Heat is a major concern for consumers of down comforters because many believe them to be too hot to use in the warm months of the year or in regions that have warmer climates.

The stereotypical picture of a down feather filled comforter is a thick, cozy blanket that you can snuggle in bed under during the winter or cuddle with a partner on the couch. However, this doesn’t mean that all of these blankets were designed this way – there are actually some that are specifically made for use in warmer climates and in the hot summer months.

summer-sunThere are different weights and fill powers of these comforters, so some are actually lightweight and meant to be used in the summer. They’ll still keep you warm, but they won’t keep you too warm. A lightweight down comforter can actually be used in 75°F rooms and not make you overheat.

Some companies label their products with a weight word (light, medium, heavy) while others will use a number gauge to indicate the warmth level. Geographic location, climate, thermostat settings and personal preference can all affect the need for a particular weight.

If you’re looking at buying one of these products and want to be sure to get something that will not keep you too hot, even in the warm months of the year, then be sure to pay attention to the fill weight and fill power.

Ultimately, the fill power will determine whether a comforter keeps you warm or hot, but the fill weight will actually determine whether it is heavy or lightweight. Higher fill powers and lower fill weights will result in a lightweight comforter that still retains heat. Lower fill powers and higher fill weights result in cooler comforters that are heavier.

Fill Weight
The amount of fill material that is inside of a comforter is the fill weight. This actually affects the heaviness of a blanket. A higher fill weight of the same comforter oftens means that it offers more thermal insulation, but weights may not be comparable with different products that have different fill power.

Some brands will actually use a word like Light, Medium or Heavy to describe the weight and warmth level of a down comforter. Here is some general information on these main warmth levels including the recommended room usage temperature for each:

Warmth Level Temperature Description
Heavy 60°F – 64°F Great for cool rooms and/or use in the late fall, winter, and early spring.
Medium 65°F – 69°F Ideal for year-round usage in most regions and environments.
Light 70°F – 74°F Excellent for warmer rooms or summer usage. Also recommended for those that may live in climates that offer year-round warmth.

You can also find more information about down filler and how it affects the thermal insulation of your comforter in our fill power guide.