Heating Pad History - A brief but interesting look the beginnings

Heating pad history begins in the 1900's when Earl Richardson was working for the Ontario Power Company in Ontario, California. He was a meter reader but in his spare time experimented with "electrifying" household items.

His first invention was the electric flat iron. At that time a flatiron could weigh 5-10 pounds and had to be heated on the stove. He designed a lightweight and smaller electric iron.

The iron was a big hit and he was able to convince the power company to keep the power on all day Tuesday (ironing day) so that power customer could use his new iron.

In 1904 Earl left the company and started his own - Pacific Electric Heating Company.

His irons worked quite well however there was one problem - the iron got to hot in the center of the heating plate. However, Earls wife had an idea and suggested for him to make an iron with more heat at the "point" of the iron. This made it much easier to iron around buttonholes, ruffles and pleats.

Earl worked on this new version and then asked several local laundresses to try it out. After a week he returned for his iron and they refused to give up the iron with the "hot Point".

By 1905 he was selling more "hotpoint" electric irons than anyone was in America.

Richardson found other ways to apply electricity to household appliances and make everyday chores easier. Between 1911 and 1917 he invented the "EL" line of appliances, El stands for electricity.

Heating pad history started with the first

electric heating pad - "El Warmo"

Other products include:

El Perco (an electric coffeepot),

El Chafo (chafing dish),

El Tosto(electric toaster),

El Stovo (an early hotplate),

El Eggo (egg fryer),

El Teballo (electric teapot),

El Perco (an electric coffeepot),

El Chafo (chafing dish)

An early crockpot, (the “jug cooker”) came out in 1920'

Heating pad history is very limited but its advent has been very important to pain management. Here is more information on heating pads.