How to Install a Radiant Heating System in a Raised Access Floor
A radiant heating system is a type of underfloor heating system which can be installed under a raised access floor easily and quickly. They can also be fitted under a number of other types of floor, although it will always be easiest when dealing with raised access floors. Fitting the radiant heating system into a raised access floor is easier than other types of flooring because you don't need to disturb the original flooring. Raised access floors are becoming common in homes because they are an easy place to locate heating and cooling systems.
Step 1 - Choosing the Type of Radiant Heating
The first thing that you must do is choose the type of radiant heating system that you want to install. There are two main types of radiant heating solutions: the most common is electrical, although water based units are also popular. The electrical system works in a similar way to an electric blanket. There is a series of wires all woven together, which are run underneath your raised floor. Water based systems are small pipes that carry hot water from your radiator. These are basically large radiators that are under the entire floor.
Electric systems are much more expensive to run, but are cheaper to install. If you are only considering using the radiant heating in one area of the house, electric systems might be the best option. Spend time choosing the best type of radiant heating for your home.
Step 2 - Removing Panels
Raised access flooring can be lifted up in sections to gain access to the sub-floor. Remove the floor covering, and then take off as many panels of raised flooring as required to gain enough access. You will eventually need to access the entire floor, but you can do a section at a time.
Step 3 - Laying the Radiant Heater
The radiant underfloor heating elements or pipes can then be fitted under the raised floor. Follow the manufacturers instructions when fitting this heater. The water based systems often come with clips to hold the pipes down in the crawl space. The electrical systems can be taped to the floor, or even cemented into a floor when it is being built.
Step 4 - Connecting the Radiant Heater
Now you need to connect the radiant heater. You will either need to connect this to the electricity supply, or alternatively, to your hot water heater. If connecting to your boiler make sure your boiler is powerful enough to run it. When connecting this to the electricity supply you must ensure that the radiant heater is connected to a circuit breaker to prevent danger.
Once the radiant heater is connected it's a good idea to test it to ensure that everything works properly before replacing the panels on the floor. This will save you time in case any adjustments are required to get everything working properly.