Call Us Email Us Find Us

Underfloor Heating: A Brief Guide

If you are considering installing underfloor heating in your home, you are by no means alone. With the cost of electricity as it is today, many homeowners are looking at alternative methods of heating their homes.

There are a couple of alternatives such as solar panels and ground source heat pumps, but both of these are very expensive to install. Not only that, but there is some debate about just how effective and efficient ground source heat pumps are.

A radiator system, which is what most homes have installed, is actually not very efficient either. Certainly, it will heat the room, but at a cost. It will also mean that different parts of the room are warmer or colder than others.

Many new-build homes are having underfloor heating systems installed instead, while quite a number of people are looking at taking out their existing radiator system and installing underfloor heating as well. This can be a far more efficient way of heating the room, and also saving money on heating bills.

The Room Is Heated Evenly

What is so special about underfloor heating? Well, apart from anything else, it heats the room evenly because the system covers the whole of the floor area. Underfloor heating can use an electric heating cable which runs under the floor, or it can instead use heated water running through a pipe system.

Of course, an electric cable system uses electricity directly to heat the room, and that brings up the cost of the electricity again. In fact, the most efficient type of underfloor heating is the water system.

Water is heated (yes, using electricity, but it could also be ground source or air source heat) and is pumped through a pipe system with an underfloor heating manifold which has a mixing unit which helps to maintain the correct temperature for the whole system. The underfloor heating manifold is the hub of the system, connecting the supply and return lines.

The pipes are then encased in either concrete or a liquid screed, such as those we can supply at Top Mix. A liquid screed is by far the better option because it fully encases the heating pipes, whereas if you use a concrete mix there will be air pockets which mean that the system is not as effective.

Not only that, but our liquid screed has almost double the heat transfer ability of concrete. So, it is by far and away the best material to use in conjunction with underfloor heating because it uses less power to achieve the same room temperature. So, you have an evenly heated room, and it costs less to operate. What could be better?