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  • Tom Clarkson

Electric Underfloor Heating Systems versus Wet Underfloor Heating Systems – Which is Better for You

Although it’s currently the middle of summer in the UK, we’re being asked questions about underfloor heating for the home. So, if it is something you’re considering or may consider here are a few insights into underfloor heating for the home.

Electric underfloor heating
Installation of electric underfloor heating

The first question of course is should it be a wet underfloor heating system or an electric underfloor heating system?

Well, both use radiant heat and are hidden systems that heat from the floor up, unlike a central heating system of water fed radiators, which needs to have visible pipes and wastes energy by heating the air, often from the ceiling down.

So, both electric underfloor heating and wet underfloor heating systems have their merits, their disadvantages and their advantages so we usually advise customers dependent upon their situation. If you’re considering a retrofit into your current home, upstairs or down or fitting out your new extension, then electric underfloor heating will be a more simple and easier installation, it will also be less costly than a water heated pipe system. However, if you’re installing into a new build or a whole house as the primary source of heating, a water system, while costing a great deal more to buy and install will, over time, give you savings on energy consumption.

piped underfloor heating
Installation of piped underfloor heating

If a significant increase in floor height is an issue then electric underfloor heating will be advantageous as a loose wire system will increase it by less than 2mm. If you’re redecorating and want to install underfloor heating in one or two rooms, the electric underfloor system will be easier, quicker and cheaper with less mess.

We’ve always found that using a quality insulator when installing electric underfloor heating greatly enhances efficiency as it’ll ensures the heat isn’t transmitted down into the flooring substrate and that’s probably true of wet underfloor heating systems as well.

So, this isn’t an exhaustive, in depth review of the two main types of underfloor heating, however, hopefully it answered some basic questions for you.

Finally, in conclusion, here are what we consider to be the main Pros and Cons of each.

Electric Underfloor Heating SystemsCons

It costs more to run than a wet system.

You need to be a little careful about just plonking down heavy furniture.

Electric Underfloor Heating SystemsPros

It’s relatively inexpensive to install

There’s no pipework so easy installation.

Easily installed on upper floors

Wet Underfloor Heating SystemsPros

Extremely efficient to run and works at low temperatures.

Ideal for use alongside heat pumps to get amazing efficiency.

Wet Underfloor Heating SystemsCons

Initial costs are very high

The savings in comparison to radiators do not make it cost effective.

Pipes are difficult to reach if there are any issues.

Of course, if you have any other questions about electric underfloor heating, please let us know and we’ll be pleased to help.

wet underfloor heating
wet underfloor heating system installed

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