Imagine warm winter mornings that are not forcing you to tip-toe across the freezing bathroom and kitchen tiles. Or, imagine a home with an interior style that is not interrupted by all those ugly-looking radiators. Well, you can have that by investing in underfloor insulation. It is an option that will warm up your entire home and make it more visually appealing. If you decide to sell your home one day, this option will increase its overall price too.
Underfloor insulation comes in a couple of forms. The ones installed most often are electric underfloor heating and water underfloor heating. Each of them has its benefits, but the one you should choose depends on your home, your needs, and of course, your budget. But let us make things a bit easier for you and tell you everything your need to know about underfloor insulation.
What is Underfloor Insulation?
You have probably heard all about the processes of insulating roofs, ceilings, and walls, but what about insulating the floors? Underfloor insulation is a perfect solution for stopping both the hot and cold air from escaping through your floors. With this kind of insulation and wall and ceiling one, you will also have lower energy bills every month! What is more, the insulating materials beneath your floors will create an acoustic sound barrier and thus, provide you with much-needed privacy from your neighbours.
How Does Underfloor Insulation Work?
To answer this question correctly, we must first tell you more about the two basic types of underfloor insulation – electric underfloor heating and water underfloor heating.
- Electric (DRY) Underfloor Heating – works by positioning a layer of electric wires under the floor but above the insulation. This layer of electric wires also comes in a so-called mat of cables that makes the wiring layout even and easier to set up.
- Water (WET) Underfloor Heating – works by installing pipes in the same position as wires, under the floor but above the insulation. The only difference is that these pipes must connect to a boiler and a manifold. For this kind of ‘wet’ insulation, it is also vital to have moisture-resistant insulation materials.
To install each of these insulations, you will need to provide a lot of your time, energy, and of course, money. You will need to prepare your home too. The floors must be completely clear so that the workers can install the flooring insulation. Therefore, start looking for a storage unit spacious enough for all your items. Even if you have enough storage space in your house, the workers will need access to floors everywhere. So, renting a separate unit is the best way to go.
Which Option Do You Need?
The underlying concept between the two insulating options is the same. The electric and the water underfloor heating makes your living space warmer and more comfortable. Moreover, both of them come with similar energy-saving solutions and the ability to make your home more visually pleasing. However, they are different, and they both have their pros and cons.
When it comes to their usage, they are similar. Both options are relatively easy to use. With a regulator and a thermostat, you can set up any temperature you find most comfortable in just a few seconds. Regarding their efficiency and running, we can say that electric underfloor heating is better for smaller areas, while water underfloor heating is better for larger spaces. Maybe the most significant difference between the two is their installation process. The electric one you can easily install by yourself, and do it quickly and safely! On the other hand, the water requires a plumber, a couple of workdays, and more money.
Is Insulation Actually Worth It?
It comes as no surprise that this kind of insulation is an additional expense! And, it is an expense that is not cheap either. So, apart from luxurious reasons, one must ask whether underfloor insulation is worth the money and effort it requires? The answer depends on the individual.
For instance, people with a great roof, wall, and ceiling insulation may find this project unnecessary and, thus, not worth it. But, people who have less than excellent insulation throughout the house find it more than necessary. Moreover, as previously said, underfloor insulation does wonders for energy-saving, decreasing the electrical bills, creating an acoustic sound barrier, making the interior of your home more pleasing, increasing the value to the house, etc. Of course, it is of great benefit for families with small children and people who like to walk barefoot.
Do You Need Underfloor Insulation if You Have Ceiling and Wall Insulation?
Again, the answer to this question is individual. But, we can say that the answer depends mainly on the current state of your home. Some people who have ceiling and wall insulation may find that there is still air leakage. For instance – they can feel the cold air inside during the winters and the hot air during summers. The reason for these two scenarios is the bad floor. And, no matter how good your ceiling and roof insulations are, your home will always have gaps through which the air will escape. So, underfloor insulation can be the solution.