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Old 01/30/10, 03:52 PM
Baroness of TisaWee Farm
 
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baseboard vs forced air wall mount?

I went to price baseboard heaters today (see prior thread), and saw that they also have forced air wall heaters that are tiny! For instance, the one I saw was a com pac by cadet and it was 4000 watts, and took up a space about the size of a sheet of writing paper x 4" deep. The cost was only about $20 more than buying 2 - 2000 watt baseboard heaters, but it would take a LOT less room. And it had the thermostat already included....which really makes it cheaper than the baseboard heaters by the same company.

Pros and cons, please, of using a forced air heater??? I know already that it heats FASTER, but is also louder. Supposedly quieter than a refrigerator, though. You mount it on inside walls, instead of outside walls.
Any other reason that I shouldn't consider the forced air heater instead of a baseboard heater? I think I like the idea that it doesn't take up nearly as much room (and I only have to mount 2 of them, instead of 4). I don't have enough wall space as it is for the amount of baseboard heaters that I need.

Thoughts are two 4000 watt forced air heaters for downstairs (864 sq' house), and then a couple baseboard heaters upstairs (bedroom - quieter), and one forced-air in each bath.

Am I missing something here or is this a no-brainer?

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Old 01/30/10, 11:01 PM
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noise and efficiency come to mind right away. you lose the efficiency of the energy required to run the fans...and if some wish state the fact that the motors running the fans create heat as well, you can't deny that they also waste energy making noise and physically moving the air, lol. on the other hand, it's sort of nice to stand in front of forced hot air when you are cold.

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Old 01/30/10, 11:54 PM
 
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Are these heaters ceramic,ribbon, or crystal? Do they run on 220 or 110? When we rewired our old house we used 12 gage wire for all 110 outlets and lights. We run several ceramic heaters on 110 and notice lower power bills in winter than summer. Depending on the size of room you are trying to heat makes a difference if these 110 heaters would work as they are max 1500 watts but a hot 1500. Hope you get good heat with what ever you use. Sam
PS forgot to add they only cost around 40 bucks and several people swear by the Amish heaters.

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Old 01/31/10, 09:43 AM
 
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I like the gentle heat of baseboard heat. I HATE the wind and constant up/down of the temps with forced air.

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Old 01/31/10, 10:53 AM
Baroness of TisaWee Farm
 
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tamsam, they are 240 and 4000 watts. They aren't portable heaters...they are built into the wall, and very similar to a baseboard heater, except they have a fan powering the air out.

I agree....I like the quiet and the maintenance free properties of the baseboard heaters, but I think these might have their place, too? If I put a small baseboard heater in each bathroom to keep it warm in there, I can get by with just two 4000 watt units downstairs...which is one huge room with one wall partially down the center to divide the kitchen a bit.

If I find that isn't enough, it wouldn't take much to throw a baseboard heater in the kitchen area (since there wouldn't be any furniture in front of it), put one or more baseboard heaters upstairs. With the house being lofted and no walls upstairs, I think I'll have plenty of heat just by convection (is that the right word?).

I'm just trying to think of the simpliest way to do this, since I'm clueless about wiring as it is.

Meloc - I agree! I have an unvented gas fireplace where I'm at in town now, and there is nothing better than standing in front of that thing and cranking it up! LOL

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Old 01/31/10, 11:16 AM
 
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Dust is an issue, especially when fans are involved. Fans have a life expectancy and replacement of just the fan component a few years down the road could be impractical.

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Old 01/31/10, 02:27 PM
 
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These units are very common in the Pacific Northwest. I've lived in a couple of houses that used them exclusively. (Note: we're putting in a woodstove for when the power goes out!)

They are MUCH quieter than a centralized forced-air furnace. The "not much different from a refrigerator" comment is accurate. Because of the fan, they heat a space more evenly and more quickly than baseboard heaters.

I've never heard of a fan unit dying, although I noticed in the hardware store yesterday that replacements are available off-the-shelf for King brand units.

I don't like the dust and crud that accumulates under baseboard heaters, and they always seem to get dented or chipped or rusty and end up looking cheap.

You are supposed to vacuum out the wall heaters once a season.

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Old 01/31/10, 04:37 PM
 
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I don't have any experience with them but they would certainly take up less wall space. If you go with them, I would still wire them up to one wall-mounted thermostat as I described in your previous thread. I don't think you will get comfortable heat by just relying on the built in thermostat, plus you'd have to adjust the thermostat at each unit at floor level to adjust the room temp.

Don't worry about the fan "wasting heat" since whatever energy it uses (probably only 50 watts or so) will also just get converted to heat and blown into the room.

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Old 01/31/10, 05:53 PM
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ahhh...but to poke fun and not to argue too seriously, some of the electricity it being converted into sound waves and some into kinetic energy when it physically moves the air.

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Old 01/31/10, 06:03 PM
 
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When I first graduated from college 25+ years ago, I rented a house. It was a National Home. Those houses were built for returning soldiers after WWII. They were basically prefab houses before the advent of prefab houses. They did not have central heat. Instead they had a heater that sounds like what you're describing. Behind the kitchen there was a utility room. The back of the heater was there. The heater was placed on a wall at the edge of the living room. Right off the living room was a hallway that led to the bedrooms. Two sides of the heater had vents that blew the heat.

It was OK. I do prefer natural gas or propane but I certainly liked that type of heat better than baseboard heaters. If you have a set up like I'm describing you have to sleep with open bedroom doors as there is no actual heat in the bedroom.

The house I rented was a two bedroom house. The one heating unit in the living room heated the entire home quite well.
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Old 01/31/10, 06:27 PM
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When I moved into this mobile 12 years ago the Wall unit a vented propane "furnace" heater at 36,000 BTU.
It was "Radiant" heat only. the heat went up the walls and sitting on the other side of the room you were lucky to "feel" warm.
The VERY first thing was find the paper work for the dern thing and Order a FAN for it, and now 12 years later, I sure love the fact I put a fan into the unit.
Even if it was 125 bucks for that model~! Never would be without a fan again in a "wall" unit at least. And I have a electric "room" heater in the bedroom and I Want the Fan to "move" the air around not just radiant around.

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Old 01/31/10, 06:52 PM
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We had some of these in our old house and it was much nicer than the baseboard heaters. They give you a lot more useable wall space and help the room be more evenly heated.

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