DIY – How to Install Radiant Subfloor Heating Mats?

When you are considering having it installed you need to make sure that you know what kind of radiant floor system you are going to be using.

If you plan on using an electrical system, you will need to know whether you want the system to be connected to your existing electrical heating system or if it should be a standalone heater. You will need an electrical feed, or a socket near to where you want the heating system to be laid. It is recommended that the heating system should have its own circuit breaker.

If you are planning on using a hydronic system, you should make sure that your boiler is capable of providing enough power to add the radiant heating to your existing system. You will need to have a boiler to run this kind of system, so you should consider the cost of getting a boiler if you don’t already have one, as they are expensive appliances to purchase.

You should then decide which kind of heating you need and what properties it needs. Some heating is better for wooden floors, under laminate, on concrete, etc, whilst others work better if it is screened over. You can usually either put floor tiles directly over electrical systems. Whatever happens though, you will need to give the installation engineer the go-ahead to pull up your floor to install the heating in most cases. This can be costly, but the outcome will certainly be worth it. You should discuss with the installation engineer about which is the best flooring for radiant heat systems.

It is important to ensure that enough insulation is used with the heating system, especially if you have wooden floors with hollow foundations. If you don’t insulate below the heating system or beneath the joists, you will find that you will lose a lot of heat to the open space. To enable more heat to radiate upwards, insulation can be the best option.

In order to control the temperature, you should ensure that you choose the best thermostat for your needs. There are different options to choose from depending on whether you have an electrical or hydronic system. Electrical systems usually come with some sort of specialist control that can only be used with a certain model of heating system. A hydronic system however offers greater flexibility as you can choose any thermostatic valve or control that can be attached to a plumbing system. Both methods of heating however can be controlled globally with the rest of the central heating system if you connect the heating to your existing supply. It is difficult to say which is the best thermostat for radiant heat, so you should try to choose the thermostat that is suggested when you purchase the heating system.