Underfloor Heating Essential Guide Part 1
Have you thought of different ways to heat your home? Without forcing it on you Underfloor heating (UFH) may be the solution for you. As well as an keeping your feet warm during the cold winter mornings, it is a superb space-saver as well as an energy-efficient way to warm up your house/work space.
So why choose underfloor heating?
There are numerous benefits of installing underfloor heating:
No radiator will ever spoil clean lines of a room again and space can be saved by freeing up a wall which would otherwise need to be committed for a radiator.
Underfloor heating is also an exceptionally efficient way to warm any room and gives a much more natural heat than radiators, stoves or traditional solid-fuel fires. The heat is emitted in a very gentle and somewhat soothing way. There are no cold spots and because most of the heat is concentrated in the lower part of the room, virtually no heat is wasted.
Types of underfloor heating
Let’s start with hot-water (or wet) systems
Wet systems basically utilise the warm water from your central heating system. The water is pumped through plastic pipes (from a central pump) that are laid on to a sub floor, this is installed before the new final surface is installed.
This type of underfloor heating also reduces water-heating costs this is because it uses water at a lower temperature than standard radiators (about 40°C – 65°C which gives a floor temperature of between 23°C and 32°C).
Electric mat (or wire) systems
Electric systems have cables which are fixed to open-weave mesh mats. The mats or rolls are laid out on the floor, connected together (if required) and are then linked up to the thermostat which is powered via the mains power supply.
In general, the electrical underfloor heating is easier to install as you do not need to lose as much ceiling height – in some cases as little as 8 mm is used below a laminate heating system.
Where to use underfloor heating
Underfloor heating is generally used in ground-floor rooms but, in reality, there’s a system to suit any floor construction.
Wet systems are mostly installed where it is possible to lift up floors or where new floors are being constructed, so it is likely to suit new conservatories, extensions and new open-plan living areas.
Electric underfloor heating is more suitable for existing rooms due to the electrical mesh system is flatter than a wet system so there is not as much requirement for floor heights to be adjusted to accommodate it.