Underfloor Heating

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Underfloor Heating

Underfloor heating is the very best way of heating a room. It provides a “quality” of heat that is difficult to explain until it has been experienced. Most customers who have underfloor heating would not entertain the idea of going back to radiators.

 

Technically, Underfloor heating is better than radiators for several reasons:

  • Heat rises so it makes sense to heat from below.
  • An even heat from the entire floor minimises drafts and helps reduce dust in the air.
  • The room temperature can be maintained up to about 2 degrees lower – but critically, it feels the same. This results in reduced energy bills.
  • You don’t lose any wall space to bulky radiators making room layouts much more flexible.

 

Types of Underfloor Heating

There are 3 broad types of Underfloor heating available.

The first is an in-screed or in-slab wet-piped system. This system distributes the heat from a heat pump or other heat source through pipes embedded into the floor structure. It provides a very good and even distribution of heat. It is the preferred solution for new-builds or extensive renovation projects where the entire floor will be created from scratch. It is rarely suitable for retrofit projects due to the requirement to install insulation below and a minimum screed thickness that cannot normally be applied over existing floor coverings.

The second is an overlay system that uses a thin sheet or set of guide components laid over the existing slab or floor covering. As it is on top of the existing floor, it does raise the floor height by between 18 and 25mm. There is a variant of this system that uses a routed board to replace a wooden floor covering and does not make a significant increase in floor height as it replaces the existing floorboards or decking.

The third is direct electric. This system uses a grid of insulated electric wires under a floor or embedded in the floor. They work effectively from a heating point of view but H2-ecO will not install these as they use a 1 to 1 conversion of electricity to heat and as such are not very environmentally friendly and can be expensive to run. They may be the best option though for, say, a single small bathroom project.

To discuss which underfloor heating option would be best for your project and for advice on the benefits, the process of installation and to obtain a no-obligation quote, please feel free to call or e-mail.

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Commercial Underfloor Heating

Underfloor heating has typically been considered as more of a domestic solution but we are encouraging commercial building owners and developers to consider using in-screed or in-slab underfloor heating in commercial premises. In-slab solutions particularly can suit rooms that have occasional rapid air changes that would admit cold air and take a long time to warm up again with normal heat emitters. An example would be a room with a loading bay door that is opened occasionally. With an in-slab underfloor system particularly, there is such a large thermal mass of concrete that the room reheats rapidly and maintains a pleasant work environment.

For office-type environments, the avoidance of radiators creates much more flexible workspaces as all walls can be used for any purpose.

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