4 Best Ski Boot Heaters & Insoles
You know what can ruin a day of skiing or snowboarding? Cold feet. It’s hard to have fun if you’re dealing with freezing toes on the mountain. To help you solve this problem, we have put together a list of the best ski boot heaters and insoles. There are several different ways to warm up your feet on the mountain, but this is one of the better methods.
In addition to ski boot heaters, you should check that you’re wearing proper ski socks. Long, thin socks are best for skiing to protect your shins and provide your feet breathability. Too thick of socks can actually make your feet cold and are often not comfortable in form fitting ski boots. If you tend to sweat, you should also be sure to use a ski boot dryer at the end of the day so that your boots are warm and toasty for your next day on the slopes.
Ski Boot Heaters & Insoles: Product Overview
How Ski Boot Heaters Work
Ski boot heater kits typically contain a pair of heating elements that can be connected to the top of your insoles. To prevent your feet from directly making contact with the heating elements, there’s self-adhesive liners that cover them and serve as the footbed for your feet.
The elements are wired to a battery pack that pins to the outside of your ski boot. These batteries are usually rechargeable and work well in winter weather. Most of these electronic boot warmers are adjustable so that you can put them at full blast on extra frigid days or keep them at a low, steady temperature on bluebird days.
Who Should Get Ski Boot Heaters
If you tend to get cold really easily or anticipate skiing in single digit temperatures often, ski boot heaters are likely a good investment. This is especially true if you are sensitive to the cold due to preexisting conditions, such as Raynaud’s disease.
Many people will be fine with a well-fitted ski boot and high performance socks, but that is simply not the case for others. These electronic boot warmers are easy to use and can make a huge difference to your comfort on the mountain. If you find yourself wanting to end the day early because of cold feet, you should seriously consider purchasing some.
Best Ski Boot Heaters
At a Glance
- Low: 84 – 98°F for 16.5 – 21 hrs.
- Medium: 107 – 121°F for 7 – 10.5 hrs.
- High: 122 – 138°F for 5 – 7.5 hrs.
- Maximum Heat: 158 – 173°F for 2.5 – 4.5 hrs.
- Universal model includes heat-ready insoles
- Three different heat settings, with “extra blast” option
- Long battery life with packs that can easily be recharged
The Hotronic S4 Universal and Hotronic S4 Custom foot warmers are almost identical products. The main difference is that the Universal model comes with heat ready, universal insoles that can replace, or be interchanged with, your current insoles.
If you have replaced your factory ski boot insoles with custom or orthopedic footbeds, then you may prefer to opt for the Custom model and simply install the heating elements into your current insoles. The custom kit does not come with heat-ready insoles.
Both kits include two battery packs, a charger, two heating elements, and a pair of adhesive strips and covers. Hotronic S4 foot warmers utilize two battery packs that are powered by AA NiMH cells. There are three different base settings, as well as an “extra blast” setting that can be initiated intermittently at 3-minute intervals. These batteries operate well in cold conditions and last up to 21 hours on the lowest setting.
The heating elements are compact, oval disks that fit comfortably in the universal insoles. Once installed, you can apply the adhesive Cambrelle covers on top of the insoles and heating elements. This lining is moisture wicking and evenly distributes the heat across your foot.
The packs come with a clip that can be attached to the power strap of your ski boot. Many customers have reviewed that this clip isn’t strong enough, and therefore they have lost the battery while skiing or riding. We recommend purchasing the additional slide strap bracket because it helps to secure them better.
Designed with thin, compact heating elements, the Therm-ic C-Pack 1700 insoles provide consistent heat to keep your toes nice and toasty on the mountain. This kit has everything you need with a pair of heated insoles, heating elements, liner covers, a pair of C-pack batteries, and a charger.
A unique feature of the Therm-ic C-Pack 1700 insoles is that the heat can be managed on your smartphone using Bluetooth technology. In the app, you can adjust the three different heat settings, as well as pause the heat to save the battery power. For example, you likely don’t need your boot heaters on while eating lunch in the lodge.
In addition, you can control each individual foot heater separately, which is great for those who are trying to deal with a specific problem foot. The maximum heat setting can be turned on for a set period of time, which is helpful if you just need a boost of warmth. There is also an ECO mode that allows you to conserve battery power by alternating between “active” and “standby”.
With up to 17 hours of heat, these insoles have a long-lasting battery. The included heat elements can be integrated into almost any insoles. It is up to you whether you want to use the insoles included in the kit or a pair you already love. Self-adhesive liners are also included as a comfortable barrier between your feet and the heating elements.
For recreational skiers, the Dr. Warm Heated Insoles are a great option. Although they are not specifically designed as ski boot heaters, these insoles work well in winter conditions. They are ergonomically designed so that their shape customizes to your foot, making them very comfortable.
Using high-efficiency, carbon fiber heaters, these insoles have three heat settings that can be adjusted with a wireless remote control. This is especially nice when you’re out on the mountain because you don’t have to reach down and mess with settings on your boots.
The Dr. Warm Heated Insoles come with a charger that works with a standard USB port. This is convenient, allowing you to charge the insoles at home or even in the car on your way to the slopes. To accommodate different feet sizes, these insoles can be trimmed according to your specific ski boot size. If you’re not quite ready to spend hundreds of dollars on ski boot heaters, the Dr. Warm Heated Insoles are a great value for their price tag.
With many positive reviews, the Winna Heated Insoles are made from carbon fibers to provide superior heating in cold weather. These insoles are unique in that they have a built-in temperature sensor that automatically stops heating once a safe temperature is reached.
Similar to the Dr. Warm Heated Insoles, these come with a remote control to adjust the heat settings as desired. With the battery capacity of these insoles, they should last one full day on the slopes before needing to be recharged.
With durable insulation, the Winna Heated Insoles should feel comfortable, whether you’re charging moguls or gliding down groomers. These insoles can also be trimmed to get the perfect shoe size.
More Ski Boot Heaters
Ski Boot Heater Buying Guide
There are a few factors to consider when buying ski boot heaters. Think about how often you’re going to ski and in what type of conditions. This should help inform how important some of these features are below.
How long the battery is going to last is clearly an important feature of any ski boot heater. The duration of the charge will depend on what heat settings you use throughout the day, how long you keep them on for, and how often you recharge them.
Some of the ski boot heaters on the list can only last a half day, while others may last you two days. If you’re a recreational skier that prefers to take several breaks during the day, then a long battery life may not be as important. However, if you enjoy riding from first chair to last, then you’ll want to consider a heater with a long-lasting battery life.
Heat Settings & Controls
Each ski boot heater offers a different temperature range and settings. Pay attention to the minimum and maximum temperatures to ensure the heater will be warm enough for the weather you’ll be skiing or riding in. In addition, it’s also important to account for how these settings are controlled.
Some ski boot heater settings can only be controlled on the battery pack, which can be difficult to adjust with gloves on. Others come with a separate remote control. This is nice since you don’t have to bend over to fiddle with the settings, but is not the best option if you are prone to losing things.
Lastly, one of the options on this list, the Therm-ic C-Pack 1700, actually has a mobile app to control the heat settings. Make sure you’re the kind of person who has their phone easily accessible before purchasing this specific heater.
Most ski boot heaters are easy to install at home. The first thing to check is whether you have heat-ready insoles. These have specific pockets built into the insoles for the heating elements for a streamlined fit.
Some kits come with heat-ready insoles, whereas others may not. If you are looking to buy a pair, the Hotronic Semi Custom Heat-Ready Insoles or Hotronic BootDoc Anatomic Insoles, which include built in heating elements, are great choices.
To install most ski boot heaters, you will have to cut an opening in the insoles and boot liner to thread the heating elements and wiring through. In addition, you may need to trim the insoles to your boot size. Once you have the liner securely placed back in your ski boot, the last step is to attach the battery pack and plug the heating elements in.
Here is a video that walks you through the installation process. If you don’t feel confident installing them yourself, you can call your local ski shop for assistance.
How to Install a Ski Boot Heater
Shop Related Products
Additional Tips and FAQs
Quick Tips to Avoid Issues with Your Ski Boot Heaters
- Fully Recharge Your Batteries: After a day out on the slopes, don’t forget to recharge your batteries. The battery life varies from boot heater to boot heater, but it’s best to recharge it at night. This guarantees you won’t be running low on heat the next day!
- Turn On Your Boot Heaters When You Arrive at the Resort: Once you have your ski boots on and you’re preparing to start your day, go ahead and turn your boot heaters on. If you wait until you’re at the top of your first run, you may not feel the boot heater right away. The warmth from the heating elements usually can’t be felt instantaneously. It takes a little bit to build up.
- Wear Appropriate Ski Socks: Although this may not be intuitive, thin socks are actually better for skiing than thick socks. Thinner socks also allow your ski boot heaters to better work their magic.
- Install the Heating Elements Correctly: Be sure to follow the instructions carefully and install the heating elements above your insoles, not under. They need to be located on top and then covered with the included liners in your ski boot heater kit. Otherwise, the heat won’t reach your feet as well.
- Store Your Batteries Correctly: In the off-season, store your ski boot heater batteries in a cool, dry place. It is also recommended to fully discharge and then recharge the batteries at least once.
Common Questions About Ski Boot Heaters
Are ski boot heaters worth it?
While not the cheapest option to keep your feet warm, ski boot heaters are often a worthwhile investment. They are easy to use, versatile, and can be a great gift idea for the avid skier or snowboarder in your life. If you find yourself complaining often about the cold and are focusing more on your discomfort than the thrill of skiing, then ski boot heaters will provide tremendous value to you. As long as you do your research (which if you’re reading this, you’re on the right track), you should be able to find a ski boot heater that works well and will last a long time. If you’re still unsure, check out ski boot gloves or heated socks first to see if that fixes your issues first.
How much do ski boot heaters cost?
There is a big range in price depending on the technology and materials used. Ski boot heaters typically cost anywhere from $70 to over $300. Higher priced heaters are often constructed with higher quality, durable materials and use more advanced technology to adjust and disseminate heat through the heating elements. In addition, they might include heat-ready insoles that can be trimmed to size so you do not have to purchase those separately.
Can you feel the ski boot heating element under your foot?
No, you should not feel the heating element under your foot, especially if you’re using heat-ready insoles. Options like the Hotronic S4 Universal Foot Warmers come with these types of insoles, which are designed to fit the heating elements. The covers, or strips, that lay on top of the heating elements should protect your foot and make them unnoticeable.
Does the battery pack for ski boot heaters get in the way while skiing?
No, the battery pack should not get in the way as long as you clip it properly to the outside of your ski boot, such as on the power strap. Make sure it’s secured and pull your ski or snowboard pants over your boot to keep the pack covered. We also recommend considering buying a separate slide strap bracket, which will really give you peace of mind if you plan on having intense riding days.
How long do the batteries last in a ski boot heater?
The battery life depends on the quality of the heater, as well as how often and how high you set the heat settings. For instance, if you consistently run your heater on the maximum setting, you’re going to quickly drain the battery. Be conscious of the settings and alternate between low, medium, and high as needed depending on the weather conditions. On the lowest setting, you can likely expect the battery to last anywhere between 8 to 25 hours.
Can heated insoles be worn outside of skiing for other activities?
Yes, that is one of the best features of the ski boot heaters on this list. They are versatile and can be used for other winter activities, such as hiking, fishing, or hunting. Note that if your boots are different sizes, you may need to buy separate insoles for each and trim them down appropriately.
How do I make my ski boots warmer?
First and foremost, be sure your ski boot is fitted by a trained professional and that you have proper ski socks before looking to purchase additional products. Ski boot heaters are just one of many options to keep your feet warm while skiing or snowboarding. People who rarely suffer from the cold may opt to just have a few basic toe warmers on-hand because they’re cheap and easy to use. Another option is a ski boot cover, which can help on more mild days. There’s also heated ski socks that can help promote warmth in your feet and your calves. Lastly, if you want to go all-out, there are a few ski boot models that have integrated heating systems.
What's the difference between ski boot heaters vs. ski boot gloves?
If you have poor circulation or are sensitive to cold conditions, ski boot gloves help but may not be as effective as ski boot heaters. The colder the weather, the more likely ski boot heaters will be a better option. Ski boot heaters are also beneficial because they do not cover your boot buckles the way ski boot gloves do.
What's the difference between ski boot heaters vs. heated socks?
The biggest difference between ski boot heaters and heated socks is the areas they warm up. Ski boot heaters are located at the bottom of your foot, connected to the insoles, and therefore mainly heat your feet and toes. Heated socks, on the other hand, can heat your feet and lower leg. Keep in mind that socks tend to be bulkier than heated insoles and can feel uncomfortable in ski boots, depending how tight they are.
Can I buy ski boots with built-in heaters?
There are a few ski boot models that have built-in heaters, but they will cost you. A few options of the best options for women include the Salomon QST Access 70 Ski Boots and the Rossignol Pure Heat Ski Boots. Unless you’re in the market for a new pair, it probably doesn’t make sense to buy a pair of these. The ski boot heaters should work just as effectively with your current ski boots.
Ski boot heaters can be lifesavers on the slopes. There are only a few brands that make this type of product, with Hotronic being the market leader. Most of the ski boot heaters on this list are easy to use and install, and they will help keep your feet happy and toasty. Skiing and snowboarding are both meant to be fun sports, so stop suffering and get some ski boot heaters to solve your cold feet problems!