Friday, June 12, 2009

Radiant Heat Is Better But More Costly

By Art Bonner

Radiant heat is of interest to many homeowners because it is a better kind of heat than the forced air that is in so many houses. Unfortunately, if you have a house that is already built, it will be expensive to install a radiant heat system. Many people get around this by installing radiant heat in just a couple of rooms, usually the master bathroom and sometimes the kitchen.

Radiant heat is great but if it is not installed right when the house is built, it becomes difficult to tear up all the floors and have it put in. Builders usually only put radiant heat into homes they are building as a luxury item and usually only in expensive home.

If you choose to have radiant heat installed in just one room or a couple of rooms, your best choice is probably electric radiant heat. This is because electric pads can be brought in and installed under the floors with a fair amount of ease and at a reasonable cost. The other common type of radiant heat is the hydronic variety that involves putting pipes of heated running water under the floors. This is a much bigger undertaking that the electric pads and can be much more expensive.

In your travels you might find a home or two with radiant ceiling heat. This is not really recommended because heat rises and if it is already coming out of the ceiling it will not heat the rooms with the same efficiency as heat coming from the floors. If you hire a professional to put radiant heat into your home, make sure you ask a lot of questions if he recommends ceiling heat. There are instances where it is necessary but in most cases, radiant floor heat is the preferred type.

People love radiant heat because it is silent and heats a room efficiently. Unlike forced air, you never really know it is there because it is not blowing all over the place. It heats rooms evenly and it is much better for your skin than the dry air that gets pushed around your house with a forced air system. Radiant heat is the best choice if you are building a house and it will raise the value of your home if you are lucky enough to have it.

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