Radiant flooring is also known as low-temperature radiant heating flooring, it is provided with a radiant floor heating system laid on wooden floors.People also name it as the under heated wood flooring, or simply the heating floor. This type of heating method , hot water pipe, electric cable can also be used as a heat source: transferring heat across the wood floor to all corners of the room. Compared with ordinary heating system, the advantage of the radiant heating floor is : heating and cooling area is bigger ; uniform, and its circulation is from top to bottom, in line with the hot air flow; it gives the feeling of being warm feet and cool head Groove, in line with the physiological phenomenon; energy-efficient, space-saving. New houses have been widely used in underfloor radiant heating..
The wood flooring installed on the underfloor heating, after the heating system is turned on, keep the heat under the flooring(like the heat in the pot). This heating process will keep the wood flooring suffering from more than 30℃ termperate, which is seriouly higher than than the room temperature. And the back of the wood flooring is heated seriouly,led to the evapertation of the moisture in the wood. Thus moisture content will not be kept same in each part of the flooring. Then the cracking and cupping of wood flooring might be caused due to this reason.
There are two main types of popular wood flooring suitable for the underfloor heating:
1 engineered wood flooring
2 laminate flooing
These two types of heated wood flooring have different characteristics, as a result, the requirements on use and maintenance are also different.
Generally speaking, engineered wood flooring, laminate flooring, bamboo wood flooring are all suitable for the underfloor heating system.Considering the thermal resistance, the thickness of wood flooring shall be thin, and the best thickness is 6~10MM,which has a good heat transfer properties.
The laminate flooring on the market today is 8-12mm in thickness, the engineered flooring thickness is 8~15mm. both types can be used, usually the keel installing method with thicker flooring is better. The 3-layer engineered flooring is with strips on the back, and between each of striped there are gaps ,this special structure makes the 3-layer engineered flooring as the best option for the underflooring heating system, because this struction is in line with the principle of thermal conduction.
No matter engineered flooring or laminate flooring, its quality must meet the following requirements:
(1) the moisture content in the floor ≤ the mositure content in the area -(1%~2%),
(2) the floor element size: the width should be narrow, the thickness should be thin, length should be short, floor structure should be composite, vertical pressured, reorganized, panel-grooved at the back.
The wood flooring with back panel-groove could improve heat dissipation, but destroy the symmetry of the structure. it is important to make surethe straightness of the backpanel Board. Baed on this,the best heated flooring is the engineeredflooring with strips and back-grooved structure ,which could conduct the floor heat and release stress within the floor, reduce the possibility of deformation.
The engineered wood flooring for radiant heating system
The hardwood flooring is always the top options when people choose the flooring for their homes. the scalability of the wood itself is relatively not good, which makes solid wood flooring in very delicate, requiring careful maintainance.
The hardwood flooring Usage in indoor radiant underfloor heating systems is difficult. There are two main difficulties:
1 tough requirement on the material for installation meratier.
In summer, the average moisture content of solid wood flooring in the North around 12~13%. The final moisture content of the wood floors upon the radiant heated system is between 4~5%. From summer to winter, the floor moisture content decreased an average of 8% per cent. This is not easy for all wood flooring.
2 shrinkage of the wood itself.
Normal longitudinal shrinkage of wood is 0.1%~0.3%, radial shringkage is 3%~6%, volume shrinkage 9%~14%.
Since the environment of the underfloor heated system could not be changed, the manufacturers have to try best to control timber Scalability for the radiant heated wood flooring. Currently there are three main technologies: the sealing and click-locking technology, the high temperature carbonization technology and the vacuum impregnation technology.
The decoration feel of wood flooring is very natural, this feeling meets the desires of modern people for the nature. Environmentally, the engineered wood flooring is better than laminate flooring. Because the engineered wood flooring feels comfortable when people walk on it.
The Surface of engineered flooring is made of natural wood verneer; and the engineered does not deform, crack, is easy for instalation; in the end, the engineered flooring has good wear resistance and it is flame-retardant.
The engineered wood floorings are divided into three-layer engineered flooring, multilayer engineered flooring, new HDF engineered flooring. As its structure is made with different species of crossed timber sheet, so the disadvantages of solid wood flooring is gone. With little shrinkage and expansion, with excellent stability, the engineered flooring keeps the natural looking of wood grain as the hardwood flooring and comfortable feeling.
Laminate flooring for underfloor heated system
laminate flooring is reprocessed with the crushed timber fiber by machines, which already break the original timber structure. This special structure can fit the underfloor radiant system. And the laminate floor surface is generally covered by the Super wear layer of metal oxides, and this material is conductive to heat. In the past, people would choose laminate flooring for their underfloor heated system, however, years later,more and more people moved toward the hardwood flooring, but it is proven, the solid wood flooring is not suitable for the radiant heating system due to the cracking of the hardwood flooring , which is led by the heating process of the underfloor heated system.
In recent years, the invention and the fast development of multi-layer engineered flooring, finally meet the high demand of market and become the most popular wood flooring around the world now.