Best Way to Heat a Basement

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A basement is the most spacious place in the house for the family. You can prepare the basement for various home activities. As such, you need to keep the basement temperatures warm and cosy.

To help you, this article will discuss the best way to heat a basement.

During the holiday, you can prepare your basement for guests for family’s recreational purposes, add some bedrooms, study rooms, or set up a home office. Quite amazing.

Unfortunately, the basement can be inhabitable during winter because of the underground cold and humidity. Secondly, it’s not easy for the sunlight to penetrate through.

A well-conditioned basement will give you peace of mind as you enjoy your favorite movie. To avoid unpleasant conditions like dampness, read on and learn the best way to heat a finished basement.

Understand Your Needs Before You Heat a Basement

Before you choose your cheapest way to heat a basement, you need first to figure out the following questions;

  • How frequently will you be in the room?

If you spend more time in the room, you need an effective method to heat your basement and save you some money. Otherwise, you may end up with an unreliable device and still pay higher energy bills.

  • Does the basement have bedrooms?

If the basement has bedrooms, people will spend nights in the basement, usually colder than during the day. As such, you need a very effective device to save people from respiratory complications.

  • Does the basement have bathrooms?

Bathrooms can be more humid than other places. You need to invest in the best heating method and remember that your heater should keep running most of the time.

  • How many people will share the basement?

Human bodies release heat during metabolism. If you only use the basement for many guests or functions, you don’t need a high-performance method.

Read: Radiant floor heat insulation panels

Insulation First Before Choosing a Way to Heat a Basement

Basements are the coldest area of the house. As such, heating a basement without insulation is wasteful because you’ll lose most of the heat to the floor and walls.

The best insulator for the concrete walls and floor is reflective foam core insulator. It’s a waterproof roll that will prevent heat loss, reducing energy bills, and enhance faster heating.

On the other hand, fiberglass insulation is the best if you have wood-flamed walls.

However, if you’re planning to install a radiant floor and wall heating system, you can do the insulation later.

Best Way to Heat a Basement

Method 1: Radiant wall and floor heating

Radiant floor and wall heating entail installing water pipes or electric coils under the floor. Radiant heating heats by releasing electromagnetic waves which hit the floor or wall surfaces.

Once the electromagnetic waves come into contact with the surface, they convert radiant energy to heat.

The method is very effective because it heats uniformly. Secondly, it’s controlled by a thermostat, therefore, enhancing efficiency.

Read: Baseboard heater valve

You can choose any of the two systems below;

  • Hydronic radiant heating – the hot water pipes are laid on the wall or floor, and the finishing design is later carried out. Water releases heat from underneath the surface.
  • Electric radiant heating – the heating coils in electrical cables can be laid under the carpet, beneath the floor, or under the wall surface. It still works by releasing electromagnetic waves.

Method 2: Ductless Mini Split Heat Pump

If you’re looking for the best way to heat and cool a basement, the ductless mini-split heat pump can work best. The system has an outdoor compressor and indoor air handling units.

The compressor gathers thermal heat from outside during winter and sends it inside to heat the room using refrigerant. On the other hand, when it’s hot, it takes out the warm air from inside.

A small conduit joins the components. And the installation becomes cheaper since no ductwork is required. Secondly, the system doesn’t blow dust into the room.

Luckily, one compressor can be connected to four air handling units to heat the whole basement. You can install one thermostat for uniform heating to serve all the air handling units.

Read: How to bleed baseboard heaters

Method 3: Hydronic Baseboard Heater

Hydronic baseboard heaters are efficient and flexible. You can use electricity, natural gas, or propane to run them.

Like the radiant floor heating method, the system heats and circulates hot water or oil around the floor surface. The only difference is that hydronic baseboard heater pipes are not installed under the floor.

When the heated fluid flows around the metal pipes, it transfers heat to the surrounding air through Aluminum fins.

The method does not blow dust or pollen into the room because no special ductwork is installed. Secondly, the fluid can retain heat for an extended period, therefore a longer thermostat on/off cycle.

Method 4: Basement fireplace

A basement fireplace can work best to heat the whole basement. The method is easy to install, cost-effective, and flexible.

You can choose a wood-burning or gas-burning fireplace, which requires a chimney. On the other hand, you can opt for an electric fireplace if you don’t have a chimney to avoid much pollution.

The electric fireplace consists of an enclosed box with coils that heat the surrounding air. According to many homeowners, gas fireplaces are more economical.

However, if you choose the chimney methods, prepare for regular maintenance to eliminate carbon monoxide build-up.

FAQs on Heating a Basement

How Do I Make My Unfinished Basement Warmer?

An unfinished basement can worsen during winter when a damp smell welcomes you every time. To keep the place appealing, ensure the basement is well insulated by sealing all the air leaks. Afterward, invest in a cosy fireplace that will heat the air in the whole of the basement.

Why is My Finished Basement so Cold?

The fact that basements are located underground makes them very cold. Secondly, the basement is unlikely to receive sunlight and heat every time because of the structure over it. The best way to keep the basement warm is to invest in an effective heating system.

Will Dehumidifier Make Basement Warmer?

The dehumidifier aims to remove excess moisture from the room, not to heat it. Although an electric dehumidifier can release a little warmth, it isn’t powerful enough to heat the basement. Choosing a powerful system is the best way to heat a basement.

Read: How to paint a radiator with a brush