Materials & Technology

Subfloor radiant vs. concrete slab heating

Tue, 11/22/2011 - 11:02

Radiant heating systems are being installed in many new residences and older homes as a way for these structures to maximize the efficiency of their heaters and to provide the highest level of comfort.

While some individuals have touted the effectiveness of installing a concrete slab over the heating pipes, a radiant heating system as part of a subfloor can provide a more effective way for homeowners to use the latest technology in the industry.

Pat Logan, writing for The National Ledger, noted that a concrete slab system would provide homeowners with a cost-effective and comfortable solution for providing heat in their homes.

Although this technology may provide a source of radiant heat for a home, there is more efficient technology that minimizes the amount of energy that is needed and can be installed under any surface.

Because the radiant heating is installed as part of a subfloor, instead of under a concrete slab, the technology can be easily placed under any type of flooring.

Along with the ease of installation, a subfloor system provides thick aluminum that is integrated with the boards in a more efficient manner than the concrete slab product.

Though the concrete slab system may also use aluminum, the tubing is not installed in the same manner, reducing the conductivity and requiring more energy to heat the floor to the same temperature as the subfloor unit.

The subfloor system relies on the effectiveness of the design and integration of the tubing into the boards to provide a more efficient delivery of warmth, and doesn't require excessive inspection like many concrete slabs necessitate.

Logan noted that homeowners may have to ensure that the concrete slab is fully cured before continuing with installation, an extra step subfloor systems do not require.