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#1 iamian

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Posted 13 June 2010 - 08:07 PM

We have a concrete-floored conservatory which gets cold in winter. Ceiling blinds have helped a little but it needs some heating beyond the puny radiator and we've been quoted for underfloor electric heating.

The cheap, self-laid laminate flooring (looks like a veneer over green cardboard) has not lasted well and we're persuaded towards Karndean flooring, professionally laid.

The Karndean people say that underfloor heating needs nothing more than a screed over the heating, the heating guy reckons we need boards between.

Anyone with experience of both or either can comment please? To me extra layers of board can only mean more insulation so the heat will warm up the concrete rather than the room.
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#2 Lancelot

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Posted 13 June 2010 - 08:40 PM

Is it not practical to increase the radiator size, or increase it's width?
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#3 Gteuk

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Posted 13 June 2010 - 08:51 PM

I may have a little experience in this ;)

The thing is choosing the right underflooor heating, Karndean is not the most ideal as the sub floor needs to be fully flat and you need a good adhesive if south facing.

Best method with little height build up is either AHT ribbon underfloor heating under heat-pak or carbon film underfloor heating under the the heat-pak both will be a primary heat.

If using a cable underfloor heating it would need to be buried into a screed which means more energy will be used and wasted to get through the screed so can be quite costly,

Ribbon underfloor heating is more expensive but no latex is needed so can actually work out cheaper for overall installation, Quite happy to give full advice as I work in both the industries of underfloor heating and flooring.

What Karndean pattern are you going for and why karndean as it is the most expensive route, I can maybe offer you a better option (by offer I mean advice not sell)

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#4 iamian

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 07:24 AM

Is it not practical to increase the radiator size, or increase it's width?


Lance:

The only wall for the radiator is that under the window, which is 18" / 500mm high. This space has the widest convector radiator that will fit there but being an add-on to this existing system and furthest from the pump never gets quite as hot as those in the main body of the house. I guess if we went for a custom made angled double radiator (supposing such a thing possible) we could increase the heating area but I'm not convinced we will get more output from it.

Glen:

I will see what details I can get of the proposed installation. We were going for Karndean Knight Tile Jura. Karndean was recommended to us by someone who doesn't have underfloor heating and it has worked very well for them. Having had both real wood laminate (about 1/2" thick) and cheapo compressed laminate and left unimpressed with both we wanted something "better". I would have had ceramic tiles but SWMBO finds them cold and noisy following our experience with them in a previous kitchen.
The concrete floor has an insulation layer beneath the screed - at least according to the conservatory plans - which may helpPosted Image

Thanks for the advice.

Edited by iamian, 14 June 2010 - 07:25 AM.

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#5 Gteuk

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 08:21 AM

The thing is Karnean has a rule in its warranty that the surface temperature should not exceed 28 degrees C so this is going to be hard to do in a south facing conservatory,

have a look at Carbon underfloor heating that can be used as a cost effective installation or Ribbon underfloor heating which is more versitile and can be used under all flooring products, Both of them are a primary heat.

Be aware that most of the cable system be it loose wire or cable mat will either under perform or be to hot for the floor covering unless buried into about 35mm of latex based screed.

Laminate floors vary dependent on quality for example a cheap laminate has no character and you can tell its not real wood / tile. Balterio does a good range especially the sculpture range which has a really good textured finish have a look at Balterio laminates.

I am not putting the links in to try and sell to you but to offer information and prices you should be paying, I will add to our company website a guide for fitting with Heat-Pak and Vinyl.

Regards


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#6 puddytat

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 09:31 AM

A long time since I worked on this stuff, but generally you would need a screed over underfloor heating,
however, although probably not cheap there is this:

Underfloor Heating

It has a subfloor (concrete or wood) then there is an insulation mat (the green cardboard already present under your laminate, it should be a fibre like board about 6mm thick), then the heating mats then the laminate. So in theory lift the laminate put down the heating mat, put back the new laminate ... then there is only the electrics to sort ... in these days not straight forward due to all the regulations needs someone qualified for that. As far as the laminate goes there are some very good laminates out there that will not cost an arm and a leg and easy to lay.

Probably, Lancelot's suggestion of a bigger radiator is simpler and more economical.



I've just discovered a duplicate thread with similar but more professional advice, the link I gave was pure coincidental and I'm not involved with any company.

Edited by puddytat, 14 June 2010 - 09:46 AM.

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#7 Gteuk

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 11:05 AM

To save confusion I have merged the 2 topics,

@ Puddy fibre board is too dense for use with underfloor heating as the wires cannot bed in so will cause movement with the floor, some form of cross linked Poly Ethylene (PE) about 6mm in thickness.

As for the qualification of installation, you can do all of the installation upto the point of connecting electricity if less than 3000 watts you can simply power it from a fused spur from an existing ring main, the spur will have to be installed and certified by a Part P or above qualified electrician. The heating will need to have a number of tests carried out under 753 of wiring regs.

The main ones being

Circuit MUST be on an RCD or on the RCD protected side of the consumer board.

Resistance reading tested and recorded
Insulation test (mega test)
Recording of overal power output
Recording of individual mat placement (in the form of a sketch)
Identification of cold leads in junction box for said mats
Identification sticker showing that underfloor heating is in the room

There is a load more but those will make the electrician happy.

Hope that helps

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#8 Gteuk

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 11:16 AM

Have a look at the quickstep prato tile it is a slate effect tile with a sculptured finish, it is similar to what you have mentioned in the vinyl,

Quick Step Quadra range Prato Design Not a link to my company this time, I would probably recommend a staggered joint though as it looks better IMO, that is if you were going down tha laminate route.

Go to a local flooring shop and have a look, nearly all have samples of the quick-step range then if you like it look online.

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#9 Cutter

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 03:21 PM

Hi I have had the same problem for 15 years our conservatory faces north and we can only use it in summer so last year I put a multifuel stove in with a stainless steel flue going up the outside of the wall this last winter we have sat in the conservatory in temperatures of minus 4 outside 24 inside what a difference we have used the conservatory more in the last 6 months than the previous 15 years. Alan :lol:

#10 iamian

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Posted 15 June 2010 - 01:51 PM

Thanks for the replies. The bigger radiator on the GFCH isn't really an option because of the lack of wall space and the fact that the existing radiator is at the end of the line as it is. We have not go a lot of space for a stove and no room for a flue, though it is otherwise an attractive sounding option. We have used a fan / convector heater from time to time but it goes cold very quickly, is noisy and eats the juice.

We'll certainly check out some of the flooring options Glen. The current quote involves a Varme system and something called Heat-Pak to get a smooth surface for the Karndean. This is where we came in. The Kardean installers are still talking about a screed but from what I see on the Varme website Heat-Pak is a dry system.
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#11 Gteuk

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Posted 15 June 2010 - 02:14 PM

If you want a like for like comparison give Allbrite a call, I am sure you will save more than a few quid, considerably more ;) I know this cos we sell the carbon film at cheaper than trade prices

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#12 Gteuk

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Posted 15 June 2010 - 02:17 PM

P.S just say Glen said call and I said to give a good price for the heat-pak as well as the underfloor heating.

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#13 Guest_ian ross_*

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 09:50 PM

hi am a fllor layer to trade ive laid many karndean floors if your house has nice smooth surface then a screed with latex or just ply wood it then use feather finish on joins so u dont see them and just lay on that using high temp glue which karndean can supply hope this helps