Ottawa Hydronic Heating Services
Hydronic radiant floor heating is a fairly common request from clients but it isn’t always practical for their needs. The question is reliant on whether or not the installation of hydronic radiant flooring will offset the initial cost of installation. To determine whether or not hydronic radiant floor heating makes sense for your new home, make informed decisions by understanding exactly what it is and the most effective way to install it.
What is Hydronic Radiant Flooring?
The most commonly found type of radiant floor heating system is the hydronic system. A hydronic radiant floor is made of plastic PEX tubes that carry heated water or glycol to different zones of the home or buildings structure. The tubes when heated radiate heat throughout the zone. This process provides an even and consistent temperature throughout the heated zone.
Hydronic radiant flooring is very versatile and can be installed on top of any type of flooring. The type of flooring installed on top of the hydronic radiant flooring does have an impact on effectively heating the area. For example, tile or finished concrete slabs are effective conductors of heat compared to hardwood or carpet. The reason behind this is because wood flooring and thick carpet acts as an insulation blanket which results in the restriction of heat flow.
Hydronic Radiant Floor Heating Advantages include:
- Energy Efficiency – At ideal temperatures the water and concrete retain heat for an extended periods of time. Unlike conventional heaters that use air flow and gas to heat areas which aren’t heat retainers. This process proves that hydronic radiant flooring saves in heavy heating costs.
- Room Function – Hydronic radiant floor tubing is within the floor assembly making it possible to heat every inch of the room rather than having a ventilation system with ducts or baseboard heaters.
- Silence – The system uses a circulator pump which moves the water through the PEX tubes silently. The only noise generate from the hydronic radiant flooring system comes from the heat source. This heat source is usually located either outside or in a separate utility room.
- Dust Particles – Without having to use air ducts to move air around, dust particles in the air don’t get moved around by generated air flow. This can be beneficial to people with allergies to dust and dander.
- Controlled Zones – Hydronic radiant flooring can be controlled by zones. Each zone can be controlled separately. For the most part radiant floors are installed in high traffic areas or areas with the coldest floors. This includes, tiled surfaces such as bathrooms and kitchens, and living rooms. Zones are also placed by areas of higher solar gain. Where there is a higher solar gain on one side of the house that area will have a separate zone.
- Multiple Energy Sources – Hydronic Radiant Floors are compatible with a number of different heat sources. These sources include boilers heated with electricity, gas, oil, or wood, a ground-source heat pump, and even solar hot water panels. The most common choice of heat source is boiler because of their low cost and easy installation. Since everyone is going green, solar power is becoming a popular choice as well.
Even though it has a higher installation cost than conventional forced air mechanical systems, radiant floor heating can be a great comfort if used and installed properly. For further information contact Ottawa Concrete Floors or call (613)-417-1930 for a free quote today.