How to Install a Programmable Thermostat for Electric Baseboard Heat

baseboard heater in a room with wood floor
  • 1-2 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 20-300
What You'll Need
Drill and drill bits
Masking tape
Spirit level
Programmable thermostat

Baseboard heaters are a very efficient type of heater which can be made even more efficient by using electric programmable thermostats. Programmable thermostats can actually be treated like an investment because they will help your heating system to save lots of energy.

Buying and installing a thermostat can actually reduce your heating costs by over 20%. Some models are very affordable and they will pay for themselves many times over their lifetime.

With the right tools and equipment you won't have a problem installing a programmable thermostat control in your home.

Step 1 - Research

Do some research so you can choose the right programmable thermostat to purchase. There are lots of different types of thermostats costing anywhere between $25 right up to $250 depending on their features. You need to do research so you choose the right thermostat to suit your needs.

When installing programmable thermostats for an electric baseboard heater you must be confident you can do the work. You might also want to get a professional electrician to sign your work off.

Step 2 - Look at Your Thermostat

thermostat wiring

Take the cover off your old thermostat and take a look at all the wires inside. If the wires are very thin then this will mean that you have a low voltage heating system. It's only a good idea for anyone to work with the high voltage systems unless they are experienced.

Step 3 - Install the Thermostat

Once you have bought the programmable thermostat it's then necessary to install it. Turn the power off at the circuit breaker to protect yourself. You must make sure the power is off before working with any of the electrical systems in your home. Take the cover off the old thermostat and disconnect the wires. If the wires are not marked then now would be a good time to mark them up before removing them.

Step 4 - Batteries

taking the front off a wall thermostat

Put new batteries inside of your thermostat. Then hold the thermostat against the wall and position it properly. Use a pencil to mark it in the right place, and use a spirit level to ensure that everything is level. Mark all of the mounting hole locations on the wall with a pencil so you know where to drill.

These holes must be marked accurately because you don't want to drill lots of holes in your wall. Once you are happy they are accurate you can then drill the holes in the wall and screw the thermostat onto the wall.

Step 5 - Wire

Now you need to wire the thermostat back into the wires. Make sure each wire is connected to the right terminal.

Step 6 - Test

Now turn the power back on at the circuit breaker and then test the circuit. If the fuse instantly blows then this probably means that the thermostat has been wired up incorrectly. Test that the programmable thermostat works and can control your baseboard heating system.