If you use electric baseboard heating in your home, and you have discovered the heat output is not as forceful as you would like or if it does not work at all, you will need to do some troubleshooting. Electric baseboard heating troubles can be handled by an HVAC contractor if you are unable to find the cause on your own. Here are a few tips you can try before making a call for professional service.
Check That The Controls Are Properly Set
If someone had mistakenly turned the damper to an off setting on the heater, the heat will stay inside the unit instead of being blown out into the room. This can cause you to feel chilly as you walk through the area. Another common problem is that someone had changed the thermostat setting to a lower temperature. This would cause the heater to stay off for longer stints of time. Check both of these controls before getting into further investigative procedures.
Take A Look At The Electrical System
If your baseboard heater is not coming on at all or if it seems to go off intermittently, there may be a problem with the wiring system. This should not be taken lightly and is best if handled by an electrical service as a fire could break out from wires that are not working correctly. Unplug the unit and take a look at the electrical wire for spots where it may be frayed or bent. Often people with pets find the wires have been chewed if they are left exposed. This is a harmful situation that can be remedied by placing electrical wire covers over exposed portions.
Clean Out The Unit To Clear Coils Of Debris
If the coils inside the unit are covered with dirt, they will not emit the heat into the room as efficiently. Unplug your unit and remove the baseboard heater cover so the coils are exposed. Use a soft-bristled brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to remove any hair and dirt particles from the coiled part of the heater. Be very gentle when rubbing the coils as too much force can cause them to bend. If you notice a few fins that are out of place, a special fin comb made especially for baseboard heaters can be used to redirect them into their proper positioning. This will help direct the air into the room.
Keep Items Away From The Heater
If there are large items such as a couch or solid wood table located in front of the heating unit, the air will not be pushed into the room where it is needed. Instead it will remain behind this item, heating only the area by the heater itself. Check that there are no draperies covering the heater and make sure the carpeting is pushed underneath the unit.
For assistance, talk to a professional like Allied Mechanical & Electrical, Inc.