Investing into underfloor heating is a great method of heating a room without radiators or taking the coldness from a bathroom floor. They are a modern and high-spec feature that can be installed in pretty much every home.
The most common areas to install underfloor heating is the bathroom, kitchen, living room and the hallway. Installing it in every room may be a great option but it can be very expensive and messy.
Although you can install it yourself, a heating engineer would be the best option. The risk of an incorrect installation may result in all the flooring laid on top needing to be removed.
Water vs Electric Systems
Underfloor heating can be achieved using an electric or water based system where both use radiant heat technology. The electric underfloor heating is available as a heated mat or cable based system, which converts energy into radiant heat. Water systems make use of the boiler through pipes that are laid within the floors finish.
Electric systems are the most popular because the water based alternatives requires more space for the pipes, which can be more complex to install. With the use of heated mats, even a confident DIY’er can install electric underfloor heating. However, for peace of mind, we advise that you have a professional check over the system before you lay new flooring.
In terms of the costs involved, electric systems are often much cheaper to buy and have installed. However, the water based alternative is cheaper to run and is often more efficient.
What Boiler for Water Systems
There isn’t any limitations to the type of boiler that you can use with water underfloor heating. The system connects to the heating via a manifold mechanism, which links up to your boiler. If you are using a water based system, you will want to ensure you have your boiler service more regularly to avoid inefficiency of the underfloor heating.
Which Flooring Works Best?
Although all flooring will work perfectly fine with underfloor heating, certain types have the slight edge. For example, stone is a natural heat conductor, which means it will feel the warmth more quickly and retain the heat.
If you choose to use real wood flooring, you will want to check the manufacturers guidelines with regards to the temperature. Certain types of wood may begin to shrink or warp if the moisture content within the wood it too high. Engineered wood or laminate will not have this issue but you will want to ensure you have the right thickness.