Best Heating Options for a Finished Basement
Nowadays, many homeowners are turning their basements into additional living spaces. Whether it is a place for the children to play, a TV room or a home office, your basement is a wonderful way to make your house feel bigger. However, the temperatures in the basement are lower than in the rest of your home. Your basement is always too cold because it’s usually below the ground and moister than other parts of the house.
Lack of insulation and air leaks are also common in basements. Finally, there is the location of your thermostat. If you’re tired of chills when working in your basement office or cold feet when watching your TV programs, you need to find ways to keep that space warm. Explore the heating solutions below to find the best option to provide you with proper insulation and warmth for your basement.
1. Adding Fireplaces
A basement fireplace can be a beautiful and comfortable addition to the look of your finished basement. Fireplaces are relatively easy to install, allowing you to heat the whole space using conventional methods. If possible, you can have a masonry fireplace, giving you enough space and enhancing comfort when using your basement.
However, if you would like to enjoy installation convenience and save some money and time, you can go for a prefabricated fireplace. There are also numerous infrared options to consider because an infrared fireplace works more like a space heater than a conventional fireplace. These fireplaces can add an aesthetic appeal to the basement and are pretty easy to use.
2. Electric Baseboard Heaters
An electric baseboard adds a new source of heat only where it’s needed. That means it simply works according to the requirements of a specific room. You can individually control these heaters using separate thermostats or completely turn them off or on, as needed.
Baseboard heaters are quite expensive but not among the most efficient solutions. The best thing about baseboard heat is that it’s silent. Considering that you already have noise in the basement from your clothes dryer, washing machine and heater, it’s good not to add to that.
Baseboard heaters tend to use lots of energy to heat your basement. You might not pay a huge bill at first, but you will later see a significant rise in your energy bill. However, they are not an ideal option if your underground space is susceptible to flooding. Several inches of water can ruin your baseboard heater.
3. Space Heaters
If you have lived in a cold dorm room or apartment, chances are you have used an electric space heater at some point. These heaters are completely portable and cost-efficient to buy. Furthermore, they do not need a professional’s assistance to install because they normally plug directly into any household outlet and immediately blow heat.
You can install large, flat, Micathermic heaters on the wall just like your flat-screen TV, and they slowly heat your basement. Fan-driven traditional heaters are usually the least expensive and the least efficient, too. You can also use portable radiators to heat your basement. The oil-filled cores of these radiators retain heat in your space even after turning off the heating element.
An electric space heater is an excellent option for giving heat only where you want it. These heaters might not be the best option for large open finished basements because they are less energy efficient. However, these heaters are a great option for supplementing other heat sources and smaller spaces.
4. Radiant Floor Heaters
A radiant heater is a fairly more costly option because you need a professional to install it underneath your floor. Basement floors are usually made from concrete slabs, which allows cold to penetrate through the floors. A radiant floor heater conducts heat utilizing the concrete slab that’s later absorbed by your basement’s surroundings. These sub-floor installations assist in maintaining more constant temperatures in your basement.
These heaters heat the ground more evenly, leaving your basement with dry floors and warm living space. This heating solution is among the most energy-efficient options on the market. Radiant heaters are significantly less obtrusive than a baseboard heater.
5. Wood Pellet Stoves
These stoves usually burn some wood pellets and later push out the warm air using a small fan. The dry fuel used by these stoves creates more heat, which causes them to burn cleaner and hotter than conventional fireplaces.
These recycled pellets usually burn at a relatively low combustion rate and, luckily, need a 110V plug-in outlet only to run the small motor that circulates the hot air. However, wood pellet stoves aren’t entirely basement internal. Since the stoves emit carbon monoxide, you’ll need exterior ventilation. Wood pellets also come in small-sized bags, which make them convenient and pretty easy to store.
6. Extending Your Ductwork
Unless you reside in a region with unusual climatic conditions, your home should have an installed internal heating system. Therefore, it’s a great idea to work off your existing heating system and extend it to your finished basement.
In many homes, the ductwork is easily accessible and visible from the basement. While it might sound easy to extend your ductwork, there are more crucial issues involved in the process that only an experienced HVAC expert can do. It would help if you had an HVAC professional perform tasks such as calculating the size and heating load and configuring the ductwork. Extending your ductwork allows you to maintain and also increase the value of your home.
7. Adding More Registers
Another way to heat your basement is by utilizing your furnace. Besides, it’s an excellent way to keep your entire house warm. To add more vents or registers in your basement, you’ll need an AC expert. Building more registers will allow some of the warm air traveling through your ductwork to enter the basement space as well.
This heating solution is not cost-effective for the other areas of your house. That’s because you will have to build some more ductwork to reach the untreated area upstairs, which can significantly hike up the cost. But, ductwork is already installed downstairs, leading from your heater.
However, you might not enjoy as much warmth as the other parts of the home. That’s because your thermostat is installed upstairs, and your furnace might not remain on long enough to heat your basement properly.
Now that you have got some ways to help you heat your finished basement, you need to pick the most suitable solution for your house. However, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Instead, you should consider your budget and the setup of your home and basement.
If you live in O’Fallon or the surrounding areas, we can help you. Hoff Heating & AC offers free advice and reliable heating services to enhance the comfort of your home. Our firm also offers an array of other essential services such as ductwork fabrication, furnace maintenance, indoor air quality analysis, energy audits, geothermal solutions and installation of heat pumps, furnaces and air conditioners.
If you would like to find a suitable way to heat your O’Fallon basement, call or email us today to schedule an appointment. We’ll be glad to help you warm your basement space without putting a huge dent in your wallet.