How to Replace a Baseboard Diffuser

What You'll Need
Replacement Diffuser

A baseboard diffuser is used in homes which have their duct openings at the edges of floors, or the bottoms of walls. These diffusers allow air to pass in and out of the duct system, and can be used with both feed air systems and rear air systems. As these diffusers are at floor level, they can become damaged though accidents, and you may feel the need to replace yours.

However, if you are reluctant to spend money to have a professional heating and air conditioning technician replace your baseboard diffuser, then you can easily do it yourself. Follow some basic steps to help you to get the job done quickly and easily.

Step 1 – Remove the Old Diffuser

The first step is to take out the old diffuser so that the new one can be installed in its place. Turn off the device which uses the duct before you proceed. There will probably be several screws holding the diffuser into place, so unscrew these carefully. If the old product has been caulked into position, you will need to scrape away as much as possible, and then use a chisel and hammer to gently tap along each side until it is loose enough to be removed.

Step 2 – Fitting the New Diffuser

Check that the hole from which you have just removed the old diffuser is large enough to take the new one. If it is not, you may need to cut off a few more feet of board. Most diffusers are built to a standard size, however, so you should have no problem fitting it to the duct. Push the diffuser over the screws or tape which are holding the duct into place, and then slot it down so that it lays flush with the board.

Step 3 – Securing the Diffuser

Secure the diffuser into the wood using some screws. These should fit around the frame, and be screwed in loosely before you return to the beginning and screw in the others. This is to ensure that an over-tight screw does not move the diffuser out of position. You should now apply a layer of caulk around the sides of the hole, and around the screws themselves, in order to ensure that air is correctly channeled up towards the diffuser.

Step 4 – Finishing

Before you finish the project you will have to turn the machine which uses the duct back on, and check that the diffuser is functioning correctly. There should be no problems, and you can now dispose of your old diffuser.