Modern Underfloor Heating Installations
Unbelievably I still come across heating installers that really do not wish to install underfloor heating (UFH). I always hear the same objections, that it’s a black art…what if it leaks?…it’s too expensive…customers don’t want it, etc. I believe many installers are stuck in a rut, doing the same processes today that our predecessors thought were modern years before. The plumbing and heating industry has evolved but not all plumbers have moved with the times.
In the industry, we have moved from plumbing a house with lead pipe to copper in the 1950’s to in more recent years, plastic pipe becoming the norm. In the 1960’s heating was starting to be installed in general housing, mainly powered via back boiler using coal then later with oil and gas.
Radiators made from steel or cast iron were the heat emitters of choice and accepted as probably the only way to get a warm room. Basic controls offering homeowners to either have their heating on or off was considered standard.
So are you still in the 1960’s? Or are you willing to leap into the 21st century and embrace techniques that today are modern but will be classed as outdated in a few years? Our industry will always be needed but in the future, it may look very different. Why would this be different? That however is a future blog.
So why should you look at UFH?
With modern build techniques UFH is cheaper, quicker and a more practical way of heating a home or any area that requires heat. The use of plastic pipe has been accepted by the industry as a reliable universal product for many many years. I have personally been designing and installing UFH for over 30 years using only plastic pipe.
Originally Pert pipe was specified but it was heavy and difficult to decoil and shape when temperatures dipped. Polybutelyne was around but not readily available and it too suffered from uncontrollability as it had a memory which meant it only liked to be coiled. Then came along Pert al, what a difference! This pipe although reasonably heavy is a treat to work with, with no memory it will lay straight and hold a shape. Installation times dropped and it is now the norm for a team of two to lay 800-1000m a day with manifold and pressure tested. An average four bed house can now have the ground floor heating installed in a day. With radiators the install time is longer as, radiators will probably be hung and removed at least twice before commissioning. From a home owner perspective, room design becomes that much easier and future decorating is less of a headache and rooms look better and are more versatile without radiators as walls have clear space. Plus many other positive build points, if the build has to have a heat pump, then UFH is ideal as extra pipe in the floors will not be noticed, but larger radiators become unsightly and 10mm pipe is not an option.
Other positives for using Pert al:
• The pipe supplied by Orange Heating Supplies is WRAS approved from 16mm upwards.
• This means that any off-cuts can be used for any plumbing or heating job.
• Why not use the left overs for your hot/cold services, it saves buying two lots of pipe.
What to do next if you want to update your plumbing skills. Orange Heating Supplies and Roth offer installation courses which cover the basic install techniques and how to pressure test etc.
OHS will design a system and supply details of the parts required and provide Cad drawings if required for helping with pipe routes.
If you do not wish to buy a stapler and a decoiler just yet, Orange Heating Supplies can also supply these for free on your 1st job.
Need help on the 1st job? We can offer help to install either over the phone or by sending an engineer to help. (subject to charges).
Give us a call on 01603 567594 to discuss your requirements.