Water Underfloor Heating Systems
If you are thinking of having water underfloor heating installed in your home or office, it’s worth finding out a few things first. You need to know how it works, how much it costs to install and how the system is installed.
This guide will give you low down on everything you need to know about water underfloor heating systems.
What is Water Underfloor Heating?
Water underfloor heating, in one form or another, has been around since 5,000 BC. The first modern underfloor heating using water pipes was first installed in 1960 by an NRC researcher in Canada.
Modern water underfloor heating, also known as radiant heating, is an economical way to heat your home. It uses pipes just underneath the floor surface to flow hot water heated by a boiler system. As underfloor heating covers the entire floor space, the water does not need to be as hot as the water that flows into the radiators as it is more evenly distributed. Water underfloor heating also has the advantage of cooling your home during hot weather. When very cold water is passed through the pipes, it will cool the floor. This means you can actually use the system to cool your home down, too.
Water underfloor heating is generally associated with luxury hotels and is mostly installed in new build homes. If wet systems are installed in existing properties, some height can be lost from your rooms as the floor may need to be raised if there is not sufficient space under the current flooring for the pipes to fit under.
How is it Installed?
Water underfloor heating (wet system) is installed by plumbing lengths of pipes into a compatible boiler. A thermostat is then wired into your mains electric so that the temperature can be controlled. The best floor for this type of heating is stone or tile, although carpet floor is also suitable if the carpet is not too thick (no more than 1.5 tog).
The process of installing water underfloor heating is very complex and requires a professional installer. Writing for Which?, Liz Ransome-Cooker explains:
“Unlike using ready-to-roll electric underfloor mats – which confident DIYers could lay themselves – a water underfloor system should ideally be installed by a professional. This is because it’s a more complex process, with plumbing connections and tests that need to be carried out.”
How Much does it Cost?
Installing water underfloor heating into your home will insure your boiler is used to its full potential. Unlike radiators, underfloor heating systems have low running costs.
Wet system heating is very economical and distributes heat evenly. Radiators only heat up the air around them, whereas underfloor heating will warm the whole area so do not need to run at a high temperature saving you money. Wet systems eliminate the need for radiators which will free up space in your home, giving you the advantage of utilising your floor space within your home.
The cost of installation will depend on the size of your home or room, the kind of system being used, and the groundwork required.