Under Floor Heating Best for Homes
Under floor heating has long been commonly used in many homes because of the even heat it provides. This type of system makes use of heat conduction and
radiant heat in giving the warmth that people need in their homes notably during the cold winter season.
For homeowners very particular about interior design, under floor heating is best. Since it is installed beneath the floor, it is therefore invisible and does not take up space compared to other heating equipment.
This type of heating system also guarantees energy efficiency when compared to the
forced-air systems. This is because heat losses in the water distribution system are very much reduced regardless of the piping layout and insulation.
Radiant heating is the most popular when it comes to under floor heating. It is much better than the convection method which only warms the upper part of the room and a personís upper body. Radiant heat, though, warms the lower part of the room and the body which gives more comfort to the people living in the home.
Basically, there are two types of under floor heating systems Ė the one that uses warm water and the electric system.
Hot water system
The system that uses hot water features pipes or tubes laid on the floor. The pipes come in various types such as the PEX, aluminum, a combination of PEX and aluminum or alupex and polybutylene. Warm water is circulated through these pipes via a
pump. The hot water boilers of this type are normally fueled by gas, oil or solid fuel.
It may be initially expensive to install wet under floor heating but it will benefit homeowners in the long run. With this type of heating, up to 40 percent of energy can be conserved. Also, the loops or the series of pipes used donít need much maintenance and can last up to even 100 years.
Electric heating system
The electric floor heating system, on the other hand, is easier to install and less costly especially when used in smaller areas. You just need to add a thermostat which costs between $100 and $200 to allow you to individually control the temperatures in each room. This type is commonly used in the kitchen, bathroom and rooms that need more heat such as the basement or the kidsí playroom.
Installation of this type takes only about half day to a day. Heating time is also faster than the wet system as the cables are laid out directly below the flooring. The cables used here have been improved so less time is spent in installing the system.
Cable mats are the latest innovation consisting of cable already laid out on to a nylon mesh. With these mats, you can just roll them on the entire space allocated for the flooring. They are also maintenance free and easy to control.
How Under Floor Heating Began
It was the Romans who first used the under floor heating in public buildings and villas. During their time, hypocausts were used which involved ducts installed beneath the floor and flues built into the walls. The hot air and steam from fires that pass through these ducts provided heat to the rooms.
The Romansí version was more meticulous as it required special attention notably in fueling the fire and getting rid of the ashes. Usually, they used only small branches and twigs for fuel as logs burned very slowly sometimes even blocking the air passage.