What are the Benefits of a Hydronic Heating System?
While radiant heating has become more and more popular over the last several years, there are still many people who are not aware of the many hydronic heating system benefits when compared to a traditional heating plan. Radiant heat is clean and comfortable, while extremely energy efficient and flexible in design.
The single most important element that a heating system must give you and your family is comfort. Hydronic heating takes comfortable to a new level, as can be seen from the many benefits below:
- Multi Zones – Radiant heating allows for personalized temperature control through the use of multiple zones throughout the home. This way parents and children can custom set their bedroom temperatures to their personal taste, while the kitchen and family room are kept comfortable for everyone. In addition, you don’t have to worry about keeping the doors closed in your rooms to trap heat. This is because radiant heat has no bursts of air that push warmth out of the areas you want it and into the spaces you don’t.
- Warm Tiles and Floors – There is nothing as discouraging to the thought of getting out of bed in the morning then that frigid walk across cold bathroom tile on your way to the shower. Radiant flooring solves this problem by infusing the floors with heat, so that those previously chilly tiles become your source of warmth. People aren’t the only ones affected, since pets love nothing better than to stretch out on a warm floor.
- Balanced Humidity Levels – It is far easier to maintain a balanced humidity level in the home with radiant hydronic heat because it will not dry out your home. Cold winter days already do enough to dry out skin without help from a forced air heating system, which sucks additional moisture out of the house in the process of heating the air.
- Quieter – Radiant flooring and hydronic heating equipment work in silence while providing warmth for the whole house. There are no sounds of the heating unit kicking on and off during the night. Instead, steady heat radiates into the room with nothing to notice but the comfortable temperatures.
Dust and allergens can be a concern for any family. They create sneezes and make it hard to breathe at times, especially for those with strong allergies or asthma. Unfortunately, traditional heating equipment pushes air around the home, which stirs up the allergens and dust, and carries it throughout the house. This is why filters are so necessary for force air systems, and why the infrequent changing of filters can have an impact on your family’s health.
Hydronic heat avoids this issue entirely, as it does not require the movement of any air to warm the home. This provides a healthier environment for you and your family.
Energy efficiency is talked about more and more these days. Aside from the benefit that reduced energy consumption can have on the planet, the immediate impact of a hydronic system is the money that you will save on your energy bill each month.
Hydronic heat is more efficient than traditional air heating for many reasons. For one, water is a better heat conductor than air. This means the warmth is more easily transferred throughout the home, so less energy is needed in heating the medium. In addition, forced air units create pressure which pushes heat out through the gaps in insulation. Any home with poor insulation or drafts will suffer from heat loss, but radiant heat does not raise the air pressure in the home, so that warmer air is actively pushed out through the nooks and crannies. You will need to speak with local installers to get a specific understanding of the savings potential in your climate when using hydronic radiant heating, but it has been shown to produce comfortable living conditions at a 20-40% lower cost than traditional heat systems.
Local installers will also be able to update you on the tax incentives for upgrading your heating to an energy efficient design. Due to the importance of reducing energy consumption, government programs have been established to offer savings that will reduce the upfront cost of radiant heat installation.
The versatility of installing hydronic heating allows homeowners to design a system around their needs. Whether your local fuel source is propane, natural gas, electricity, or oil you will be able to find a hydronic boiler that works for you. Hydronic piping can be placed in the walls and easily routed around the home, unlike traditional systems that require extensive ductwork and return air systems with large chases, which eat into your usable square footage in the home.
These are just a few of the benefits that come with residential hydronic radiant heating systems. Read ahead if you would like to learn about the methods of how to install hydronic heating and what can go wrong with a radiant floor installation.