Radiant Heat


I have a house with radiant heat in the ceiling upstairs and in the floor downstairs. If you put in a small ceiling fan in the upstairs rooms, even if you run it at the lowest speed, you will be amazed at how much warmer the room gets. It pushes all that warm air from the ceiling down to the lower part of the room. You could even use a fan on the floor and have it blowing up to circulate the air in the room.

One advantage of this type of heating system is that it heats the house itself. In a winter power outage I find that it takes over 12 hours before I notice the house cooling down. Once I got home from a business trip at 8am and didn’t realize the power was out until it started to get dark. The house stayed that warm!

An engineer friend of mine told me not to use setback thermostats with radiant heat. The whole house, he says, acts as a heat-sink and it if it cools down it actually takes more energy to heat it back up than it does to keep it a constant temperature.

Comments (10)

10 responses to “Radiant Heat”

  1. xperiencewindows

    Uh, you do realize you’re posting on an IT-related forum, right?

    • pecosbob04

      In reply to xperiencewindows:
      The post is in a response to an issue brought up in FRD and is therefore fair game for a forum post but thank you for policing the forum content in such a diligent manner. The internet needs more pedantic induhviduals.
      ETA: Also to the forum in question is PAUL a sub forum of GENERAL DISCUSSION so entirely appropriate as well as interesting and informative, just saying.

      • xperiencewindows

        In reply to pecosbob04:

        Fair enough, however without necessary context, the post does look as it's out of place. I stand correction on this site being more of a personal technology collection rather than an IT-relation collection.

    • Paul Thurrott

      In reply to xperiencewindows:

      I have discussed my radiant heat issues on podcasts recently.

      Also, I'm not sure I'd call this "IT-related." It's more personal technology related.

  2. Paul Thurrott

    Thanks for this.

  3. GT Tecolotecreek

    My next door neighbor has older radiant heat in the ceiling of their 2 story. Costs $600-700 a month to heat in the mild California winter. My forced air gas (96% efficient) run a max of $150 a month, usually in the $90 range.

    Point is, you need to take in account how expensive power is versus natural gas when considering radiant. In southern California, power is pricy, paying off all those old nukes.

    • Chris_Kez

      In reply to GT_Tecolotecreek:

      Many radiant heat systems are actually hydronic, with the water heated by a boiler or hot water heater that is part of your existing systems (which in turn can be based on natural gas, oil or electricity). All-electric radiant heat is cheaper and easier to install, but is typically more expensive in the long run as you note.

  4. offTheRecord

    I agree with the other comments that a bit of context would have helped. I only clicked on this post's link because I thought it might be discussing computer cooling. After reading the post, I started looking for signs it might have been SPAM because it didn't seem to be relevant to anything here; but, I didn't see any obvious SPAM links. I don't listen to FRD (isn't that a premium podcast?), so wasn't aware this was related to that.

    • infloop

      In reply to offTheRecord:

      First Ring Daily was made non-premium when the site had the recent changes, or roughly around that time (though the live Friday episodes were always free). The video service for these formerly premium episodes also changed from Vimeo to YouTube.