Electric Resistance Floor Heat

first_img This article is only available to GBA Prime Members Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to this article as well as GBA’s complete library of premium articles and construction details. In most regions of North America, electric-resistance space heating is expensive to operate. Since air-source heat pumps use only 33% to 50% as much electricity as electric-resistance heaters, most homeowners who want to heat their homes with electricity specify air-source heat pumps.That said, there may be a good reason to include some electric resistance heat in your home: for example, if your house is very small and well insulated; if you live somewhere with low electricity rates; if your house is equipped with a large photovoltaic (PV) system; if you want to supplement the output of an air-source heat pump on the coldest nights of the year; or if you want to make your bathroom a little more comfortable.There are many ways to provide electric-resistance heat: you can install electric-resistance baseboard units, electric-resistance wall panel heaters, electric-resistance cove heaters, or an electric boiler connected to a hydronic distribution system. In this article, I’ll focus on another type of electric-resistance heat: electric-resistance cables or mats installed under flooring (usually tiles). The most common place to install this type of heat is in a bathroom.If someone in your family likes the feeling of a warm bathroom floor, and you don’t mind the operating cost for a small amount of electric-resistance heating, you may be thinking of installing electric-resistance heating cables under your bathroom flooring. Is this a good idea?Opinions vary widely on this point. Suffice it to say that electrically heated bathroom floors aren’t a total energy disaster, and many people like them.How much electricity will it take to heat your bathroom floor? The answer, of course, is “it depends.”A typical installation draws from 12 watts to 15 watts per square foot. Let’s start with some assumptions:When operating, the floor draws 480 watts, so the… center_img Start Free Trial Already a member? Log inlast_img

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