Central Versus Under Floor Heating – Which Is Better?

January 27, 2015
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Melbourne, Australia
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Whether you are building a brand new home or renovating your current one, it is essential that you have taken the time to choose a heating system that is appropriate for your needs. These days, two of the most popular options include central and under floor heating. Whilst both are quite successful at keeping your home warm internally, there are a number of pros and cons associated with each that it is important you are aware of.

Central Heating

  • Energy Efficiency: The fact that this option relies on convection heat in order to warm a room puts it at an immediate disadvantage in terms of efficiency. This is because the heat often comes from a single source, which only heats the air around it (not the room as a whole).
  • Space: The amount of space that your central heating takes up will depend on entirely on the type of system you have installed. Whilst ducts are relatively unobtrusive, furniture placed over the top will block heat. Wall radiators are quite obvious and chunky.
  • Heating Speed: This is one of the only areas in which this system will prevail over under floor. The radiators are known to heat up quite quickly, allowing you to give a cold room an almost instant boost of warmth – perfect for when you get home!
  • Quietness – Anyone who has lived with this option before will know that it can be incredibly noisy at the best of times. It is not uncommon for bangs, knocks and clangs to echo around your home, disturbing your slumber or scaring the life out of you.

Under Floor Heating

  • Energy Efficiency: This option is quite efficient, as it warms the room from the floor up. The heat is mainly transferred via radiation, which provides a much more even distribution and results in the lower part of the space being warmer than the ceiling.
  • Space: If you’re looking for a system that takes up as little space as possible, this option takes the gold medal! After installation, everything is hidden below the floor and there are no ugly units taking up valuable space within the room. Place your furniture wherever you want!
  • Running Costs: Did you know that you can actually have your system set at a lower temperature and will feel warmer than normal? This option distributes heat more evenly throughout the space. The water is heated to between 35 and 60 degrees Celsius for maximum comfort.
  • Maintenance: These systems are relatively maintenance free; the only thing you will have to worry about is an annual check of the manifold to ensure that there aren’t any leaks. Homeowners are often worried about the piping, but there is actually very little chance it will crack.

As you can see, there are a number of pros and cons associated with both central and under floor heating; before reaching a final decision for your home, it is important that you have weighed them all up against your requirements. It is also imperative to note that what works for one home may not necessarily work for another; the decision on which heating system to install is a completely personal one that should not be made lightly.


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