Heating Basement Rec Rooms


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If you're house is like most, the rec room can get cold in the winter, especially at the floor level. You've got a sub-floor, and maybe you've got underlayment, some carpet and a couple of space heaters - and it's still cool down there! Chances are, that most of your heat is collecting at the ceiling, and warming the floors above, quite nicely!

A Couple of Suggestions

If you have electric heat, and enough head-space, you could install a ceiling fan to help re-distribute this stratified air - or you could install a fan upstairs to draw air up from the basement, which would be replaced by warmer air from upstairs. If you have a forced-air system, you can direct your supply ducts from the ceiling to the floor level. You might install a small to medium-sized grille in a return duct, to help redirect some warm air from the ceilings back to the floor. (You can't give a furnace too much return air. . . although you might affect the cold air circulation in another part of the house. )

CAUTION: With a gas/oil or other combusting furnace, the return grille should be no less than 10 feet from the furnace, and not within the furnace room, to avoid drawing combustion air from the furnace.


Wood was Canada's original heating fuel, used by its indigenous people and earliest settlers to stay warm in this cold northern climate. Although the number of homes heated with wood declined dramatically in the middle part of this century, many homeowners turned to wood heating in the 1970's when there were concerns about the price and security of supply of conventional heating fuels. Now, more than 400,000 or 6 percent of all single family dwellings in Canada use wood as the primary fuel for heating; in addition, over 950,000, or 14 percent use it as a supplementary heating fuel. These households have found wood burning to be an effective and economical way to heat their homes.

Copyright Gil Strachan - All rights reserved.

Gil Strachan is a professional home inspector, representing Electrospec Home Inspection Services in east-central Ontario, Canada since 1994. Visit http://www.allaroundthehouse.com to learn more about home inspections.

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