Why are some rooms warmer than others with radiant baseboard heat?


Electric space heaters break down into two basic types: radiant or convection. Radiant models (such as ceramic and quartz portables, under-floor systems, cove heaters and ceiling panels) emit infrared radiation that heats up objects and people directly within their line of sight. They're designed for ultra-quick heating and are best for: Heating one or two people, large rooms where you don't want to heat the entire space, open rooms without a lot of furniture or obstacles between you and the heater, spot heating and sporadic use, workshops and home offices where you mostly want warmth for yourself while you're at your desk or workbench, or a TV room where the occupants are sitting in one area.

Convection models include oil-filled radiators, electric baseboard and toe-kick heaters, and flat panel wall-mounted units that warm the air around the heater and rely on the room's air circulation to heat the room. Fan-forced convection models are the most popular type of supplemental...

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Precision Air and Heating, Inc.
3045 N. Colorado St.
Chandler, AZ 85225
(602) Fix My AC (602.349.6922)
Air Conditioning, Heating, Plumbing and Home Performance Maintenance, Service, Repair and New Equipment Sales and installation
Servicing the greater Phoenix area since 1995.

Adam in Phoenix, AZ asks; i just bought a new AC system, so why are some rooms in my house still warmer than others?

A common misconception is that the AC unit itself will solve all the air flow issues within a house. There are actually several factors that may be related to warm rooms or spots within a home that have nothing to do with the actual Air Conditioning unit.

The distribution of air into your home is mostly related to your duct system. Having your duct system upgraded or inspected for leaks or blockage is reccomended anytime a home has uneven air distribution.

Additional reasons why some rooms may...

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"Make a precision decision with Precision Air. Trained professionals with integrity. Call 602FIXMYAC. Make a precision decision with Precision Air." Hello everybody. Erik Bryan here, owner of Precision Air & Heating. Since 1995, we have performed well over 250,000 service calls across the valley. We thought, what better way to share our experience and know-how than answering some common homeowner questions. Adam in Phoenix asks, "I have a new air conditioning system. So why are some rooms in my home still warmer than others?" Adam, great question. Listen, one of the biggest misconceptions when purchasing a new air conditioning system is that it is going to correct air flow. Please understand that a new air conditioning system has zero to do with the distribution of air into your home. Just about every new manufactured piece of equipment has roughly the same amount of air...

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Answer . Body temperature is an individual thing. The average body temp for people is 98.6 degrees, but that is only the average. Some people's body temp is 97 degrees and would be feverish at 98.6.. Not easily or quickly explained . The human metabolism will increase and decrease in speed depending on many different things. Could be almost anything, different medications will speed up or slow down metabolism which us humans being endothermic usually maintain a constant temperature usually between 96.4-98.8. 97.4-98.6 being an average for a healthy human all year around (I am attempting to give you a broader range with the #-#). Once you start to hit 99.6, you are considered running a fever for any number of reasons, usually illness or in some cases heat stroke (but heat strokes tend to make you quite a bit hotter, we are talking about your body cooking itself). Temperature might be constantly maintained in endothermic animals by means of using ones own chemical process to keep...

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Reasons for a room to be colder:
Air leakage at windows.
The vent is at the end of the duct run or undersized.
Damage to the ducting or an obstruction in the ductwork.

Changing your heater settings will not fix the problem. Check your windows to see if you feel any draft around the edges of each pane. Covering these edges with masking tape can fix the problem temporarily. Single-pane or single-glazed windows allow heat to escape outward more easily making the room cooler. Closing shades or curtains will mitigate heat transference. If this room is at the end of a ducting run there may not be enough pressure to force warm air into the room. Partially closing a vent or vents closer to the air handler may increase pressure to the cold room.

If there is damage to the duct, warm air may be leaking and reducing pressure to your bedroom. Most ducts in homes are made from duct board http://www.jm.com/content/dam/jm/global/... or flexible ducting...

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In a climate with cold winters, few words are more positive to describe a home than warm, cozy, and snug. Achieving these images requires the best heating system for the right conditions. Many choices are available, and two of these are baseboard heating and radiant floor heating 1.

Baseboard heating is a hot trend for the coldest climates, providing a good choice for homes where the area experiences temperatures near or below freezing regularly. Radiant floor heating 1 warms cold feet and heats a room evenly, eliminating cold corners. In the sections below, we will discuss the features of these heating systems in order to help you decide which is better for your home.

Heat Distribution

Radiant floor heating 1 systems come in two varieties: a boiler-based hydronic system and an electric coil system. The heat source for a hydronic radiant floor system is a boiler centrally located in the home. The heat the boiler produces is transferred to PEX tubing carrying...

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Dear EarthTalk: How energy efficient (and comfortable) is under-floor heating, sometimes known as radiant heating?—Marcy Dell, Boston

Underfloor radiant heating involves under laying the floor with a hot element or tubing that transfers heat into the room via infrared radiation and convection, obviating the need for forced or blowing air.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Savers website, radiant heating has a number of advantages over other forms of heat distribution: “It is more efficient than baseboard heating and usually more efficient than forced-air heating because no energy is lost through ducts.” It is also flexible as it can run off of a variety of energy sources: Gas, oil, wood, solar and other sources or combinations thereof can feed radiant systems. And radiant heating is a good choice for those with severe allergies as no potentially irritating particles get blown around the room.

Several aspects of radiant heating make it more...

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Radiant floor heat reduces building heat load by 25% and saves energy as much as 40% or more. Here’s why:

1 It Feels Warmer

Since radiant floor heat is attracted to people and objects, and warms the body from the floor, radiant heat feels 6-8 degrees (F) warmer than forced air. Utility providers publish potential energy cost savings of 3-5% for every degree the thermostat is turned down.

2 No Ducts or Pipes

Radiant floor heat is not blown through the ductwork or pumped through piping. The USDOE estimates as much as 35% of heat loss occurs in the duct system or piping.

3 Not All Heat Rises

Warm air rises. Radiant heat does not. Since radiant floor heat does not directly warm the air, it does not rise to the ceiling where an enormous amount of convective heat is wasted.

Natural gas furnaces, heat pumps, geothermal heat pumps and baseboard heaters are all convective systems that blow warm air as their primary...

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It is actually the 'thermal conductivity' of the material that makes the difference. Think it as the material's capability to transfer(conduct) heat. The lower it is, the better it keeps you warm. For example, cotton has a thermal conductivity of 0.04 W/m-K, when it comes to copper, it is 401 W/m-K. That is why you feel copper is much colder than cotton no matter in summer or winter . As for wool, the thermal conductivity is 0.029 W/m-K, better than cotton.
The furry blanket is better (assuming they are of the same thickness) is probably due to the air between the blanket and your body. Air is actually a good insulation. Its thermal conductivity is 0.024 W/m-K, almost as good as wool. That is why many insulation windows are filled with air. The problem of air is that it flows, thus taking away the heat. But the furry blanket keep an layer of air between the body and the blanket, therefore give an extra layer of insulation. As for the smooth cotton blanket, it doesn't do that...

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Commonly Reported HVAC Problems:

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Some rooms are warmer or colder than others:

Air Duct Balancing...

If some rooms are warmer or colder than others, this is usually just a matter of balancing. Meaning adjusting the airflow to each room so they all even out. Or sometimes making the rooms you choose more comfortable, and unused rooms less so. If a room is heating or cooling much quicker than other rooms, the airflow can be reduced to that room to even things out, also sending more air to other areas.

If some rooms can't keep up with others and the airflow isn't as noticeable, make sure the air vents are fully opened.

What is the best way to balance your ducts?

Many systems have dampers installed on the individual supply runs coming off the main supply trunk. This is either in the basement or attic. They are identified by little metal handles which open,...

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Requiring no ductwork, baseboard heating can be an easy-to-install and affordable solution for many homeowners.

By Michael Franco

Baseboard heat can be an effective and affordable solution, either for the whole house or as a supplement in rooms under-served by the main heating system.

Baseboard heat vs. forced air

Baseboard heat offers several advantages over the average forced-air system. For one thing, baseboards operate almost silently, in contrast to the noisy blowers of forced-air heating. Another advantage of baseboard heat is that it requires no ductwork. That means two things: One, it’s relatively easy to install, particularly in older homes, where adding ducts can be so problematic. Two, whereas forced-air heating ducts should be serviced regularly, there’s little ongoing maintenance to do with baseboard heat. Last but not least is a matter of preference: Many homeowners like how baseboard heat comes out evenly, not in intermittent...

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With radiant heat, every object in the room becomes warm and contributes to your overall comfort. Because you’re heating more than just the room’s air, your living space maintains an even, satisfying warmth with no air currents, blowing dust, or cold spots. Unlike other heating methods, radiant heat doesn’t dry out the air. The warmth starts at your feet where it is most desired instead of blowing out of ductwork and ending up on the ceiling. With traditional hydronic baseboard heating, the hot air flows up the wall creating a convective current that can actually draw in cold outside air.

Also, with radiant heat, you feel comfortable at a lower thermostat setting, so your fuel bills will be lower…a major plus!

In addition, the system is silent, has only one moving part, needs minimal maintenance, operates more efficiently than any other heating system while offering superior comfort, and if that isn’t enough, you can walk around in socks all winter!


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Installing a heating system into your home can be a difficult decision, and you may be unsure whether to go for radiant floor heating or baseboard heating. There are advantages to both different types of heating system, so what you choose will depend upon the type of home that you have, and what of the advantages will suit you best. In order to get the best from your heating, you will need to make the right decision based upon the circumstances of your household, and what you can afford.

Radiant Floor Heating

Radiant heating uses reflected heat from a boiler or other source in order to warm up a certain part of the home. In floor heating, this is usually managed by laying a series of pipes below the floor, through which hot water travels. Heat from the water pipes is transferred to the board of the floor, giving a warmth to the room. This kind of heating is often considered to be more efficient than ordinary heating, and may be more environmentally sound, as less...

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Space heaters can save you a lot of money. As supplemental heaters, they provide targeted heating, allowing you to concentrate heat in the rooms you’re occupying rather than wasting energy heating empty rooms in your home. They’re small and portable enough to go anywhere: your bedroom, your living room, even your office. There are a number of different space heaters, each employing different strategies to keep you warm. Some use diathermic oil, forced fan convection, or infrared radiation, but micathermic space heaters are unique. Instead of relying on one method, they combine two different methods in order to provide raise room temperatures very quickly. This makes micathermic heaters energy efficient and highly effective at keeping warm through the winter and beyond.

How Micathermic Heaters Work

Micathermic heaters use an electrical resistor that converts electricity into heat when it’s switched on. No electricity is wasted. They’re all 100 percent efficient. As...

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Published: June 20, 2014 - by Dan Holohan

Categories: Hot Water

Q: What's loop hot water heating?
A: It's the simplest method of heating with hot water. Each zone consists of a single loop made up of the pipe and the radiators. The water flows out of one radiator into the next.

Q: What sort of radiators do most people use with loop hot water heating?
A: Usually fin-tube baseboard. In fact, it was this type of radiation that first made the loop method of heating so popular in the early 1950s.

Q: Why is baseboard so popular?
A: Most heating contractors use baseboard radiation as perimeter heat, running it from room to room along the outside walls of the building. Piped this way, the baseboard radiation becomes the piping as well as the means for transferring heat from the water to the air. Compared to earlier methods of heating, the baseboard loop system is inexpensive and relatively foolproof.

Q: Does this mean I have to...

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I would like to share the following tips and ideas for keeping your bathroom warm and cozy:

Having a warm and comfortable bathroom is incredibly important. Stepping out of a hot bath or shower into freezing air is an unpleasant experience that can be avoided by proper heating of your bathroom.

Once you have chosen and installed your heating system, you won’t have to worry about crossing cold floors in the morning, or shivering in the cold as you dry yourself off after your shower. Keeping your bathroom warm can also help to prevent problems with mold and mildew.

It is important to choose your bathroom heater carefully because your bathroom is a unique environment in your home. The most important thing to remember is that your bathroom will need to be able to cope with exposure to a lot of steam and moisture in order to provide a good source of warmth for your bathroom.

You may also want to consider what types of heaters will be able to provide...

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Here you are at home, warm, snuggly, and content with your central heating system. What more to winter warmth could there be? Actually, you may be missing out on some valuable savings to your health and happiness without a small room heater to help.

We live in harsh economic times and the high cost of natural gas, propane, or oil heating can hurt families and individuals where they need help most. Heating is essential to living well, comfortably, and healthy.

This need for energy efficient and cost effective heating leads to alternative sources of warmth. Thus, small portable heaters.

So What are Room Heaters?

These types of heaters are small and convenient making them extremely portable. At first glance, they may look rather dinky by comparison to central or baseboard heaters. After all, what's that tiny little box going to do for you, right?

How could it possibly keep your...

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We have hot water baseboard radiation heat. How is it possible that the first room the hot water is supposed to heat is cold and the second and fourth room are to hot and the third and fifth rooms are just right?

I would expect the heat of the water in the radiators to drop a little bit as it travels along the loop but there are other considerations to how warm or cold a room is:

how many feet of radiator are there in the rooms? More radiator length will mean more heat is delivered in that room.

how many windows/doors in the rooms? Are any of the rooms drafty? Do you have a fireplace that is losing heat? If the rooms have very different heat loss situations that could explain it.

is the heat well-distributed in the rooms? Maybe there are hot spots and cold spots that could be solved with a small fan.

is there any furniture blocking the radiators? A large couch pushed up against a radiator could block a substantial amount of heat.

If the...

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|By Tim Carter, Tribune Media Services | Ask The Builder

DEAR TIM: I'm looking to buy a house, and I've seen online descriptions saying a house has radiant heat. What in the world is that? The house I grew up in had hot air that blasted out of ducts. What are the pros and cons of radiant heating? Is it expensive to operate? Would you own a home with radiant heat? --Lucy B., Goochville, Va.

DEAR LUCY: Radiant heat is by no means new. It's as old as our solar system. When you go outdoors on a sunny late-winter morning and feel the warmth of the sun when it's invisible infrared rays hit you, that's the oldest and most basic form of radiant heating. It's time tested, and in my opinion, the best form of heating you can have.

Radiant heat uses invisible electromagnetic infrared waves to heat you. It doesn't heat the air, as the system did in the house you grew up in. The objects that are in the direct pathway of the infrared rays absorb the energy immediately. Once...

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Have you noticed that some of the rooms in your home are always hotter or colder than others no matter what you set your thermostat to?

Have you noticed that some of the rooms in your home are always hotter or colder than others no matter what you set your thermostat to?

First, check for these common problems:

Dirty air filter—A dirty filter restricts airflow, not letting your home get enough cool air.Closed vents—Closed vents in rooms can cause them to be hotter than other rooms.Open windows—Your conditioned air can flow out of open windows, leaving uneven temperatures in your home.Air duct issues—If you have any kinked or crushed supply ducts, certain rooms won’t get enough air. Also leaky ducts cause a host of problems, including uneven temperatures. Here’s how to tell if your ducts are leaking.

If it’s not one of the problems above, the next likely cause is an unbalanced air conditioning and heating system. You’ll need an AC company to balance it.

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Electric baseboard heaters provide an economical secondary heat source for primary HVAC systems. Or they can act as the primary heat for peripheral spaces like cabins, basements, or additions. Rarely are they used as the only heat source, except in some warmer climates where additional heat is rarely needed.

There are two different types of baseboard heaters: convection and hydronic. They have many similarities: both providing a slow, gentle, and quiet trickle of heat through the room; both built on the same type of long, metal framework; and both looking exactly the same, at least on the outside.

Baseboard heaters' economical nature stops after you leave the cash register. Inexpensive to purchase and equally inexpensive to install (when you do it yourself), baseboard heaters are notorious energy-wasters. One way to curb their appetite for electricity is to purchase a hydronic heater rather than a convection heater.

Features Common to Both Convection and...

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To be fair, it is probably more about the skill of HVAC designer and installer than the type of system, however we have lived with steam, hot air, hydronic radiators, hydronic base board and now a hydronic radiant slab. This is the first time we have been completely happy with our heating system. The thing I like best about living on a heated slab is that the heat is non-intrusive. It is warm and comfortable everywhere. There are no cold spots or hot spots. We have backed our thermostats down 4 degrees from our previous homes and still find it comfortable.

Another plus is the freedom to place furniture against any wall without dealing with baseboards or...

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Photo: baseboardheatercovers.com

Baseboard heating can be an effective and affordable solution, either for the whole house or as a supplement in rooms underserved by the main heating system.

Baseboard heating offers several advantages over the average forced-air system. For one thing, baseboards operate almost silently, in contrast to the noisy blowers of forced-air heating. Another advantage of baseboard heating is that it requires no ductwork. That means two things: One, it’s relatively easy to install, particularly in older homes, where adding ducts can be so problematic. Two, whereas forced-air heating ducts should be serviced regularly, there’s little ongoing maintenance to do with baseboard heating. Last but not least is a matter of preference: Many homeowners like how baseboard heat comes out evenly, not in intermittent blasts.

Technically speaking, electricity plays a role in all baseboard heating...

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There are a number of different types of heating systems for homes, offices, and industrial settings, though some are more optimized for certain locations than others. Size and power considerations are some of the biggest differences, since heating something like a small home or basement apartment is a lot different from regulating temperatures somewhere like a high-rise or major shopping structure. Still, the basic operating technology is usually somewhat consistent no matter the setting. Most systems are one of five major types, namely forced air, radiant heat, hydronic, steam radiant, and geothermal. Each type should be considered for its effectiveness in meeting the budget and heating and cooling needs for the space at issue.

Forced Air Systems

The forced air system is most commonly seen in residential structures and is also used a lot in larger buildings like offices and stores. It works by heating air in a furnace and then forcing the air out into various areas...

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Occasionally I wonder if I have some sort of masochistic streak — somehow enjoying the grief I get when bursting people’s favorite bubbles. I’ll brace myself for such a response to this column, when I point out why radiant-floor heating systems don’t make sense for new, energy-efficient houses.

Radiant-floor heating is a way of delivering heat through the floor — usually with hot-water tubing embedded in a concrete slab. It’s a very popular heating system advanced by zealous proponents. If you want to pick a fight in the building industry, simply criticize such sacred cows as radiant-floor heating or ground-source heat pumps (stay tuned on that one).

Don’t get me wrong. Radiant-floor heating makes a lot of sense for the right applications. In fact, I think it’s a great heating system…for lousy houses. But with new construction, if the house is designed and built to be highly energy-efficient (something I always encourage as the number-one priority), it doesn’t make...

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Calculating comparative heating costs

I live in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada and have basically two choices for heating my home: natural gas, or electric. My home has been heated with natural gas since it was built about 30 years ago. I recently did a calculation comparing electric space heating to natural gas to see if it might be worth switching. I was interested in comparing both cost, and greenhouse gas emissions. Here is what I found out. These results are specific to my home and my region.

There are many units of measurement for energy (ex kWh, GJ, BTU, Therms, etc). For ease of comparison, I’ve used kWh for both electric and gas, even though gas is more commonly quoted in GJ. Notice I’ve included two columns for gas. The one with values “per kWh used” takes into account the efficiency of my gas heating system. Electricity is inherently 100% efficient (or close enough that system losses are negligible). This isn’t true of combustion based heating systems....

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When these two eventually come into the basement, they will want it to be warm!

I get it, you'd like your finished basement to be warm, toasty and comfortable even on the coldest, darkest winter nights.

You didn't build that kick ass movie theater room just so you could freeze your butt off alone!

You need it to be warm so your lady will come down and snuggle with you. Get'cha snuggle on!

So what are your options for heating your basement?

I scoured the internet for weeks, collected pages of notes and asked hundreds if not thousands of my readers what they use.

Here are my top 5 ways to heat your basement:

1. Add registers to your existing or expanded HVAC duct work. (get $$ out and your tin snips ready)
2. Buy a vented stand alone "system" to heat your basement. (like a pellet stove)
3. Buy an electric (unvented) stand-alone unit. RECOMMENDED !!
4. Buy something that can heat a small room.
5. Suck it up you big...

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A modern bathroom creates an appealing environment in any household. In most instances, a bathroom is the first place a homeowner will think of renovating even before considering upgrading a kitchen. One of the reasons why a bathroom will be refurbished more regularly compared to other areas is because space is usually smaller and the cost is less. If you are planning to overhaul a bathroom, it is worthwhile to understand some details right. Some working is also important so that you know what to expect instead of getting something totally different from the first picture.

Just before you start working on a design idea, it is important to figure out exactly what you want to achieve in this remodeling work. Other considerations such as the color and types of showerheads may come later. Perhaps you want a bathroom where you can relax comfortably for a warm shower inside a free-standing bathtub. On the other hand, you may want to create a more spacious bathroom to meet...

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Have you turned your heat on yet? After I divulged that Mr. Frugalwoods and I haven’t–and likely won’t until November–I received a number of comments and emails from readers asking that I share our methods for thermostat abstention.

We adore the shoulder months of fall and spring when we live totally sans climate control. Heating and air conditioning are money drains and we save a bundle by flat out not turning ours on. Summers are rather mild here in Cambridge, MA and we were able to squeak by with AC only in July and some of August.

Our winters, on the other hand, can be epically harsh. Going without heat all winter is an absolute impossibility–in addition to being extraordinarily uncomfortable, our pipes would freeze and burst, which is about the least frugal thing in the world. Despite this fact, we spend a fraction of what most folks do in order to avoid the shivers every winter. Here’s how!

1) Don’t turn it on.

Wait as long as humanly...

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