Anja Jensen


Hi! My name is Anja and I'm the author of the blog you are currently viewing. I'm glad that you are visiting my site. My blog is meant to show you my experiences and explain things. I hope you'll like it and you'll stay here longer. Enjoy!

Replacing Hydronic Baseboard Heating Covers

If you have repainted your current baseboard heating covers made of metal for many times but they still can't conceal their age by showing off their rusting and physical damages, it is high time for you to replace them. Even though this project is not that easy it can be done on your own. The pieces from the back side are seldom damaged because they can be hardly reached but the movable vents and front covers as well as other pieces located there can be even lost. Front covers may get easily scraped or kicked. Besides, the paint deteriorates can make them unsightly over time. It's often impossible to find suitable replacement pieces as manufacturers tend to change their designs. In this way, new front covers don't fit on older models. The pieces of the back panel also need to be replaced but the front cover mountings and vent pieces are also different, more

The old pieces can be easily removed with the help of a screw gun, a pair of high-rate metal snips and a pry bar and removal. Be careful to wear a pair of gloves not to cut your hands from the sheet metal. You'll have to do the removal and replacement without disconnecting or damaging the heat piping.

Start removing the movable vent pieces and the front cover. Next place the mounting screws or nails used by the plumber when he installed the baseboard. If these are screws you may consider them to be beneficial for your project. Some baseboards may be nailed on with a few penny galvanized nails which are much harder to remove. Still, if you have the nails remove them with the help of a pry bar and a hammer. Before this procedure it's recommended to wrap a towel around the heat fins made of aluminum as the latter are extremely sharp and you can get hurt easily. If you bend the fins, you can draw a comb through them to restore their shape. If you have bent only a few fins, straighten them with a flat screwdriver.

After you've removed all the mounting screws (nails), wrestle out the back plate that is located behind the heat piping. It's a rather difficult task but you will certainly succeed if you bend or twist it. If you can't manage to do it use a pair of metal snips. Divide the backer plate into a few sections and remove the back plate. After that clean the heating fins from dust and dirt, but be careful not to touch the fins with bare fingers.

In the oldest installations you won't find reflective paper located behind the backer plate. If you don't have it and can't buy it from the local hardware store, simply use leftover foil from insulation. Have the paper cut into smaller pieces than your baseboard back plate is. Have it stapled to the wall. The paper won't show off after the project is completed. This foil paper will reflect the heat into the room preventing the wall from absorbing it. Then slide the new backer plate down to locate it behind the heat piping. It'll fit tightly. If there's some slack in the holes with the piping, it will help to move the piping and slide the new backer plate in the right place.

After you located the new plate, slide the backer plate up until the heat piping slips around the square fins. Using the largest carpenters hand level that will fit on the baseboard, level the backer plate and make some pencil marks. Take a few drywall screws and your screw gun and fix the backer plate to the wall.

Finally, check up whether the backer plate is level. If you're satisfied, start installing the new movable vent parts, as well as front and end baseboard heating covers. An eight foot baseboard section usually takes up to two hours to finish the replacement.