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Understanding Underfloor Heating and What to Go With

Understanding Underfloor Heating and What to Go With


As it gets chillier, we’re trying to find every way possible to keep every inch of us warm and for some of us, the sweaters just aren’t cutting it. Underfloor heating is a home improvement that you can make to change your frosty mornings and make for a happier one too. It’s a form of central heating that goes right below the floors of your home which can either be made from electrical mats or a water system consisting of a pipe network.


The Benefits of Underfloor Heating

Unlike conventional heaters, underfloor heating has a much larger surface area, allowing your home to get warmed up much quicker. But this does come at a price with more labour and materials involved. However, as your home will heat up faster, you can expect to see a reduction in your energy consumption and costs by 15-40%, making the initial outlay worthwhile. This cost-saving benefit will be dependent on a number of factors such as your insulation. With the heater being built into the floor, heat is much more evenly distributed throughout the home too so there are no cold spots for you to avoid in the winter.


Which Should I Go For?

Of the two types, there are certainly more advantages for the electrical option. For one, electrical underfloor heating mats are much less complicated to install and can be fixed by any confident DIY-er. Water underfloor heating on the other hand involves laying out rows and rows of pipes and connecting them to your boiler. Electric mats on the other hand can just be laid down under your floor or be embedded into your tiles.

You will also need to consider the type of floor that you have. The harder it is, the hotter the water beneath it will need to be. Water systems typically heat up to around 30°C so if you have quite a hard floor, it might not be a suitable option for you.

You should note that this is only a viable option if your boiler can support the system, otherwise, you will need to upgrade. With all of the leg work involved, water underfloor heating systems are also the more expensive option.


How Much Can I Expect to Pay?

If you’re looking to embed your heating system into a screed, you can expect to pay approximately £21 p/m² for an electric system and £23 p/m² for a water system. In comparison, a traditional radiator set up will cost you £15 p/m².


Can You Install Underfloor Heating in Carpeted Rooms?

Yes. Carpet won’t prevent you from making your room toasty and warm with UFH and in fact, can help to reduce the heat loss from your system. It’s a great insulator of heat, helping you to retain warmth. What you will need to be mindful of is thickness. Generally, you want a combined tog of 1.5 as otherwise further pipes and cables will be needed which will add to your costs.