Don't just sit there and suffer if you've got an older radiant heating system and you're experiencing problems. Many issues with existing radiant heating systems can be resolved relatively cheaply by retrofitting them with new equipment.
Other issues may require you to change some habits, while in a few cases, the problems will require more extensive repair:
Common problems with radiant floor heat.
Are the floors warming up properly in some rooms but not warming at all in other rooms?
Many times, the problem is an airlock in the zones that aren't getting warm. There are several causes for an airlock, which prevents hot water from flowing through a zone's tubing.
Plastic and rubber tubing is permeable, and may be pulling in air. Older expansion tanks, which are designed to keep the system from building up too much pressure, may be releasing air into the system. Adding a new air eliminator to your system may help, as will having an expert inspect your expansion tank.
There also may be problems with your thermostat, or with the valves that open and close zones in multiple-zone systems.
Your habits may be the problem.
Homeowners with concrete slab floors often complain that there is a significant lag time before their floors get warm.
You should note that the thicker the concrete is, the longer it will take to heat the thermal mass to comfortable levels. But, if you set the boiler too high, eventually the floors will collect so much heat, rooms become uncomfortably warm. Too much floor heat can warp sub-flooring and tiles as well.
Resolve this issue by letting the system run 24/7 in cold weather rather than turning it off and on as needed. By maintaining a consistent hot water pressure in your system, you won't have extreme fluctuations in room heat. Increased insulation in colder rooms will also make a big difference.
More serious issues.
In rare cases, there may be serious leaks in the embedded tubing. Older boilers and expansion tanks may need to be replaced.
When a system was installed, it may not have included enough tubing to adequately warm the flooring above it. Alternately, there may be too much tubing, which means hot water is flowing through the system too fast to properly increase the temperature.
There may also be defective fittings used. One product's brass fittings degrade easily, releasing zinc which builds up and causes fittings to fail. Having these fitting installed in your system may even cause you to be denied homeowner's insurance.
To resolve radiant floor issues, hire a professional to inspect your system. They will be able to pinpoint the source of under-heating and overheating issues, and will be happy to give you tips and tricks on how to manage your system for maximum comfort and reliability. To learn more, contact a company like Allied Mechanical & Electrical, Inc. with any questions you have.Share
3 April 2015
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