Heat Pumps Underfloor Heating
Table of Contents
- 1 - Underfloor Heating With a Ground or Air Source Heat Pump
- 2 - Why Heat Pumps are Ideal for Underfloor Heating
- 3 - Underfloor Heating vs Radiators: How to Choose
- 4 - HVAC is Excellent for Both Heating and Cooling
- 5 - Underfloor Heating Controls
Underfloor Heating With a Ground or Air Source Heat Pump
Nothing beats the comfort of warmth underfoot as the weather cools – particularly in the morning. Your underfloor heating works much more efficiently when used with ground source or air source heat pumps, giving out heat at lower temperatures over longer periods of time.
Underfloor heating is cost-effective in the long run, eco-friendly, and saves you wall space you can use to beautify your home.
Why Heat Pumps are Ideal for Underfloor Heating
Unlike an oil or a gas boiler that heats water to between 65°C and 85°C, a heat pump produces hot water at around 40°C. Besides, walking down a floor of 65°C would scald your feet and break your tile cover.
If you wanted to use a traditional fossil fuel boiler for underfloor heating you would have to blend hot and cold water to get the temperature back down from 65 degrees to a more suitable temperature – which is incredibly inefficient. 35°C – 45°C is a great temperature for underfloor heating, and because it is not efficient to heat water simply to cool it down again before using it, a heat pump is an optimal alternative – delivering hot water effectively at the perfect temperature for underfloor heating.
It is critical that the system is designed correctly for any underfloor system that is to be used with a heat pump. The ACE Heat Pumps UK will design and supply a fully optimised heating system that integrates the energy-efficient heat pump with the maximum spectrum of underfloor heating benefits.
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Underfloor heating is an innovative way to keep your home warm. It provides an even distribution of heat around your home. Furthermore, it creates more space that you can use for aesthetically pleasing valuables such as other furniture, paintings and artistic shelves.
Underfloor heating can be installed with a ground source heat pump or air source heat pump system offering your home or office space a highly efficient heating solution.
As with all heat pumps, models of air source heat pumps are most efficient when supplying low-temperature systems such as underfloor heating systems. Similarly, ground source heat pumps work best with heating systems that are optimised to run at a lower water temperature than is commonly used in boiler and radiator systems in the UK. So, they too are a perfect match for underfloor heating systems.
Heat Pump Efficiency
Since a heat pump uses electricity only for power rather than heat generation, it has a relatively high output performance. A heat pump will keep you warm in the winter and cool you down in the summer. The effectiveness of heat pumps is determined by their Coefficient of Performance (CoP), which indicates how well the heat pump systems from the ground and air supply can heat your home in the best conditions.
Using this scale, heat pump efficiency from an air source heat pump can be as high as 4 while heat pumps from ground source can reach up to 5. This ensures that the heat pumps have the capacity to generate 4 and 5 units of heat respectively for each unit of energy you put in. The more powerful a heat pump is the more cost-effective it would be to run, and the less energy it uses.
Heat Pumps use Lower Temperature to Lose Less Energy Transporting Heat
The efficiency of heat pumps depends on how hard they have to work to keep the room temperature in your house at a reasonable level – the lower the temperature liquid of water that passes through your radiators, the more efficiency they provide.
Underfloor Heating vs Radiators: How to Choose
The high installation price of underfloor heating puts many people off. However, since underfloor heating at a lower temperature gives the same heat output as radiators, running costs are often far lower. In the long run, that may actually make it cheaper. Granted, radiators are cheaper than UFH to install but the choice is also about the aesthetics as much as the amount of heat required.
There are two types of underfloor heating – electrical or ‘hot’ heating systems and water or ‘wet’ systems. Electrical devices are relatively efficient and less costly to build, but their operating costs are higher, and they are better suited to narrower spaces like tiled toilets, or places that are difficult to get to. To add to this, underfloor heating is the perfect partner for a heat pump which is efficient in producing the required low temperature.
Radiators are quick to respond to desired temperature changes. Radiators are a familiar option and are well understood by almost all plumbers and heating engineers. They’re less expensive to install. Furthermore, installing radiators in existing buildings is relatively less disruptive than UFH.
Ultimately, you should choose a heating system based on your own needs and lifestyle. An underfloor heating system definitely provides convenience, energy efficiency and is cost-effective in the long run. As a conventional heating system, underfloor heating can be installed in existing houses as well as in new builds.
Radiators Struggle to Heat Larger Rooms Quickly
A small radiator will struggle to effectively heat up a large room because of the greater amount of air they need to act against. This can lead to an unbalanced room temperature and a long-term waste of energy. Large radiators can change the temperature of a small room quickly but are still more expensive to run.
Underfloor Heating Spreads Heat More Evenly
Compared to radiators, underfloor heating uses water at a much lower temperature because it distributes heat more evenly than radiators, making your boiler more efficient. Underfloor heating systems have both practicality and efficiency. Since heat rises upward, an underfloor heating system will naturally be extremely effective, allowing you to feel instantaneous results.
Underfloor Heating vs HVAC
Underfloor heating can be said to be safer, separating heating from cooling and thereby reducing draughts and pollution, pollen and other issues associated with contaminants. Underfloor heating can be more reliable, easier to maintain, and produces less noise. It is completely unobtrusive, can save space and can be quieter than HVAC systems. In some cases, running underfloor heating can be less costly than the energy needed to power an HVAC system..
Underfloor Heating Works well with Domestic Hot Water Production
Underfloor heating can be operated using hot water or electrical energy as the thermal medium. Electrically-powered heaters are used at residential and commercial premises, thereby eliminating the need for a central heating system. Furthermore, underfloor heating works very well with air source heat pumps – so if you want to get the most out of your heat pump system, you should consider installing underfloor heating.
HVAC is Excellent for Both Heating and Cooling
HVAC stands for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning. In modern homes and buildings, these functions are often combined in one system. The aim of an HVAC system is to provide thermal comfort and an acceptable quality of indoor air.
Your heating system works with the central air conditioning during warm seasons. The air is cooled as it is blown over the cooling coil of your air conditioning unit, often attached to the furnace fan circulating in the air, and then sent through the same air ducts all over your home.
Heat pumps can switch from heating to refrigeration mode. If a building is equipped with a water-source heat pump for each area, the building can be both heated and cooled using only one return pipe and supply pipe.
How to get Underfloor Heating Right
It is recommended that an underfloor heating system should be kept on at all times in the depths of winter, although it should be at different temperatures depending on usage and activity. This is because underfloor heating may take between two and three hours to warm up, so it is best not to turn it off completely.
The best approach to optimise your heating system performance is to allow 2 “on” times with a temperature of comfort and 2 “off” periods with setback temperatures that are usually 4°C lower than the temperature of comfort.
Getting the Right Insulation to the Underside is Key
For your heating to be effective, your home needs to be well-insulated and draught-proofed. This is because ground source heat pumps are at their best at low temperatures. What amount of insulation is needed? A u-value of 0.13 to 0.25 is usually required for underfloor heating to meet current building regulations, depending on the style of construction.
It will need approx. 125mm and above to achieve 0.13 u-value efficiency with standard rigid foam insulation. To prevent downward heat loss, all insulation should be installed below the floor. This can be between the concrete slab and the underfloor heating layer on a solid floor, or it can be beneath the concrete slab. In a suspended timber floor, this can be under the floorboards, between the joist timbers in the floor, or on top of the floorboards.
Using the Right Construction can Ensure the System Lasts as Long as the Building
Planning the layout of the underfloor heating loop correctly is important. When it is done properly this will enable the underfloor heating system to be optimally laid out. This prevents the possibility of covering heating loops and limiting the heating system’s output. It also makes the system last as long as the building.
The ACE Heat Pumps UK has been specialising in underfloor heating architecture, build, and supply for over 10 years. Our committed and knowledgeable team is committed to the production of innovative, new technologies and solutions that allow us to stay at the forefront of the industry.
Underfloor ventilation is our speciality and we focus on being consistently successful at it. No matter how challenging the parameters of your project may be, we are sure we can provide an underfloor heating system that will meet your needs. Furthermore, in the unfortunate case that one of our standard sets does not suit your requirements, we have the facilities to assemble tailor-made packages to address non-traditional or demanding needs.
Underfloor Heating Requires Almost no Maintenance when Installed Correctly
Correctly installed, UFH should give excellent heat output and efficiency – more so than radiators – and no more maintenance is required than any other heating system. Since polypropylene (this is what the chemical-resistant pipe used for underfloor heating is made of) is a naturally tough material, very little maintenance is required. This happens to be the case with underfloor heating based on both water and electric.
Underfloor Heating Controls
We provide stylish control systems to suit your individual heating needs, lifestyle and budget for both electric and water underfloor heating.
Smart Thermostats and Smartphone Controls
Smart thermostats work with you to provide an optimal heating system that is cost-effective and energy-efficient. It does not require programming for use with electric underfloor heating systems and uses the latest technology to ensure that your home is always at the desired temperature, at the right time.
Smartphone controls allow you to heat your house remotely from anywhere you have 3G, 4G or WiFi to adjust and turn on and off. Furthermore, these apps come with detailed analytics telling you when and where you use heating the most to help you to achieve more efficiency.
Reduce energy costs with smart app features that allow you to schedule your floor heating system to suit your lifestyle choices and reduce energy costs. We can also offer the convenience of an intelligent thermostat that adapts to climatic conditions, and knows when to start and shut down the heating. Save energy by meeting your planned heating demands and reducing the temperature automatically when you don’t need it. Set the temperature to match your mood and experience superior thermal comfort.
You can configure your smart thermostat to turn on your heating at a certain time or heat up to a certain temperature in your house. Some smart thermostats will also figure out how long it takes for everything or half of your house to heat up.
While a smart thermostat helps you to monitor the temperature of your house, a smart metre can give you details about your energy usage and prices, usually on a display inside your home. The ACE Heat Pumps UK provides both devices to support you in managing your heating system and reducing costs.
Underfloor Heating is Suitable for Most Buildings
Underfloor heating can be installed or retrofitted into existing spaces on new-build projects.
It can be used in combination with sources of renewable heat, thermal mass and night-time purging.
Underfloor heating is an effective alternative heating system for your home or business and is becoming increasingly popular as it allows you to heat up your floor or act as a primary source of heating, completely replacing the need for traditional radiator systems.
Shops and Offices
As with domestic properties, underfloor heating’s advantages also come into play in commercial property such as offices: the freedom in design to place glass walls and the freedom during design in space planning.
More Industrial Applications
Underfloor heating is ideal for houses, classrooms, hospitals, and a wide variety of commercial uses. That is because underfloor heating offers 70% radiant heat and 30% convected heat in comparison to the radiators which are the converse. Consequently, it produces a more pleasant and controllable living atmosphere for the end-user.
As one of the largest underfloor heating providers in the UK, we are proud to deliver the best products at the lowest prices. Our client base varies from architects, large-scale builders and developers to small tile firms, individual vendors, and self-construction businesses.
Our in-depth experience of concrete subfloors, floor coverings and different construction techniques make us the leading specialists in both water and electric underfloor heating systems as well as heat pumps in the industry.