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Baseboard Heaters: Instructions for Wiring

Electric baseboard heaters are well suited to use as a heat source in new room additions or in rooms you're finishing -- like a basement. Baseboard heaters are usually installed along outside walls, particularly under windows. Wherever you choose to install them, be sure the location won't be blocked by furniture or bookcases, both to allow free distribution of heat and to prevent the possibility of starting a fire.

Things You'll Need

  • 12-gauge electrical cable
  • Wire cutter/stripper
  • Screwdriver
  • Electrical tape
  • Wire nuts
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    • 1

      Run 12-gauge electrical cable from the circuit breaker panel to the heater location. In new construction, drill holes in the studs and route the wire through the wall. If the wall is already finished, you'll need to cut the drywall with a keyhole saw prior to drilling holes in the studs.

    • 2

      Remove the screws holding the panel with the control knob at the front of the heater and remove the panel. Pull 6 to 8 inches of electrical cable through the wiring opening on the rear of the heater visible at the bottom of the heater where you've removed the panel. Remove 1/2-inch of insulation from the ends of each of the wires in the cable.

    • 3

      Match the ends of your wires to the corresponding wires in the heater. The wires will be color coded, so match the wires red to red, black to black, white to white, and green to green. Slide a wire nut over the ends of each of the paired wires and twist until the wires are held together tightly.

    • 4

      Place a piece of electrical tape around the base of each wire nut and wrap it around the wires proper. This will add an extra level of security to the connections.