Radiant Floor Heating – Highly Efficient in Both Costs and Indoor Climate Control
Based on information derived from the Department of Energy in the United States, radiant floor heating is a highly efficient form of indoor climate control and savings compared to other products currently available that aid in the creation and distribution of heat throughout a structure.
If you want to save money and obtain a form of heating that will optimize the overall comfort of your home, continue reading to learn about radiant floor heating.
What is Radiant Floor Heating?
Radiant floor heating – which may be referred to as “floor heating” or “underfloor heating” – is a type of heating system that is placed under the floor and has the capability of conducting heat through the surface of that floor, whereas other systems conduct heat through the air within a structure.
How Does Radiant Floor Heating Work?
An underfloor heat system utilizes hot water, which flows directly through a type of plastic-based tubing of crosslinked polyethylene (PEX).
This tubing then transports the water into rooms or certain zones within the structure in order to provide heat to that area.
All radiant heating systems typically include a main source of heat, a variety of pumps, certain types of manifolds that are capable of conducting heat, as well as controls for the system.
Heat sources may include boilers, a hot water heater, geothermal units, and/or a solar device.
What are the Benefits of Radiant Floor Heating?
There are numerous advantages to utilizing floor heating within the home. The heat is emitted in the form of infrared waves that helps to heat the building and reduce heat loss to the surfaces within the structure. Because of the fact that the feet stay warmer, the building is able to feel warm at lower temperatures.
Traditional heating systems send the heated air to the ceiling and then drop it back down.
As a result, temperatures must be kept higher to get the same degree of comfort.
Generally speaking, heat rises. Traditional systems place the heat at the top half of the house, while floor heating places it at the bottom half – where we frequent.
What are the Disadvantages of Radiant Floor Heating?
While floor heating is considered to be one of the best choices in terms of indoor climate control, there are a few disadvantages associated with this type of heat system. These include the following:
- Initially, the system is typically more costly than traditional heating systems; however, as time progresses, you are able to experience a vast amount of savings.
- If a floor is already present, the floor heating system may be very difficult to install. In many instances, you will have to completely remove the flooring that is already in place. There are radiant pads that may be placed in the joists that are present underneath your floor; however, access must be available through the means of a crawl space or a basement.
- Because of the difficulty level of installation, professional installation is required.
- The floor height is commonly increased in rooms that have floor heating. On average, the height is less than a half of an inch; however, this amount could increase if insulation boards are placed.
- You will need a qualified electrician who has the ability to connect the floor heating system to the power supply and, possibly, a plumber who can assist in the installation, too.
Which Types of Flooring Work Well with Radiant Floor Unit Systems?
The good news is, all materials used on floors can work with a radiant heat system; however, there are some that are more effective.
Those materials that are considered to be good sources of thermal conduction are the best in the creation and transfer of heat.
These include ceramic tile, stone, and even concrete.
Wood floors typically shrink and experience expansion when temperatures fluctuate. As a result of this, gaps may develop.
Laminate flooring created from plastic and/or vinyl may have a few limitations, but still work well.
Carpets – because of their ability to insulate – could cause a reduction in the amount of heat that is transferred into the home when the radiant flooring heating is used.
We Can Help
Regardless of the size of your home, the presence of floors, and the materials that your flooring is composed of, we here at Reynold’s Plumbing and HVAC can help you select a radiant floor heater that is perfectly suited for your needs.
Additionally, we offer professional installation, maintenance, and servicing for these types of heating systems.