Floor Heating FAQs: Everything You Want To Know Before Installing
Uh oh! Is Jack Frost nipping at your toes?
Cold feet on a chilly winter morning are the last thing you want. Especially in Northern Ontario, where temperatures quickly drop below freezing.
Your stash of thick socks and fuzzy slippers can only do so much against the cold!
That’s where in-floor electric heating comes in.
In-floor heating offers quality home heating that’s basically invisible! Our electrical technicians install it discreetly beneath your tile, stone or laminate flooring. So you don’t have to give up any space in your home for added ductwork, vents or heating units.
It’s also quiet, energy-efficient and maintenance-free!
Ready to invest in the warmth and comfort of your home this winter but not sure if in-floor heating is a good fit? Keep reading! We have the top 10 frequently asked questions about in-floor heating below!
1. How does electric floor heating work?
Electric in-floor heating warms your home from the ground up using radiant energy.
Radiant energy is a naturally occurring form of heat. You experience it when standing close to a barbeque, sitting by a bonfire or walking on hot sand.
This unique form of heat works differently than a forced-air heating system. Instead of heating surrounding air, it heats surrounding objects.
In-floor heating uses radiant heat to transfer warmth directly from the heater to your flooring. Here, the flooring absorbs the heat and spreads it up onto other surfaces in your home.
As you walk on your floor, your body actually absorbs the heat radiating from your in-floor heating - allowing your toes to warm up!
2. How do you control the temperature of floor heating?
You’ll need a specific thermostat to control the temperature of your electric floor heating system.
This thermostat works very similarly to that of your furnace and comes in a variety of options.
- If you choose a traditional thermostat, you’ll need to manually adjust the temperature.
- If you choose a programmable thermostat, you can program it to a specific heating schedule.
- And if you choose a Smart thermostat, it will automatically create its own intuitive heating schedule for your home.
Your choice of thermostat depends on which of the above solutions fits your home and lifestyle.
3. How warm do heated floors get?
Heated floors can usually reach between 23 and 35 degrees Celcius. However, the actual temperature depends on three specific factors:
- The composition of the room,
- The ambient temperature of the room, and
- The heat loss associated with the room.
For example, if your room has a lot of windows, you could lose almost 10% of the heat through the natural form of radiation. Your windows act as heat sinks. And as the heat from your floors rises, the windows absorb it.
If this is the case in your home, you may consider using your in-floor heating as ancillary heat. That way, it can help support your primary heating system and add extra comfort and luxury to your home.
4. How long does it take your floor to warm up?
Electric floor heating typically takes about 20-30 minutes to reach optimal comfort. However, the amount of time it takes for your floor heating system to completely warm up depends on a series of different factors, including:
- Room size,
- Floor finish,
- Potential heat loss factors and
Want to help your radiant heater reach maximum heating efficiency faster? Below are a couple of things you can do it help it along!
First, improve the insulation in your room. This includes the insulation in the ceiling, weather stripping on doors, window seals etc.
Second, install a programmable thermostat! As mentioned earlier, you can set a programmable thermostat to follow a specific heating schedule. For example, you can ensure it’s turned off when you aren’t at home and ensure it has enough time to heat up before you arrive!
5. Does floor heating help you save on home heating costs?
It’s a well-known fact that home heating is expensive. It can be especially pricey if you live in Northern Ontario too, where temperatures drop fast and stay low for longer.
That’s why many homeowners in the Gravenhurst and Muskoka regions are looking for the most efficient home heating systems.
When shopping for a new heating upgrade, they typically have two main goals:
- Decrease energy consumption, and
- Lower heating bills.
And thankfully, in-floor heating can help achieve both!
6. Where do you install under-floor heating?
You can install electric floor heating pretty much anywhere in your home. However, for optimal efficiency and functionality, we recommend installing it below the following floor types:
Flooring Options For In-Floor Heating:
Tile and stone are two of the most popular surfaces used with in-floor heating. Both options have high thermal conductivity, which allows them to transfer heat more effectively. That’s why many homeowners and cottage owners install in-floor heating in their kitchens and bathrooms!
7. Is radiant heat safe?
Heated floors are 100% safe.
As we mentioned earlier, these systems use radiant heat to transfer warmth. And radiant heat is the most natural form of heat in the world!
In fact, it’s how our bodies maintain healthy internal temperatures. Without it, we wouldn't be able to retain or release the necessary amount of heat our bodies need to function.
If your body is warmer than your environment, you’ll begin to radiate that heat into your surroundings. This helps your body to cool down.
If your surroundings are warmer than your body, your body will absorb the heat in your environment. This helps your body to warm up!
8. Can electric floor heating shock you?
Because this heating solution is typically installed in bathrooms, we get a lot of questions about whether it can cause a shock.
In short, no, electric floor heating cannot shock you.
The wires used for electric heating all undergo extreme safety checks and have built-in safety features. This ensures there are zero potential risks of electric shock or fire.
As long as a licensed electrician installs your electric floor heating, you're good to go!
9. How does in-floor heating affect air quality?
Forced air systems move heat around your home using a network of ducts and vents. But as they carry this warm air from room to room, they can also transfer other harmful particles. This includes pollen, dust and other particulate matter. And as these particles spread, your indoor air quality declines.
In-floor heating has zero effect on indoor air quality! So you can experience allergen-free home heating!
10. What are the pros and cons of floor heating?
In-floor heating adds incredible value to your home. But it’s necessary to consider both the pros and cons before installing.
Pros of in-floor heating:
- Uniform heating
- Energy efficient
- Quiet operation
- Easy to install
Cons of in-floor heating:
- You may need to replace your flooring.
- High upfront costs.
- Maybe elevate the floor height.
Learn More About Our Electric Floor Heating Options at Gravenhurst Heating!
Have more questions about electric floor heating? Give our heating and electrical team a call today!