A bench seat in front of a window can be a wonderful addition to a room, it can create an attractive and cozy place to sit and relax while looking outside at a pleasant scene.
Often there are baseboard heaters on your exterior walls and that would place them in front of your windows also. I am often asked “is it ok to put a window seat on top of a baseboard heater?” ” Is it safe, will it block the heat?”
Well, it is safe, the hot water in your baseboard heat is not nearly hot enough to ignite wood. But will it block the heat?
It could, if it is not done properly.
The important thing to remember about baseboard heaters is that they work on convection, air flow. So the window seat must be designed to allow for the proper airflow. Baseboard heaters are like little chimneys. Cool air is drawn in the bottom, as warm air flows out the top.
So your window seat must have openings near the floor to allow cool air to flow in, and openings at or near the top to allow warm air out. The diagram below shows a good way to do this. There are openings in the bottom and top of the seat (shown with red) to let the air in and out. The bottom and back wall of the bench seat channel the air under the seat and out the rear of the top. some efficiency will be lost as the warm air will warm the inside of the seat a little bit, but I have not found it to be a problem.