Electric Vs. Hydrolic Radiant Heat - HVAC - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 04-24-2007, 08:52 PM   #1
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Electric vs. Hydrolic Radiant Heat


I am thinking about installing electric radiant heat on the floor of the basement, however not sure if it will provide sufficient heat to keep the floor warm. Based on my research, tile warming mats are the least expensive option, however it sounds like they are most suitable for small areas such as bathroom or kitchen.

Another option would be to install hydrolic system, since my house will be heated by hot water system. However this option is more expensive.

I am in the middle of major renovation of the house and unsure about which of these two options are best suitable for basements.



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Old 04-24-2007, 09:08 PM   #2
Lehigh Valley PA
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My opinion on it is this...

Electric costs a lot of $$$$$$ to operate to heat a large area.
My whole house is heated with electric radiant heat in floors and our electric bill in the winter is 4-5 times more than anyone else I know.

Granted my house isn't the most energy efficient but it's still expensive.
My opinion is to take the initial cost now and not spread it out every season.


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Old 08-23-2007, 03:51 PM   #3
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electric vs. Hydronic

Haver a heat loss calculation done on that part of the home first. When you have real numbers to work with you can calculate the cost of electric as follows:
Figure 12 watts/40 BTU/hr per square foot of heatable floor. This will give you the total amount of BTU's available, and the amount in watts per hour it will use.
Figure on roughly $12.00 per square foot for the electric heat material (this is on the high side but you should be well within this amount)
Do a material and labor take off on expanding the existing hydronic system, including possibly increasing boiler size and capacity.
You should have a pretty good idea of how much you spend to heat the square footage now, so extrapolate this into the additional square footage to get an idea of how much it will cost to run.
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