Tile floor heating, also known as radiant floor heating, is a relatively new technology that is an alternative to traditional convection home heating systems. Instead of relying on baseboards and forced air, tile floor heating consists of specialized rods or tubing placed under the floor to distribute heat. In contrast to convection heating that blows heat from outside walls, this kind of system heats all the rooms of a home from the floor up, providing more of a greenhouse effect.
There are several advantages to choosing tile floor heating over other home heating systems. For one thing, it is highly efficient and economical. In fact, independent studies have found that homeowners can expect to lower their thermostats by up to eight degrees Fahrenheit, for an average thermostat setting of 60 degrees Fahrenheit (16 Celsius), even during the coldest winter months. In addition, installing tile floor heating may entitle certain homeowners to federal and state tax credits or deductions.
Heating with a tile floor heating system is also healthier for the home occupants. Hot air heating systems tend to recycle pet dander, dust mites, and other pollutants throughout the home, which can trigger allergy symptoms and asthma attacks. These systems also rob the atmosphere of moisture, which also contributes to breathing difficulties as well as an increased risk of respiratory infections. As an added benefit, tile floor heating doesn’t utilize any blowers or other moving mechanical parts, so it works without making any noise.
From an aesthetic viewpoint, radiant heating doesn’t involve any visible apparatus since everything is contained underneath the floor or slab. The absence of baseboards around the perimeter of rooms also translates to increased room for furniture placement. This is also a safety feature. Pets and small children can’t get burned from accidentally coming into contact with hot radiators or baseboards. In addition, the potential for small toys and other objects to find their way into such spaces is also eliminated.
Finally, tile floor heating is one of the most environmentally friendly systems available today. In the absence of burning a fossil fuel, such as oil or gas, there are no carbon emissions being produced. Radiant heat also significantly reduces energy use since this type of system is designed to run off of the same water heater that produces hot water for the home. In fact, if an up-to-date condensing water heater is used, it can capture steam that would otherwise be lost to the atmosphere and convert it into water again. This not only increases energy efficiency, but also reduces water-soluble particle pollutants from being released into the environment.