More Information on Heating and Underfloor Heating Products:
Our plumbing, heating and underfloor heating systems are manufactured by Maincor, based in Germany who supply and manufacture specialist pipe products, as well as pipe systems for plumbing, heating, underfloor heating for boiler and white goods manufacturers. They specialise in pipes solutions and underfloor heating, using primarily multi layer composite pipe (MLCP) and they also have a PE-RT Product alternative available.
Maincor products and systems possess the required UK WRAS approvals and many have international approvals as well. Maincor are a member of BEAMA (British Electrotechnical and Allied Manufacturers Association) and work with CIBSE (Chartered Institution of Building Sevice Engineers), BSRIA (Building Services Research and Information Association), IDHEE (Institute of Domestic Heating & Environmental Engineers) and CIPHE (Chartered Institute of Plumbing Engineers).
Underfloor heating can be either a method which pumps warm water through piping under the floor (a 'wet' system) or electrical coils positioned beneath the floor (a 'dry' system). Taking advantage of this fundamental principle that heat rises, warmth from under the floor is radiated into the area.
Underfloor heating is the earliest type of heating -- the Romans used a kind of underfloor heating called hypocausts, which heated buildings and baths. Today's kind of underfloor heating is common in Northern Europe, also gaining popularity in the UK.
What is the Cost Difference?
A wet underfloor heating system will cost about a third more than a standard system, on average. This consists of the fact that more insulation is likely to be inserted beneath the pipework. In case the products are installed at the time of building or renovation, its setup costs will be minimised. Electric underfloor heating systems generally cost less to set up, but is more expensive to run. Double storage underfloor heaters involve two sets of pipes along with additional heavy screed, so that they can gain the majority of their running energy from more economical nighttime tariffs. This is not a cost-effective kind of heating.
Will Underfloor Heating be OK In My Home?
An underfloor heating system is ideal for buildings which are well insulated. This leaves underfloor heating perfect for heating from heating pumps. As a very low temperature kind of heating, underfloor heating is most effective when kept on continuously. It's slower to respond than traditional radiators, so it isn't suitable for irregular heating.
Some houses have underfloor heating in a main ground floor room and smaller intermittent heaters at other chambers. Commercial buildings may see more efficiency gains compared to houses, due to having a bigger volume of continual occupancy.
Who Will I Need To Install My System?
For an underfloor heating apparatus, unless you are very handy with DIY, you will likely want a professional with experience to do the setup. You may expect to cover for the setup than you would for new radiators. Installation should take a few days, based on the floor space, but screed may take up to three weeks to dry.
Will I Need a New Boiler?
To get a gas powered system, it's ideal to have a condensing boiler, that can be most effective for heating with low temperatures as for example as underfloor heating. Most new boilers are condensing. Underfloor heating can also be connected to a thermal store, and works nicely with heat pumps.
What Type of Flooring Will I Need?
When installing with timber, you'll have to keep in mind that wood will expand and contract with changes in heat and moisture over stone or ceramic tiles will. This is commonly addressed by floating wood boards on a layer of polythene foam that allows subtle movement. Depending on the kind of wood floor, it may also be a less powerful heat conductor.
Nevertheless, timber floors are more responsive, so can be ideal where there are more sporadic heating needs. Carpet insulates, which can be very good for stopping heat loss in the ground, but bad for letting heat from underfloor heating in. But underfloor heating will work efficiently with carpeting. You want to be familiar with combined tog value of the carpet and underlay, which ought to be a maximum of 2.5 and ideally lower.
Will I Need Screed?
Underfloor heating systems are generally installed with a layer of screed on top to make a flat surface that the flooring is put onto. Suspended floors can have underfloor heating added without screed. And even without suspended flooring, it is possible to set up without any screed (a 'ironic' installation, not to be confused with an electric system) with screed replacement tiles, that can be fixed together so as to make a level, floating flooring.
This might be preferable if you want to prevent bringing additional moisture into the construction, and also means less wait time before you're able to walk on the ground.
What's it Like?
Underfloor heating is not very responsive, so after you turn it on, you will need to wait longer to feel warm. It is most efficiently used where it can be left on constantly.
Electric systems are more responsive, but are more expensive to run.
Underfloor heating delivers a more constant temperature, with heat spread more from the base of the room. Whereas radiators will send warm air throughout the room, but less in the bottom of the room, the underfloor heating will deliver an even heat, and will heat more at the bottom and top of this room than at the centre.
Not having radiators gives you additional space. But you'll have to think about that furniture items such as cabinets and wardrobes should not sit over the heat coils, since they are sometimes damaged. Bathrooms are harder to heat because the tub takes up a lot of floor space, but if you've got a claw-foot tub this will be less of an issue.
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