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Underfloor heating is growing in popularity, and when properly installed, can result in increased enjoyment in the use of your wood floor.
There are two main types of under floor heating system available with many variations from different manufacturers. Essentially, they will either be water heated or electrically heated systems.
Antares offers for sale an electrical heating system made by Ebeco.
In general we would always recommend that where underfloor heating is being used then an engineered floor should be installed in preference to a solid wood floor, due to the increased stability that an engineered wood floor provides.
Not all timbers react well with underfloor heating so it is important to choose one of the floors that are recommended for use with this system. In particular, beech and maple are not considered suitable.
Timber is a hydroscopic material which means that it absorbs moisture from the environment into which it is installed, and it undergoes dimensional changes as it does so. As well as absorbing moisture it will also give off moisture.
When timber absorbs moisture it causes the boards to expand and when it gives off moisture it causes the boards to shrink. The most important factor that influences this reaction is humidity.
Underfloor heating systems often result in slightly more movement in hardwood flooring, and the formation of some cracks while heating is being used must be expected if moisture is not supplied to the surrounding air.
Whichever system of heating you choose, it is essential that floor temperature probes are incorporated, using manufacturers’ instructions, between the heated surface and the wood floor, and they should ensure that the temperature below the wood floor never exceeds 27ºC.