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Underfloor heating pipework layouts

Underfloor Heating Pipework Layouts


Different ways tp lay out underfloor heating pipework

 
How to lay out pipework for underfloor heating

At first glance, underfloor heating pipe layouts may either look mind-blowing and complicated, or could be mistaken for random loops. They are in fact neither.

Pipe layouts should be planned, but there is only simple logic at work.

Understanding the simple dynamics of what is happening will uncover the potential mystery and help you plan your pipe layout to achieve maximum effect from your system.

The basic principles of underfloor heating pipework

Firstly you need to understand that in a heating circuit water entering the loop is hotter than water exiting it, as heat is gradually dissipated into the floor along the length of the pipe. This is important when planning the pipe layout as you may want hotter water to go to colder areas of a room - conversely, you may want to keep the floor temperature even across the whole room.

Example

Let us suppose you live in a terrace house or apartment where three sides of the room are solid, well insulated walls. The forth side however is all glass - patio doors let's say.

 

It is highly likely that the area adjacent to the glass is going to be cooler than the rest of the room during the winter. It would seem logical therefore to direct the earlier part of your underfloor pipe run straight to the coolest part of the room - hence ensuring the hottest part of the pipe run is put to work in the coolest area.

 

There would be arguably little point in leaving this area until last in your layout, as the coolest water would have least effect and the area would possibly struggle hardest to stay warm. Unless you deliberately wished to create such a temperature gradient across the floor for some reason.

Bifilar and meanering pipework designs used in the same underfloor heating zone.

So now you have your hottest water to the coldest point, you have a choice how to start planning the rest of your pipe layout.

You may decide that the area of the room nearest the glass in our example is particularly cold during winter. For this reason you might decide to expend more of the heat from the early part of your loop to this area. This may be achieved by concentrating the first few coils or rows in your design within this area. If your room were to have side windows or other features that may cause cold spots the same applies - direct the warmest part of your pipework layout to counter this, then work away back to the naturally warmer area.

 

Conclusion

As you can see, a complicated pipe layout now looks somewhat more logical.

Remember: When planning your layout, don't 'paint yourself into a corner'. You must remember that your return pipe has to go back to the manifold.

 

Here are a few examples of different pipe layouts. Each will have different resulting characteristics -

Underfloor heating bifilar layout

Underfloor heating pipework layout meandering design

A combination of bifilar and meandering pipework for underfloor heating pipework.

Bifilar Meandering Combo meandering and bifilar
 
 
 
 

How to layout Underfloor heating pipework

 

 


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