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History of Underfloor Heating

The History of Underfloor Heating



Throughout many years, underfloor heating has been a luxurious source of heat, from historic civilisations, right up until the modern-day. As time has moved on, the process and construction of underfloor heating has drastically changed, additionally to underfloor heating becoming much more accessible to a wide range of homeowners. Despite this, they are still considered as a luxury even if they are less exclusive then what they were in the past. Underfloor heating is still a component in households that owners of the component are extremely privileged to have, and it is likely that it will always remain this way. 

This blog explores the past civilisations that invented, developed and produced underfloor heating systems to be what they are today, and how past productions have been adapted the underfloor heating systems that are available in the market today. If you are interested in finding our more about different types of underfloor heating systems, then enquire today with our experts here at Robbens Systems. Our team will be able to confidently deal with any enquiries you may have and find an ideal solution for you. Get in touch today so we can help you. 
When Was The Underfloor Heating System Invented?

History has found that the earliest ever underfloor heating system was discovered in modern-day North Korea. Incredibly, it is believed that these systems were thought to have been invented as early as 5,000 BC! The floors were originally heated or baked, which would then later be coined as Ďwarm stoneí or Ďondolí around the end of the 19th century. Strong evidence suggests that the earliest ondols were initiated as gudeul, which was essentially a cooking plus heating system in the home or property. 

When fires were lit inside the furnace to cook, the flame would extend horizontally due to the fact that the flue entry was in a location beside the furnace. If smoke from the flame was to travel upwards, then the fire would be put out too quickly and would not be able to cook food for as long as it was required. Following this, a series of passages would guide the flame with the smoke with entire rooms constructed on the furnace flue able to experience and enjoy the underfloor heating. 

In time for 3,000 BC, the North Koreans were using a fire hearth system which was used as a form of internal heating, additionally as an early iteration of an oven. As well as this, it has also been thought that a double hearth system was used in 900 BC with one hearth being used for cooking and another as a heating system. Ancient Romans and Greeks were also documented as being users of underfloor heating systems, however, these underfloor systems were in the form of hypocausts alternatively to double hearth systems. Hypocaust systems raised the floor with pillars while hot air passed through the space beneath to heat the flooring.
Moving Towards More Advanced Methods

By around 500 AD, there was a significant difference between Asian and European underfloor heating systems. In Asia, the ondol was being continually developed further, whereas in Europe, the heating system of choice was the open fire system. The upper class and palaces in Asia used a more sophisticated form of the gudeul around the time of 700 AD. In Mediterranean countries in Europe, hypocausts were used extensively in public baths and public homes. As time progressed towards 1400 AD in countries in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, there was extensive use of sophisticated hypocausts such as the Turkish baths, which were built by the Ottoman Empire.
The Throwaway Discovery Leading to an Invention Vital for Modern Underfloor Heating System

During the 19th century, extensive research was put into developing the modern central heating system that we use today using water boilers and piping systems. This included extensive research into thermal conductivity, additionally to surface reflectivity and surface emissivity. 

During this period, a discovery that was a throwaway at the time would subsequently lead to the discovery of the most widely used plastic in the world to this day. Hans von Pechmann found a waxy residue at the bottom of one of his test tubes whilst carrying out an experiment. His colleagues Eugen Bamberger and Friedrich Tschirner then took this waxy residue and took it for use as a plastic we now call polymethylene. Polymethylene was discovered during the autodecomposition of diazomethane in ether. This type of polymer is also virtually identical to polyethene, which was obtained by Eric Fawcett and Reginald Gibson in 1935. Following this, industrial use of polyethene for radar cables in the Second World War. 

After the discovery in 1899, polymethylene was thrown away, however, it became a vital component in wet underfloor heating systems. The concept of the hypocaust was in fact still in use as late as the year 1904. It was the hypocaust system that was utilised in Liverpool Cathedral in 1904.

Modern Underfloor Heating Systems

In the 1940s, the US saw a large scale construction operation that installed radiator water-based heating systems in multiple new homes. This heating system proved that these types of heating systems could be incorporated into any property design project and would then pave the way for the modern central heating system to be produced in mass to a huge number of homes. The 1960s then saw the first wet underfloor heating system being invented successfully in Canada and by the 1980s, underfloor heating systems were becoming commonplace all across the globe with Korea arguably being the leading users of the system. This was due to nearly all residential buildings having underfloor heating systems already installed. From this point, underfloor heating systems were being used more and more as heating methods for many residential buildings and saw increased use in non- residential buildings in Scandinavian nations. 

How a Modern Underfloor Heating System Works

There are two main types of underfloor heating systems that are extensively used today. These two systems come in the form of wet underfloor heating systems and electronic underfloor heating systems. Wet systems pump warm water by using piping underneath the floor, whereas electronic systems use electric coils that are placed underneath the flooring. 

Once a system that was considered a component of expensive buildings and complexes, the systems have become increasingly more popular heating systems in the UK. This is as the design of underfloor heating systems can be integrated into the structure of the property. If you own an older property, this shouldnít put you off as you as it is still simple to install underfloor heating in older properties with ease and experience the many benefits.


Underfloor Heating




As previously mentioned, it is easy to access underfloor heating systems in the UK and have a system successfully installed into your home. If youíre considering installing an underfloor heating system to your home, then choose Robbens Systems for efficient and professional underfloor heating system installations in the UK. For many years we have installed systems to homes of all scales for owners to experience the benefits of underfloor heating. If youíre interested, get in touch with our team of experts in East Sussex today and arrange for a service or installation.
Created On  24 Jul 2020 15:23  -  Permalink
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Underfloor Heating Buying Guide

Our Complete Guide to Underfloor Heating




Underfloor heating is ideally suited for a wide range of projects for professional heating companies and self-installers alike. For homeowners - underfloor heating systems are designed to be simple to install - allowing for self-installation or installation with your preferred professional (we only supply underfloor heating and do not carry out installations for our clients.) Our team of experts are perfectly suited to help create the best underfloor heating system that suits your needs or the specifications of the project at hand.

We have created our complete guide to underfloor heating to help those that are thinking about installing an underfloor heating system or are installing an underfloor heating system for a client. Our quotation service ensures that your design and quotation are unique and we also calculate the heating and ventilation requirements of each room. This ensures that we can design the perfect system and deliver this system ready for installation.

Should you be looking to purchase an underfloor heating system, why not get in touch with a member of our expert team today? We are more than happy to help you install the ideal underfloor heating system. Get in touch using an online contact form on our website or telephone now.

Installing an Underfloor Heating System during a Project

As discussed, a common myth surrounding underfloor heating is that it is very difficult to install and needs to be installed by a heating professional. This is not the case with an underfloor heating system as these can be installed by DIY enthusiasts and heating professionals alike. Although underfloor heating can be installed by DIY installers, itís highly important that an underfloor heating system is installed correctly so that there are no issues later down the line. Hydronic underfloor heating systems require little to no maintenance after the system has been installed. If something goes wrong or the installation is not carried out correctly - you will not want to have to dig up the system again to make repairs so if you are unsure about the installation process - itís always better to seek the assistance of trained heating professionals.

Hydronic underfloor heating is often installed along with liquid floor screed as this type of screed increases the efficiency of the heating system - especially when compared to other seeds such as cement-based screed. This often means that underfloor heating is often installed in new build properties as it is easy to integrate the installation of the system alongside other work that is being carried out such as other parts of the construction of the property. Liquid floor screed is also used because you are able to walk on liquid floor screed 24 to 48 hours after the screeding has been laid which again benefits those who need to carry out the project to a strict schedule.

Although new build homes are seeing a huge shift in adopting underfloor heating compared to other traditional heating systems - it is also simple to install underfloor heating into a historic property or premises. Using liquid floor screed can also be used to completely change a floor space and with the huge amount of finishes available - this can be perfect for a redesign project!

Greener Solutions With Underfloor Heating




There are a huge amount of benefits associated with underfloor heating and this heating system is the perfect way to save space in the home as well as reduce energy costs. With innovations being developed for different greener energy sources that can be used to power the system - this leaves the potential for renewable energy sources to be used in the future.

Should you require further information on underfloor heating or how we can provide you with a bespoke underfloor heating system, get in touch with our team of experts today. We will be more than happy to discuss your requirements and talk in further detail about underfloor heating systems.
Created On  25 Jun 2020 17:09  -  Permalink
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Questions Around Underfloor Heating

Common Questions Asked About Underfloor Heating


If you are thinking about installing an underfloor heating system - you may have a number of questions around this heating option. Although many consider central heating systems that use radiators as the more traditional option - underfloor heating is becoming a more popular option - especially for new build properties.

We have created this blog post to answer some of the most common questions around underfloor heating. Although heating professionals will fully understand the benefits and features of underfloor heating systems - DIY clients or those who are arranging for an installation of an underfloor heating system and are looking to purchase a system for their heating professional to install may not fully understand the features and benefits.

As always - if you have any questions that werenít covered in this article or you require further information on underfloor heating systems - please do not hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team today by sending us an email, using an online contact form on our website or telephone now!

What is Hydronic (Wet) Underfloor Heating?

The two main types of underfloor heating systems - wet or hydronic/electric underfloor heating. An underfloor heating system utilises pipes that dispense hot water around the system to heat the floor with wet underfloor heating systems or electrical elements that are powered with electricity for electric systems.

Hydronic underfloor heating systems are connected to a heat source which is typically the boiler but can use other heat sources such as a ground heat pump. As hydronic underfloor heating systems heat water at lower temperatures - this is a more energy-efficient solution compared to traditional heating systems such as radiator based systems.

Is Electric Underfloor Heating the Cheaper Option?

Many questions often revolve around the price of both systems to run. As mentioned in our underfloor heating myths article - people often think that electric underfloor heating is the cheaper option. Although electric underfloor heating systems are cheaper to install - electricity is much more expensive to run - making wet underfloor heating systems the cheaper option. They are more environmentally friendly which is why we only supply hydronic underfloor heating systems. 

Is Underfloor Heating Difficult to Install?

Our underfloor heating systems are designed to be able to be installed by DIY installers and heating professionals alike. When an underfloor heating system is installed correctly - there is little to no maintenance required so this is why itís important to find a heating professional to install an underfloor heating system if you are unsure about a DIY installation.

We don't install - our systems are designed for you or your builder to fit, using detailed plans showing pipes and ducting across your building.

Our uniquely designed systems allow us to give you a £1m design guarantee for peace of mind.

Is Underfloor Heating Suitable for New Build Properties?

Underfloor heating is becoming the ideal choice for heating systems in new build properties. This is because of the fact that these heating systems are easily able to be integrated within the installation process. When installed with liquid floor screed - this is especially useful in the installation process as liquid floor screed is ideally suited for installation as you are able to walk on the screed surface withing 24-48 hours. The liquid floor screed can then be forced to dry if the rest of the build needs to be continued quickly.

Why is Liquid Floor Screed Recommended?

Liquid floor screed is highly recommended as the material to use when installing a hydronic underfloor heating system for a construction project. As touched upon, liquid floor screed is ideally suited to other tradesmen in a construction project. As well as these benefits, liquid floor screed actually increases the thermal efficiency of the underfloor heating system, nearly doubling the efficiency when compared to sand-based screeds that are also used in some installation projects. There are a variety of finishes that can be applied to the resulting screed that encases the underfloor heating system and liquid floor screed is ideally suited to smoothen uneven flooring for a smooth and fantastic finish every time.

Can An Underfloor Heating System be Installed in Older Properties?

Although new build properties are using underfloor heating systems more prevalently, this isnít to say that older properties are not able to install underfloor heating systems. Older properties can also benefit from underfloor heating - with homeowners often looking to increase the thermal efficiency of older homes. Many projects see upgrades to areas of the home such as double or triple glazed windows, changes to doors or changes to other aspects of the property such as adding insulation - to increase the efficiency of older homes.

Underfloor heating fits perfectly into this category as you are able to massively increase the thermal efficiency of a home when compared to traditional heating systems. As underfloor heating heats rooms evenly, this even heat distribution allows for more efficient heating of rooms around the home. If improvements to glazing and overall insulation have been made - this further increases the energy efficiency of the underfloor heating system. Unfortunately, heating systems such as radiator based heating tend to have pockets of cold air which affects the ability to create a fully warm room.

Is Underfloor Heating Good for Health?

Some may be interested in the health benefits of underfloor heating systems. Compared to traditional heating systems - there are a variety of health benefits especially for those with allergies. Radiator systems if not constantly cleaned can disperse dust into their air which can irritate dust allergies. Other airborne allergies can also be irritated by radiator based heating systems with underfloor heating removing the need for radiators to be used at all. This is great for those who suffer from allergies and offers obvious health benefits for homeowners.

Is Hydronic Underfloor Heating Expensive?




Underfloor heating is a fairly big investment but has become much more affordable compared to the past. Underfloor heating systems are often associated with high rise properties or luxury hotels. This is simply not the case anymore with underfloor heating being an affordable option for many homeowners. As underfloor heating (especially with liquid floor screed) is more energy-efficient - homeowners gain savings on energy bills in the long term making this investment has the potential to pay dividends after future use.

Created On  29 May 2020 17:08  -  Permalink
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Benefits of Underfloor Heating

What are the Benefits of Underfloor Heating?


Underfloor heating is a highly innovative and cost-effective heating solution for many homes and businesses. Although many homeowners and business owners have more than likely heard about underfloor heating - they often do not know about the wide range of benefits that underfloor heating provides.

This article talks everything about underfloor heating. We take a look at the features of hydronic underfloor heating as well as how you can benefit from choosing to install underfloor heating in your home or business. If you have a question about underfloor heating or want to find out more information, get in touch today!

How Does an Underfloor Heating System Work?

A hydronic or water-based system operates via a number of pipes that run through the floor. These pipes dispense heated water which in turn starts to heat the room when in operation. The installation of an underfloor heating system along with liquid floor screed makes the system more efficient compared to other materials. As heat air rises, your underfloor heating system will heat the room evenly to make your room the perfect temperature every time.

How Does Underfloor Heating Compare to Traditional Heating?

Underfloor heating offers a wide range of benefits, especially when compared to traditional heating methods. The fact that underfloor heating runs at lower temperatures allows for users of the system to enjoy a reduction in energy bills as well as allows for the removal of bulky radiators. This is highly beneficial for modern homes and businesses and users of many different rooms in a property or business will benefit from even heat distribution. 

Can Anyone Install Underfloor Heating?

We do not install underfloor heating systems however we provide bespoke underfloor heating systems for heating professionals and DIY installers alike. With the correct installation of underfloor heating - little to no maintenance is required for the system after installation. This is why itís important to arrange for professional installation if you are unsure about the installation process. 

Your design and quotation is unique - we calculate the heating and ventilation requirements of each room, to build a system that is perfect for you.

An expert will visit you and your project nationwide, to answer your questions and ensure our design meets all your requirements - before you order.

We don't install - our systems are designed for you or your builder to fit, using detailed plans showing pipes and ducting across your building.

Installing Underfloor Heating in New-Build Projects

Underfloor heating offers a wide range of health benefits as well as is a more environmentally friendly heating option compared to other methods. This results in a fast increasing amount of new build projects opting to install underfloor heating as the main heating system. The ease of integration within the construction of new homes makes underfloor heating the perfect choice for new-build properties. Underfloor heating can also be installed with liquid floor screed which has a wide range of benefits in terms of thermal efficiency and ease of use on-site. 

Can I Install Underfloor Heating in an Existing Building?



Although an underfloor heating system is a perfect match for new-build property, seamless integration is guaranteed for existing buildings! When installing underfloor heating, liquid floor screed is highly recommended when installing in an existing building. This allows you to level the floor and install a material that increases the thermal efficiency of the underfloor heating system. Thereís also a wide range of excellent finishes available which can be added after the system is installed and the screed has dried. 

If you have a question about underfloor heating or want to find out more information, get in touch today!
Created On  27 Apr 2020 18:13  -  Permalink
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Underfloor Heating Myths

Top Underfloor Heating Myths



As there is a lot of information online about underfloor heating systems - it can be confusing when looking for an underfloor heating system or when you are considering installing one in your home. What can make the process even more confusing is the fact that there are a number of common misconceptions and myths online and in the public domain about underfloor heating which may put some homeowners off installing an underfloor heating system.


This article debunks some common myths around underfloor heating - which may help in finding your underfloor heating system. We take an in-depth look at the various features of underfloor heating and address some myths that we have come across or heard about in the past. If you want to find out more on underfloor heating from our experts, get in touch today.


Myth 1 - Underfloor Heating is Only Suited for the Most Luxurious of Homes

One of the most common myths associated with underfloor heating is that an underfloor heating system is only suited for luxurious buildings such as hotels and luxury apartments. However - underfloor heating is a very cost-effective and innovative solution for many businesses. This is due to the fact that underfloor heating systems are now very affordable and use less energy than traditional heating methods.


Myth 2 - You Canít Install Underfloor Heating in Older Properties


As underfloor heating is becoming more and more popular in new-build properties, this myth has become to crop up around underfloor heating. However - another benefit of underfloor heating is that it is ideally suited for both historic and new-build properties. Homeowners who are looking to save space in their property by replacing bulky radiators or who want to enjoy a more energy-efficient heating system can install an underfloor heating system.


Myth 3 - Underfloor Heating Systems are Unhealthy


Quite the contrary - another myth is that underfloor heating systems are unhealthy. They are actually a more healthy alternative compared to traditional heating systems. Radiator based heating systems can aggravate allergies such as dust allergies and other conditions such as asthma if radiators are not cleaned regularly. You are also able to enjoy a heating system that does not cause dust mites or mould to form in your home.


Myth 4 - Underfloor Heating is Really Difficult to Maintain


Some are put off by choosing an underfloor heating system because it seems like a complex system that requires a lot of maintenance. However, underfloor heating when installed correctly requires little to no maintenance. Traditional heating systems require regular maintenance and may require bleeding should air become trapped in the system as this will reduce their efficiency. It is very important to arrange for a qualified heating professional to install your underfloor heating system if you are unsure about the installation process as you will not want to have to remove the underfloor heating system from the floor if something goes wrong.


Myth 5 - You Need to Be a Heating Professional to Install an Underfloor Heating System


As mentioned - if you are unsure about aspects of the installation process then you should hire a heating professional to install your new system. However, our underfloor heating systems are designed for both heating professionals and DIY installers which allows those who want to install an underfloor heating system themselves to be supported. We do not install underfloor heating systems but we design your system specifically towards your needs and requirements. 


Myth 6 - Underfloor Heating Takes a Long Time to Heat Up


As with any heating system, your underfloor heating will not instantly be hot and will take time to heat a room to an even temperature. However, it does not take very long and is comparable to other heating systems. Due to the fact that heat rises, you will also be able to enjoy even heating across the entirety of a room. Traditional heating systems can often have pockets of air which may cause parts of a room to remain cold. We highly recommend installing an underfloor heating system with a thermostat if you are concerned about the time taken to heat a room. This allows you to set a timer to have your room ready and warm when you need it.


Myth 7 - Electric Underfloor Heating is Cheaper Than Hydronic (Water)


When comparing electric underfloor heating to hydronic underfloor heating, one of the main aspects that are discussed is the price of both systems. This has led to a misconception that electric underfloor heating is cheap to install and run. Although hydronic underfloor heating is a more significant investment than electric underfloor heating - hydronic systems run at lower temperatures than traditional heating systems and are much cheaper to run than systems operating via electricity. 


Myth 8 - Underfloor Heating has to Run Constantly


Another myth relating to the operation of underfloor heating systems is that they have to be on constantly in your home. This may understandably concern homeowners who want to control their heating system. With thermostats available to control variable temperature - you have complete control over the heating of your home. With various new technologies available, you are also able to integrate your underfloor heating system with a smart home which is becoming more and more popular for modern homeowners.


Myth 9 - Underfloor Heating Isnít Environmentally Friendly


With concerns about environmental impact - many homeowners are trying to find ways to lessen their impact while at home. Hydronic underfloor heating is better for the environment than other heating systems as the system heats water at lower temperatures. New innovations are also allowing for alternative heat sources to be connected to underfloor heating such as renewable energy sources.


Myth 10 - You Cannot Use Underfloor Heating With Wood Flooring




Underfloor heating can be used with a variety of floor finishes when also installed with liquid floor screed. Combination of wood, as well as underfloor heating, can create a wonderfully warm floor that can be enjoyed by all of the family. 


Have you heard an underfloor heating myth that you want to be debunked or have any questions about underfloor heating? Get in touch today!

 

Created On  27 Apr 2020 17:56  -  Permalink
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Underfloor Heating Systems in Birmingham - Robbens Systems

Underfloor Heating Systems in Birmingham - Robbens Systems


Underfloor heating systems are becoming more and more popular for homeowners and installers alike and this is hardly surprising. With the amount of benefits associated with underfloor heating - itís hardly surprising that they are becoming one of the most popular heating solutions. 


Whether you are carrying out a DIY project in which you are installing your own system - are using a professional installation company or are undertaking an installation of an underfloor heating system for a clientís project - we have an underfloor heating system available that suits your requirements - everytime.


Starting in 1993 - Robbens Systems started with the main aim of making underfloor heating easy for self-builders as well as heating professionals alike. As the technology of underfloor heating and the heating sector in general developed - we developed our product portfolio to reflect this change in technology - allowing you to install the latest in underfloor heating technology.


To find out more about our underfloor heating systems or if you are looking for underfloor heating in Birmingham - enquire with our team using an online contact form on our website or telephone now on: 01424 851111
Created On  27 Jan 2020 14:54  -  Permalink
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