I have an old two story house that's heated with oil (Ugh!) using radiators.
The radiators on the first floor keep it pretty warm, but there is only one
radiator on the second floor, in the bathroom. The pipe for the second
floor has to travel about 30 feet before it gets to the radiator (not a
My question is, would it be more efficient to remove this radiator and cap
off the line (on the first floor) and put in radiant underfloor heating in
the bathroom? Wouldn't the heating system work better if it only had to
focus on the first floor, rather than diverting a line to the second?
Any suggestins would be appreciated.
If that 30 foot pipe is in the house, it is giving off heat and helping the
system. If it is in the wall, insulate it so as not to lose heat.
Heating systems don't focus. The boiler has a certain amount of capacity to
heat water. It heats it to the set temperature and the burner shuts off
until the water temperature drops, then it starts again. If the burner is
on 100% of the time, it is undersized and just won't keep up any more. Heat
is being distributed by the water through a pump to the radiators (I wonder
how they got that name?) and then the radiators radiate the heat to the rest
of the room. Heat is always seeking cold so it will travel to cooler places
in the house. Keeping doors open or close will affect the total comfort too.
How do you plan to heat the bathroom floor? With the existing boiler or
using electric? If you go with electric, the boiler will work less, but the
electric bill will be more than the cost of oil in most areas. Sometimes
twice as much, even with the high prices of oil. It would make for a comfy
You really need a good heating contractor to take a look at the entire
system. It may pay to upgrade it all.
Are there rooms that are too hot or too cold when the rest of
the house is comfortable? If so, which ones? If not,
why do you want to mess with it?
EFFICIENCY is what want in a boiler. BALANCE is what you
want in the heat distribution system.
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