Best Thermal Underlayment

Old 08-12-14, 04:12 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: USA
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Best Thermal Underlayment

Hello everyone. I'm not exactly a big hardwood flooring person, but I was wondering if anyone can provide some info/advice for me.

My current flooring is a cheap 8mm MDF laminate. I have a fairly unique problem. You see, I live in on the 1st floor of an older 2-story apartment complex that shares one large water heater. To ensure every unit has quick access to hot water, there is a hot water re-circulation system that runs 24/7. The problem is the pipes that carry this hot water don't appear to be insulated in the concrete slab at all. So every unit on the 1st floor suffers from heat being radiated from these pipes all day long. We are talking a significant amount of heat too. My IR thermometer generally measures these hot spots to be about 10-15░F warmer than the ambient floor. I live in central Texas, so this added heat is not something we appreciate here. During the winter, on nights when it would get down into the 20s, my unit would easily stay at 65░F with the heat off.

I would like to rip up my current laminate and replace it was something nicer. Maybe bamboo, ceramic tile, or hardwood floor, and in the process put down some type of thermal barrier to block out this unwanted heat. I have purchased and received some samples of underlayments that tout high R-values. I have done tests with these underlayments to see which is the best. I just wanted to see if anyone else has experienced this problem or has any good advice as the best possible underlayment to use. Thank you so much in advance.
Old 08-12-14, 05:43 PM
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Hamilton County, Ohio
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If you are not the owner, check before tearing up the floor. I would think that anything you put down, unless it is very thick, will rise to and hold the temp from the pipes. Not a pro here so hang on and see what they say.

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