How to Install a Baseboard Heater

Baseboard heater just out of the box

Winter’s on the way and one of the most popular forms of supplemental heating is a baseboard heater. Not only are they effective, but they’re subtle and provide an even flow of heat most people have come to appreciate. Some of the benefits include:

  • Low maintenance
  • Zonal heating
  • Low profile design
  • Low operating temperatures
  • Neutral colors
  • Extremely quiet
  • Temperature accuracy within 1-2 degrees of settings
  • Safe choice with built-in thermal cut out
  • Draft-free heating
  • Fins for widespread coverage

Electrical breaker boxInstalling a baseboard heater isn’t as hard as you think. Along with your manufacturer instructions, you can use this guide and get your heater up and running in no time.

1. Turn off electrical power

2. Know where you want to install the heater. Make sure the heater is flush with the surface of the wall.

3. For best results, make sure the heater is installed either under a window, along an outside wall, or as close as possible to an outside door. Do not install heater beneath an electrical outlet.

4. Most baseboard heaters can be installed directly on any floor surface including carpet. However, it is important to check your product installation guide to be sure there are not any restrictions.

5. If installing on carpet, do not allow carpet to block blower air intake. Be sure the heater is clear of all obstructions and that there is a 12 inch clearance between the heater and drapes.

Baseboard heater wires right side6. The baseboard heater can usually be wired to the right or the left. Decide which side of the heater you plan to wire.

7. Be sure to locate the supply wires before actually mounting the heater.

8. Verify that the electrical supply wires are the same voltage as the heater. For example, 120V heater to a 120V power supply.

9. Locate wall studs closest to the supply wires and position the heater against the wall.

10. Remove the wiring compartment cover.

11. Remove the slotted knockout closest to the supply wires and install a strain relief connector.

12. Mount the heater securely to the wall with nails or screws. They must go into at least two wall studs. The back of the heater should have punch dimples that allow hardware to pierce the sheet metal.

13. Connect the grounding lead to the grounding screw. Both sides of the heater include a grounding screw.

Baseboard heater wires left side
14. Double check the wiring to be sure the electrical supply wires are the same voltage as the heater. If wiring on the left, disconnect factory connector A. If wiring on the right, disconnect factory connector B. only disconnect one factory connector.


For standard baseboard wiring on the right or left using 120V or 240V supply:

  • Connect one supply wire to one heater wire
  • Connect remaining supply wire to remaining heater wire
  • Replace wiring compartment cover and secure with screw previously removed
  • Turn power back on at the electrical panel board

Multi-watt baseboard heater right or left wiring

  • Connect one supply wire to the upper black wire.
  • For 2500 watt applications: Connect the remaining supply wires to both the black and red wires.
  • For 2000 watt applications: Connect the remaining supply wire to the remaining black wire. Leave the red wire disconnected. Cap loose end with an approved wire connector, or wrap loose end with electrical tape.

Replace wiring compartment cover and secure with screw previously removed.

Turn power back on at the electrical panel board

Baseboard heater thermostatBaseboard heaters typically require a thermostat to operate. Below are some instructions on how to setup yours up.

1. Single pole wall thermostat

  • Route supply wires to the thermostat-wiring box if not already present
  • Connect one supply wire to one thermostat wire marked L1
  • Route remaining thermostat wire marked T1 to the baseboard heater
  • Route remaining supply and ground wire to the baseboard heater

Follow the installation instructions above for mounting and wiring your baseboard heater and you’re all set!

2. Double pole wall thermostat

  • Route supply wires to the thermostat-wiring box if not already present
  • Connect one supply wire to one thermostat wire marked L1
  • Connect remaining supply wire to other thermostat wire marked L2
  • Route remaining thermostat wires marked T1 and T2 to the baseboard heater
  • Route ground wire to the baseboard heater

Follow installation instructions for mounting and wiring your baseboard heater and you’re good to go. Enjoy your baseboard heater!

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