If you reside in a household that has that age-old radiant baseboard units, it might be a good time to get rid of them now.
And there’s a good reason to do so.
Despite so many advancements within the thermodynamics, it’s quite surprising that several homes have still retained those radiant baseboard units because they believe that the residents are not sure about how to remove baseboard heating systems. Perhaps it’s too expensive to get a new scheme in place.
The good news is, it’s not at all problematic or costly to do so.
You can remove the baseboard remove on your own without even calling up a professional and paying a hefty upfront to do it for you. However, if you want, you can ask an expert to install a new heating system in place.
Today, just start with these simple steps to remove the baseboard heating:
Steps To Remove Baseboard Heating System
1. Turn Off The System
Switch off the baseboard heating in your home circuit breaker box by flipping the button to an off position.
Make sure you do that with caution since it can be a little tricky with older switch systems.
2. Unscrew Your Heating System
With the help of a screwdriver or a power drill, remove the screws from your baseboard heater to expose the wall behind the element inside it.
3. Remove The Heater From The Wall
Gently, unlatch the heating unit from the wall. Make sure that you don’t scrape the paint or ruin the wall during the process.
Use a flathead screwdriver or, better yet, a knife to displace the unit. You might want someone to assist you with this since you might want an additional hand to help you with the process.
It is not recommended to use a crowbar since it may damage the paint and cast permanent damage on the wall.
4. Expose The Wires
Open the wiring panel by unscrewing the small box at one end of the baseboard heater.
Again, double-check that the power is switched off (of course, you don’t want it to be your last job anyway).
You can even check the current flow by using a multimeter. Pop-out the panel and unscrew the old wire nuts.
5. Cut The Wires
Clip the wires with a wire cutter. Try to be precise and cut them as carefully as possible from the heating unit.
Ensure that the exposed wires are capped with the wire nuts and held in place with electric tape.
Wind all of them together, however, make sure that the tips are conveniently set apart so that they don’t result in any mishap.
This would help you reconnect a new heater in place when you’re ready.
6. Add A Temporary Seal
If you have infants or kids around your space, you would want to do this: make sure you shove the wires back to the hole and cover it up with a wall cap so that it remains out of reach from your kids.
Add in a seal by using super glue or screw it into the wall to make sure that it doesn’t scrape off easily.
Once you are ready to install a new baseboard heating system in place, unscrew the cap and start right away. That’s about it. If you are still unsure, ask a professional to assist you with the process.
Moreover, getting rid of the baseboard heating can help you with a lot of things.
You might be thinking about installing a thermostat in place to avoid the overheating issues, but this might overheat the rest of the house.
Baseboard heating systems may seem economical and efficient, but they have their set of pros and cons.
Radiant Baseboard Heating Systems Are Outdated
The radiant baseboard units contain electrical elements that are designed to provide heat.
They work similar to the way a nichrome wire works in an incandescent bulb – the only difference is that the latter induces light as well.
However, the amount of energy that they consume can not only be high, but they can also even burden your piggy with substantial expenses.
With baseboard heating in place, there is a high chance that they consume a lot of electricity.
The hydronic baseboard systems are comparatively efficient since it works on the principle of heating the water and helping to heat the rest of the place.
These heaters drain a lot of electricity before heating the whole room. As a result, managing energy efficiency can be a huge issue.
Even baseboard heating systems that come with built-in thermostats can be difficult to maintain as they produce inconsistent heat as compared to a wall-mounted thermostat.
Safety & Care
Baseboard heating systems require regular maintenance and cleaning, which, though simple, can turn out expensive, if overlooked.
Cost of Replacing Baseboard Heaters
While Baseboard heating remains extensively popular across the region, there may come a time when you eventually must remove these because of the high operational costs they generate as a result of inefficiencies and the introduction of smarter, more efficient baseboard heating systems in the marketplace.
The price for an electric baseboard system is lilliputian as compared to its counterpart – the forced air furnace system.
A single room can be as low as $150 US dollars per room – and that includes materials and installation.
On the other hand, the forced air furnace system can be as high as USD 5000, and that too, for a small to moderately sized house.
Baseboard Heaters Replacement Options
If you want to replace the heaters, you can go for either of the two options: the hydronic heater or the conventional electric heater.
Both are relatively easy to install, can be fitted snugly into any room, usually under windows and doorways.
When Should You Remove Baseboard Heating and Replace it With a New One?
To state it very simply, you need to have your baseboard heating system replaced when you detect that it has started to consume too much energy/ electricity and that it takes more time than usual to heat the room than it used to do earlier.
This can be validated by opening the baseboard and detecting for signs of damage and corrosion in the heating elements.
Secondly, it’s worth replacing the system if you haven’t changed it for at least a decade.
Newer models come up with an efficient temperature control system that makes it more viable to operate, especially when temperature fluctuations are quite high.
Some baseboard systems even come up with an embedded dehumidifier system to keep the temperatures under control.
Need Help with Removing Baseboard Heating?
- Most of the Baseboard heating systems are easier to manage and require little assistance or involvement of a technician or heating expert.
- However, if you are not sure, and have a few bucks to spare, call up a professional HVAC technician to take a look and help mitigate issues for you.
- If you’re installing a new baseboard system from scratch, by stripping off the forced air furnace system, ask a professional to assist you. You might want to consider a few wall repairs for this ordeal.
- If you are having issues with leaky pipes, then there’s some mold and rust which you need to scrape off or discard altogether.
- A certified technician can cost you some money; however, based on the experience, you’ll be able to make a more informed decision regarding the replacement and fixtures that you need to do.
- Besides, these professionals would be able to detect leakages and installations more effectively with the help of the specialized equipment, thereby saving you a lot on your safety and reworks.
- Baseboard heating systems do require some vigilance and regular checks. Make sure that you don’t falter on that.
Hiring A Professional Technician To Remove Baseboard Heating
Now that you have made up your mind to hire a technical expert or professional to assist you with the removal of baseboard heating, it’s a good idea to look into some of the basic things that must look for in an HVAC professional.
Remember that this is something that you would not wish to take lightly, as it involves dealing with a sophisticated heating system that can directly affect your health and safety.
Check for License or Certification: While browsing for HVAC technicians, make sure you ask them to provide a license or certification to work on the equipment.
Some states do require that the technician has at least two to five years of hands-on experience working on HVAC systems.
This is critical and important as it would prove the contractor’s skill and understanding of some of the most complex aspects of refrigeration systems, wiring, combustion, and airflow through pipes and ducts involved in the entire ecosystem of baseboard heating.
It is essential to have that information at hand since it can be vital in preventing incidents such as carbon monoxide poisoning, which can be fatal and lead to death.
Ask Questions: If your baseboard system has died down on a cold day, it may be an attractive choice to go for the first and most readily available HVAC technician. But in case you are getting a significant upgrade done, such as scrapping off an entire baseboard heating system, thorough research must be carried out to scrutinize the best.
Find Referrals: A professional service should have at least a bunch of recent, happy customers. Don’t shy from asking for ones from your service provider if this is the first time that you are availing of this service.
Get Estimates: Since the process can be complicated and can involve multiple repairing, replacements, and installations, it’s recommended that you get at least three to four written estimates from different companies or service providers.
The most important consideration should be the project cost, which can vary a lot from one company to another. But based on how sophisticated the company is, keep an eye on the overall scope, details, and project completion time to get the best bet.
System Installation: Based on how much money you wish to spend, and how sophisticated you want your baseboard heating system to be, make sure you investigate the expertise of the company in the relevant domain.
Contract & Payment Conditions: If you choose to have an advanced system in place with cutting-edge technology, the contract and payment terms may vary. While the service contracts, which involve long term maintenance and coverage, may give you additional peace of mind, it may be a bit expensive than the simple one-time installation contract.
We would advise you to do your math and make an informed decision regarding what you’re paying for
Also, investigate the payment terms and conditions in case the job involves a lot of skill and labor. Individual companies offer a long-term payment plan, whereby you pay a specified deposit and manage the rest of the costs every month.
If you’re choosing to go for financing via an HVAC company, read through the fine print regarding what you would be responsible for paying for
A Final Recap
If you’re planning to remove the baseboard heating system, to upgrade to a new one and repair the existing one, it shouldn’t be a big hassle. If you are confident about how to go about it, you can do it at your home.
Replacing the old baseboard is a worthwhile investment, and you’ll be able to reap the dividends in the long run in the form of lower electricity bills, a comfortable living and a relaxed environment at your home.
As for choosing and installing a new baseboard heating system, approach multiple vendors and HVAC experts to find out more about their charges, payment terms and conditions, contracts, modus operandi, and the project scope.
Once you have all the things drafted and finalized, you would be able to make a better decision regarding the installation of the new baseboard system or removing it altogether.
I agree! Hydronic heat is more efficient than traditional air heating for many reasons. For one, water is a better heat conductor than air.