Radiant Floor Heating for the Energy Efficient Home
Radiant floor heating is a topic that I hear thrown around that I feel may not be completely understood by the familiarity of the term. The technical concept behind it is quite simple and has been around for many years. Tubing is placed in the flooring. The tubing has hot water run through it which warms floors and the objects that come in contact with the floor such as furniture. Now, by warming it may mean that the objects get to a temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit which in no way damages the items though it sounds somewhat scary.
The benefits of this technology are in the fact that energy use is reduced by approximately 30% from a normal system where the air is warmed and blown around the home. Air based systems still have drafts which can make it more uncomfortable, and often leave the floors still cold. The example I think of is the bathroom on a cold morning. The floors are cold even though the room may be an acceptable temperature. Radiant floor heating is also used in months where the temperature is warmer outside. By running cooler water through though the under-floor tubing the technology cools the home much like it does in the heating example.