Why Radiant Heat? An Interview with the Pex Supply Team.

Radiant Heat Reviewer is proud to be affiliated with Pex Supply. They specialize in radiant heat products such as PEX radiant tubing, electric radiant heat systems, thermostats, tankless water heaters, manifolds, boilers, and much more. Pex Supply also has a wide array of plumbing and heating supplies. They stock products from excellent manufacturers including Wirsbo, Suntouch, Honeywell, Bosch, Takagi, and Taco.

Their business focuses on helping do-it-yourself customers, plumbers, radiant heating specialists, electricians, and HVAC installers. We contacted the Pex Supply company to ask them some questions about Radiant Heat. Lauren O’ Toole, the Marketing Manager, addressed our questions on the products and services they provide. Here is a summary of our question and answer session.

David Tiefenthaler – Why do people choose to install radiant heat instead of traditional heated forced air?

Lauren O’ Toole – People choose to install radiant heat instead of traditional heated forced air for a variety of reasons, including energy efficiency, comfort, and ease of maintenance.

DT – What are the advantages of radiant floor heat compared to forced air?

LO – Radiant floor heat has several distinct advantages as opposed to forced heat: It (1) generates a more even flow of heat as it naturally radiates upwards from the floor, heating every object it touches, (2) provides warm and cozy comfort wherever you go—whether you are standing over the kitchen sink, relaxing on the living room floor, or brushing your teeth in the bathroom— and (3) reduces energy usage since you can set your home’s temperature 2-3 degrees lower than with a standard forced air system and feel just as comfortable.

DT – One of the services you offer is a Radiant Heat Materials Quote. Should this be the first step if you are considering radiant?

LO – Our Radiant Heat Materials Quotes provides you with a list of materials needed for your job (along with pricing), a Heat Loss Report (indicating heat loss per room, tubing spacing, and total heat loss), and Loop Mapping (length of each loop and which manifold each loop will be attached to). This is a great resource and an obvious first step when planning your radiant heat project.

DT – You also can request a materials quote and a Loop Cad. Can you explain what a “Loop Cad” is and what information a customer has to provide to get an accurate assessment of their needs?

LO – A Loop Cad Drawing shows the tubing layout of your space with loops drawn to manifold locations. Think of it as a map that shows you exactly how to plan out your radiant heat project. The design indicates the number of loops, the loop length, and the amount of tubing required. You can request a Radiant Heat Quote that includes both the Radiant Heat Materials Quote and the Loop Cad Drawing, or you can request one with just the Radiant Heat Materials Quote. Both are great options when planning your radiant heat project. To only request a Radiant Heat Materials Quote, fill out the Radiant Heat Quote and fax or e-mail it to PexSupply. To request both a Radiant Heat Materials Quote and a Loop Cad Drawing, fax or e-mail the completed Radiant Heat Quote form and e-mail a copy of the floor plan for your project (in .DWG file format) to PexSupply.

DT – Are there any other levels of support Pex Supply offers for people who purchase materials from you?

LO – Don’t know if you should use PEX-A, PEX-B, or PEX-C? Unsure of what size pump your system needs? The PexSupply Staff is prepared with answers to all of your questions. Whether you need a recommendation on which fitting or brand to choose or if you have questions about installation, our staff is ready to help you make the right choices. We offer a huge selection of products and can get almost anything you need that is not found on our site. Our educated customer service staff will help you understand your choices and will contact the manufacturer for those difficult questions. We also honor all manufacturer warranties and, in the case of any issue, will contact the manufacturer and arrange for a replacement, if necessary.

DT – What do most do-it-yourselfers purchase from Pex Supply?

LO – Some of the most common products Do-It-Yourselfers purchase from PexSupply are the HydroPEX Crimp-All Combo Tool Kit (part #: CRIMPTOOL), HydroPEX PEX Ratchet Clamp Tool (part #: CLAMPTOOL), radiant heat packages, PEX plumbing packages, SharkBite fittings, PEX cutters, PEX tubing uncoilers, and the Radiant Heat Quote. Don’t forget to visit the Resource Center on www.pexsupply.com and check out the Video Library to learn more about using these popular tools.

DT – Is installing radiant heat throughout a whole home too big a job for an inexperienced do-it-yourselfer?

LO – A Do-It-Yourselfer with no experience working with PEX should be very careful when thinking about taking on a radiant heat job. Radiant heat jobs are appropriate for new constructions or major floor renovations and it is absolutely critical that all the necessary steps are taken during installation. Even with some PEX experience, we recommend that, at the very least, you still get a radiant heat quote.

DT – Let’s say I bought all the materials for my home, but I am having trouble installing it. What suggestions do you have for me to find and hire a qualified person for helping me finish the project?

LO – PexSupply is currently working on creating a contractor directory to assist you in finding and hiring someone qualified to help you do the job. Check back soon for this feature!

DT – Your company offers electric and hydronic radiant heat materials. What situation is best for electric radiant floor heat, and when is hydronic the way to go?

LO - Electric radiant floor heat is appropriate where there is no heater to heat the water needed in a hydronic system.

DT – I read through your list of testimonials on the site. Many of the messages posted were repeat customers. Is a lot of your business from repeat customers?

LO – A large portion of our business comes from repeat customers. That is why we are constantly implementing new tools and technology to make the site more user-friendly for frequent shoppers. These improvements include our “Re-Order Pad”, which allows returning customers to view past orders and then place new orders directly from that list.

DT – Many individuals are still skeptical about buying any products, let alone radiant heat supplies through the internet. What can your company do to make sure a new customer gets exactly what they need?

LO - Shopping at PexSupply is a unique experience for the customer. Browse through manuals, high-quality images, and informative videos to learn more about a product. We offer free shipping on all orders over $300 (as well as select items under $300), fast shipping on all orders, technical support, and we honor manufacturer warranties. Also, our secured check-out process ensures that all of your information remains safe.

DT - Finding excellent radiant heat products locally can be hard to do. Is this part of the reason your business is successful?

LO - Absolutely. Even if you were able to find these products locally, you may end up searching elsewhere for the correct fitting type or the necessary tubing sizes. On the other hand, PexSupply’s one-stop shopping experience, complete with customer support and a large selection, allows you to find everything you need in one place. Best of all, PexSupply can be anywhere you are—just place your order online or over the telephone and we will make sure it gets to you as quickly as possible.

DT – Let’s say I’m not quite ready to invest in a radiant heat system quite yet. What should I do to learn more about this type of heating system, so that when I do build a new home, or remodel my current home, I am more prepared?

LO – Conduct some research to inform yourself of the benefits of radiant heat. Pex Supply offers excellent resources to help you learn more: Go to the check out the Resource Center on www.pexsupply.com and visit the PexSupply video channel on YouTube.

DT – Thank you very much for your time Lauren. Radiant Heat Reviewer is happy to be affiliated with Pex Supply, and we hope to educate more and more people about how wonderful and comfortable a radiant heat system really is.

[ Related Link at Pex Supply - Your one-stop Radiant Heat shop ]

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