What’s under your feet (or how you get around) is as important as anything when it comes to the house. That’s why this fall, we collaborated with The Home Depot on an A-to-Z guide that will give you the confidence to make the flooring choices you’ll love. Read the manual from A to Z here.
Mornings always find a way to arrive too quickly, with familiar and discordant rituals. An alarm clock wakes you up and an elaborate combination of yawning and stretching reveals that somehow you tore your elbow (or neck or back) while you slept. Already, a multitude of professional text messages and emails light up your cell phone, flashing to get your attention. Then-after all that! “We have to tiptoe on the cold tiled bathroom floor to get ready for the day. For the most part, there is plenty to take before 8 a.m.
But, if you are considering a flooring remodel, you can easily remove any of these obstacles: Enter the radiant floor heating.
“No one thinks they want heat in the floor until they get heat in the floor,” says general contractor Joe Truini. “They’re like, ‘Oh my God! I should have done the whole house! “
Home Depot offers different types of heating systems and voltage levels, so wherever you consider incorporating underfloor heating, you can do it right.
Radiant heat is best for tile and stone
While any type of flooring can technically be heated, it takes a bit of research to determine whether or not it is suitable for the material you want to use. Tile and stone are the best conduits for underfloor heating because they easily transfer heat to the floor surface and, once there, retain it. Hardwood is a much greater challenge due to the risk of buckling, while carpet heating depends on the thickness and density of the weave. (For laminate and vinyl, check with the manufacturer.)
Tile and stone are the best conduits for underfloor heating because they easily transfer heat to the floor surface and, once there, retain it.
Fortunately, for those of us who dread cold bathrooms in the morning, tile and stone are some of the most common flooring materials, from powder rooms to private bathrooms, making it the perfect place to test a little oasis of underfloor heating. congratulated.
Economical heating or heating for the whole house
Floors can generally be heated in two ways: using water power or electricity.
- Hydro-electric power (above) is typically used for larger jobs or for heating the whole house, and while ultimately quite economical, the installation process is often quite complex and probably not the right choice for the first attempt to install a heated floor.
- Electric radiant heater (below), on the other hand, is fairly straightforward, and if a flooring overhaul is already underway, adding a heating element to the mix is as easy as installing low voltage electric mats or high voltage cables.
Low-voltage electric mats are probably the only real DIY option in the bunch (unless you have a highly trained electrician on hand). They can be custom cut to work in your space, whether it’s a kitchen, laundry room, or bathroom, and then installed on the sub-floor, provided there is sufficient insulation.
Or, in the case of some above ground heating mats, with additional mortar for protection. Some heat mats come with a thermostat system already built in to more easily regulate the rate at which the flooring heats up, and if you’ve decided to heat a larger space (or several smaller spaces), expect to see a reduction. of your heating bill from your HVAC will not be taxed as well.
Electric mats come in standard sizes and they’re cut to fit, Truini says. He adds that the rugs are even available in custom sizes to fit essentials like vanities and toilets. Installation includes laying a suitable tile backing, spreading the mortar, then placing electric mats into the mortar, with others added on top. Then the tile is installed on the carpet. “This means that the heat can pass directly!”
High voltage wiring works a little differently, but is also more spatially customizable. Triuni recommends checking German company Schluter’s Ditra Heat if you’re interested in this route. The threads snap into the system’s honeycomb pattern to add warmth where you want it. For example, explains Truini, you can place them side by side in front of a vanity where you often stand. But if there is a corner that is not often used, you don’t have to add more.
“I saw them installed in a shower, where they put them on the bench and on the walls,” says Truini.
Safety first, then satisfaction
Of course, make safety your first priority. Don’t be a hero when it comes to trying out electrical work that makes you uncomfortable – there are experts for it. And before starting any underfloor heating project, be sure to consult with an electrician who can verify that your power circuits can handle the extra heat, uh: 8 and 12 watts per square of heated floor is the standard usage estimate.
You deserve a bit of extravagance in your day-to-day life, and it has to be argued that heated floors are the perfect level of extravagance. When it snows, says Truini, it’s a special pleasure to walk into her heated bathroom in the morning. “It’s just luxurious,” he says. And who doesn’t deserve the luxury?