Underfloor heating is the ultimate in home comfort. Using the principle of rising heat over a large surface area. Heat’s distributed evenly throughout your room via wet pipes or electric coils. Running under the floor. You can’t beat feeling warm underfoot in the depths of winter. Underfloor heating is energy efficient and maintenance free. Radiators have to work hard to heat an area. Less heat and energy are required to heat the same size area with underfloor heating. So an installation will save you money in the long run. Energy efficient and great for the environment. No radiators required also means freed space making your home look and feel bigger. The underfloor heating installation will add value to your Chelmsford home. Not only will your home be worth more it will be easier to sell. The Greatest comfort and energy efficiency is a desirable selling point.
TM Hughes & Son have over 25 years experience in underfloor heating. We install new systems and repair existing ones. There are two types of underfloor heating. Wet system & electric. We install both.
Wet System Underfloor Heating
Wet System is also known as water and hydronic. is compatible with all flooring underfloor heating. Whether it’s wood, tile, carpet or stone. Underfloor heating uses pipes that run under your floor. A pump’s attached to these pipes. The pump circulates hot water heated by your boiler around the pipes heating your room. A thermostat’s connected to the system so room temperature’s controlled. Room by room if required
Wet system underfloor heating’s more expensive to install than electric underfloor heating. but is cheaper to run. Underfloor Heating’s more energy efficient and cheaper to run than conventional central heating.
Wet underfloor heating systems run under concrete and screed floors. Also between joists and suspended floors or over the top of existing flooring.
Pipes under concrete or screeded floors sit on top of Celotex insulation. Held in place by staples or a purpose-built clip system. The floor’s screeded. The pipes sit inside the screed, heating your room. Running under floor heating between joists ensures you don’t increase floor thickness. This can be a bonus in homes with low ceilings where increased floor height is undesirable. Celotex insulation’s placed between joists to keep heat in. Pipes run on top of insulation using aluminium spreader plates to keep pipes in place. Insulation’s available with pre-cut grooves. So the pipe sits inside the insulation. Pipes are clipped straight on top of the insulation that sits between the joists. Screeding take’s place between the joists.
When wet under floor heating has to placed over existing floors there are two options. Floating floor panels made from XPS insulation. Featuring a covering of aluminium foil. The pipe’s fitted into pre-existing grooves, built into the boards. Floating floor panels are best used when laminate flooring’s used. For tiled/stone flooring we use solid floor panels. Which are compatible with adhesives and tiles.
Electric System Underfloor Heating
Electric Underfloor Heating is cheaper quicker and easier to install than a wet system. Electric underfloor heating is more expensive to run than conventional wet underfloor heating.
This needs taking into consideration when choosing between the two. The wet system will cost more to install, but will save you money in energy bills over time.
The type of electric underfloor heating used will depend on the size of the room you want to heat. The type of flooring you’ll be using on top of the electric underfloor will determine the type also.
Electric mats are very easy to install. The heating element’s fitted to a special insulated mat that’s rolled out over the floor and wired in.
Electric cables, heated wires placed under the floor in a snake-like fashion (like wet systems). Covering the whole area.
Foil mats act like electric mats, with the added advantage of being much thinner.
Small spaces can use flexible, loose fit wiring. While heated mats and cable systems is a better option for larger areas. Foil mats are best for carpeted floors or vinyl tiled floors.
Inscreed electric underfloor heating is also available. Electric cables that sit in the screed like wet underfloor heating. Inscreed electric systems are for situations where a wet system isn’t possible.
Underfloor Heating Installation
Installing underfloor heating is a specialist job. One that needs to be undertaken by an experienced heating engineer. Not a DIY job that’s for sure. Our qualified heating engineers have installed underfloor heating hundreds of times. So you can rest assured your installation’s done to a high standard. Underfloor heat is usually associated with new build homes and extensions. We install underfloor heating in homes of any age. Some people worry they will lose floor height if they install underfloor heating. This is true to an extent but a reduced loss of floor height’s possible with certain systems. Such designs are useful in old cottages where ceiling height is low.
Installation procedures vary. Depending on the type of underfloor heating fitted and the type of floor. Here’s a typical procedure for wet underfloor heating with screed.
- The manifold’s fitted in a suitable discreet area. The manifold takes hot water from your boiler which’s distributed through your pipes under the floor. Heating each room in the process. The manifold is a system comprised of a series of thermostatic valves. The number of valves will depend on the size of the system. The manifold also features temperature gauges and a circulation pump.
- Old flooring’s removed along with any debris underneath the old flooring. Ensuring we have a 100% flat surface for your underfloor heating. A damp proof membrane’s added to concrete floors.
- Floor insulation’s carefully laid. Every joint’s taped to prevent screed leaking through. A polyethene layer’s placed on top for the screed to sit on.
- Pipe fixings are attached to the floor insulation. The fixings will hold the piping in place.
- The pipe’s fitted to the manifold and sealed so it’s 100% watertight.
- The pipe clipped to the floor. Running from end to end of the room with adequate spacing between each row. This ensures the whole floor’s covered with even heat distribution. The pipe’s secured in the fixings.
- The pipes are pressure tested. We ensure there are no leaks in any joints, the pipes and manifold.
- The screed’s laid and left to cure.
- Once the screed, has cured flooring’s laid and you can enjoy your new underfloor heating.
Underfloor heating repairs
An Underfloor Heating installation will last a long time. Before needing repair and maintenance. Underfloor heating has been popular in Chelmsford for a while now. There are lots of old systems present throughout the city. Old systems sometimes need repairing or parts upgrading. While the pipes will remain solid for a very long time. Pumps do wear out after 10-15 years. Pump replacement is a straight forward job one of our engineers can undertake. Flooring that’s not heating up in places could have a faulty underperforming pump. Airlocks are common in old underfloor heating systems. Cold areas of your floor could be a symptom of an airlock. If you’re suffering from an airlock we can remove it for you. Our engineers have lots of experience in this field. Our vans are well stocked with all the tools required for any repair and maintenance you need. We use thermal imaging technology to detect any problems. With thermal imaging, we can see where the pipes are getting hot and where they are staying cold. Enabling us to detect and fix your issue quickly at the minimum of cost. Chelmsford homeowners get nervous with underfloor heating issues. Our customers sometimes think that the problem will be under the floor and expensive. Nearly all underfloor heating problems occur with the parts above ground. Most underfloor heating issues are fixable without going into the floor. Only the most extreme situations (like a bad fire) will need the under floor pipes removing.
Underfloor Heating Checks
Underfloor heating systems should be checked annually. Undertaking checks during your annual boiler service’s recommended. Annual checks will ensure your system runs smoothly year after year. The manifold should be checked for leaks. In the event of leaking, water fittings are tightened. Washers and seals that have worn out are replaced. Very old manifolds can be replaced and attached to existing pipework if required.
The pipes themselves shouldn’t need any maintenance ever. The build-up of sludge and debris in an underfloor heating system is rare. Inhibitors added to the water at the time of installation will prevent such build-ups. Occasionally we will find a blockage in an underfloor heating system. In the event of a blockage in your underfloor pipes, we can clear it with power flushing. Attaching a special pump to your manifold and pumping through a mix of chemicals. This mix will clear any obstructions in your pipes. Old water will be disposed of and new water will be added with corrosion inhibitors.
If you would like to discuss your underfloor heating requirements please get in touch using the phone number or contact form below