How to put a warm floor under a tile

Water heated floor under the tile. device options and installation instructions

Many people have the impression that the floor surface is wet and cold when they see tiled or ceramic tiles in the apartment. In fact, most of the time it is. Tiles, mainly laid in the bathroom, kitchen or balcony, looks quite attractive, but with the onset of cold weather to touch it barefoot almost unreal. That is why people install a water heated floor under the tiles, thanks to which the room is heated from the bottom.

With the help of floor heating, it is possible to provide comfort not only in the bathroom but also in other rooms, such as the living room or children’s room. You only have to choose a system and install it properly. information about the choice and installation of water underfloor heating system will be discussed in this article.

The principle of operation of the water underfloor heating

How foil covers work

IR flooring is a rather thin film, between the layers of which there are strips made of graphite (carbon). It is these black strips and are the very heating elements, because of which the system begins to emit heat. There are also film floors, fully covered with carbon. The film is placed on the prepared floor surface, connected by wires to the power grid and begins to heat. All surfaces around the film are heated by infrared radiation.

The floor due to the work of the film is heated very quickly, and thanks to the “smart” thermostat is turned off after heating. Thus the infrared flooring only works for about 20 minutes per hour. If necessary, the system restarts and heats the base.

Infra-red flooring has the highest coefficient of performance in comparison with other types of floor heating systems. It heats up fast, but only requires a small amount of energy. It is therefore very economical.

Characteristics of infrared heating floors

The film is excellent for laying in any type of room, be it a bedroom, children’s room, hall or bathroom with a kitchen. The film is laid in accordance with the layout of the furniture in the room, in places where there will be large objects (sofa, closets, etc.) and in places where there will be large objects. д.), the foil is not installed. It is easiest to install it only at places where your feet touch the floor. for example, at the exit of the bathroom.

Diagram of a typical radiant heat floor installation

Warning! There are two kinds of infrared flooring. bimetallic and carbon. The first one mustn’t be laid under the tile.

Interestingly, unlike other heating systems, the infrared floor heats the objects around it, not the air. Because of this, such a system has a positive effect on the formation of the microclimate in the room, it does not dry the air, but rather enriches it with negatively charged ions.

How to put a heated floor under tiles

What is an electric underfloor heating?

Electric underfloor heating. a cable heating system of increased reliability, which can be used as a system of comfort floor heating, and as a primary heating system. The heating sections of underfloor heating systems are double insulated shielded single and double core cables and reliable connection sleeves. From traditional methods of heating, where heat is transferred by convection currents, underfloor heating has a number of advantages:

  • The heating part of the system is hidden in the floor structure, which allows you to increase the usable area and diversify the design of rooms, while the floor covering can be any: tile, marble, carpeting (except parquet).

How to Lay and Install Underfloor Heating Mats Prior to Tiling. Tile Mountain

  • Does not dehumidify the air in the room because the heating cable is not in direct contact with the atmosphere.
  • Double insulation and shielding braid cables allows the use of warm floors in rooms with any humidity.

First of all, choose your system

Before you start installing underfloor heating we advise you to make sure you have selected the right system for your space and the type of heating you want (comfort or basic).

Basic heating system in freestanding buildings, including those cases where there is no possibility to connect to the central heating system. A basic heating system requires a stronger cable and a floor screed at least 5 cm thick. Underfloor heating should be at least 70% of the total area of the room to be heated. Recommended power density of the system when using underfloor heating as a primary heating system. from 160-180 W/m2. For example, underfloor heating with an output of 0.19 W, floor heating area 1.2 m2; check the output: 190 W/1.2 m2 = 158 W/m2.

Additional (comfort) heating system. Installed in combination with other types of heaters and designed to achieve thermal comfort. Most suitable in rooms with cold floors (bathrooms, toilets, kitchens, swimming pools) and on the first floors of buildings. Recommended power density of the system for comfort floor heating is 120-140 W/m2. E.g. floor heating of 0.19 kW, heating area 1.5 m2; check the power: 190 W/1.5 m2 = 126 W/m2.

Check whether the electrical installation in your home allows for the connection of extra power. Consider additional electrical devices that can be connected to the same network. Also check the current carrying capacity of fuse boxes. We recommend that electric heat tracing systems with a capacity of 2 kW or more be connected via special wiring and a separate circuit breaker. We also recommend the use of a RCD with a rated current not exceeding 30 mA. This is a small device mounted on the electrical panel, which ensures the safety of the electrical insulation of your equipment. When underfloor heating is installed in wet areas (bathrooms, saunas, pools), the heating section shield must be connected to the earthing conductor of the supply network, which in turn must be connected to all accessible metal parts, such as: metal shower trays, metal shower cubicle frameworks, etc.п.

  • Identify the free space that is not occupied by furniture and appliances.
  • Set back 5-10 cm from walls and furniture.
  • Select a heating mat or heating section for the available space.
  • The size of the heating mat or the heating surface of the section must not exceed the available space.
  • It’s allowed to install underfloor heating under furniture if the height of legs isn’t less than 15 cm.

The heating cable is the basis of the underfloor heating. It looks like radio-frequency cables for transmitting television signals, but its purpose is not to transmit electrical signals or power over a distance, but to convert all 100% of the power of the electrical current flowing through it into heat. The release of this power per unit length of cable (specific heat release) is the most important technical parameter of heating cables.

Binding wire 2. Heat-resistant PVC plasticate 3. Three protective layers of PET 4. Heat-resistant PVC plastic sheeting 5. Protective copper tape shield 6. Copper shield wire 7. PET 8. PVC plastic compound

Binding core 2. Return core 3. Heat-resistant PVC plasticate 4. Three protective layers of PET 5. Heat-resistant PVC plasticate 6. Protective copper strip shield 7. Copper shield wire 8. PET 9. PVC plastic sheeting

Floor base 2. Thermal insulation with foil 3. Heating section 4. Assembly tape 5. Cement-sand screed 6. Decorative coating

Heating sections are essentially made up of a heating cable strip of a certain length and a half.н. “The minimum laying spacing should be 8 cm for the cold leads, i.e. strips of standard commercially available wire connected to the heating cable with a sleeve. The sections may be single-core or double-core cables, and you must visually see at the ends: in single-core sections. two wires on each side (shield and load), in double-core sections. three wires on one side (shield, load, load).

Where S is the area over which the floor heating is laid, L is the length of the cable section. Minimal step of laying. 8 cm

Underfloor heating on the basis of heating sections

Prepare a place in the wall for the installation of the thermostat. 2. Drill grooves in the wall for electrical wiring, mounting ends of the heating section and a tube for the temperature sensor.

What must be considered before installation

Each heating cable manufacturer develops its own recommendations for the installation of its products, taking into account its characteristics. But the general requirements are as follows:

  • The base of the floor should not have significant defects and height differences. As the preparation of the base is recommended to pour a thin cement or self-levelling screed.
  • Insulation of the basis. In the case of location of the object on the first floors or above the unheated rooms, the dense polystyrene foam with thickness of not less than 50 mm is used as thermal insulator. If there is a heated living space below, the thickness of insulation can be reduced to 20 mm. If the floor heating is used as an additional source of heat, in some cases, instead of polystyrene foam it is acceptable to use foil insulating material with foil laying upwards.
  • To connect the floor heating lays a separate power line, which is connected through a diffuse or a bunch of RCD plus a circuit breaker.
  • Thermostat and temperature sensor for floor heating control must be purchased separately. Thermostats by the method of control are mechanical, electromechanical, electronic, and installed in a conventional sub-socket.

Pay attention to! When organizing underfloor heating in the bathroom, the thermostat is located in an adjacent dry room. The recommended height of mounting box is not less than 30 cm.

Laying of insulation is not always possible because of the great thickness, so the insulation can be not laid, but the heat loss will be higher.

Installing thermal insulation

Before you lay a warm floor under the tiles, take care of thermal insulation. At this stage it is also necessary to be responsible, because properly laid insulation will save more heat and money.

We have already said above that the foam insulation is one of the best thermal insulating materials, so we will tell you about its installation in more detail. If the foil is covered with foil on one side, the second, most likely, has a double-sided adhesive tape, which will easily fix the material on the concrete. If you are interested in the detailed characteristics of the material, it is worth saying that the thermal conductivity coefficient of this material is 0.049 W/mK.

warm, floor, tile

  • Cut the sheets to 5-10 mm distance from the walls, and make the joints even and tight (not overlapping).
  • Remove the protective film from the adhesive side and lay the sheets, starting from the corner;
  • Seal joints with masking tape. It is desirable that it also has a reflective surface.

Monitor and control the floor heating

Simple floor heating models can be controlled with a simple thermostat. When it reaches the set temperature, it shuts down the system. When the sensor reaches the critical temperature of the lower range, the thermostat closes the circuit.

The modern home improvement approach strives to implement the idea of a smart home. Appliances, home appliances are given new functions that increase comfort, convenience of use, control options, saving money of the owners. No exception to the new generation of underfloor heating.

Heating remote control display

The basic layout of heating elements does not change, but the electronic devices expand the functionality of the system. Manufacturers offer to connect innovative control units. Not so long ago, consumers began to be offered products with timers, separate adjustment of heating zones.

Today, companies with extensive experience in energy-saving technology are incorporating advanced developments in their products. Consumer can buy remote controller. Commands are given through a public network or local network, by WI-FI. From a remote computer, smartphone, tablet PC you can check the status of the heating system, turn it on, turn off, program the algorithm of action at a certain time interval.

Although today it is not yet so widely used, but 20 years ago and owned a cell phone a few.

Features of different heating systems

Of several options, consumers need to choose the most successful for its case, and for this purpose it is recommended to get acquainted with professional advice of masters. The information is as objective as possible and has nothing to do with advertising booklets of manufacturers.

When choosing a floor heating system, you need to consider many factors

Electric under-tile floor heating

Currently the most common variant, universal application, suitable for installation under most floor coverings. Depending on the manufacturing technology and the materials used, it has three varieties.

    Cable. Traditional universal system, can be used for heating residential and technical premises. Large margin of power allows the system to be used as an additional or primary heating. The cable is single-core and double-core, the second option increases the safety of the system, and is mounted only in homes that have grounding. Unfortunately, old domestic buildings do not provide for grounding, you have to do it yourself, which is quite time consuming and not always possible. Cables are relatively large in diameter and can withstand considerable bursting forces. another definite advantage of this system.

The main advantage of thermal mats is quick and easy installation

Under the tiles you can install infrared film flooring only with parallel connection

Important. It is recommended to install ceramic tiles on a concrete base with a thickness of at least 5 cm. This is quite a heavy load, not all electrical systems can withstand it.

In this regard, installation of infrared heating has its own characteristics.

Water heating under the tiles

This variant is considered optimal for underfloor heating in bathrooms. If the technical calculations are performed correctly, and installation was done in accordance with existing technologies and regulations, the systems can operate for decades.

The water heated floor is most often installed under the tile

But there are also disadvantages. the consequences of accidents are very sad. Small leaks are difficult to immediately notice, for a long time damped building structures lose their original properties, can not withstand the planned loads and are subject to replacement. In some cases, leaks damage the wall finish, making repairs even more difficult.

Important. We must remember the universal rule. the repair work is much more expensive than the exact observance of construction rules and regulations.

What and in what case is better to choose

After considering the options, you can determine which underfloor heating is better to choose under the tile, based on the living conditions:

  • For owners of country houses, you can choose any option, but the most economical, as the main source of heat in the house, will be water floors. Electric systems are suitable for individual small rooms (bathrooms, toilets);
  • residents of city apartments should opt for electric systems, but be aware that to make an electrically heated floor the only source of heat in the apartment is unreasonable too high will be the cost of electricity.

Laying on a warm electric floor tiles

The technologies of installation of tiles on the mesh mats and infrared film are different.

Mesh mats

    Taking into account the composition, properties of tiles, temperature of the room. Do not use outdated material, because the properties have already lost. For some compositions require special preparation of the base. It is advisable to use a material that performs several functions at once, such as using for grouting.

  • A marking is made and the tiles are laid on the base to visualize which laying scheme is best. Whole pieces should be placed in exposed areas, and trimmings are hidden in hidden areas.
  • The work starts with the corner farthest from the entrance. Glue slurry is prepared from the dry mixture by diluting it with water. The technology of obtaining the mortar is indicated on the packaging of any composition, and is not as simple as it seems at first glance.
  • Use a toothed trowel to apply the mortar to the surface of the heating mats, so that it penetrates into all the voids. The thickness of the layer must be 5 mm or more above the heating elements.
  • In the corner place the plastic crosses and put the first tile. It must be placed strictly horizontally and evenly, so that the row runs flush with the wall. Crevices are installed on each tile in all directions. After placing the second and third tiles, check the evenness of their placement. Install the rest of the solid tiles. For laying scraps you will need a tile cutter. If it is absent, you can use a good glass cutter.
  • The next day the joints are covered with grout.

Infrared film

  • The rolls of the thermal film are spread in the room and fastened in the middle of the transparent areas between the sectors.
  • A grommet with a temperature sensor inside is installed under the foil in the recess of the base and fixed with a scotch tape.
  • The thermostat is connected to the thermal film and the sensor. Then power is turned on and the system is checked.
  • The whole floor is covered with thermal insulating film with overlapping of 20 cm. The joints are fixed with masking tape.
  • The floor screed has poor adhesion to the film. Therefore, a reinforcement mesh is laid on top and fixed to the base with dowels through the film holes at a distance from the conductive areas. Once again, a check is made to ensure that the conductors with insulation are not damaged.
  • A thin layer of cement-sand mortar is poured. It is leveled on the whole surface of the floor. Cure the layer for 20 days. Then the floor heating is turned on and checked for proper functioning.
  • Tiles are laid on the screed by conventional technology. If necessary, the tiles can be glued before the cement screed dries.
  • The technology repeats the previous one, including the installation of a vapor barrier film.
  • Instead of the cement screed, the surface of the underfloor heating is covered with fiberglass, fiberglass boards or gypsum plasterboard.
  • Finally, the ceramic tiles are put on top with glue.
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