Radiant Floor Heating
This system senses the temperature dropping and turns on before it is needed, ensuring appropriate time is given for the heat to radiate up to temperature before it gets too cold.
Normally, setpoint thermostats turn off and on when the temperture drop/raises a specified temperature (the setpoint). This is typically within 1-2 degrees of the desired temperature setting. This is fine for heating a room in the traditional way, but Radiant Floor Heating complicates things. After the thermostat is triggered there is usually a 1-2 degree drop in temperature in the room before it begins to heat up. Likewise, after the thermostat cancels the demand for heat, there is heat stored in the flooring that will continue to radiate warmth, causing an additional 1-2 degree increase. This makes for a 1-6 degree temperature swing within the room.
Radiant Floor Heating Thermostats are designed to work according to your room’s unique specifications, whether it be tile flooring, wood, concrete, carpeted or otherwise. The thermostat will find the appropriate cycle for the room, resulting in a system that turns on before the room gets cold and turns off before it gets hot.
Radiant floor heating is a method of introducing heat to your home or business through the floor where it will naturally move upward warming as it goes. Water circulates through a flexible and durable tubing installed under almost any type of flooring material – wood, tile, carpet. And because a radiant floor heating system is designed in zones, you have the luxury of changing temperatures for each room, depending on its use. This makes the system even more energy efficient because unoccupied or lower-use rooms (such as a guest bedroom or formal dining room) can be set to a lower temperature than rooms with greater use (like a kitchen, bathroom or basement).
If you are looking to install radiant floor heating in your new home or are looking to remodel your existing home, here are some general tips to follow.
- If comfort is your top priority, it is important to entrust a third-party certified design professional who can independently represent your interest over and above the interests of the builder, trades and suppliers. Seek out a designer who understands the integration of architecture, building enclosures, interior design and HVAC systems.
- Note that a design professional may or may not be the installing contractor. In the case of a separate installer, ensure the contractor is an experienced radiant installer — and check references!
- Be clear on what you expect from the radiant system — are you looking for warm floors or space heating, do you want it in your entire home or just specific areas, is lower energy costs or improved indoor environmental quality (IEQ) your main concern?
- What is your construction plan? Are you integrating into an existing frame? Can you accommodate construction changes for potential benefits? Are you using the best application based on your heating source?
- What is your heat source? Are you locked in or can you be flexible to coordinate with low-mass radiant potential?
- Do your research on the equipment. It is important to use brands that have continually demonstrated long-term market dominance. This will not only ensure a solid system but will also help with resale value.