With the winter season fast approaching, talk is sure to turn to the dropping temperatures and the raising energy costs. For those of you looking for a contemporary heating option that is efficient and effective, underfloor heating systems are a must-have but what are the basics behind the marvellous installation that allows you to feel heat right under your feet?
We explore the types of underfloor systems available and help homeowners everywhere to make those important decisions that will get their property warm and cosy just in time for the festive season.
The Advantages of Using Underfloor Heaters
As well as providing a consistent source of heat throughout the home, underfloor systems harness a number of other benefits for homeowners looking to create the ultimate cosy environment. This heating option is far more efficient than traditional radiators as it heats a room for a longer period at lower temperatures rather than racing to a maximum temperature to provide intense heat. Not only will this provide a more effective way to heat rooms within your home by creating a comfortable environment free from the cold spots and stuffiness imposed by radiators, it will also ease the pressure on your purse strings too.
The aesthetics of underfloor heaters is also a plus point especially in modern homes that wish to keep clutter to the bare minimum. Radiators can be clunky and unsightly, but underfloor heating is seamless and invisible to the naked eye meaning clean lines and contemporary décor remains unspoilt. Underfloor systems are also great for properties that are short on space.
What Types of Underfloor Systems are Available?
There are two main types of underfloor systems available, each of which offers an array of benefits for owners of residential and commercial properties. The first and most popular type of system is the hot water heater. The hot water or wet system is piped into you existing central heating system and pumps warm water into the network of plastic pipes laid underneath your floor during installation. The circulating warm water provides a consistent and cost effective source perfect for those chilly winter mornings and cool evenings throughout the year.
The second system is the electric mat or wire underfloor heater. The installation of this type involves the laying of mesh mats, which are connected before being linked to a thermostatic valve and power supply.
Which System is Right for Me?
Choosing between the hot water and wire systems can be a particularly difficult choice when considering an underfloor installation as each offers its own pros and cons. Hot water systems tend to be much more cost effective to run than electric mat systems, as these work with your existing central heating to reduce water and heating costs for good. However, electric systems are much cheaper to install. Electrically powered or wire systems cause less disruption to the structure of your floor as hot water underfloor systems much be installed onto a sub floor before the finishing surface is laid.
Where Should I Use Underfloor Systems?
Underfloor systems can be used pretty much anywhere in a new build property, however in existing properties they tend to be used primarily on the ground floor due to the disruption that installation (particularly when laying wet systems) can cause to the floor structure. Electric floor heating is more suited to existing structures as the mesh system is more discreet and thinner than the large plastic pipes found in wet systems.
The installation of underfloor systems is much easier than you may think so take advantage of this modern, convenient and ultimately cosy heating option.