Introduction: DIY Heated Belt

Picture of DIY Heated Belt

I have long wanted to make a small and comfortable, inconspicuous heat source that could use both at home and on the bus or in the office. It should be operated from any source of energy, consume very little power and long run on batteries. It should have a heat regulation. It should be very simple to make and very inexpensive cost...

The result is a carbon heated belt.

Step 1:

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For my waist took 0.9 meter (3 foot) of carbon tape 44 mm from (and now on Amazon) a small strips of black and white fabric, one button, one meter ultra flexible cable with silicone insulation, female plug 5.5 mm with wire. The desired temperature can be determined from the table.

New! Now it works with RF remote dimmer!
(Step 10)

Step 2:

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I cut four strips 10 cm wide of some inexpensive white fabric. Three stripes stitched together. Then sewed them with carbon tape.
Top will be sewed with the remaining fourth strip of fabric. The result will be a sandwich: three layers of  fabric + carbon tape + one layer of fabric. The meaning of this is that I can put the belt on one side, if I'm cold or the other, if not very cold.

Step 3:

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Know from experience that a carbon tape will last for many years, but a bad wire may break off in a month. I recommend using ultra flexible wire with silicone insulation. For example AWG18 150 strands x 0.07 mm.

You should sew some contacts to the carbon tape. Very convenient to take the wire mesh of any video cable. This mesh will be very good as a contact.

Step 4:

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Take a piece of mesh wire and sew it by a sewing machine or by hand.
Such contact is soft and can resist to repeated bending.
Solder the wire to the edge of the mesh.

Step 5:

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Bent edge of white strips and sewed up, so that they form a channel for wire.
Top sewed the remaining fourth strip of white fabric.
Button glued with a hot glue stick.

Step 6:

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Nowyou can sewa niceblack clothandVelcro.
Heated belt ready.

Step 7:

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At 12-volt the current is 1.6 Amp, it's about 19 watts of heat. Belt can be powered by three 18650 batteries connected in series. If you use a good modern batteries 3400 mA / h, such as this one, the battery life will be longer than two hours and it weighs only 150 grams! The battery pack is attached to the belt with Velcro. If desired, it can detach and put in your pocket. Switch button is on the belt.
I use battery power when I go to the bus to work, or when I go shopping.
Carbontapeand all layers ofthe beltfreelybreathable, somy backdoesn't sweatwhen I comefrom a cold street toa warm room.

Step 8:

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When I'm working with a computer at home or the office, I put the battery on charge and connect the belt to the power supply from any laptop or other device. You can use almost any adapter, as the belt consumes little energy. It is very convenient because it doesn't need to buy and carry a special power supply. All this is possible through the use of small and low-cost dimmer.  It has the same contacts 5, 5 mm and I can supply power through it if necessary. Dimmer allows you to use any adapter from 12 to 24 volts and make the desired temperature.

Step 9:

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Thanks Velcro carbon heated belt can put a small child and a large adult. Especially it helps when you have a long time to sit in a cold bus or in an office. Sometimes I wear it when watching TV at home. My father likes to wear the belt if he had a sore back.
Carbon belt is comfortable to wear, you can just put it in the morning and forget about it, but if it gets cold, simply click on the button.

It's very cold now, and sometimes I wear it instead of a scarf:)

Step 10: RF Remote Dimmer!

Picture of RF Remote Dimmer!

Now you can smoothly change the temperature of heated clothing!
Inexpensive and reliable RF controller allows to switch the power at a distance of more than 5 meters. It's so small that it can be soldered directly to the battery pack to make a battery with remote switching output . And you can sew RF controller directly inside to any item of clothing. You can apply for it from 5 to 24 volts and up to 12 Amper! Now, if necessary, at the touch of a button you can turn the heater on full blast, if very cold around. And if not very cold and you need quite a bit of heat, you can turn it on very little power, and then the battery power will last for many, many hours.

With my carbon heated belt, for example:
Direct current at 12 Volt - about 1,58 Amper

With RF remote controller we have 10 steps of power:
0,14A - 25%
0,52A - 50%
1,57A - 100%


ArielleH4 (author)2017-04-13

Awesome Instructable! If you attached a USB power cord instead of a battery pack do you think it would still work?

Shenzhen (author)ArielleH42017-04-14

Yes if you will use 12v output on a power bank.

But if you power it directly at 5v USB you have to use shorter carbon length. Less voltage means less length.

meteormurat (author)2014-11-24

super cool!

jeronimo1495 (author)meteormurat2015-05-18

I think it is "super warm" since it is a heated belt :D

Shenzhen (author)2015-02-22


Shenzhen (author)2015-02-12

Just imaging and win $100 US dollars!

Shenzhen (author)2014-10-19

There's a promotion on

Make an instruction with the carbon tape on

and get 10 meters of carbon for free!

paulolondres (author)2014-09-22

Hi guys, i want to make a glove heated by the tape, but the small size at 12v get to hot. Does any one knows what kind of potenciometer and value can I use to control the warm?

Shenzhen (author)paulolondres2014-09-22

Shenzhen (author)paulolondres2014-09-22

RF Remote Controller Dimmer 12 Volt

wesleyv (author)2014-03-10

Do I need a protected battery? Is the button switch needed if using the rf wireless dimmer? What is the best way to connect the batteries in circuit?

Shenzhen (author)wesleyv2014-03-11

1. Yes, for such a large current consumption, it's recommended to use a protected battery. If you have unprotected batteries, recommended to connect them through any of protection board:

2. The switch is not needed. I set it before I bought the radio dimmer.

3. You can buy already soldered battery:

or you can put batteries in a holder:

I soldered my batteries with a flexible cable. Of course, this is not correct (it is not recommended to solder the battery), but it is a handy flexible design and very convenient:)

wesleyv (author)Shenzhen2014-08-12

I am wondering if I can use two batteries in series instead of three, I am only trying to heat about 4 inches of carbon tape to body temp. and am using a remote dimmer. I am concerned about concealment space and thought I may get away with two batteries.

Shenzhen (author)wesleyv2014-08-12

The temperature depend on current only
(at any voltage), so you can calculate the length for the needed
temperature at chosen voltage.

At 3,7 V and 4 inches of 15 mm carbon tape it will be about 1,4 Amper.

At 7,2 V and 4 inches of 15 mm carbon tape it will be about 2,8 Amper.

hegel (author)2014-02-02

I am preparing to make either a vest, or a belt, or both, I am not sure yet. My question is this. Do you know what the maximum safe temperature the carbon tape can operate at? not nessessarily how hot someone can stand it but how hot it can be operated at before damage occurs.



Shenzhen (author)hegel2014-02-02

Tape a long time can give the temperature to 600 degrees. At higher temperatures there is an intense oxidation of carbon. Short time, the tape may be heated to 1200 degrees.

Ferriswheel (author)Shenzhen2014-08-08

is that celcius?

Shenzhen (author)Ferriswheel2014-08-08

Yes, celcius.

Ferriswheel (author)Shenzhen2014-08-08

thats quite hot D: but thats so awesome!

jenndouglas (author)2014-03-03

Could you make the battery pack smaller about an inch wide and 2 inches long? Also about how much did this cost?

Shenzhen (author)jenndouglas2014-03-04

Unfortunately I am not able to produce and sell any batteries, but I would be able to advise you on any good batteries.

Magic battery still does not exist. Under laboratory conditions, there
batteries with energy density of 400 Wh / kg , but the series produced
not more than 250 Wh / kg.

Knowing the weight of your battery, you can roughly estimate the maximum amount of energy that it can be stocked in the best. For example, 18650 battery weighs about 50 grams. Thus at the very good and very expensive batteries of this type may contain energy in the best case, 12 watts (0.25 x 50 = 12.5 watts). This theoretical calculation corresponds to the declared parameters of one of the most expensive batteries 18650 - Panasonic 3400.

jenndouglas (author)Shenzhen2014-03-04

Well the battery would need to last at least 10 hours but I have to confine it in a small space because you cannot run with the battery bouncing around it would need to fit inside the metal tube

Shenzhen (author)jenndouglas2014-03-04

Power is the first, time the second.

We can not do any calculations, if power is not known.

Please tell me, what need is the power?

dsantil71 (author)2014-01-30

You said your father likes to wear it for his sore back? I am always having to heating pads to help with the pain from my herniated discs in my discs. This sounds like a really good option for me.

bennelson (author)2014-01-27

Fun idea! A little more flexible than my Heated Coat. I like the "heated scarf" photo!

Shenzhen (author)bennelson2014-01-28

Dear Bennelson,
Thank you very much for your instructables. I have studied your work before making my heated vest:)

johnny_berlin (author)2014-01-24

Finally an instructable of an idea, which has been hovering in my mind for way too long! I always wanted to build a mobile body-heating for the cold months, but couldn't think of a better solution as doing this with kanthal wire (wich is just unhandy).

So thanks for the tipp with the carbon belt, this is how I will do this now! :)

tensegrity (author)2014-01-23

Neat idea! I wonder if this would be a good survival gear item as it would allow a person lost in the wilderness to show up more clearly through IR/thermal imaging.

Shenzhen (author)2014-01-22

There is quite a strong correlation between the current passing through the tape and temperature. In the near future I will prepare a detailed table "current - temperature."

Lectric Wizard (author)2014-01-21

This is great, didn't know this stuff existed (carbon tape). THANKS for the info, nice Instructable also !!

astralea1692 (author)2014-01-21

excellent!!! my husband works for a barge the ice storms and it is brrr cold!! this would be a perfect idea. .for many ppl & reasons!!! thanks!

64Anthonyp (author)2014-01-21

"Cool" idea! I was about to ask if you have thought about a heated jacket - then I saw your other projects. Well done. I'll be looking out for this carbon tape stuff. Thanks!

coast2coastcreator (author)2014-01-20

that is perfect! I have been wondering what to use as a wearable heating element, didnt like the nichrome idea or any wire really, this carbon tape idea is brilliant! I will definitely be making some of these, I work in a refrigerated warehouse, the temp never goes above 32 degrees F, so this would really help. Thanks for sharing

vicesat (author)2014-01-20


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