Underfloor heating is a common feature in many N European homes & is becoming increasingly popular in the UK as an alternative to traditional radiators. Underfloor heating creates an even uniform surface temperature across the entire floor area within the building in order to ensure a consistent comfort level. Underfloor heating runs at a lower heat than conventional heating methods which reduces waste heat & can be cheaper to run than radiators.
Underfloor heating systems can be run with most heating fuels. A conventional gas, oil or solid fuel boiler can be used with a wet system.
Alternatively, underfloor heating can be used with renewable technologies such as a heat pump which are more efficient at the lower temperatures at which underfloor heating systems operate. A biomass boiler could be used & the system may even be supplemented by a solar thermal panel. Underfloor heating can also be electrically powered.
Underfloor heating can be retrofitted but because of the process of installation, is probably better suited to new builds or extensions. With no radiators there is more wall space & a greater choice of where to locate furniture. Because it takes longer to heat up & cool down than radiators, the property needs to be well insulated to minimise heat loss & reduce heating up time.
Underfloor heating also lends itself better to where the building is consistently occupied rather than houses where heat is needed a few hours in the morning & evening.