The methods used in radiant heating are actually thousands of years old. The ancient romans used to use it to heat their homes, lacking as they were in the technology required for a forced air system. In more modern times, radiant heating systems have become some of the most energy efficient and cost effective heating systems available. Despite their advantages, however, many homeowners don’t seem very aware of radiant systems as viable heating options. We will attempt to remedy that unfortunate state here. The following are just some of the many reasons why you should consider a radiant heating system.
What is a Radiant System?
A radiant heating system can be boiler-based, using water to transport heat instead of air. Water pipes are installed in the walls or subfloor of each room that needs heating. Then, this network of pipes is connected to the boiler. When the system is turned on, the boiler heats water and distributes it through the pipe network. As the hot water runs through these pipes, it transmits its heat through the pipes and into the room. This is why it is called a “radiant” heating system, because the heat radiates into the room instead of being transported by air.
Sometimes electrical heating coils are used inside the walls and subfloor instead of water.
Why Should You Care?
As mentioned above, radiant heating systems have a few huge advantages over forced air systems. Prime among these is energy efficiency. There are a couple of things that contribute to a radiant system’s superior energy efficiency. The first of these is that water is a much better thermal conductor than air is. This means that the water used in a radiant system will heat up faster and stay hot for longer. As such, the system itself doesn’t have to be on for as long to reach the same temperature as a forced air system.
The second reason has to do with ducts. The US Department of Energy estimates that forced air systems lose as much as 30% of their heat on average to leaks in the ductwork. By eschewing ducts altogether, a radiant system avoids this massive drain on resources.
If you’re thinking about installing a new radiant system, call Kilowatt. Our HVAC technicians offer professional heating services throughout Los Angeles.