Top positive review
181 people found this helpful
Drastically reduces mosquito bites and no-see-ums
on August 2, 2011
Nothing in this world is perfect. If you are looking for something that eliminates mosquitoes and no-see-ums 100% of the time, then you just gotta break down and screen in your outdoor area and/or slather on the deet when in warm, humid places. Otherwise, I highly recommend investing in a Thermacell unit... or two... or more!
About the Reviewers: We live in coastal, east-central Florida. Our house backs up to a slough just off of the Indian River Lagoon. Lots of stagnant water around,so prime testing grounds! In addition, mosquitoes find me incredibly attractive, as evidenced by the 32 welt-sized bites I received during an hour-long dinner at a seaside restaurant last week (maybe I need a Thermacell for my purse). My husband is less prone to bites, but finds even he can't last long in our swampy backyard in August.
How We Use Thermacells: We have two Thermacell units, along with holsters. They turn on with a click; then we simply place them at opposite ends of the table or area we intend to use. The pads really do seem to last 4 hours; the 3:1 ratio of pads to butane cartridges in the refill packs leaves us with lots of extra pads. Replacing pads it a breeze. The metal surface is well-protected from fingers by the grill. We push the old pad out using the new one, then use the old pad to make sure the new one is properly centered. The butane cartridges need replacement less often, and screw in and out with a twist. I do wish there was a window that allow you to see how much butane was left. The holsters are great for holding extra pads on one side and extra butane on the other. The holsters also allow us to wear the Thermacells when working in the yard or hang them from the fence nearby; on nights when the bugs are really aggressive, we use the holsters to hang the Thermacells right under the table or chair in which we intend to sit. During the climax of bug season (when these vile creatures attack and feed 24/7), we will place the units outdoors and let the Thermacells warm up for a few minutes (5-10 min) before re-entering the enemy's domain long-term. If it is windy, we place both units a few feet upwind of our location. When not in use, we store the units indoors; the metal is cool to the touch within minutes.
Recommendations: The number of units you'll need depends on the size of your outdoor area and severity of your mosquito problem. For 11 months of the year, our two units protect my husband and me from these annoying pests with only the occasional single bite. This is amazing considering how much time we spend outside, and just how bad the "blood-vulture" problem is here in Florida year-round. However, during the "Dog Days" of summer, we do find that sometimes two Thermacells just aren't strong enough to fend off the overwhelming hordes that attack at dusk. With the Thermacells, we usually are fine up until about 7pm, but after that, you really need to pull out the bug spray or pack it up and go inside. Also, with only two of us, it's pretty easy to plan and focus our Thermacells on a small protected refuge. However, when we entertain parties of 5 or more, the two units just aren't quite enough to cover the area we need defend. I'm back today to purchase two more units so that we can place one unit at each corner of our patio when we entertain guests to create a larger area of protection.
Conclusions: We have tested these units here at home for over a year, plus on multiple camping trips. Our Thermacells have allowed us to reclaim life outdoors from these awful blood-suckers! I can say unequivocally that Thermacells drastically reduce the chances of being bitten. Using Thermacells sure beats slathering on icky sprays and lotions, and 95% of the time, Thermcells are the only thing we use to fend off the mosquitoes and no-see-ums. I highly recommend investing in the holsters--they are very helpful to keep the units out of the dirt when camping or picnicking, to assist with customizing the zone of protection, and to keep extra pads and cartridges on hand.