Drafts got you down? If your goal is to achieve even, comfortable heat and warm floors, then you may want to look into installing a radiant heating system for your home.
Radiant heating systems are installed in or below the floor of your home, and distribute heat evenly and comfortably. The heating coils first warm up the floor, and then the heat rises gradually throughout the room, warming the air and all of the furnishings so that the entire interior becomes snug and toasty.
“Radiant heat holds many advantages over typical convective heating methods,” notes Daniel O’Brian, a tech team member here at SupplyHouse.com. “Radiant heats the whole room evenly, so there is no ‘cold at the floor – hot at the ceiling’ effect. It will even heat the surface of the objects in the room, greatly increasing comfort.”
“Because airflow is negligible in a radiant system, there is less heat loss due to drafts, and in general the thermostat can be set lower while remaining comfortable,” O’Brian continues. “On top of that, the water temperature required for a radiant system is much lower than traditional systems. A properly configured radiant system can save you big bucks on utilities.”
In addition to comfort, radiant heat is aesthetically pleasing, because all of the components are tucked away out of sight—there are no radiators, baseboard heaters or hot air returns in view. Radiant heat is also silent, eliminating much banging, whistling, creaking, popping, rattling and humming of conventional heating systems.
There are two primary types of radiant heating systems, hydronic and electric. Hydronic systems are the most common and use hot water passing through PEX tubing to heat a space. Electric radiant heat uses electric cables or mats to heat a space. Radiant heat can be installed in both new construction and in existing homes, and there are several different types of installations, depending on what type of home construction is used. Hydronic tubing can be installed in a cement foundation when it is being initially poured; or the tubing can be installed in an “over-pour” on an existing foundation. Tubing also can be installed in between the floor joists with or without plates; or it can be installed above the subfloor using a specialty product such as Quik Trak.
Radiant heat is also an energy-efficient option for many homeowners. Although the initial installation cost may be 10% to 25% more expensive than a conventional heating system, a properly designed and maintained radiant heating system can cost 25% to 50% less to run and maintain. Also, the life expectancy of a radiant heat system is typically 30 to 45 years, double or even triple the 10 to 25 year life expectancy of a traditional forced air furnace. Radiant heat also can increase the value of your home at resale, since these systems are considered a highly-desirable option among home buyers.
SupplyHouse.com offers a large selection of products and packages for installing radiant heating systems from the top manufacturers in the industry. For more information, including a radiant heat calculator, visit SupplyHouse.com.