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Old 10-20-2008, 10:39 AM   #1
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Baseboard Heater

We have an electric baseboard heater in our master bathroom as supplemental heat. It is four feet long, hardwired in, and controlled by a thermostat.

My winter morning ritual includes turning the thermostat up, setting a kitchen timer, and at least once a week driving to work desperately trying to remember if I turned the stupid thing back down.

Is it possible to either replace the thermostat with a timer, or add one to it? I don't want anything fancy or programmable, just something that I could set to shut off in 20 or 30 minutes.

And if so, is it possible for someone who's electrical experience is limited to replacing light fixtures and wall switches to do this?


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Old 10-20-2008, 11:06 AM   #2
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If you forget and leave it on it should not be a problem other than the cost because the thermostat will control it. Hang a sign on the door as a reminder.


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Old 10-20-2008, 12:04 PM   #3
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I know you said that this is not what you want, but realistically I think a programmable stat would be the easiest solution (well, aside from hanging that sign up).. This is just an example, b/c I don't know if your heater is 240V or 120V nor how many Amps it draws:

But I think what you'd want is one of these:

If you wired that timer inline with your thermostat, the heat would turn off after whatever period you turned the dial to.

This would involve adding another box in your wall in which the timer would sit, and then wiring it appropriately. I am not sure if this would be to code either, but I can't see why it would be unsafe.

You would need to find a timer that is appropriately rated for your heater. (e.g. 240V @ 15A).

This wouldn't be all that much harder than replacing a light switch or fixture, BTW. Definitely easier to go with the digital Tstat tho.
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Old 10-21-2008, 12:52 AM   #4
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Taz, currently the tick-tick-tick of the kitchen timer reminds me to turn it down, but there are slightly hectic mornings I am not quite sure once I reach the road.

Scott, sorry, I should have been more precise in my original post, but my schedule varies day to day and week to week. I admit I have not looked closely at the digital ones because I assumed I would have to reset them every morning like I have to reset my alarm clock every night. I think the second one you linked would be easier to operate and fit my needs better. Just set if to turn off 20 minutes from "now".

I guess I have more research to do.

Thanks much!

Maybe I'll just hang a sign on the door.

Last edited by Blondesense; 10-21-2008 at 01:29 AM.
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Old 10-24-2008, 11:22 PM   #5
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If the thermostat is on the wall, and not built into the heater, a spring wound timer would do just what you want. Intermatic makes then, likely a few others as well.

These come in 15, 30, and 60 minute maximum ranges. You simply turn the knob to the amount of time you want the heater to run, and it turns off when the time is up. Extremely simple.

They can replace the thermostat you have now, (if it's mounted in a box on the wall) and are as simple to install as a light switch. They don't care if the circuit is 120 or 240 volts.

I have them controlling the bathroom fans and heaters at my house, I never need to remember to turn them off.


P.S. A 4' baseboard heater is almost always 1000 watts. Most of them operate at 240 volts, and draw about 4 amps. If its 120 volts, the current would be 8 amps. The timeswitch will handle either one.
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Old 10-25-2008, 12:58 AM   #6
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Yes, Rob, it is a wall thermostat.

Thanks for the additional information!


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