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Spotlight is a new series on CyclingTips that we’re using to briefly showcase new products we’ve just received, and/or products that require just a short review. This regular and short-form tech coverage replaces our previous Tech Round-Up series.
Therm-ic does not offer any cycling-specific products; rather it’s a brand with a long history of developing portable heating systems. Therm-ic’s UV Warmer is a dual pod, ultraviolet heater designed to dry, heat and sanitise shoes, boots, and gloves. Given the abuse cycling shoes get, they often have quite an aroma. The warmers’ drying and sanitising features caught my eye for some new shoes I wanted to keep fresh.
The warmers are a relatively simple device – two rectangular-shaped vented pods sit inside the shoes or gloves with a USB cable supplying power. Ultraviolet bulbs housed in each pod provide a mild heat to dry and heat the shoes or gloves. The UV light from these bulbs sanitises the shoes, fighting the bacteria that builds up in cycling shoes; bacteria that eventually leads to a smelly odour.
The warmers are also said to produce a vortex effect which “optimises the circulation of warm air and increases drying time”. I believe “increases” should read “decreases”, but the vortex effect is not noticeable either way. In fact, when using the warmers, there is not much to notice at all. The heat is unnoticeable at first, and the warmers omit no sound. Other than a blue light on each pod, there is no indication they are working. However, after a few hours, a mild heat was noticeable on my surprisingly dry shoes.
Although the warmers are designed to connect at the base for easy storage, I never needed this storage feature given the weather has been so poor the past few weeks. Indoors or out, the warmers have been used after most rides, and have so far kept my shoes much fresher than experience tells me they would be otherwise. The UV warmers are not the most exciting tech piece ever, but they’re the best solution I’ve found so far for keeping shoes fresh.
The heat from the warmers is too mild to offer any meaningful heating function and needs to be warming your gloves for hours to have any effect. One word of warning: having never previously had my shoes attached to an electrical socket, I do find I have to set a reminder to ensure I don’t forget to unplug the warmers.
The UV Warmers are available at Therm-ic.com for €16.58