Can anyone advise me on the installation of hydronic coils before a slab
is poured ?
We are building a new home and I have costed the Rehau 16mm PEX totalling
$6,000 for 550 sqm. This is working on 5m per sqm equalling 2750m.
On a sqm basis this is approx $11 however every quotation I have received
is approx $50-$55 per sqm to supply & lay the pipe prior to having the
So it will cost me upwards of $21,450 for the installer to design the
layout and attach the pipe to the mesh prior to the pour !
As it cannot be rocket science and well worth the savings are there any
DIY guides available for potential pitfalls and design etc.
Thanks in advance...
I looked on Amazon and there is at least one book on radiant floor
heat. Also, Fine Homebuilding or the Journal of Light Construction
might have articles on it. You're right, it isn't rocket science.
You will need to come up with a design, though this typically is
tubing run 12" oc and no loops over 300 feet. I think the reverse
spiral is the prefered layout. I prefer to staple the tubes to the
foam and put any reinforement over the tubes--this lessens the chance
of a tube floating up and later being hit by a drill or something.
Thanks for the pointers, after much research I am confident to proceed.
After reading many of the replies to this thread I can also appreciate why
many would consider this "rocket science" however most of these
individuals would also consider the complexity of tying their shoe laces
DIY at www.radiantcompany.com/
Think about it junior. $21,450 to do your job. A lot of money? I
wonder why? You're thinking $11 per sqm but low and behold all the
professionals are right about the same at $50 to $55 per sqm. Gee,
maybe they all got together and fixed their prices just so they could
screw you? Seems logical.......................you dolt.
Keep this in mind. YOU are going to design and install your own
$21,450 job that of which you have never done before. I hope you
understand how much fun busting up all that concrete and redoing it
again the right way will cost. It ought to make $21,450 look like
cracks, kinks, holes, leaks, loose fittings, bad connections, sizes,
lengths, placement, attachment, depth, insulation, ignornace, stupidity,
etc. and once the slab is poured, if there is a problem, your fucked. If its
done by a pro, they have insurance to take care of their mistakes, and they
will make it right on their dime.
Now go piss up a rope and suck on the bitter end.
Well, I am a contractor, not a plumber. I have personally installed 6
hydronic radiant floor systems. I have two friends who have done
their own installs (non-contractors), and can think of about 4 other
projects that were done by contractors, not plumbers. All have
worked. twice I've installed systems with a plumber working by my
side. The plumber was the first to tell me it ain't rocket science.
I've never seen pex cracked. I air test mine, though when I did it
with a plumber, he didn't air test his. He didn't inspect it for
cracks, either. I've read that if you kink pex, it can be returned to
it's original shape with a torch. But in the 6 I have done, I have
found that kinks are easy to avoid if you use common sense. I've never
seen anyone get a kink. If you're stupid enough to put a hole in it
while you are installing it, then you truly are stupid. Course, it is
possible that it will be damaged during the pour, but that is just as
likely as if you had a team of master plumbers installing the stuff.
Loose fitting and bad connections only occur around fittings and
fittings don't get buried in the pour. Attachment, depth, insulation
should be dealt with by the designer. I'm not going to suggest the OP
does this cold without some design help. But for a competent DIYer,
it's one of the easier parts of the building process.
In the last 15 years or so that radiant slabs have been around my
area, I know of two major screw ups. One, a DIYer tried to test a
radiant heat system he had installed in an outside slab with water
from a garden hose, and left the water in over the winter. Ruined it
through stupidity. Another time, a professional plumber on a house I
was building fired up the system while the slab was still too cold,
and froze a loop, though it thawed and all was well.
telling me to "go piss up a rope" only undermines your credibility.
Actually not, because you come trolling in here like a homeowner that just
thinks he is gonna DIY and "save a bundle" without giving *ANY* indication
of your vocation, or experience. This leads us to believe that your nothing
more than some computer weenie or even worse, and EE. If your are
experienced as you say, then you already know what possible problems your
going to run into and how to avoid them.
Now, troll.....I refer you to the last statement in my previous post.
Go over to the OP's and look at his when he is done. That will be one
If you've got to ask, yo'veu obviously not installed or serviced any
of them and I dont believe you've done 6. I think you may have seen
six of them done after you showed up.
Ive seen lots of screw ups. The majority of them would be the
homeowners trying to do it "on the cheap".
That's what makes "Service" so wonderful.
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