Underfloor heating in properties, especially in new-builds and new developments is an increasing trend. The luxurious feeling of your toes warming up from the floor sounds appealing but maybe be too costly to consider for a ‘normal consumer’ on a small budget. We decided to look deeper into the benefits of underfloor heating; what makes it more appealing than conventional radiator heating systems? Is it worth of investing in?
We asked people who have installed underfloor heating in their property to give us their arguments on why underfloor heating should be something to consider when renovating or building a new home. The most common answer was also the most obvious: Underfloor heating feels more cosy and warmer than radiators in the middle of winter. Let’s look at other aspects that were mentioned to demonstrate that installing underfloor heating should be considered by anyone looking to improve their home. Is underfloor heating at home more of a desirable than an essential?
1. It gets warm, and quick
There are two types of underfloor heating systems; warm water systems (known as hydronic or wet) that heat the floor with hot water streaming through water pipes, or electrical underfloor heating where wires are installed beneath the floor to heat the floor up. Both systems provide comfortable radiant heat from the floor for a lifetime. Water based systems take more time to reach the desired temperature, but cost less to run than electric underfloor heating systems. The latter gets to the desired temperature in under 20 minutes. Conventional radiators are far less efficient because they heat the air around them initially, leaving any space away from the radiator cold, whereas underfloor heating heats the floor evenly across the whole room through radiant heat, heating objects rather than air. Finally underfloor heating heats the entire room far quicker than radiators.
2. Decorating heaven
The thing with radiators is that they take up wall space. Even the slimmest and most efficient radiators on the planet still take up some space on the wall, and if you fit the guards too, you’re looking at a solution that essentially makes your rooms slightly smaller. You don't want this. Instead, and as a clear alternative, underfloor heating throughout the room means that you are able to claim that space back. No longer will the radiators eat up the inches; on the contrary, you will have more room to enjoy every inch of your space. The next time you look at your walls and wish you could give them an entirely new look, think about the possibility of underfloor heating. With the radiators gone, you have complete freedom to make those walls shine, take the opportunity to introduce bold colours and finally get that ‘feature’ wall you always wanted. It’s all possible with underfloor heating.
3. Your style
Your home is your own, and you've spent years making it so. Your style shouldn't suffer just because you’ve decided to bring in some underfloor heating. Whether it’s laminate, carpet or wood, underfloor heating seamlessly integrates, making your floor perfectly warm and attractive no matter what it is made of. The large range of different underfloor heating systems suited for every floor type allows you to choose the floor finish of your dreams combined with the most efficient floor heater underneath.
4. Clean and clear
Underfloor heating does an amazing job of ensuring that the air in your rooms is not stuffy. The air is not overheated, which can happen when you have conventional radiators fitted. Not overheating the air makes it clearer, thus less stuffy. It’s a small feature in a way, but it adds to the overall impact. Furthermore, radiators tend to absorb dust and clutter, being an unwelcome inconvenience to a person suffering from allergies. Large amounts of dust and clutter also sensitises to other breathing problems such as hayfever. Underfloor heating is a desired heater for people needing an alternative heating system.
When safety comes up, the concern with radiators are those metallic edges that can mean that the younger members of your household could find themselves at the wrong end of something sharp. Underfloor heating, for obvious reasons, doesn't have this problem. It’s invisible and tucked away.
6. Easy to install
Electric underfloor heaters are easy to install beneath the floor. What’s more, for people with smaller budgets, underfloor heating can be laid down in the floor construction as a DIY project. Warmup provides a pressure sensitive, adhesive StickyMat solution with the electric wire already applied to it. Laying down an underfloor heating with StickyMat ensures a 35% faster installation speed compared to similar products. Although electric underfloor heating is a great DIY project for an advanced DIY practitioner, it is still recommended to call over an electrician to make a test that the resistance in the wires is sound and everything works correctly.
7. Less costly
Radiators heat the air, pure and simple. This can often mean that you end up opening the window above them to bring in some fresh air to the room. This is a loss of energy and a waste of your money in expensive energy bills. Underfloor heating simply heats the floor, which means that you can enjoy the same levels of warmth that a radiator brings, but with the air not feeling crowded and pressured. Higher heating costs that come with conventional radiators are also due to their extremely high temperature, usually between 65-75°C. Underfloor heating on the contrary does not have to be heated any higher than 29°C, or, in some cases an even lower 27°C for delicate floor finishes, to warm you up. Therefore, underfloor heating does not use much energy, bringing your heating bills down.
8. Heat, at it’s best
Underfloor heating warms a room in a rather unique way. You may be used to radiators heating the air but underfloor heating warms from the ground up. This is less wasteful, it makes sure that you get more for your money, and ensure an all-round more pleasurable heating experience. The reason; when a radiator heats up, the heat moves along the walls upwards. The thermal current of hot air cools as it rises and subsequently drops. This creates an air cycle, meaning that you can feel the hot temperature reflecting from the radiator when close to the radiator or on the other side of the room due to the air cycles created by thermal currents. However, in the middle or on other sides of the room, the temperature remains cool and you can physically feel cold spots. Underfloor heating on the contrary warms up evenly across the room leaving no cold spots.
9. No Maintenance
This may bring us to our last point. Harping on about the gentle warmth that the underfloor factor brings seems easy, but the best reason is without questions the long-term cost savings. Underfloor heating, when installed correctly, doesn’t need any maintenance for a lifetime. Once the heater has been laid down in the floor construction underneath the floor, it will be up and running for years to come. For people with long-term financial thinking, the investment pays itself back. Not to mention the energy savings and environmentally sustainable choice the underfloor heating makes as discussed previously. The ‘ground up’ effect of heat simply makes it more efficient. The room is heated more effectively and allows you to save money every year on your heating bills. Underfloor heating can spare you up to 15% on your heating bills.
So there you have it. Nine reasons why underfloor heating should really be your next choice when it comes to home improvements.
If you’re considering getting the system, get a quote for underfloor heating.