Under Floor Heating
Anybody got some sound experience of Under Floor Heating?
Just about to have a large extension on my house and I want to put UFH in it. Two decisions I need to make are
1) Gas or electricity
2) UFH Brand
Personally I favour electricity as I think the routing pipes to switch between ‘normal house radiators’ and UHF will mean a big (bigish) box somewhere in the extension. And I think that electricity will be more controllable.
Having looked on the net there are loads of electrical UHF suppliers who all recon they are the best. So anyone recommend a brand?
I would say Los that as for the actual product, there wouldn't be a lot of difference between manufacturers. As long as whatever you're supplied with is British Standard that would be fine. If you're employing someone to supply and fit, it's likely that all such companies purchase from the same or similair sources anyway.
Originally Posted by LosEndos
Just do the usual checks that everybody tells you to do anyway - check if the contractor can supply references and all that sort of thing.
I don't have experience of UFH myself, so i'm not sure whether or not electricity would be more controllable. However, I would have thought though, that if you go for electric that's going to consume a lot of juice. I would say water would be more economical. All depends on your particular situation though which would affect the cost of installation. I would get quotes for both and then have a think about it.
Of course the other thing to bear in mind is that rads are more or less instant heat, whereas UFH takes a few hours to heat up. That's OK in the winter when it's cold all the time and you can have it running at a constant temperature, but this time of the year when you don't know whether it is going to be hot or cold (or sunlight blocked by volcanic dust) you will probably have to plan ahead a bit more!
Electric underfloor heating will have big fuel costs - since you'll very likely have earth moving plant on site (a big chunk of the installation cost) at the time of construction of the extension, you might like to look at the idea of putting in a heat exchanger under the garden!! This, when I looked into it, would save around 60% of your electricity costs (3kW of heat returned for each 1kWof electricity consumed), and works all year round no matter the weather.
Ground source heat pumps - Heat pumps & ground loops - Energy Saving Trust
A downside would be the bigger upfront cost, and the need to find somewhere to site the compressor and associated gubbins, since you've mentioned space as a problem.
Aloso, this is of course a wet system, rather than pure electric heating!
Thanks for commenting.
Although rads do themselves get hot very quickly a lot of the heat goes up to the ceiling in convection and only close items benefit from the radiated heat
Modern UFH heats up much quicker now as is laid on an insulating base rather than the concrete floor so all of the heat goes up rather than down.
We are also putting in a wood burner to provide the bulk of the heat for when it is cold.
Ooooh, CL. Good idea. Will look into that!
Ah yeah good point CountryLad. It's worth bearing in mind that hire of Plant on site is a big chunk of cost and it may be worth concentrating some of your bartering efforts on that. If you're using a contracter to install, you could ask them what cost they have in for the plant. Now, they might be a bit funny about telling you that and they may not, but you have a legitimate reason for asking since there is a possibility that you might be able to go and negotiate the plant hire from somewhere cheaper. Of course, the contractor may be a regular customer of a plant supplier so they may have a good deal in place, but on the other hand due to the recent slump in construction a lot of plant suppliers have had machinery stood in their yards for ages not earning any money, so may be happy to negotiate with you.
Originally Posted by CountryLad
I'd like UFH I reckon. I hate radiators.
Give me empty walls any day.
But does it buuger up your carpet or laminate flooring?
Not from what I have read...