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Thread: Radiant Heating

  1. #1
    In the Trades tingeyplumbing's Avatar
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    Default Radiant Heating

    All heating systems are definitely not created equal. One of the most desirable, radiant heating is unmatched in comfort and performance. Incredibly, some forms of radiant heating actually trace their roots all the way back to Ancient Rome. Technology, of course has added countless improvements ever since.
    Radiant heating is a technology for heating indoor and outdoor areas. Heating by radiant energy is observed everyday, the warmth of the sunshine being probably the most commonly observed example. Radiant heating as a technology is typically more narrowly defined. It is the method of intentionally using mostly the principles of radiant heat to transfer radiant energy from an emitting heat source to an object. Designs with radiant heating is seen as replacement for conventional convection heating. But also as a way of supplying confined outdoor heating.
    Radiant heating can also be used for snow melting and for roof and gutter de-icing applications. For roof de-icing, heating elements can be placed on the surface of the roofing material and some technologies can be placed underneath the roofing materials. Heating elements are used in gutters and downspouts to prevent ice buildup that can cause ice dams and icicles. Radiant heating is also used on roofs to eliminate heavy snow loads that can cause structural damage.
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  2. #2
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    I think I would use that Radiant heating system, on the right of the screen and put some wood in it.

    Then get some good Bear rugs for the floor.


    Looks nice, How long does it last ?
    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

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  3. #3
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    The Roman radiant was a house on blocks and stone floors with a slave feeding a fire outside in one corner and a chimney in the other corners. worked well, as long as those good old days of slaves were legal. And your floor didnt have cracks in it. The thermostat was a horse whip used out the window.

    But radiant with good pex has been going in Europe for 40 perhaps years. Might get 100 years or more out of it at lower temps and pressures. Its the ONLY thing I would live with.

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    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
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    Those extolling the virtues or radiant heat should do a little more research. While radiant ( pex systems ) can offer comfort, they also cost 2 to 3 times more to install, and will not necessarily save one single cent in energy consumption as compared to say baseboard heat or even an efficient forced warm air system. Many folks (professionals and non professionals) have been sweet talked into the radiant revolution but few are willing to run the numbers. In most cases a radiant system will take more than twice as long to realize any cost savings over a conventional system and many times will require much more maintenance due to the amount and complexity of the system. However I would like to thank the OP for spamming us in such a thoughtful manner.
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Sawyer View Post
    However I would like to thank the OP for spamming us in such a thoughtful manner.
    I'd also like to point out that it was a cut-n-paste too.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiant_floor

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    A properly installed radiant system doesn't require any more maintenance than any hot water heating system - still uses a boiler and instead of non-functional (at least for heat generation) pipes connecting things, the pipe IS the heat generating thing. A warm floor also means freedom to put your furniture anywhere, and your pets will LOVE it. It can limit or decrease the efficiency if you want carpeting everywhere, but if designed for that, you can get the heating. Yes, it is more labor intensive to install. You do it because you want it, not because it is more efficient. But, it can be, since you will generally be more comfortable at lower temps, but don't count on it as a major selling point. With a condensing boiler, you'll be in the condensing mode much more often with a radiant flooring system than you would be with typical installation with radiators.

    Now, if my condo would let me, I'd like to do snow-melt for the 6-8' they can't get their plow to that I'm responsible for, but that won't happen! It wouldn't need to be run much, so the operating costs wouldn't be huge, especially with the small area.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  7. #7
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Just get one of these for melting your snow and Ice.

    Or even warming a floor. With the door open.

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    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

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  8. #8
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Sawyer View Post
    Those extolling the virtues or radiant heat should do a little more research. While radiant ( pex systems ) can offer comfort, they also cost 2 to 3 times more to install, and will not necessarily save one single cent in energy consumption as compared to say baseboard heat or even an efficient forced warm air system. Many folks (professionals and non professionals) have been sweet talked into the radiant revolution but few are willing to run the numbers. In most cases a radiant system will take more than twice as long to realize any cost savings over a conventional system and many times will require much more maintenance due to the amount and complexity of the system. However I would like to thank the OP for spamming us in such a thoughtful manner.
    The KEY is to do an OPEN system, combined with your hot water piping. You need only one pump and one check valve. Absolutely no complexity, no crud in leaky ducts, no radiators taking space, and warm feet and very happy dogs, and a place to dry your shoes and coats. The cost becomes labor to lay the pipe [cheap], the manifolds, one pump, and one valve. far less cost than forced air. Now if you need AC, you have ducts also, or wall units up high in dedicated holes, so some loose the incentive when they get a quote from the clown with 8 pumps and zone valves and anticipators.

  9. #9
    DIY Junior Member justintimeref's Avatar
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    As per my knowledge, there are several new products for electric radiant floor heating, some look like they can be installed under laminate flooring.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by ballvalve View Post
    The KEY is to do an OPEN system, combined with your hot water piping. You need only one pump and one check valve. Absolutely no complexity, no crud in leaky ducts, no radiators taking space, and warm feet and very happy dogs, and a place to dry your shoes and coats. The cost becomes labor to lay the pipe [cheap], the manifolds, one pump, and one valve. far less cost than forced air. Now if you need AC, you have ducts also, or wall units up high in dedicated holes, so some loose the incentive when they get a quote from the clown with 8 pumps and zone valves and anticipators.
    the problem with open systems is cross-contamination possibilities, most areas here do not allow combined open loop systems for this reason. when the water is stagnant in the off season.

  11. #11
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeplummer View Post
    the problem with open systems is cross-contamination possibilities, most areas here do not allow combined open loop systems for this reason. when the water is stagnant in the off season.
    There is no stagnation because as long as you keep your manifold valves open, ALL the incoming cold water runs thru the zones before feeeding the water heater. Apparently your enforcers don't read schematics.....All with one well placed check valve. And if you have cold well water, you get a cool floor, or at least one the warms the incoming water to the water heater. All one circuit, so no chance of stagnation.

    Stagnation happens in monster houses with a remote guest bath, where water might sit in the pipes for a year before granma gets a swig. 99.999999% chance that granma won't get ill anyway.

  12. #12
    DIY Junior Member EZroute's Avatar
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    Very nice, you may want to start looking at this new pex routing product for your installations. Quick and professional. www.EZroute.ca
    [IMG]www.ezroute.ca[/IMG]

  13. #13
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
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    Ahhhh more spam. Thank you so much
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  14. #14
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    quote; ALL the incoming cold water runs thru the zones before feeeding the water heater. Apparently your enforcers don't read schematics...

    Now, that would be an efficient system in the wintertime, not, because you would replace heated water with cold water, which would also cool down the radiant slab.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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