Underfloor heating system: 6 questions to ask first
As we get closer to winter, running an underfloor heating system may be the cheapest way to heat up your home. But there are lots more advantages, including better heating in your rooms, a smaller carbon footprint and no unsightly radiators on the walls. You can heat your home efficiently with lower level heat that spreads throughout the room. It’s cosy, modern and very, very functional.
There are two main types of underfloor heating:
- Wet Underfloor Heating
Electric underfloor heating is best for smaller, tiled spaces like bathrooms or kitchens, while wet systems are more suited to larger spaces – they have a large section of pipes that hold water that will be heated by your boiler when you switch it on and off. If you find yourself thinking of changing your heating system, explore your options to find out if an underfloor heating system would be better suited to your home instead of a central heating system that uses radiators to emit heat generated by your boiler.
In the meantime, we’ve created a list of questions to ask yourself before you install an underfloor heating system:
How many rooms are you going for? The truth is, if you live in a small flat in the middle of the city and you are only planning to have underfloor heating installed in one room, it may not be the most cost-effective choice. The planning, materials and labour involved simply make underfloor heating systems better suited to larger rooms, large projects or whole house refurbishments. For a small flat or single room, it’s cheaper to install a radiator.
Are you prepared for a big project? You will need to take up all the flooring in the rooms you’re having fitted. You will also need to work out the finished floor height once all the layers are in place, if the installation is happening in a kitchen, the whole kitchen will need to be refitted as generally all rooms will be stripped right back to joists and concrete. Installations like this are best left until they’re part of a much larger project e.g a kitchen refurb or new bathroom installation.
Are you prepared for unforeseen circumstances? As with all building projects, you might start the work and discover problems you didn’t account for. You may encounter leaky pipes, water damage to your wooden floors etc. Depending on the size of your property, how many rooms you’re having fitted with the new heating system and whether you’ve had electric or wet underfloor heating installed, you could find that you have to install a new boiler to handle new capacity. Make sure you have a contingency for such things that do come up.
What type of floor do you have? Underfloor heating systems work best in homes where the floor materials are good conductors of heat. The heat circulating in a tiled bathroom or kitchen will be better than that in a living room with wooden floors. Generally, it’s advised that you don’t have wooden flooring in rooms where you intend to generate heat from the floor, as wood is naturally a bad conductor of heat.
What are the Benefits and Disadvantages?
|Cheaper to run||Expensive to fit|
|Even heat spread out across the room, no cold spots||Lots of work - a project could take up to a month|
|No ugly radiators||Your current boiler may be inefficient, and need to be upgraded|
|You can control each room individually|
|Limited sludge and corrosion|
Have you checked reviews? Remember that cheap isn’t always best. Always make sure you check your installer’s reviews on Google, Facebook and Checkatrade to make sure that you can trust them with such a big project.
We hope our tips for you have been helpful, to find out more about WPJ Heating, visit our website here.