Warm Water Central Heating Basics
Warm water central heating systems use water to distribute heat thoroughly and evenly around the home. Water transfers energy at a much higher rate than air, making these systems very efficient. They can be installed in new or existing homes.
The heat source (either a boiler or heat pump, often situated in the garage, laundry or outside) heats the water, then pumps it through the heat distribution system (either a network of looped pipes under the floor of the house, a system of pipes under the floor or in the walls connected to wall-mounted radiators, or a combination of the two), which then releases the heat gently into the home.
- Because there is no forced air movement, there are no draughts, hot and cold spots, or noisy fans to contend with. The heat is passive and unobtrusive. It warms objects and fabric within the room.
- The process is superbly efficient. No water is actually consumed, and once the water is up to temperature the heat source modulates or switches off while heat continues to be emitted from the pipes or radiators.
- Many systems can also produce hot water for domestic hot water use. Some will even heat a spa or swimming pool as well as supplying the central heating and domestic hot water.
- All systems are fitted with a thermostat and time controller, allowing warmth to be delivered only when it is needed. In addition, individual radiators are fitted with thermostats, allowing precise control over the heating supplied to different parts of the house. Some underfloor systems can also be programmed to control the duration and level of heat supplied to individual rooms or zones.