How to choose between radiators and underfloor heating?


Surely you agree that the perfect heating system is one that can offer you comfort and efficiency at the best price. Before deciding to install radiators or underfloor heating at home, discover the characteristics of these two heating systems and choose taking into account their pros and cons.


The climatization of a space is essential, because on good heating at home or in the workplace depends the fact of being at ease enjoying a pleasant temperature. The system by radiators and radiant floor, have common characteristics and also significant differences that must be taken into account to know what is convenient in each case.

Heating solutions

What are the differences between both heating systems?


Underfloor heating consists of laying of pipe network under the pavement, embedded in the concrete, through which water flows at a temperature of around 30 - 40°C. The heat emitted by the pipes will rise, penetrating the floor, thus raising the ambient temperature of any room.

On the other hand, radiators also work by the hot water action, but in this case to a temperature between 70°C - 80°C and making the heat start from a single point, the one where the radiator is fixed.

These are the two differences: temperature of the surrounding water and location of the heat supply points and from them derive a series of advantages and disadvantages that you must have clear before taking a decision.



Underfloor heating

Which heating system is Better?

When installing heating, professional advice is essential because the best system is one that adapts to the characteristics and needs of each space. If your goal is to make a reform that includes the choice of a climatization system, discover the pros and cons of the two most common, compare and decide


Installation of the heating systems.


Installing a series of radiators is always simpler than completing an underfloor heating installation. On the other hand, the initial economic outlay required by the radiant floor is higher, especially if you need to lift the floor and return to the site. In the long run, it can be more cost-effective, but the budget will be more expensive initially.

Saving energy and money.


As we have indicated, the water that runs through the floor heating pipes does so at a considerably lower temperature than that of traditional radiators. The radiant, in this sense, is a more efficient system, it requires less energy to achieve the ideal temperature, and this also translates into a less expensive heating bill. It is estimated that the value of the energy consumption of a radiant floor installation is between 10 and 20% lower than that of other systems such as radiators.



Heat distribution


In this respect, underfloor heating has the advantage. Please note that pipes underfloor are distributed in a coil form that reaches almost the entire surface of the room. This is why the system achieves an even distribution of heat. On the other hand, we can all perceive that, in the case of radiators, the temperature increases the closer we get to them. A heating system by radiators provides effectivity if the number of appliances is enough and if they are correctly placed so that the heat is not concentrated only in the area where they are located.



Time to reach the desired temperature


The high thermal inertia is for many the significant disadvantage of underfloor heating. Once turned on, the system takes a considerable time (depending on the space to be heated) to reach the comfort temperature and, in the same way, it will also keep the heat for hours once turned off, perhaps wasting valuable energy. Without a doubt, the speed in reaching the optimum temperature is a point in favour of radiators.



Use of space


Underfloor heating is does not take up any space in the room, unlike radiators which can sometimes limit aesthetic and furniture options.


Climatization


Current underfloor heating systems can also be used as a cooling system, only by using cold water to cool the floor of the house.



Savings on bills

When to Choose Underfloor Heating and When to Opt for Traditional Radiators?

If you are still in doubt about which system is right for you, some examples may give you an idea of which is better in your case.

  • If it is a new build or you are going to make a renovation, which includes lifting the floor and new paving, the radiant floor is an option to take into account.

  • If you have little space, radiators can be a severe inconvenience because they will be meters away.


  • The underfloor heating is thought for spaces of continuous use, in which a pleasant temperature is going to be required during practically all day. If you want a heating system that works at specific times (only a few hours in the morning and others in the afternoon) and therefore requires frequent switching on and off, then the radiator system will be better for you.


  • If your source of energy is a heat pump, which allows the cold/heat option, remember that underfloor heating can be transformed into an effective cooling system. If it is a new build or you are going to make a renovation, which includes lifting the floor and new paving, the radiant floor is an option to take into account.

  • If you have little space, radiators can be a severe inconvenience because they will be meters away.


  • The underfloor heating is thought for spaces of continuous use, in which a pleasant temperature is going to be required during practically all day. If you want a heating system that works at specific times (only a few hours in the morning and others in the afternoon) and therefore requires frequent switching on and off, then the radiator system will be better for you.

  • If your source of energy is a heat pump, which allows the cold/heat option, remember that underfloor heating can be transformed into an effective cooling system.

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