Time to Kick Cold Feet
Ask any skier and I think you’ll hear the same thing: cold feet while skiing are a major pain. Ski boot heaters combat this problem with automated systems that distribute heat to your feet consistently and at whatever setting you please via battery power. These systems are super convenient and effective, but have to be installed in your boots before use (something most skiers don’t know how to do). Don’t fret if you’re unsure how to install a ski boot heater, as anyone can do it themselves with the proper instruction. In this blog, we will show you how to install ski boot heaters, step-by-step.
Who Needs a Ski Boot Heater?
A ski boot heating system is the perfect solution for any skier who gets cold feet while spending the day on the slopes. The liner of a ski boot is packed with insulation to keep you warm, but for many skiers that simply is not enough. Your toes are the furthest extremity from your heart, and the last part of your body to get warm blood, making them the first part of your body to get cold.
If this sounds like you, a Ski Boot Heating System could be the answer to your problem. Not only will the extra warmth make your feet cozier while skiing, a ski boot heater system will increase your performance and longevity on the mountain. Each hour you are outside skiing below 32 degrees, your body starts to lose muscle dexterity causing your balance to deteriorate. Many racers use a Ski Boot Heater to keep their feet warm, up until it’s time for them to race, then they remove the battery packs to prevent them from breaking off when they clip a gate.
For some skiers, a ski boot heating system isn’t much of a choice. Skier’s with diabetes or Reynaud’s Syndrome have poor circulation, so having a ski boot heater is essential for them.
For more details on the components and options available to you, please consult our Ski Boot Heating System Buying Guide.
Installing a ski boot heater isn’t as difficult as many people would seem to think it is; all it takes is a little know-how. All ski boot heaters, whether they are manufactured by either one of the two top companies, Hotronic Ski Boot Heaters or Therm-ic Ski Boot Heaters, are installed the same way. This method can be used with any type of footbed or insole, stock, pre-molded or custom, and is the preferred method by both manufacturers. Just follow these easy steps to install your ski boot heater:
What Tools do you Need?
- A Sharpie to mark the spot to slice a slit in your footbed.
- Serrated knife/dremel tool with a cut-wheel-To cut a slit in your footbed and liner
- Duct tape -To keep the heating element wire in place
- Scissors -To trim the excess Camberelle Cover.
Step by Step
1. Remove the liner from both ski boots. Do this by placing the sole of the ski boot on your thigh with the toe pointed down. Grab the liner with one hand and the back of the shell by another. Push the liner out while pulling the shell with the other hand. The liner should peel right out.
2. Next, reach down inside the liner to grab the footbed located on the bottom of the liner.
3. Position the heating element directly underneath the ball of the foot on the footbed. Having the heating element under the ball of the foot will keep your feet warmer rather than placing it closer to the toes.
4. Use a sharpie to mark where you will want to cut the slit. The slit must be wide enough to allow for the end of the heating element to slide through.
5. Using a serrated knife, cut the slit through the footbed. Typically, just less than an inch long. A Dremel tool with a cut wheel makes a nice clean cut. This cut will not affect the performance of your footbed even if it is a full custom.
6. Take the end of the heating element that plugs into the battery pack and run it through the cut that you just made.
7. Remove the adhesive from the back of the heating element and stick it to the footbed with the heating element sitting flush on the footbed.
8. Lay the wire from the heating element flat on the bottom of the footbed. Pull it tight. Cover it with Duct Tape or the included strip of adhesive. In my experience, Duct Tape holds longer.
9. Remove the protective layer on the Camberelle Cover. Starting with the heel, gently fold the cover and stick down on the center of the footbed. Working from the center outward, use your thumbs to press down and stick down the rest of the cover.
10. Trim any excess Camberelle Cover with scissors.
11. Next, grab your liner. Most liners now have a little membrane or slot on the outside of the back heel of the liner. Use the serrated knife or dremel tool to cut approximately a 1 inch long slit on the liner. If your liner already has pre-cut slit, ignore this step.
12. Take the heating element wire and slide this through the slit that was cut in the back of the liner. As you get further down the wire, position the footbed to slide correctly into the liner.
13. Using the Duct Tape, secure the wire to the heating element up the back of the liner.
14. Time to slide the liner back inside the shell. Slide your hand all the way inside the liner to the toes, curl the toes upward and push the liner back inside the boot.
A Few Tips
Once your heating elements are installed, we always recommend giving your new heating system a conditioning charge. A conditioning charge is when you plug in your battery packs for a duration of 24 hours. This will boost up the battery power and deliver a full charge. A conditioning charge is also recommended at the end of the season, in the middle of the summer and the beginning of each season. Taking good care of your batteries will lengthen the life of your ski boot heater.
When You Are Done Skiing
Once you are done with your après beers and you are pulling off your boots, it helps to plug in your battery pack for a charge right away. That way they will be ready to go either the next day or the next time you are ready for first chair.
To round out total warmth and comfort, having a dry ski boot to slide on your feet the next morning will keep the liners of your boots from getting funky. Both Therm-ic and Hotronic produce Ski Boot Dryers that plug into the wall and power a fan to blow fresh air into the boots. Once you have a Ski Boot Heater installed and a Ski Boot Dryer, you will wonder how you ever skied without them.