Using STEP Warmfloor® radiant heating elements eliminates the need for a forced air furnace, which blows dust and particles around.
Forced air is the most commonly used heating/cooling alternative in the US. Generally the system pushes hot/cold air through duct-work, then through vents to heat/cool a building. The ability to switch between cooling and heating in one system are appealing for a lot of homeowners for simplicity. But is forced air an efficient and comfortable heat source?
If you look at forced air heat, we are heating our living space from the ceiling down to the floor because heat rises. This means to get our feet moderately comfortable, the temperature at the ceiling may wind up very high. It takes a significant amount of energy to create and maintain that comfortable temperature at our feet in a forced air system.
With radiant heat, we flip that temperature profile. The entire floor becomes the radiator. The temperature at the floor level is at that comfortable range while the temperature at our head is lower but still at a very comfortable temperature. The heat radiates up from the floor, warming all the objects in the room. Everything in the room will gain a nice, warm, comfortable feel to it. Even your bare feet propped up on the table will be comfortable from the warmed coffee table surface. The amount of energy required to create and maintain this comfortable temperature at our feet is significantly less than compared to forced air.
Despite the fact that forced air is a less energy efficient way to heat a house compared to STEP Warmfloor®, there are some conditions where forced air is the better alternative. If areas are not properly insulated, you may not attain the desired floor and ambient temperature or have an energy efficient house with radiant heat. Forced air will not be energy efficient either, but it will keep the area warm.
Because radiant heat does not blow allergens, it helps those with allergies and asthma find dramatic improvement to their symptoms. In addition radiant floor heat minimizes mold growth because it reduces the type of humidity that fosters mold and fungi growth.
Installing a well-designed separate heating and cooling system provides the best levels of comfort. Cold air has a higher density than hot air. Cold air will fall or sink into the room, while hot air will rise. Initial cost may be a concern, but the comfort benefits and energy savings of separate heating and cooling systems as opposed to a hybrid system far outweigh the price.
With STEP Warmfloor® radiant heating installed, the system will provide a lifetime of comfort. There are no high-temperatures, stress, or wear on the material. There is no need for a machine room with a boiler, pumps, and valves to maintain. There is no dangerous storage of fuel and gas or risk of electrical shock.