If you are considering the installation of a bathroom heated floor, you'll find plenty of options on the market. Heated floors have been around for years. In fact, some concepts used to heat floors were developed as long as 100 years ago. Take the time to research you options to make the best choice for your bathroom, your pocketbook and the environment.
Deciding on a Heating System
A bathroom heated floor provides an inviting element even in the middle of winter. Many people are happy with the easy care and the good durability of tile or stone, but find it to be cold and uninviting to bare feet.
Glass, ceramic, porcelain, stone, marble, granite and slate floors make good choices for bathroom heated floors because they are great conductors of heat. Even stone as thick as three quarters of an inch transfers heat without a problem.
However, as you decide on the thickness of your flooring, take into consideration that the thicker it is, the longer it will take for the heating system to heat it. However, once it is warm, due to thickness, it will hold heat longer.
As you look into the various floor heating choices available on the market today, consider the following items:
- Local building codes
Be sure to check codes in your area because they are changed and updated regularly to fit with today's emphasis on conserving energy as well as adjusting to new technology. These newer systems offer advantages in:
- Energy efficiency
- Environmental sensitivity
- Ease of use
Many of the newer systems can be easily converted to solar or other alternative energy sources.
Radiant heat is a system that uses hot water, steam pipes or electric resistance coils to heat the floors, walls or ceiling of a room. Radiant heat is an environmental friendly choice for heating a bathroom floor because it produces fewer greenhouse gasses and use less fossil fuel than most other systems. Various types of radiant heat systems are available on today's market. Here are a few of the most popular.
Open Direct System
This heating system uses the same hot water source used for bathing and laundry. Many homeowners choose this cost-efficient system because it eliminates the need for an additional hot water heater. This system can also be modified to use solar energy. If your existing hot water heater is 50 gallons or larger, it is probably big enough to support a radiant heating system.
With a closed system, heat is available when the thermostat turns the pump on, which sends the warm water from the boiler or water heater so that it flows throughout the heated floor.
When it comes times to heat your floor with an indirect radiant heating system, water is pumped to a heat-exchanger. Here heat transfers to the water used to warm the floor and a pump circulates the water throughout the floor.
In-floor Cable Electric Floor Heating
Electric radiant floor heating is another option for a bathroom heated floor. Kits are available in 120 volts and 240 volts, along with the necessary accessories. A cable system of wires is laid out on the floor and then covered in a self-leveling pour. In-floor electric cable systems incorporate the use of high-tech heating cables to create an economical and durable heating system to warm your floor.
Bathroom Heated Floor Mats
Another option available to warm your bathroom floors is heated floor mats. These mats are easy to install as you roll them out on your sub-flooring. Heated floor mats come in a variety of sizes and are available in 120 volts or 240 volts.
Warm Floor, Warm Feet
No matter which system you choose to heat your bathroom floor, you'll enjoy the advantage of stepping from the shower onto nice warmed tile even on those blustery winter days as your new floor heating system takes the chill out of tile, ceramic, laminate or natural stone. And remember, no matter which system you choose, be sure to use a certified electrician for the wiring.