Underfloor heating systems have become increasingly popular in recent years. From being primarily used in small spaces such as bathrooms or hallways, they can now be utilised to heat larger rooms, apartments, or entire homes. UFH can also save space by eliminating the need for Radiators. This, alongside their ability to link to Smart Thermostats, has seen more and more people consider an underfloor heating solution.
What are the main types of Underfloor Heating?
Electric underfloor heating, otherwise known as a dry system, works by installing a series of wires or heating mats directly beneath a floor covering. This has made it ideal for installing UFH in a small single room as well as rooms you normally walk across barefoot, like a bathroom.
Meanwhile the water-based model, which is more commonly referred to as wet underfloor heating, uses pipes that are connected to the home’s boiler. These can then pump hot water underneath a large space such as a living room however this tends to be less common than electric UFH.
What are the costs involved?
Because most floors must be elevated to fit pipes underneath them, a wet system will typically cost more to install than electric underfloor heating. It will usually take longer to install water-based underfloor heating as well, whilst electric UFH can sometimes be fitted in as little as 30 minutes.
However, an electric system will consume more energy once it’s in operation. Indeed, this is why the Energy Saving Trust doesn’t recommend dry underfloor heating for larger rooms. Moreover, water-based underfloor heating is often tested to have a life-expectancy of 50 years, offering greater cost-efficiency in the long-term.
Considerations for your home
So, before choosing between a wet or dry UFH system, you should consider the following:
Floor level – It’s usually easier to install electric underfloor heating on the first or second floor of the house, whilst the ground floor is typically the better choice for a wet system.
Floor height – If you have a low ceiling, it might not be possible to install a water-based system in your home.
Warm-up time – Water-based UFH takes longer to warm up and is slower to cool down, making it less effective for Precise Temperature Control.
Project type – Electric underfloor heating is often preferred for renovations and single room projects, whereas a wet system tends to be recommended for new-builds and larger spaces.
What Type of Underfloor Heating is best?
The best type of underfloor heating will largely depend on factors such as where you’re trying to upgrade as well as personal preference when it comes to room temperatures. Whilst electric UFH can be more accurate for comfort and control, a wet system can lead to Greater Energy Savings moving forward.
Ultimately, however, most flooring will be compatible with both models, and our Underfloor Heating Controller operates effectively with both. You see How Wiser Can Improve Your UFH System Here for more information.