Thursday, 18 December 2014
On a cold morning, just the thought of having your feet hit a cold floor makes you want to stay in bed! With radiant floor heat, even your dog will want to curl up on the bare floor rather than in your bed. Radiant heat has benefits when compared with traditional convection heat. But what is it and how does it work?
Radiant heat elements in the floor, wall or ceiling warm the people and objects in the room rather than directly heating the air. You cannot see radiant heat energy but you can certainly feel it, and it just makes you feel more comfortable and cozy. It works like sunshine. When you're outside on a sunny day, you may feel comfortable in short sleeves even if the air temperature is only 60 degrees. This is because of the radiant warmth from the sun. Radiant heat lets you feel warm at a lower air temperature than conventional forced-air heat. Plus, because there is no blower as with forced-air heat, there are no drafts.
It is estimated that radiant heat is not only about 30% more efficient than conventional forced-air systems, but provides a more even and continuous level of warmth. Here's why:
Besides saving energy, here are some other benefits of radiant heat:
There are many types of radiant heating systems.
There are two basic ways to supply radiant heat in floors or walls: hot water or electricity. Electric radiant, which uses zig-zag loops of resistance wire, is generally retrofitted to a single room, such as a bathroom, kitchen, or added room, such as a converted garage. It can be used for spot installations and operate along with traditional forced-air heating systems used in the rest of the house. Hot-water "hydronic" systems circulate water from a boiler or water heater through loops of 1/2-inch flexible plastic tubing. Hydronic systems are better suited for whole-house (rather than spot) installations.
What About Air-Conditioning?
Keep in mind, no matter what radiant heating system you use, you'll still need a separate air-conditioning system for cooling. Radiant cooling cannot be used in Tennessee because our high humidity would cause excessive condensation (not a problem for heating systems). That means that although radiant heat does not use ductwork, registers or vents for heat delivery, you'll likely still need these for a cooling system.
But with radiant heat, you can say goodbye to cold floors in winter! Radiant heating can be a comfortable, efficient, and reliable heating choice.
Posted on 12/18/2014 3:01 AM by Tony Anderson
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