Finding do it yourself radiant floor heating systems will not be difficult and the rewards include a warmer home. Radiant floor heating reduces the amount of dust, allergens and mold in the air and provides an energy efficient way to heat your home.
Radiant Heating Systems
There are radiant heating systems that use air, water or electric elements to warm a room’s floor and when you choose to do it yourself, radiant floor heating is more affordable.
- Heated air systems were considered less effective than water or electric systems but the surge in solar technology is quickly allowing these electric radiant floor heating to be cost effective.
- Hydronic radiant heating systems have been in use for thousands of years. Today’s hydronic systems use flexible plastic pipes that allow heated water to flow under flooring producing balanced radiant heat.
- Electric radiant systems can use heating elements bonded or encased in flexible plastic or plastic polymer sheets that heat up when an electric current is passed through them.
All of these systems are easily installed by homeowners at a greatly reduced cost.
Choosing a Radiant System
There are many helpful online websites that will walk you through choosing a do it yourself radiant floor system. These planners allow you to create a blueprint of the room or home in which you will be installing radiant floor heating.
Once the plans have been created these online planners tell you the tools needed, element or pipe placement and calculate an estimated cost and installation time for the type of system you select. Some will also offer recommendations and suggestions, especially when installing radiant heat in difficult areas like bathrooms.
Bathrooms, roof systems, sidewalk and driveway radiant systems require specific elements due to the potential of exposure to water and moisture. There are many books available for do it yourselfers that can be found in libraries and bookstores to help learn to install these types of radiant floor home improvement projects.
Installing do it yourself radiant floor heating can be almost effortless, even those projects that include the loose wire that can be placed under any flooring. It is wise to check with the flooring manufacturer to be sure that the flooring is compatible with this type of system.
- One of the easier DIY systems uses the mesh radiant heating mats that are flexible. You can install these thermostatically controlled mats under heavy flooring, including tile and stone.
- Carbon heater materials are a made-to-measure system that is capable of reaching temperatures of 85 degrees for safe, evenly distributed warmth.
- Foil radiant heating systems can be placed under floating laminate flooring, hardwood and carpet, and this system is extremely thin, requiring no floor build up.
In addition to the heating panels, flexible tubing, mortar or adhesives, do it yourself radiant floor heating systems should include the purchase of insulating boards. These special boards keep the radiant heat flowing upwards and are used when heating elements are installed under floors that lack a ceiling like those found in unfinished basements.
You will also need to purchase thermostats or timers that allow these systems to be energy efficient by limiting the on and off times. Thermostats can keep a floor at a steady temperature 24 hours a day, while timers allow the floors to be warmed only when people need them. Choosing between a timed system and a thermostatically controlled system should be determined before you purchase your system.
Easy-to-install do it yourself radiant floor heating allows the homeowner to improve their home’s comfort level and reduce energy costs.
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