What Is Radiant Floor Heating?
Although radiant floor heating has been traditionally associated with luxury homes in Washington, more new construction is incorporating this method of heating today. Radiant floor heating is usually created by installing either electrical wires or hot water pipes in the floor to generate warmth that then actually heats the objects and people in the room, rather than the air. This is a much more satisfying and effective type of heat.
Our team at G&G Heating and Air Conditioning wants you to be informed about the advantages, disadvantages, costs, and maintenance associated with radiant flooring so you can make the best decision for your family.
According to the US Department of Energy (DOE), radiant floor heating is one of the most energy-efficient means of heating a home. Consider that a conventional radiator must run upwards of 150 degrees in order to provide a comfortable room temperature.
Radiant floor heating only needs to reach about 84 degrees in order to bring the above room to average indoor temperatures. That means you’ll use less energy in the long run, saving you money.
In addition, radiant floor heating provides very evenly distributed heat in your Olympia home. You can easily eliminate hot and cold spots commonly found with other heating systems, since this type of heat actually warms the objects or people in the room instead. This means each room is as comfortable as another for all your family members.
Many other heating, ventilation, or air conditioning (HVAC) systems require regular maintenance to keep them running efficiently. Radiant floor heating, on the other hand, requires nearly no maintenance at all. Once the wiring or pipes are installed, heat simply rises from the floor without the need of motors, fans, blowers, or other equipment.
Most radiant floor systems are designed to last upwards of 30 years. If you incorporate installation with new construction or a renovation project, it’s also relatively simple to put in place.
Finally, radiant floor heating works with any floor covering, operates silently, and eliminates the need for unsightly equipment, appliances, and vents in your home. This frees you up to design and decorate without worrying it will interfere with your heating system. Eliminating the forced-air component of a conventional furnace also means you’ll stir up less dust and indoor air pollutants during operation.
Most of the disadvantages associated with radiant floor heating have to do with installing this system in an existing home. Obviously, if you need to tear up your floors to install radiant heat, this will be costly and inconvenient to daily life. In addition, adding something under an existing floor can raise the floor height, which may cause other issues in your home.
When you’re adding radiant floor heating to new construction or as part of a large home renovation project, you’ll still incur higher costs than other conventional heating systems. Electrical-based systems are less expensive than water-based systems. Installation time will also be longer than installing a furnace or other HVAC equipment.
Although radiant floor heating typically does not require much maintenance, any problems that do surface will be more difficult to repair as you’ll have to remove your flooring to reach electrical wires or hot water pipes.
Remember, radiant floor heating only helps you manage your indoor climate in cold weather. If you experience hot summers, you’ll need a separate cooling system. In conventional HVAC solutions, you can often use the same air duct system as well as some of the same equipment to heat and cool your home. This is not possible with radiant floor heating.
When it comes time to make a final decision on whether radiant floor heating is best for you, remember to weigh the pros and cons and consider your personal priorities. The beauty of this heating option is it can also be used to supplement other heating systems to add comfort to certain areas. For instance, radiant floor heating can be an excellent addition to a bathroom remodeling project where a little extra warmth is always welcomed.
Contact Us for All Your Heating Needs
For more information on radiant floor heating, call G&G Heating and Air Conditioning in Olympia, WA. Our team of professionals would be happy to answer any questions or share current radiant floor heating options available on the market today. Call 360-943-0964 or request service online.