Underfloor Heating - Frequently Asked Questions
Underfloor heating is becoming an increasingly popular solution, saving space and providing an energy efficient alternative to more traditional radiator systems. You may have lots of questions; how energy efficient is it? Is my property suitable? How does it work? We’ve answered our most commonly asked questions below.
Q: What are the benefits of underfloor heating?
UFH systems have seen a rise in popularity over recent years due to their range of aesthetical benefits and also performance and efficiency, it’s not just about keeping your feet warm. We have listed some of the main benefits below:
– Distributes heat more evenly and consistently throughout rooms.
– It’s hidden so it’s more aesthetically pleasing than having radiators with the added benefit of the additional space that radiators would have consumed.
– Most floor types are suitable for modern UFH systems.
– A suitably sized system can heat larger areas than radiators and as they work at lower temperatures, they can often reduce your heating bills.
Q: How is underfloor heating installed? Will it damage my floor?
Underfloor heating is often installed during the build process of new builds and extensions by fitting the pipe work into a layer of screed in the new floor as it’s laid. UFH systems can also be fitted to existing buildings, however, depending on the solution this can be either laid on top of your existing floor, adding as little as 15mm total height, or we may need to temporarily lift your existing flooring. Speak to one of our technicians to find out the most suitable method for your home.
Q: What flooring is suitable for underfloor heating?
Underfloor heating systems are compatible with most flooring options however materials like stone are best suited to underfloor heating as they’re natural heat conductors. We are able to advise the best solution once we understand your set up and requirements.
Carpet – The thicker the carpet the longer it will take to warm up, therefore, we advise when installing UFH systems underneath carpet that it’s not too thick.
Concrete – A popular option, and for good reason, as concrete is well suited to underfloor heating systems as it retains heat well.
Wood – Whilst UFH systems can be fitted with wooden flooring we need to take extra care and check the maximum temperatures that the wood can handle. Without taking these precautions the heat may cause wood to warp and shrink.
Q: Is underfloor heating suitable for flats/apartments or upstairs?
Yes, underfloor heating can be fitted on upper floors. Given they are typically made of timber they require a suspended under floor heating system. Timber boards act as an insulation layer and as a result a higher temperature is often required.
Q: Can you add underfloor heating to an existing heating system?
Underfloor heating can run alongside your existing heating system and works well with gas, oil and LPG boilers.
Q: How do I know if my home is suitable for underfloor heating?
Most homes are suitable for underfloor heating systems. The approach we take will vary depending on your current structure and the flooring materials. You can speak to one of our technicians and they will be able to advise the most suitable way to improve the heating efficiency of your house.
Q: Will underfloor heating raise the level of my floor?
Depending on the solution used underfloor heating can raise the level of your existing floor, due to the latest technology this can sometimes be as little as 15mm.
Q: How hot does the floor get? How do I control the heat?
UFH systems use lower temperatures than traditional radiator heating systems. Each room is fitted with individual thermostats, giving you complete control over the temperature. The temperature of underfloor heating is not only suitable for pets, it’s also a more hygienic solution as it keeps dust mites away.
Q: What’s better; water or electric systems?
Electric underfloor heating utilises cables which are laid over the flooring deck. These systems often heat up quickly but aren’t as good at retaining heat as a water system, therefore, we recommend they are must suitable for small areas like bathrooms.
Warm water underfloor heating systems use a series of pipes to pump water around the property. Due to their higher heat output we often recommend they are best suited to larger properties with lower levels of insulation.
Q: What happens if there’re a fault with my underfloor heating system?
During installation we have a thorough testing process to ensure that your system is set up correctly to minimise future problems, however, we know that problems can occur and have an efficient way of diagnosing faults before undertaking any remedial work by using thermal imaging and specialist testing equipment.
Once we have diagnosed and located the fault, if it’s not relating to the system, we can lift the floor for that area only to asses and fix the problem. Broken tiles can be replaced with new tiles for other flooring types we work with flooring specialists to ensure that minimal damage is caused. We always recommend keeping spare flooring for repairs.