Hydronics is the heating or cooling with water. Hydronics systems consist of a compact boiler (fired by any fuel) that heats water, which is distributed to a network of slim baseboard, panel or space radiators, or under floor tubing by a circulator.
How does it work?
If you’re like most people, you probably assume that the warm floor heats air which rises to heat people. This is only partly true. A small percentage of the heat transferred to the room from a radiant floor actually comes from heated air. In fact, the air temperature ceiling to floor and throughout the room never varies more than one or two degrees.
The obvious question is then, “where does the heat come from?” Radiant heat is a little more difficult to understand although we experience it daily. The air in the big outdoors is primarily heated by its contact with the heated earth. When we step outside on a warm cloudy day, the warmth we feel is the radiant energy coming directly from the sun. It is exactly that form of heat which is radiated from a warm floor.
Radiant energy is transferred through the air in all directions and is converted to heat energy when it contacts an object such as walls, furniture or people. It is a fact of nature that if one object is warmer than another, the first object will radiate its heat to the cooler object. You can perform a demonstration of this phenomena yourself by simply holding the palm of your hand a few inches away from a cold window. What you perceive as cold “draft” coming from the window is actually your body losing heat to the window by radiation.
What this means is that a floor which is a few degrees warmer than the ceilings, walls, furniture and people will radiate its heat into the room at a constant comfortable rate without the help of noisy moving air or bulky baseboard heaters. There are virtually no cold drafts or hot ceilings and furniture can be placed anywhere.
Responsive heating engineered for your radiant system
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