Radiant Flooring Heating For Architects

Specify Warmboard for happier clients and greater design freedom

Architects throughout North America have an appreciation for the many benefits Warmboard provides. Our panels simplify installation, provide a host of energy saving options, and most importantly, create a truly comfortable environment for the occupant.

There are many benefits from our radiant flooring heating for architects. Radiant heating improves indoor air quality and provides a host of energy saving benefits which can contribute up to 15 LEED points towards your project. Warmboard has been used in thousands of homes, many of which earned LEED Gold and LEED Platinum recognition. Warmboard has also been installed in many Net-Zero homes and has been a regularly included in the annual Solar Decathlon. Radiant heating is at least 25% more efficient than forced air, and Warmboard takes savings far beyond that.

  • Warmboard & LEED for Homes Certification

    Potential points for a home using Warmboard:

    Innovation and Design Process 0
    Location and Linkages 0
    Sustainable Sites 0
    Water Efficiency 0
    Energy and Atmosphere 11
    Materials and Resources 0
    Indoor Environmental Quality 4
    Awareness and Education 0
    Total 15  

    Click here for further details

  • Tubing installed in our radiant floor heating panels

Warmboard-S, is a code-approved structural panel and part of the conventional framing process. Warmboard-S consists of 4 modular, tongue-and-groove panel types and weighs only 1 pound per square foot more than ¾” subfloor. Warmboard-S is rated to carry all of the point loads, uniform loads and horizontal shear loads typically carried by 3/4“ subfloor. (Review ICC-ES report). It is ideal for 16” or 24“ on center joists (19.2 also works, but increases waste factors). Warmboard-S is a particularly stiff and strong subfloor which delivers a sturdier floor for your clients.

Warmboard radiant is also an ideal heating solution for architecture featuring cathedral or open beamed ceilings. Forced air is obviously less than ideal in these situations. And room-by-room zoning allows for custom comfort settings in every room of the house, with unoccupied rooms being turned down to save energy. Warmboard-R is also an ideal solution for new homes, and is often installed over slab foundations, subfloors or in the walls or ceilings. Warmboard-R is 13/16” thick and made of the highest quality OSB. There are 2 panel types to accommodate your design.

Both products offer the same ease of installation and energy-saving benefits.

Traditional “high mass” or “thin slab” systems add 15-25 pounds dead load per square foot. In most instances, this requires upsizing joists to the next 2 inch increment as well as increasing the size of the support beams. In a seismic zone, lateral loads can be enormous, necessitating additional engineering and construction costs. The upsized joists and thickness of the pour can add 3 inches per story, which can cause issues in areas with critical zoning restrictions. The additional height will also require double sills throughout, and in many cases require special detailing where stairs are considered. Hardwood installation is particularly difficult with the many moisture control, fastening issues and uneven heating surface which must be addressed. And yet, none of these issues apply to Warmboard. Click here to see a sample set of Warmboard architectural floor plans.

All projects include our in-house design services and architectural design plan sets. Our Designers provide detailed documents featuring panel and tubing layouts, manifold locations and other essential installation information. Heat Loss and Mechanical Designs are also available.

Because of its dual nature, it is essential that Warmboard be integrated into the construction documents to ensure best use practices. Inclusion will also ensure consistent bidding and cost-effective installation by contractors.

Follow these easy steps to include Warmboard into the Design process:

  • When determined that Warmboard-S or Warmboard-R is appropriate for your project, please call Warmboard at 877.338.5493. You will be connected with the Regional Manager (RM) for your area If the structural plans are not yet complete, the RM will consult with your structural engineer to optimize the floor framing plan to most efficiently integrate Warmboard. Once completed, preliminary plans are sent to us, preferably in an AutoCAD format.
  • The RM will consult with you regarding zoning preferences, floor covering selections and other data necessary for proper design.
  • The Warmboard Design Team will produce a preliminary design for review and markup. These documents will include panel and tubing layouts, manifold locations and various detail drawings and notes. These documents should be thoroughly reviewed to ensure that they meet your client’s needs.
  • Our Design Team will provide a final set of documents, including corrections based on your markup for inclusion into your full set of construction documents. These documents are typically 1/4″ scale plans formatted for D-sized sheets, though other formats can be delivered upon request. We can also supply plans in the AutoCAD file format, or plot them on bond paper or vellum per your request.

Further detail on Warmboard’s contribution is as follows (page numbers refer to the LEED for Homes Rating System):

Prerequisites (Warmboard can help meet these requirements of LEED for Homes):

  • If a minimum of R3 insulation is used around all radiant pipes/tubing located in unconditioned spaces (ie Garages), this will fulfill the Prerequisite of section EA 5.1. (pg. 64)
  • Depending on the project’s location, if the radiant heating system utilizes a boiler (gas or oil fueled) with an efficiency of greater than or equal to 80 AFUE (in climate zones 1-3), or 85 AFUE (in climate zones 4-8), this will satisfy the prerequisite of section EA 6.1. (pg. 66)
  • A radiant heating system with sealed combustion (supply and exhaust ducting), will contribute to meeting the EQ 2.1 (Indoor Environmental Quality) prerequisite. (pg. 87)
  • If the radiant heating system is designed with room by room heat load calculations and following the manufacturer’s guidance in meeting these loads, this will fulfill prerequisite EQ 6.1. (pg. 93)

Points (Warmboard can help gain points under LEED for Homes in the following areas):

  • If the entire radiant heating system, including the heat source, is contained within the conditioned envelope of the home, this will earn 2 points, per section EA 5.2. (pg. 64)
  • If an outdoor reset control is installed, this will earn 3 points per section EA 5.3. (pg. 65)
  • If the radiant heating system utilizes a boiler with an efficiency of greater than or equal to 87 AFUE (in climate zones 1-3), or 90 AFUE (in climate zones 4-8), the home will earn 3 points under EA 6.3. (pg. 66)
  • If a ground source heat pump is used in conjunction with a boiler meeting the requirements of #3 (above), the home will earn 1 extra point under EA 6.3. (pg. 66)
  • If the boiler has a Combined Annual Efficiency greater than .08, and is also serving as the heat source for the domestic hot water, this will earn 2 points under EA 7.3. (pg. 70)
  • If the radiant heating system incorporates thermostatic control in each room, the home will gain 1 point under EQ 6. (pg. 93)
  • If at least two distinct zones with independent controls are designed and installed, the home will earn 2 points under EQ 6.2. (pg. 93)
  • By using a radiant floor heating system without ducts, the home will be awarded 1 point automatically under EQ 8.1 with no further work required. (pg. 96)

Using a Warmboard radiant floor heating system meeting the above requirements could help meet 4 prerequisites, and earn a home up to 15 points under LEED for Homes. Note that most radiant floor heating systems can be designed to meet the above requirements. Warmboard makes these systems easier to plan and cheaper to install.

  • LEED for Homes is designed to be builder friendly and budget conscious
  • Efficient Radiant Floor systems can simplify the documentation and testing required to complete LEED for Homes certification.
  • Heating systems without ducts can enhance Indoor Air Quality, a key component of the LEED for Homes program (as described above).

USGBC LEED for Homes Rating System, www.usgbc.org/leed/homes EPA Indoor Air PLUS www.epa.gov/indoorairplus.