Cold Floor Syndrome is quickly becoming a thing of the past as companies and technologies spring up to cure frozen tootsies. There is a multitude of choices out there from water-based to wire systems that are either embedded in some fashion or just laid underneath the levels of flooring. Warmup, has added to the pack of choices with its ultra-low profile carbon heater system for laminate floors.
This month’s Remodelers’ Choice is a British import that we brought to you in our November 2006 issue of Qualified Remodeler. Started in 1994, Warmup started with low-profile wire radiant heating systems for under tile. In 2002, Warmup hit the global market and brought its innovation to the United States.
Warmup’s latest creation is the Radiant Electric Floor Heating System for laminate floors and floating floor systems. This system is installed under the floor to provide either primary or supplementary heat. These heaters are energy-efficient and provide a safe, even distribution of heat. Warmup Underlaminate Heaters are sold in two widths (12- and 36-in.) and are thin (thinner than a dime), so they won’t raise floor levels.
“Radiant systems give even heat across a room,” says Sharon Mangino, general manager of the United States operations. “With forced-air systems heat is moving up and around and can cause rooms to be cold in the middle. People prefer warm feet and tend to feel warmer with heat radiating from the floor — even if it’s colder around the head level.”
More and more, radiant heating is being used as a primary heat source, Mangino says, and to slightly warm up tiles during the summer when the air conditioning is on. Warmup has also seen applications go beyond just the kitchen, bathroom and sunroom. It is getting more interest from yacht and RV home owners.
Among Warmup’s other products is its Loose Wire System. It has designed this system using a 0.12-in., ultra-thin, dual-core heating element. The small cross-section of this element allows it to be installed in a matter of hours with no need to dig up the floor or mix concrete. It is just simply laid down on the subfloor and tiled over. To make this wire system even simpler, Warmup also offers a Undertile Matting System. The electrical heating cable is attached to a tough fibreglass mesh, rolled out before tiling and connected to a programmable thermostat.
Although Warmup does offer a 30 year warranty transferable to any new homeowners and a SafetyNet Guarantee on the loose wire and matting system, this doesn’t ensure proper working order. Mangino states that it is important to test the system before tiling to make sure there are no problems.
Up next for Warmup, the company is looking to dive deeper into U.S. market and look at new technologies for a warm future. “I think by 2010, fifty percent of homes and offices will have underfloor heating,” adds Mangino.