • Can be plugged into your car, motorcycle, ATV, or snowmobile to be recharged while you’re wearing it
  • Can be paired with single-zone, dual-zone, and BlueTooth controllers
Cons
Cons
  • No pockets
  • Runs large and is kind of baggy to fit underneath another jacket
  • Not good for heavy-duty outdoor working environments
  • All battery packs and controllers are sold separately
  • Heating panels may move around during strenuous activity.
Honorable Mention
Gerbing Heated Jacket Liner

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All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, or practical experience with most products we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.

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Best Heated Jacket Reviews & Recommendations 2021

Best Overall
Milwaukee Jacket KIT M12

The Milwaukee Jacket KIT M12 snags our vote for the best overall heated jacket. It’s a comfortable, functional, and lightweight jacket that’s offered at a reasonable price point. With its ToughShell Stretch Polyester shell, it promises up to five times longer lifespan than some other leading models. 


Although not fully waterproof, it is wind- and water-resistant, making it a great option for a variety of different weather conditions. It functions on a 12-volt lithium battery pack that provides up to 8 hours of run-time. On most occasions, you won’t need to run it for a steady 8 hours, as it gets substantially warm and you might need to shut if off to cool down from time to time.


A one-touch LED controller with three heat settings per zone gives you lots of customization options. However, the placement of the battery itself can be a bit annoying, depending on your height. Another thing we don’t love about this particular jacket is that there is no lower back heat zone and no hood.

Best Value
ORORO Soft Shell Heated Jacket

If you’re looking for a more budget-conscious choice that still delivers high-quality heat quickly, consider the ORORO Soft Shell Heated Jacket. It’s constructed from lightweight, yet super durable 100 percent polyester that’s fully machine washable. It’s got a neat and tailored design that can easily go from work, to your motorcycle, to a night out. The breathable lining adds a level of comfort and mobility that is lacking in some other heated jackets. 


This jacket is equipped with a 7.4-volt battery that provides heat for up to 10 hours. It also has a convenient USB charging port that you can use to charge your smartphone. This jacket features 3-setting, adjustable heat zones in the chest and upper back only, not the lower back, unfortunately.


While we do appreciate that this model comes with a detachable hood, it seems the zippers are of lesser quality than some other options. This jacket also tends to run small and fits more snugly than other models.

Honorable Mention
Gerbing Heated Jacket Liner

If you like options, the Gerbing Heated Jacket Liner is going to be right up your alley. This is an ultra lightweight and breathable jacket liner that includes a whopping seven different and independently operated heat zones. There’s even a heat zone in the collar to keep your neck warm. This jacket is primarily designed for motorcycle, ATV, and snowmobile riding, and it’s made to fit under another heavier coat if necessary. Although, it can definitely be worn as a stand alone option.


It’s equipped with microwave-powered heaters that get hot quickly and retain warmth for a long time. With the 12-volt power source, you can even plug this jacket into the 12-volt outlet in your car, motorcycle, ATV, or snowmobile so that it doesn’t drain the battery while you’re riding or driving. It can even be paired with single-zone, dual-zone, or BlueTooth controllers.


There are a few drawbacks. One being that all harnesses, controllers, and battery packs have to be purchased separately, making this already pricey jacket even more so. Being a jacket liner, it doesn’t come with any pockets at all. It’s not a good option if you do a lot of rugged outdoor work in the cold weather, since the fabric and zippers are kind of flimsy.

Honorable Mention
Ridgid Men's Black 18-Volt Lithium-Ion Cordless Heated Jacket

We really like the look and style of the Ridgid Men's Black 18-Volt Lithium-Ion Cordless Heated Jacket. It’s also ruggedly constructed from 95 percent polyester and 5 percent Spandex, giving it a snug, yet intuitive and movable fit. It also has a nice duck-tail design that provides extra coverage on the back side for additional warmth.


Elasticized cuffs and waistband keep water and cold air out. As with most heated jackets, this one is wind- and water-resistant, but not fully waterproof. Four roomy pockets allow you to keep accessories and wallets safe and secure. This model also comes equipped with a clever USB power source that you can use to charge your mobile and electronic devices.


Three heat zones and three heat settings are pretty standard on this type of jacket, and give you moderate options for customizing your heating experience. One thing we don’t love is that this jacket has a much shorter heating time before needing a recharge. We recommend buying additional batteries, which will drive up the overall cost.

Honorable Mention
Venture Heat Men's Softshell Heated Jacket

The Venture Heat Men's Softshell Heated Jacket deserves an honorable mention for taking some of our favorite design aspects of other individual heated jackets and combining them to make one functional, versatile, and well-priced model. This fully machine washable and dryable jacket is constructed from a wind- and water-resistant outer shell with a cozy and breathable inner liner. The carbon fiber heating elements are dependable and lightweight and heat up fast.


This updated version of the jacket features heating panels that are 20 percent larger than in previous versions, boosting your core body heat. There is also a heating panel in the collar, which many other heat jackets lack. As with some other heated jackets on our list, this one comes with a USB charging port for plugging your cell phone into.


This jacket is equipped with a 7.4-volt, 5,200 mAh battery kit that promises up to 10 hours of operation, but many users report getting closer to 3 or 4, depending on your preferred heat setting. This jacket comes backed by a one-year warranty and is a great option for hiking, hunting, fishing, snowmobiling, and even cross-country skiing.

Tips

  • You may still choose to wear layers underneath a heated jacket to keep warm. A long-sleeve t-shirt or thick padded shirt will help insulate you.
  • If you notice any frayed wires, replace your heated jacket. Using one with broken wiring may result in it malfunctioning.
  • When you are not using the jacket, make sure to turn it off. They should come with LED lights that are easy to see so that you know if it is on or off.
  • If your jacket doesn’t have heated pockets or you don’t like leaving your hands in them all day, you should consider heated gloves.
  • For parts of your body that the jacket doesn’t heat, you can get a portable heating pad. They are compact and lightweight and can be placed in your jacket to heat a specific place for a few hours.

FAQs

Q: How many hours will a heated jacket last?

A: Typically, a heated jacket can run up to six hours on a single charge. You may find some brands that last longer. When you need to recharge a jacket, it may take around an hour or two for it to be fully charged.

Q: Are heated jackets machine washer and dryer safe?

A: Always check to see if you can toss the heated jacket in the washing machine. The same goes for putting them in the dryer. You may want to leave it out to dry. You should always remove the battery pack before washing the jacket.

Q: Are heated jackets waterproof?

A: While the majority of heated jackets are water-resistant, they are not all waterproof. You should be able to wear the jacket in the rain or snow, but it is not advisable to dunk them in water.

Q: How does the heat work on a heated jacket?

A: Tucked behind the fabric and material of the jacket are small carbon fiber or stainless steel wires. The components heat up over time and warm your body through the jacket. Heated jackets have multiple areas of heating, such as the upper back, lower back, shoulders, and chest.

Final Thoughts

If you want to keep warm during the winter, consider the Milwaukee Jacket KIT M12 12 Lithium-Ion Heated Front and Back for its multiple heating areas and great insulation.

Or you can check out the ORORO Soft Shell Heated Jacket and get one of the best heated jackets at a lower price.