Since her porch is semi-heated, maybe she only needs to build
a closet around her washer/dryer and insulate it, and place another
heater inside. If she wants to go to greater expense, then she might
consider insulating the porch, or extending her heating system.
Probably not the best way to heat the space. Having a heavy item,
with a distinct possibility of some water on the ground, sitting on an
electric mat is sketchy at best. If you could close off the area
immediately around the machines - create a tent-like arrangement - you
could heat the interior with a light bulb.
I would imagine that it has something to do with money and not wanting
to continuously heat a space that is used only a couple of times a
week. That's why I was suggesting reducing the volume to be heated to
the point that it could be heated very cheaply and simply.
What about lining the space with industrial freezer panelling?
Not that cheap new ($A40/m2) but might be available at scrap
Extractor in an external wall wired to the light switch.
Trapped waste in the floor to carry away leaks/spills (assuming there is
fall to the outside of course).
Well, since nobody else has mentioned it I'll bring it up.....
You said that it "sometimes get below freezing in there". That could be a
big problem if the plumbing freezes!
I've spec'd electric in-floor radiant heat many times in everything from
bathrooms to porches. Water isn't an issue as long as the flooring is
appropriate (i.e. tile). While they're not the most efficient way to heat a
space, they work great for areas that don't need to be constantly kept
heated. But they aren't going to heat a large space from 40* up to 70* in
As long as the room keeps the plumbing at a safe temp. you could consider a
heated rug/pad. I've seen some (2'x4') rubberized ones with electric heat
coils. I've never used one so I don't know how well they work, but if the
volume of the space is small enough I'd be willing to bet they' work fine.
Another good option is a heating lamp. I put one up in my garage and use a
500watt heat bulb (get the white color bulbs not the red ones - unless you
like to feel stoned all the time!). The bulb probably keeps my workbench
area (roughly a 3'x8' area) 5-8 degrees warmer. The main benefit is my
tools are actually a little warmer and I can avoid freezing my hand when
grabbing a wrench.
Radiant heat can be great for people with arthritis and I think there is
an added benefit whenever you are on the second or third floor of a
radiant heated structure. You would not believe how wonderfully plants
grow on a mid floor of a building with radiant heat on the floor and
affecting from above, depending on the plenum. People do nicely, too.
Done right, they can be cheaply maintainable.
Anyone designed a solar radiant system?
Yes, but it was some months ago, so I can't remember what exactly the
product was, or really anything else about it, other than that I saw it.
It's stuff you can put tile on top of, as a DIY thing. nIt *was* made for
bathrooms, tho'. The weight of a washer and dryer might be a problem, but
you could always put the stuff down only under the surrounding areas, maybe
build a low "platform" for the waser and dryer to help delineate the space.
I have no idea how expensive it might be. Have you also considered a
protable heater? Tile the floor (non-flammable) with some insulationg
stuff under it (to conserve the heat) and set up a portable so it points
towards the floor.
Sorry but that's all Ican recall about the under-tile heating coil unit,
you'll have to search...
I'm not sure - I'd seen it on HGTV =8-o about a year ago, but I'm sure
that is mroe than one permutation. THe stuff I'd seen (which does seem
to look like the little pic, from what I can tell) consisted of a heating
element sandwiched between 2 layers of protective material, prob. soem
sort of plastic/vinyl. You could plug a series of panels/mats one into
the other, like holiday lights, to cover a large area. THey had to be
covered with some sort fo waterproof flooring, or else installed where
water drips were not going to occur.
Nifty item, esp. if you live up North and have a house built on a slab.
The optimal installation is to have the radiant under the tile. The
retrofit stuff works, but the subfloor plywood acts as insulation and
it's not as efficient of an installation and it doesn't warm up as
fast nor hold the heat as well.
If you've never stepped on a warm radiant floor on a cold night,
you're in for a treat. It's a damn fine feeling. The programmable
thermostats are well worth the money. Some of them learn the response
time of your floor installation - if you want the floor to be at a
certain temperature at a certain time, it'll turn on the juice ahead
of time so it'll be the right temp at the right time.
I'm wondering (have to look) whetehr there is something like a heated
carpet, similar to a heated matrass pad - there was no under-floor
heating option when thise place was built, not going to rip up a tile
floor that's only 18 months old, but a heated carpet could be nice in the
bathroom on a chilly day.
Thanks =:-D ! I was trying to search, glad I decided to pop into the
This will be a great Solstice ;) present for seomone I know who refuses to
drop hints (but complains about cold floor tiles in the morning).
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