The rise in underfloor heating continues – but how do consumers know which system to buy?
Underfloor heating is no longer reserved for the lucky elite. Growing at a rapid rate of 13% year on year, it is becoming more desirable and affordable than ever before. But with so many systems to choose from it can be hard to cut through the noise. Wunda Group, a British heating company with more than 16 years of experience, explains how its flagship underfloor heating product, Wundatherm, offers the ultimate luxury of heat underfoot while still being easy to install and affordable for a range of renovation projects.
Sam Jump, Product Manager, Wunda Group comments: “Simply put, there has been a large boom in underfloor heating. This has been a long time coming, but is now here thanks to our desire for energy efficient solutions at home driven by the green revolution. More recently this has been compounded by the increasing time we have spent at home over the past two years and a desire to invest in our comfort and spend more on home improvements. Insulation aside, underfloor heating is one of the best things you can do to improve heating at home during retrofitting, but not all underfloor heating systems are equal. We knew that for underfloor heating to be desired by the masses, we had to solve the problem of performance, control, easy installation and affordability. This is how we came to reinvent underfloor heating and develop our Wundatherm underfloor heating system.”
No more burying under inches of screed
Underfloor heating was originally developed to heat large spaces such as airport lounges, runways and all-weather football pitches. This was achieved by burying pipes in screed which heated a thermal mass under the floor and warmed the surface. This system can work well if the heating is permanently switched on but it is not an efficient solution in homes where we want to quickly adjust the temperature to suit our needs.
“A common misconception of underfloor heating is that installation requires huge disruption,” explains Sam Jump. “But the truth is that this school of thought has been overplayed in domestic settings for too long. We have reinvented underfloor heating and our quick to install Wundatherm system can actually be laid directly on top of your existing flooring rather than digging up your floors which is required for screed systems that need to be buried beneath six inches of screed and cement. Thanks to the aluminum and polystyrene boards with close pipe centres, Wundatherm is a hassle free dry-fix solution which turns your whole floor into a radiator of warmth.”
Input temperatures for Wundatherm can be as low as 45°C, using half the energy required to heat a radiator at 70-80°C. This allows users to only heat the rooms they’re using, removing the need to leave the heating on at all times, as is the case with traditional screed systems which take days to heat and cool. When compared to even the fastest of screed systems using close pipe systems and modern anhydrite concrete screeds, the reaction time of Wundatherm is in a league of its own. Instead of the 24-72 hours a screed system can take to heat up, Wundatherm can be turned on or off, or adjusted, to reach desired temperatures in as little as 30 minutes.
Wundatherm is based on a lightweight, extremely strong grooved board which is covered with a thick aluminium foil and the grooves hold a special 16mm plastic pipe with a core of aluminium. This combination results in responsive use and lower energy requirements to run Wundatherm, making it a low carbon solution that makes current heating technology like gas/oil boilers 40-50% more efficient; as well as working efficiently with alternative fuels of the future like hydrogen boilers and air & ground source heat pumps. Wundatherm is compatible with any heat source, including future heat pumps which have an efficiency rating of 270% – 400%.
“Our Wundatherm underfloor heating system is ‘heat pump ready’ which means you will easily be able to switch to this alternative heating source whenever you are ready” comments Sam Jump. “Heat pumps operate most efficiently at lower temperatures meaning underfloor heating, which runs at around 45°C, is extremely compatible with a heat pump compared to radiators which require temperatures of 70-80°C. Using an underfloor heating system with a heat pump will result in less money spent and less energy used. Alternatively, simply turning down the thermostat on your boiler to 45-50°C will save you up to 50% in energy bills in the long run as this ensures your underfloor heating system is running as efficiently as possible.”
Wundatherm has many benefits, including improved energy efficiency, better insulation, silent operation, and even minimizes the movement of dust around the home. Opting for a wet based system will have more energy and cost saving benefits than an electric system– a Wundatherm underfloor heating system will cost on average 60% less to run than electric floor heating.
Wunda Group has also developed intuitive smart controls which are completely compatible with Wundatherm. Wunda’s WundaSmart heating control system, which is Good Housekeeping Approved and highly recommended by TechRadar, allows you to control, schedule and zone your heating room by room through your smartphone or via thermostats for even greater efficiency.
Wunda has now sold over 30,000 Wundatherm systems and prides itself on its unrivalled customer care which has been rated Excellent by Trust Pilot. When you contact Wunda to discuss your project a personal Project Manager will guide you along the way and can point you to installers experienced in its system. Wunda will work in collaboration with your builders and support with floor plans on where to lay the materials, boards and pipe.