030 HPM 1115

HPM November 2015

WWW.HPMMAG.COM Got a story? Ring us on 01732 748041 or e-mail twood@unity-media.com SPECIALREPORT Underfloor heating made so simple Underfloor heating has moved from being a rich man’s luxury to a common aspiration of all homeowners, but there still some way to go before it becomes truly mainstream, however, due to some misconceptions on its complexity. Gareth Samuel, product manager at Wavin, explains... Originally regarded as a luxury which was complex to install, underfloor heating (UFH) has developed to provide customisable and easily installed options which enable it to be an option for installers and clients in almost any new build or refurbishment. The benefits of UFH versus traditional radiator space heating are well-established, offering comfortable, even warmth allied to efficiencies of low water temperatures. In addition, there are benefits for modern interior design flexibility and aesthetics, as no radiators clutter the walls, which help occupiers, make the most of constrained development footprints. UFH is also ideal for connection to renewable energy sources such as heat pumps and geothermal systems as they typically require lower water temperatures than traditional space heating options. One of the key efficiency benefits of UFH is that as radiator size decreases for traditional solutions, water has to be provided at a much higher temperature to provide the same level of heating that UFH installations can. In order to produce the same 45°C temperature typical for UFH installed in concrete floors, radiators would need to be three times their normal size. KEY PERFORMANCE BENEFITS OF UFH: • Floors only require heating to 26-28°C • Water temperature needs be 40-45°C for Underfloor heating can be used in almost any new build or refurbishment concrete floors and 50-60°C for timber floor constructions • Fuel bills can be up to 20% lower • No creaking due to thermal expansion or noise from water flow • Health and safety benefits, including reduced dust, mites, fungi, and hot surfaces • Low maintenance with no requirement for renewal or repositioning of radiators • Evenly distributed warmth • Less heat loss through windows, walls and ceilings • A less stuffy atmosphere from dry re-heated air SIMPLE ROUTES TO SUCCESS UFH installations have increased exponentially over the past 20 years, with installers broadening their focus from new build domestic installations to wider markets, including the commercial sector and house renovations. Concurrently, the innovations that have been seen in modern UFH systems have led to greatly simplified installation as well as the development of a range of system types to support this wider range of projects. Installers can now quickly and securely install effective and reliable UFH in a wide range of floor types and room sizes. Wavin has invested in innovation to help simplify the process of specifying and installing UFH systems to ensure that installations are fit for purpose in each individual case. For example the Hep2O System selector guide helps installers quickly find the ideal system to suit a project’s floor construction. In addition, for screeded or suspended floors, Hep2O’s online quotation tool can provide an instant quotation or bill of materials. One of the major benefits of UFH is the ability of systems to be zoned, giving users the ability to have precise control of areas using thermostats. A key part of commissioning an installation is ensuring that the manifold is balanced correctly to fine-tune heat outputs to match a user’s requirements. However, modern manifolds have made this much simpler, helping installers finish the job with minimal fuss. Hep2O’s 25-year guaranteed Composite Manifold allows any manifold arrangement to be configured from simple flexible modules, to precisely suit the installation. The next step change in bringing the full benefits of controllability to users is app-based controls which can enable individual control of zones remotely to maximise both efficiency and comfort. Hep2O’s neoApp can control up to 32 thermostats from a smart device, with the addition of a neoHub to the control system. The option to control multiple neoHubs opens up further opportunities for comprehensive remote control. The Hep2O UFH system has been designed under an exacting Quality and Environmental Management regime and demonstrates the benefits of specifying a whole system together, from pipework to manifold to controls. The polybutylene pipe used in UFH systems is guaranteed for 100 years meeting the most stringent whole life demands. Underfloor heating is no longer complex to install 30 NOVEMBER 2015 HEATING & PLUMBING MONTHLY enquiry number 112


HPM November 2015
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