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Cozy winter still life: cup of hot coffee and opened book with warm plaid on vintage windowsill against snow landscape from outside.

Heating Your Home – Radiant vs. Forced Air?

Radiant floor heating is a method of heating your home that circulates warm water underneath or within the floor. Comparable to warming yourself in the sun, this type of heating warms people and objects in contact with the floor, as opposed to a traditional forced air system that heats the temperature of the air and blows this air throughout the home.

As mentioned, in a radiant floor heating system, warm water flows through flexible, durable, cross-linked polyethylene (PEX) tubing that is embedded under the floor.  It is the purest form of human thermal comfort. The water in a radiant system has a capacity to transport energy 3,500 times greater than air, so it can heat (and even cool) using less energy than a forced-air system. This amounts to greater comfort at a lower thermostat setting, which in turn provides lower energy bills. In fact, more people are comfortable with radiant floor heating at a lower thermostat setting than with forced-air heating at a higher thermostat setting.

Radiant floors can be used alone or in conjunction with a traditional forced-air heating system. A radiant floor heating system is in fact compatible under any type of floor covering — carpet, wood, slate, tile, stone, laminate, and even concrete — making design possibilities endless. Because it distributes heat evenly across each room, you don’t have to crank up the thermostat to reach the chilliest corners. It’s perfect for homes with vaulted ceilings or large windows, which would otherwise waste heat.

At HummingbirdHill Homes & Construction, we work with our clients to assess and implement a holistic strategy to create a high performance custom home that increases efficiencies and decreases operating costs. A radiant heating strategy is a popular choice to achieve this objective. For more information please contact us to discuss your particulars.

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