Underfloor heating – how it works:
Underfloor heating warms up your home very differently from the traditional radiator systems. Here’s a quick explanation as to how it works:
Underfloor Heating gently heats the floor by either warm water pipe or electric cable. It is already widely used in other countries and is now being recognised in the UK as the most modern energy-efficient option for space heating.
Heat is transferred from a warm area to a cold area in three ways:
- • Conduction
- • Convection
- • Natural radiation
Our bodies find natural radiation to be the most comfortable, because this is how the sun heats us. UFH emulates this natural heating action of the sun. Energy emitted from the floor is absorbed by other surfaces in the room. These warm up and become secondary emitters.
By contrast, radiators use room air to transfer heat, mostly by convection. This results in:
- • Hot air concentrated at ceiling level: cooler air – and often draughts – at floor level
- • Dust carried around the room in convection currents
- • Significant heat loss through windows, walls and ceilings
- • Higher energy loss from connecting pipes
- • Dry, re-heated air: causing a feeling of stuffiness
An UFH system is controlled using room thermostats, which turn the flow of water on and off to achieve the required temperature. Each room, or zone, can be heated to a different temperature as required, if the system is plumbed with multiple circuits at the installation stage.
Controlling the temperature
Room thermostats are used to monitor the air temperature in a heating zone. They can measure temperature very accurately – to within 0.2OC, for our own thermostats. They interact with a programmable control centre, which adjusts the water flow through the manifold to achieve the desired temperature.
In underfloor heating systems, warm water is circulated only within the zones where it’s needed. But in conventional central heating, the water travels around the whole system, regardless of where it’s needed, losing heat along the way. So, the underfloor heating system reacts in a more effective and efficient way.
Features of Heatmiser control systems include (dependent on system specified):
- • Wireless or wired thermostats
- • Multiple zone control
- • Boost and holiday modes
- • Optimised start, which adjusts the system start time to achieve the desired temperature by the required time
- • Child/Keypad lock
- • Ability to control system via the internet or by SMS