Necessary to move heatin vents to floor?

stir_fryiSeptember 14, 2010

Just starting our basement -- hearing so many different ideas from people it is hard to know what to believe.

Our basement will be drywalled with a drop ceiling and a raised insulated floor.

A non-HVAC person (actually a plumber) told us you definately need to move the heating vents down the walls near to the floor instead of keeping them in the ceiling. We do have at least one cold air return in the ceiling.

Just went to a neighbors house (same layout as ours) -- their vents our still in the ceiling of their finished basement. She said it is not cold down there.

We are in Michigan.

Don't want to spend unnecessary money.

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I would suggest that your cold air inlet be near the floor for certain - I cut ours into the cold-air return at the base of the furnace. Cold air near the floor is captured, conditioned and recirculated.

I did not move our "vents" to the floor either and our basement temperature is actually quite warm during the months when the house thermostat calls for heat. We installed an electric fireplace to add auxulary heat, primarily necessary during spring/fall when the furnace is not operating as much. We're in N. IL.

I would suggest replacing or adding storm windows for any builder installed basement window. Significant heat loss from the standard single-pane ones.

Here is a link to our basement. Comments have been added below many of the photos to perhaps provide some ideas. Good luck.

Here is a link that might be useful: Basement Photos

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 11:23AM
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Very nice.

May I ask why an electric FP and not gas???

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 3:36PM
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The gas inserts at homes we visit put out too much heat. Thus they must be turned off, then on again. Can't just enjoy the ambience of a fire. Ours is thermostatically controlled for heat but the fire illusion is independent.

I am uncomfortable with the ventless gas. CO is not something I wish to risk. Electric saved installing a chimney or vent.

Hope that helps. F

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 4:25PM
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Ventless gas adds lots of moisture to the air. The burning of natural gas produces 66% of the byproducts as water vapor.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 8:12AM
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plus they STINK. They do throw a lot of heat and in our open concept upsatirs the water vapour is not an issue but the smell is so its always a battle of how much we leave the flu closed for heat vs the smell. We bought it with the intention of leaving the flu open and using it for ambience but the amount of heat it can throw is enticing. For a basement, I'd look for another product...maybe pellet...?

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 9:03AM
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Our basement is drywalled, part with a drop ceiling & part drywall finished ceiling. It is a concrete floor with pad and Berber carpet. There are two cold air return vents at floor level in two adjacent bedrooms at one end of the house (side closest to furnace), but no floor vents in a 3rd bedroom or the main family room. All areas have ceiling vents. Not sure why they did it that way. We're in NE Nebraska and get extremely cold winters. We get along fine.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2010 at 6:34PM
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