Imagine getting out of bed on a chilly winter morning, and instead of being shocked by cold tile, your feet are actually warmed by the floor beneath you. Heated flooring is an increasingly popular alternative to traditional heating methods, as it not only keeps your feet warm, but these systems also heat more evenly as well.
However, while the prospect of having heated floors installed in your home may be exciting, this is no small undertaking, and there are a few things that you may want to consider before jumping into this project.
To help you decide if this is the right option for your home, keep reading for a look at seven things to know before installing heated floors.
What Kind of System Do You Want to Install?
If you are considering installing heated flooring, you will first have to decide whether hydronic or electric floor heating is right for you. Hydronic flooring systems use hot water tubes to emit heat, while electric systems use loops of electric wires.
While hydronic systems typically cost more to install, they are cheaper to run. So while an electric system might look more appealing initially, it will cost more in the long run.
What Rooms Make Sense for Heated Floors?
Depending on the size of your home and your budget, you may decide to install heated floors throughout your home, or you may choose to install them in certain rooms.
If you are going to choose just a few rooms to install heated floors in, consider starting with bedrooms and bathrooms, as this is where you are most likely to walk around barefoot on cold floors late at night or early in the morning.
Heated floors are also a good option for rooms with high ceilings since heating from the ground up provides more even heat distribution.
What Kind of Flooring Do You Plan to Use?
Since having heated floors installed requires ripping up your existing flooring, it is important that you take a moment to think about what type of flooring you want to install. Tile, wood, laminate, and vinyl floors are all great options as they conduct heat well.
Certain types of carpet may also work, but carpets with thicker pile may be too insulated, trapping the underfloor's heat instead of radiating it throughout the room. It is important that you work with an experienced installer who can help you choose the right materials for your project.
What's The Average Cost?
Before you start looking at heated flooring systems and flooring materials, you must first take a moment to think about your budget and how much you are willing to spend.
As we previously mentioned, the cost of installing heated floors can vary greatly depending on whether you choose hydronic or electric flooring. While electric floors range between $8-$15 per square foot to install, hydronic systems can cost as much as $22 per square foot or more.
Can I Install Heated Floors Myself?
If you are like many homeowners, you may prefer to DIY projects around your home to save money. However, you may find yourself wondering if this is feasible with a more complex project like a heated flooring install.
The fact is that this job requires intermediate skills and a significant amount of electrical experience. While many home improvement projects are great for DIYers, this is one that should probably be left to the professionals if you want it done right. If you mess up the installation, you could end up costing yourself a lot more money in the long run.
What Are The Benefits of Radiant Floor Heating?
If you are unsure whether radiant floor heating is right for you, you may find yourself wondering what benefits it offers other than keeping your feet warm. One of the primary benefits of this heating option is that it heats your home more evenly and uniformly than forced air heating, ensuring your comfort while reducing the cost of heating your home.
Additionally, while forced air heating can spread dust, dirt, and other allergens throughout your home, radiant floor heating is non-allergenic. This makes it a great option for people with asthma, allergies, or other respiratory conditions.
Are There Any Cons?
Of course, radiant floor heating systems do not come without their cons, with the biggest downside being the high cost of installation. Additionally, heated floors will increase your floor height by about ½ an inch, which could cause uneven surfaces throughout your home if you do not plan on installing heated floors in every room.
Ultimately, you will have to weigh the pros and cons and decide whether radiant floor heating is right for your home. However, many people find installing heated floors to be a worthwhile investment as they offer even heating and add to their home's resale value.
Contact us to learn more about heated floors and whether you should consider having them installed in your home this winter.