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and with that title comes some great projects!
Check our a great home that we had the pleasure to be involved with installing Underfloor Heating.
Luxurious, silent & discrete
Underfloor heating is the most luxurious form of heating as radiant heat is evenly distributed throughout the room; wall to wall; floor to ceiling.
Hard floor surfaces are warm to the touch – this is very important with increased numbers of new houses being built with concrete floor surfaces And the system is totally hidden from view and takes up no wall space – very important to many people, especially where large glazed areas mean there is little or no wall space.
With no air being blown around it is totally silent. The heat can be provided by specially designed air to water heat pumps, or by boilers fuelled by gas, diesel or wood.
How does underfloor heating work?
The heat source: A boiler or heat pump supplies heat to the system by heating the water that is pumped through it.
Primary pipework carries the heat from the heat source to the manifold(s). Manifolds distribute the heat to the underfloor pipe loops.
Pipe loops, with hot water flowing through them, heat the floor, typically at least 1 loop for every 20m2 of heated floor area.
Controller switches the heat source on and off, and directs the heat to where it is needed to heat the rooms to the desired temperature.
Incorporating underfloor into a radiator system
If a system is mostly radiators it is possible to have a small area of underfloor running through a return temperature limiting valve. This can cover about 15m2 per valve. This is a specifically designed thermostatic valve that allows the floor to be heated via higher temperature water but limits how hot it can get.
Incorporating radiators into an underfloor system
Radiators and underfloor can be and are often used in the same system. Usually with the living areas kitchen and bathrooms, (hard floor areas) in underfloor, and the bedrooms with radiators. This is easy to accomplish with a boiler as it can supply high temperature water to the radiators, and heat the floor via and thermostatic valve to reduce the temperature of the water going into the floor. If a heat pump is used the radiators will have to be sized to run at a lower temperature, or two heat pumps used, one for the underfloor and a high temperature model for the radiators.
Runs on your preferred fuel, no matter where you are
Underfloor heating can use heat pumps or boilers for supplying heat. Often the heat source is determined by the availability of fuels in the area. Heat pumps work very efficiently and have low running costs at the lower operating temperatures of underfloor, typically 40°C, compared to radiators, typically 70°C. High efficiency condensing boilers also run more efficiently at lower operating temperatures. Unless a Baxi gas boiler is used, which has a special underfloor setting, a mixing valve is needed to reduce the temperature of the water going into the floor
Any floor covering on top of the heated part of the floor acts as a barrier to the heat flowing from the floor into the room. Thicker floor coverings such as carpet can be used, but the heating system has to be run at a higher temperature to get the required heat output, which is less efficient if a heat pump is used. If the operating temperature has to be raised just for one room, the whole house will have to run at a higher temperature which increases running costs if a single heat pump is used. A more expensive alternative is to use multiple heat pumps running at different temperatures. This is sometimes used for larger homes; or use supplementary heating in hard to heat rooms
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