Radiant Floor Heating Advantages - Five Benefits of Radiant Heat
What are all the radiant floor heating advantages. Quite simply, radiant floor heat is is the world of warm floors and rooms even in the coldest of winter. It is the world of silent warmth, without the clunky burping radiators and hum of HVAC systems. It is the world of pollen- and dust mite-free indoor environments, snow-free driveways, stable temperatures, and less power consumption to boot. In short, it is a world of comfortable home environment at less cost.
What is radiant floor heating?
Essentially, radiant floor heat involves heating the floor’s under layer to keep it warm and, by extension, the room temperature as well. The radiant heating system is usually sandwiched between the subfloor and top layer, either in the form of electric nichrome wires or hot water tubes called PEX. In the first system, the high resistance of the nickel-chrome wires generates heat enough to warm the floor as well, and eventually the area above it. This same effect is also achieved using PEX tubes where hot water from a boiler is run. Radiant floor heating advantages were realized a long time ago.
Actually, radiant floor heating is not a new concept: the ancient Romans used fire below their floors. The Koreans built-in ducts under their floors where they can channel flue heat prior to releasing it via a chimney. In a different tack, the Chinese –and other peoples-- of old slept on clay hearths intentionally made flat and wide for the purpose, comfortably making great use of the hearth’s residual heat. They all took advantage of the benefits of radiant floor heating.
Five Radiant Floor Heating Advantages
Warm comfort. While this is a very subjective term, no one can argue that a warm room in winter is comfortable. Since warm air rises, it follows that the warmth of the floor generated by the radiant floor heating system will move upward, heating the space above and finally, given enough time, the whole room. In effect, the room itself becomes a low-warmth ‘oven’ where everyone can move in comfort, even walk barefoot. It is like having a sunlit room in summer, in winter.
Savings in electricity. When the concrete floor is warmed, it stays warm for a longer time than when only the air within the room is warmed, as done by ordinary HVAC forced-air systems. Thus power may be turned on and off, depending on the thermostat setting. Radiant floor heating may even be selective in more sophisticated systems, heat being turned off in unneeded spaces or rooms. This alone can save power and thus electric consumption.
With systems that use solar power to heat the water circulating within the radiant floor heating system used, the energy savings is, needless to say, enormous.Finally, radiant floor heating systems normally use lower water temperatures than other water heating systems, especially with low-volume heaters run only when necessary to keep the room temperature at optimum.
Better air quality indoors. Radiant floor heating advantages sometimes are necessary for a certain situation. If you have allergies, radiant heat could be a godsend. Radiant floor heat does not depend on air sucked in like that of standard HVAC systems. So no ---or much less--- stray pollen, dust mites, polluted air, floating air particles and such are made to circulate within the room. And, the absence of hot surfaces precludes the burning of dust particles that can create poisonous chemicals or particulates in the space. This is vital to people with allergies and extremely low tolerance for inhaled toxic substances.
Peace and quiet. In radiant floor heating systems that use water as heating element, only the very low-volume whirr of the boiler’s cooling fans and maybe the sound of water circulating in the pump would be heard. There are no gurgles from the water running through metal pipes as in ordinary radiators, no clanking fan noises nor creaks from expanding or contracting materials. The system works in silent mode every time.
And naturally, in electricity-based radiant floor heating system, you will not hear any sound at all.
Very low maintenance needs. Water radiant floor heating systems comprise essentially of a boiler and a network of plastic tubing where the water circulates to heat the floor. There are virtually many no moving parts anywhere except for the pump and its cooling fan. The boiler lasts for many years, while the plastic tubing is practically indestructible, being embedded in the concrete or tile floor, immobile and designed to run warm water or liquid chemicals through it. Radiant floor heating advantages also occur when using electric. You can install a small system just for a tiled bathroom.