Electric Heaters & Thermostats Question

A questions from a resident:

Does anyone ever use any of their electric heaters, especially the large ceramic heater on the second floor of their apartments?  If so, have they ever replaced the thermostat control for it?

Please post any replies in the comments.

4 thoughts on “Electric Heaters & Thermostats Question”

  1. I used mine pretty regularly until it stopped working one day a few months ago. I have purchased a new thermostat figuring that was the issue but haven’t installed it yet.

    NOTE that you need a thermostat designed for BASEBOARD HEATERS for the ceramic panels – you need one that sits on the power line vs one that has a control wire like for the head pumps.

    I do not recommend you replace them yourself unless you know what you are doing – you’re dealing with live, full current here, not typical “thermostat-level,” AAA battery-level current.

  2. Our unit has 4 electric heaters: one by the front door, a baseboard one in each bathroom, and a large ceiling one in the loft (which I’m guessing is the ceramic one you mention). The one in the loft is the only one we’ve ever used (not counting the times someone has kicked the knob on the upstairs bathroom one and accidentally turned it on). I’ve found the loft one very effective on the rare occasions I’ve used it but we’ve never changed the thermostat so I can’t be much help with any info there.

  3. Never used or replaced, but as Jack said it’s likely a 240 volt line-level thermostat so if replacing you’ll want to look for something that’s rated for “high/line voltage systems,” which is not most off the shelf thermostats you find at Walmart.

    I have a bunch of old ones I’ve torn out of various rentals, but they’re just standard gauge types.

    I’ve spent a lot more time researching “smart” digital thermostats that can be controlled via a phone or remotely. As far as I know, there’s only two major ones on the market today:

    1. Mysa Smart Thermostat: https://www.amazon.com/Mysa-Thermostat-Electric-Baseboard-Heaters/dp/B075VBP42M

    2. Stelpro’s electronic thermostats (I’ve installed 1/2 dozen of the “Ki”” models for remote control and automation. Overkill if all you want is wall control, but super reliable and easy to use (there’s two buttons for everything).

    As Jack said, the big thing with line level thermostat installs is just to ensure you have the right breaker turned off at the panel before installing the thermostat. If it’s only 2 wires behind the thermostat then it’s a dead simple, direct swap install: cut the power, remove the existing thermostat, and connect the new one with a couple appropriately sized wire nuts (doesn’t matter which wire connects to which if it’s only two wires since it’s just completing the circuit).

    If it’s four wires out of the wall it means something else is likely wired into the circuit and things get a bit more challenging. I had that in one install, wired it up wrong, and arc’d the breaker at the panel with enough of a pop that I thought I killed both myself and the person at the other end of the thermostat!

    If that all sounds too complicated, call the electrician. 10m install for someone that knows what they’re doing so don’t accept anything more than $150 for an install (thermostat/parts excluded).

    Hope this helps!

  4. PS: here’s the link to the StelPro Ki line of remote controllable line level thermostats. Lots of options here so read the fine print for differences across the line:


    If you just need a basic, “turn the knob, turn on the heat” thermostat, most anything rated for line / high voltage will do. Here’s a few examples there:

    2 Wire Thermostat

    4 Wire Thermostat

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