||Radiant Heat Subflooring
|Whether you are building a new house or remodeling
an existing one, you may want to consider
installing a radiant heating system to gently
and evenly warm your rooms. Using a floor-based
radiant heating system can save energy since
it primarily heats the lower part of the
room, where the heat is needed, and uses
lower temperatures than baseboard or wall
mounted radiators. |
If you are thinking of installing a radiant
heating system in your floor, investigate
using as your subfloor the special plywood
panels that are manufactured with aluminum
lined channels already cut into them:
- These panels are made from premium grade
seven layer plywood that fits together by
tongue and groove. They measure four feet
by eight feet and are 1 1/8 inches thick.
Aluminum tubing is bonded to channels cut
in the plywood. The aluminum surface heats
up quickly, providing heat with very little
- Ceramic and stone tiles can be laid over the radiant subfloor, but
a layer of mortarboard or backerboard needs
to be installed between the tile and the
subfloor to provide the necessary stiffness.
- Carpeting can be installed by nailing carpet tack
strips directly to the panels. A slab foam
rubber carpet pad should be laid before the
carpeting goes down.
- Hardwood can be laid over the radiant subflooring,
but best results will be achieved by choosing
a stable type of wood that has been quarter
or riff sawn into strips rather than planks.
The wood should be acclimated to the room
at normal heating temperatures. Hardwood
floors will require heating temperatures
between 60 and 80 F degrees and humidity
levels of 30 to 50%. Laminated/engineered
flooring is a good choice, as it is less
prone to shrinking and swelling.