The History of Underfloor Heating

June 28, 2016

[fusion_builder_container background_color=”” background_image=”” background_parallax=”none” enable_mobile=”no” parallax_speed=”0.3″ background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” video_url=”” video_aspect_ratio=”16:9″ video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_preview_image=”” overlay_color=”” overlay_opacity=”0.5″ video_mute=”yes” video_loop=”yes” fade=”no” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”” padding_top=”20″ padding_bottom=”20″ padding_left=”” padding_right=”” hundred_percent=”no” equal_height_columns=”no” hide_on_mobile=”no” menu_anchor=”” class=”” id=””][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][fusion_text]Today’s underfloor heating is very popular, with improved technology it is extremely reliable and efficient, even in the coldest climates. However, this method of heating is not really a modern technology at all.

Underfloor heating has been around a lot longer than one might think…The concept of Underfloor Heating dates as far back as 2500 years!

The Koreans

The Koreans began using what is called the ‘’ondol” system.  A chimney was built at one end of a building, and a cooking stove was built at the other end of the building, linked by a void under the stone floor.  This was the birth of underfloor heating.

A fire was then lit on which to cook, and a draught would then draw the exhaust gasses from the stove towards the chimney.  The hot gasses would pass through the void under the floor, heating the stone slabs above, which would then heat the rooms above.[/fusion_text][fusion_imageframe lightbox=”yes” gallery_id=”” lightbox_image=”http://www.greenleafalternativesolutions.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Ondol-Floor.jpg” style_type=”none” hover_type=”zoomin” bordercolor=”” bordersize=”0px” borderradius=”0″ stylecolor=”” align=”center” link=”” linktarget=”_self” animation_type=”0″ animation_direction=”down” animation_speed=”0.1″ animation_offset=”” hide_on_mobile=”no” class=”” id=””] [/fusion_imageframe][fusion_text]

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The Romans

500 years later the Romans adopted a similar underfloor heating system to heat their villas and public buildings.

Hot air from fires was channelled through a system of chambers or ducts under the floor, called ‘hypocausts’.

At first, this system of heating was initially only used by the wealthy, but soon became more commonplace in homes of the time.

Modern Day

Frank Lloyd Wright, an inventive American architect of the 20th century, is acknowledged with the invention of modern day underfloor heating in the 1930’s, which uses warm water, rather than heated air.

Wright visited Japan where he was exposed to an ‘ondol’ type system and was struck by the concept of being warmed from below. He also realised that in the ‘ondol’ system, there was a risk of lethal smoke inhalation, and therefore Wright worked at a system that used warm water instead.

Wright’s underfloor heating designs have been perfected over the years and today, warm water underfloor heating is installed in various buildings all over the world.

These systems are very efficient, and especially when powered by energy saving heat pumps to warm the water.

Water-based underfloor heating is the most economical way to heat your home. It is far more of an environmentally friendly choice compared to electrical underfloor heating.

How it works:

A series of pipes connected to your boiler circulate warm water throughout the floor to heat the space.

Advantages of purchasing Water-Based Under Floor Heating:

  • Efficient energy source
  • Space-saving – 
Heaters and radiators are often unnecessary with the application of an under floor heating system.
  • Aesthetically pleasing – 
Your space will look uncluttered, as there are no heating elements.
  • Reduced energy consumption
 – An under floor heating system approaches the most ideal heat distribution.

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