NEW! Faster Search Option

Loading

designs for baseboard heater covers.

smee's picture

i am looking for some designs for wooden baseboard heater covers. any help will be appreciated.


Edited 1/14/2007 11:09 pm ET by smee

BruceS's picture

(post #84345, reply #1 of 28)

I would suggest that you go over to the Breaktime forum.  There is a section on Heating/ Insulation.   

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!


Bruce S. 


 

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!

Bruce S. 

 

seriousbbrc's picture

Steel Baseboard Heater Covers As Alt To Wood (post #84345, reply #28 of 28)

Wood covers are great but you may want to think about just using galvanized steel. These ones are powder coated white and perforated. They come with a lifetime warranty and free shipping. You can't beat that!

MBerger's picture

(post #84345, reply #2 of 28)

Hi Smee,

I'm in the middle of a project to cover my baseboard heaters. When we moved into our fixer upper all of the baseboard covers were rusted. Rather than replacing them, I decided to make my own. Here is the first attempt. Not sure if I'm completely satisfied.

The long rails are constructed by gluing a narrow and wide strip with short pieces in between. The rails are then mortised into the stiles every five feet. The top extends the entire length of each baseboard.

I'm looking for feedback as well. I don't know much about the physics of heaters so I'm hoping they're efficient and all that.

Matt

PreviewAttachmentSize
baseboard.JPG
baseboard.JPG28.8 KB
nikkiwood's picture

(post #84345, reply #4 of 28)

Most of the old houses around here are heated with hot water radiators.

Over the years, I have been asked to build a lot of custom radiator covers.

I looked into what could be done to maximize heat transmission, and I found there are a couple of simple things you can do to help.

First, you cut a piece of foil-faced polyisocyanurate insulation that will fit behind the radiator. This stuff is commonly available at home centers in a 3/4" thickness. 1/2" would work too if it is available.

Raidiators are usually placed on an exterior wall, and the sheet provides a modicum of insulation. But mainly, its purpose is to reflect heat back into the room (hence the foil covering).

Second, take a piece of thin sheet metal (aluminum will do) and bend it over the inside top of your enclosure. It will not show from the outside, and its purpose is to direct the heat out into the room (rather than let it collect at the top of your enclosure).

From what I was told, it's important that this sheet metal be curved over the top, which will promote convection currents -- i.e. cold air flows into the bottom of your enclosure, and the heated air flows from the top. This convection process requires that you have an unobstructed space at the bottom of your enclosure.

Having looked at the pics of your spiffy baseboard units, I would think the same principles would apply.

********************************************************
"It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts."

John Wooden 1910-

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-
MBerger's picture

(post #84345, reply #5 of 28)

Thanks Nikkiwood,


That's good news, because I left intact the old sheet metal that goes over the top and back of the old baseboard covers. The wood covers really just cap that existing material.


My biggest question so far is how big of a gap I need for airflow at the bottom and top. Right now I have 1 in. clearance on the bottom and 1-1/2 in clearance on the top (plus the decorative holes). These aren't glued up yet so I can flip the stiles and get 1-1/2 in on the bottom and 1 in. on top as an alternative.

nikkiwood's picture

(post #84345, reply #6 of 28)

I went back and looked at your pics, and I would say your top/bottom spacing will work fine (for adequate convection).

EDIT: I just reread your post, and I would leave the front exactly as you have it -- 1" on the bottom, 1 1/2" on the top.

I just did a lot of work on a basement reno, and the guy put in HW baseboard heat.

I'm going to show him the pics of what you've done, and maybe I will get more work out of him.

Picasso supposedly once said that "all art is derivative," so I know you won't mind if I steal your design. <G>

********************************************************
"It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts."

John Wooden 1910-


Edited 11/22/2006 10:59 am by nikkiwood

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-
MBerger's picture

(post #84345, reply #8 of 28)

I'm glad to inspire. It's funny because the design was a fluke. I was going to make the rails solid, but I only had a small supply of 4-in. wide poplar at my disposal, and it wasn't enough to glue up two pieces to get the full 7-1/2 in. width I needed. I was in a rush to get these prototypes built and came up with this solution. It ended up working out.

nikkiwood's picture

(post #84345, reply #9 of 28)

I'd say it worked out very well. I like the design........obviously.

********************************************************
"It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts."

John Wooden 1910-

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-
smee's picture

(post #84345, reply #7 of 28)

i think the size of the gaps you have now will do fine. i also think what you have done looks really good.

JeffHeath's picture

(post #84345, reply #10 of 28)

Matt


Thanks for the great idea!  I've been perplexed about what to do about our radiant covers for some time now, as I hate the ones that are on them now.  My wife has been painting them, which helps, but I really like your idea.  I'm gonna do one room and see how it turns out. 


Jeff

A distinguished graduate of the School of Hard Knocks
MBerger's picture

(post #84345, reply #3 of 28)

here's one more picture showing the metal grate that will go behind the covers. I purchased this stuff from a local steel supplier. It comes in 4x8 sheets and they cut it up for me into 7-1/4 in. wide strips. The entire unit will be painted when complete.

PreviewAttachmentSize
baseboard_with_grate.JPG
baseboard_with_grate.JPG46.07 KB
johnjingles's picture

(post #84345, reply #19 of 28)

Very nice - I have a few questions.
1 - how are the covers attached to the wall/floor/old metal housing.
2 - that metal grate - how do you remove it for cleaning?
3 - that metal grate - I was at the local hardware store yesterday and they have 4' x 4' sheets of very similiar looking stuff - did you work with 4x4 sheets or where you able to find other sheets of a smaller dimension.

Thanks

John O'

MBerger's picture

(post #84345, reply #20 of 28)

Hi John,


I actually haven't gotten to installing yet. And now that you mention it, I'm not sure I know yet.


I planned to screw the top piece to the existing metal top by driving 1/2-in. long screws from underneath the sheet metal top into the wood. But that begs the question, how do I then attach the stile and rails to the top piece? Originally I planned to tenon the stiles into the top piece and leave them unglued so they can shrink and expand freely, but logistically that won't work. If the top is screwed first, I won't be able to get the stiles in. If the stiles are fit into the top mortises first, I won't be able to reach the screws???


The metal grate will be attached to the rails on the back side. I won't remove it. Rather, if I need to open it up, I'll remove the entire component.


I purchased 4x4 sheets and had the supplier cut them to size with a big shearing machine. I'd recommend that because it's tough to cut these with hand sheers and maintain the straight edges.


Matt

johnjingles's picture

(post #84345, reply #21 of 28)

Thanks again for the info - and let me know what you end up doing - I am about 6 weeks behind you in doing this for my project.

Thanks

ArtHouse's picture

(post #84345, reply #22 of 28)

 I'm planning on doing something similar with my baseboards at some time and am wondering if it might be an idea to use rare earth magnets. Assemble everything together first like you'd planned and insert some magnets at the back of the assembly and use the existing metal shroud at the back. Just an idea. Love your design.

BoardmanWI's picture

(post #84345, reply #24 of 28)

I've been making some radiator enclosures and have lined the isides with some foiled insulative/reflective material that you can get at the BORGs.  Basically thin bubble wrap foiled on both sides, it's about 99% reflective and it's the same stuff most businesses that make radiator enclosures use.  It's sold in rolls - it's about 3/16th - 1/4 inch thick.

johnjingles's picture

(post #84345, reply #25 of 28)

Any interest in posting details about this - this is great and just what I need. How did you build put these together, what did you use for stock, dimensions, etc?

smee's picture

(post #84345, reply #26 of 28)

the material i used is superior alder to top part of it is solid and the lower piece is veneered plywood. as for the dimensions you will have to see what you need to clear your heater. the top has a 1/2" overhang there is also a 23/32 dado routed in the top for the bottom to fit into. routed the 3/8 grooves in the to for the vents. the 2 pieces on the bottom with the grain running vertically are biscuited to the horizontal piece.

theres not much to it. i am going to be making a bunch more in a week or 2 so i will take some pics of the construction process then.

smee's picture

(post #84345, reply #27 of 28)

here are some pics of the process.

http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJG%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPlealoqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJG%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJQ%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleal0qpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJQ%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJQ%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleallqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJQ%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxzX7BHpUUKxgXPQJ%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPlealeqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPQJ%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJa%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPlealaqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJa%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJe%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPlealnqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJe%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJJ%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleaePqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJJ%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJl%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleae0qpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJl%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXP0n%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleaelqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXP0n%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJP%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleaeeqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJP%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXPJJ%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleaeaqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXPJJ%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438
http://render2.snapfish.com/render2/is=Yup6aQQ%7C%3Dup6%3DzqH%3AxxqUD7qRUrKxzX7BHpUUKxgXP0n%3F87KR6xqpxQQooxQGPxJQnxv8uOc5xQQQ0olPPleaenqpfVtB%3F*KUp7BHSHqqy7XH6gXP0n%7CRup6GnJ%7C/of=50,590,438

BruceS's picture

(post #84345, reply #11 of 28)

Just wondering if we're talking hot water, steam or elec. ?

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!


Bruce S. 


 

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!

Bruce S. 

 

smee's picture

(post #84345, reply #12 of 28)

all of the above.

BruceS's picture

(post #84345, reply #13 of 28)

My reason for asking is that I was given three  8' elec baseboard heaters to install in my shop and was curious as to how hot they got. Well I wired one up and had it setting on sawhorses and then sprinkled some fine "sanding dust"  on the element to simulate worst case lack of cleaning.  Well in an hour the pine dust had darkened to a very dark brown and I could smell a faint odor of burn.  Concluding that when I install them I will definitely have a cleaning cycle.

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!


Bruce S. 


 

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!

Bruce S. 

 

smee's picture

(post #84345, reply #14 of 28)

did they come with a thermostat?

BruceS's picture

(post #84345, reply #15 of 28)

No thermostats,  But that shouldn't make a difference,  the thermostat is just an off/on switch with temperature control.   The elements would reach  that temperature regardless of how they are controlled.


Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!


Bruce S. 


 


Edited 11/23/2006 11:06 am ET by BruceS

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!

Bruce S. 

 

tinkerer2's picture

(post #84345, reply #16 of 28)

Having had electric baseboard heaters for more than thirty years, I think your caution is well warranted.  I had a friend who's wife was cleaning up for company and stuffed a rolled up lamp wire in the heater to get it out of the way.  He caught it in time.  I think if you had enough baseboard that if you hooked up 110v instead of the 220v, that it  wouldn't get so hot.


Edited 11/24/2006 9:47 pm ET by tinkerer2

MBerger's picture

(post #84345, reply #17 of 28)

I'm not sure I'd recommend this for electric baseboard. I have hot water baseboard so there's no electrical involved. When hot wires get involved, I'm always cautions where I use wood vs. metal.

Pondfish's picture

(post #84345, reply #18 of 28)

I have an article buried somewhere about this topic--I'm currently installing wooden covers for my baseboard heat in our english basement.  The design itself coordinates with a wainscoting going above the heaters.  Key aspects of the workings are (1) a reflective coating that wraps the pipes on three sides; and (2) adequate gaps at the top and bottom to promote convection.  The design is also worked so that the radiator cover mimics the base and cap trim on the neighboring two walls. 


The reflective insulation is "Reflectix" insulation that I got from Lowes.


Recommending the use of "Hide Signatures" option under "My Preferences" since 2005
Recommending the use of "Hide Signatures" option under "My Preferences" since 2005