Due to their high quality construction, all of our engineered wooden floorboards are suitable to be laid over underfloor heating. When installing engineered wood flooring over underfloor heating there are a number of factors that need to be considered, some of which we have listed below. It’s not possible to cover every individual circumstance in this guide – should you have any specific questions in relation to laying one of our engineered wood floorboards over underfloor heating please contact us directly and we would be happy to help.
There are so many underfloor heating systems on the market today that we cannot go into detail on the systems themselves. The design and installation of your underfloor heating should be left to a qualified professional and they should supply you with the appropriate certification to show that the system is fully operational with temperature control that ensures that the underside flooring does not go above 27 degrees Celsius. This cannot be controlled by room thermostats alone.
The points below are specifically related to the use of our own engineered wood flooring and underfloor heating and do not cover other aspects of installation such as different fitting methods, preparing environment for fitting, expansion gap etc. More information can be found on the Fitting and Finishing section of our website. The information provided is help and guidance only and is not a step by step guide. If you or your fitter have any specific questions and can’t find the answers you’re looking for then please do not hesitate to give us a call or email us. We are a family business that are always happy to help.
Underfloor heating must be turned on & tested prior to installation
It is recommended when installing engineered wood flooring over underfloor heating that all underfloor heating systems are turned on and tested prior to installation. It may seem simple but it’s something that can be forgotten.
If underfloor heating is set within a screed, the system must be turned on before the flooring is acclimatised or fitted. Screed must be dried naturally in accordance with the instructions / professional fitter. However even if the screed has been allowed to dry over time naturally, you can find that there is still moisture within the screed that will be driven out when the underfloor heating is turned on for the first time. It’s crucial that this moisture is not trapped or driven into the underside of your flooring. Then, once your professional installer is confident that the screed is ready for the flooring to be installed, the underfloor heating must be turned off/right down prior to installing the floor. More info on this can be found below.
Underfloor heating is turned off / right down before installing or treating your floor
The underfloor heating system must be turned off / right down prior to installation. It is recommended that this is done gradually. If your floor is being glued down then it is recommended that you do not commission the UFH for 48 hours after the floor has been fitted to allow the adhesive to cure naturally. It is also recommended that the underfloor heating is turned off if you finishing the floor on site and the finish is left to cure naturally. Again, be sure to read all instructions specific to the glues, underlays or finish you’re using.
No hotspots – Heat must be evenly distributed
It’s very important that the heat beneath your wooden floor is evenly distributed. This means that your underfloor heating system must have a heat diffuser such as a screed, liquid compound, aluminium trays etc. Your underfloor heating must be designed in such a way where you do not get hotspots beneath your floor. The underside of your flooring must not reach temperatures above 27 degrees Celsius. If any areas of your floor exceed these limitations it may cause damage to your floor.
Do not cover the flooring with heavy rugs or coverings
When using engineered wooden flooring over underfloor heating it’s important that you take care with what you lay over the flooring. If more work is to be completed in your property after the flooring is installed, and the flooring requires covering to protect the finish, then the material you use to cover your flooring must be breathable and must not cause the flooring to get excessively hot. Again, the underside of your flooring must not exceed 27 degrees Celsius. This is also the case when living in the property – be careful when laying rugs that they are not too heavy or thick and could cause the flooring to get overly warm. All rugs / mats must be breathable and not rubber backed. Covering the flooring with an unsuitable material can cause damage to your floor and has also been known to cause discoloration.
No sudden temperature changes or very high/low temperatures
Many hot water systems fail to control the boiler temperature appropriately which can result in areas of your floor becoming far too hot, causing potential issues within your floor. Boilers can heat water to 80 degrees celsius +, which is far too hot for underfloor heating pipes. The UFH system that is installed must have pipe temperature controlled by valves and not thermostats. With recognised systems supplied by Nu Heat the hot water is pumped from the boiler to a pump rack, where it’s mixed to the appropriate temperature and then distributed via a manifold to the controlled heating zones.
If the water is running through your underfloor heating pipes at temperatures over 26 degrees then all areas / zones must be fitted with room stats and thermostatic sensors beneath the wooden floor as a safe guard to ensure the underside of your flooring does not exceed 27 degrees Celsius.
It’s also recommended that at no point during the year the property is left to get cold, damp or humid. Always set the heating to a frost temperature of 12 degrees Celsius when not in full usage. Also with any underfloor heating system it is very important that any temperature changes are made slowly and gradually. The industry recommendations are that underfloor heating temperatures are not changed any more than 2 degrees Celsius per day.