DIY Tips For Installing Radiant Floor Heating
by Brian Whitehurst (7/2/2013)
When deciding which heating system is right for your home, you want to make sure you have checked out all your options. One of the best heating systems out there today is known as radiant floor heating. It is considered to be one of the best heating systems because no one will realize it’s there. There are no radiators, vents or dust-spewing ductwork throughout the home. A comfortable blanket of heat is evenly distributed throughout your home at all times.
“What is radiant floor heating?” you ask. Radiant heating systems supply heat directly to the floor panels or walls of a home. The heat then radiates up from the floor or out from the walls to warm up a room.
According to US Department of Energy, there are 3 types of radiant floor heating.
- radiant air floors
- electric radiant floors
- hot water radiant floors
The most cost effective way to install radiant heating in your home is to use the electric radiant flooring system.
An electric radiant system consists of thin heating cables, usually embedded in a mat. These thin cables are usually installed under ceramic tile- like in your bathroom or kitchen. This system is great for remodeling because the cables are thin enough that they don’t raise the level of the flooring. These systems don’t replace your main heating unit; instead they are controlled by their own thermostat.
Benefits to Radiant Floor heating:
- Comfort – Feet remain warm, head stays cool, the ideal heating curve.
- Efficiency – Hot air rises, but warmed floors keep the heat where we live.
- Air Quality – No dust or germs blown around the room.
- Design Freedom – Can’t hear it, can’t see it. Place furniture anywhere, it’s warm everywhere.
DIY Tips for electrical radiant flooring:
- Be sure to read our Watts Radiant Design/Installation Manual (3.5MB)
- A comprehensive manual covering Concrete Slab, Under Subfloor, Over Subfloor, Snow Melting, System Design and Installation.
- Be sure to make a scale drawing of the floor plan to identify “walking areas” and where the cable will run
- Be sure to keep cable wires away from cabinets, a tub, or shower enclosure.
- Be sure to consult a licensed electrician to hook up the new electrical circuit.
The US Department of Energy
This Old House Magazine
Tagged with: diy, tips, self install