Jumping out of the shower first thing on a cold morning isn’t a pleasant experience, and it can only be made worse by stepping onto an ice-cold bathroom floor. That’s partly why underfloor heating is quickly becoming the popular must-have in bathroom renovations across the UK. Here’s a few points to consider when installing your new heating system.
Some materials are far more effective at heating than others, due to the levels of conductivity, but it’s important to consider a material’s ability to store heat rather than just transmitting it. Tiled floors are very good at keeping the heat stored, but if the tiles are too thick it can take a long time to heat up. The thinner the tile, the quicker the warm-up times, but it can feel cold when barefoot if the heating system is not turned on. Carpet is comfortable regardless if the system is on, but be sure to use one with a lower tog factor otherwise the underfloor heat simply won’t get through.
Real hardwood materials warm quickly, and will continue to retain a good heat level throughout the day and feels comfy underfoot even when the system is off. It is important to note that engineered board should be used in order to prevent the board from shrinking or moving when heat is passing through. Underfloor heating can be installed under solid, natural timber flooring but be careful how you lay the heating system to avoid movement issues.
One element that shouldn’t be overlooked is running costs – Cheaper to install electric systems may seem like the wallet-friendly choice short term, only to cost a significant amount to operate on a regular basis. Water-based systems aren’t the cheapest, but running costs are far lower.
Damp, a problem we have all experienced, is something that occurs most frequently in older houses. Unquestionably a common problem for home renovators, it’s important to know how to eliminate the issue and work to keep your house damp free. The most common occurrence of damp comes in the form of condensation, easily identifiable when you find water running down windows.
In some cases, water can be found running down walls creating dark mould spots, ranging from small speckles to big patches on ceilings and walls. Getting rid of this mould is vital, as not only does it look unsightly, it can release spores which individuals with respiratory problems can seriously be affected by.
So what causes this damp to occur? In short, the amount of water that is carried in the air varies dependent on the temperature of the environment. Hot air can carry more water than cold air, and with our homes being fairly warm during winter, the air contains plenty of vapour.
Condensation occurs when the warm air comes in contact with cold surfaces such as windows or walls, where the water can no longer be supported. The vapour condenses back to a liquid and remains on the surface. The main causes come down to poor cavity insulation, or insufficient ventilation.
Treating this type of damp is fairly straightforward providing you stick to certain control methods. Better ventilation is a good starting block therefore environments that create plenty of vapour or steam such as the shower room, require an automated ventilation system. Upgrading your insulation on outside walls will also create less cold surfaces for vapour to settle on.
I think you’ll agree that the bathroom is one of the places you can truly escape the stress of everyday life, and with multiple options becoming widely available and affordable it may be easier than you think to achieve true rest and relaxation. The bathroom is one room in the house that tends to have a lock on the door, and allows you to keep the outside world at arms length.
The most luxurious hotels and day spa retreats provide us with endless inspiration from beautiful whirlpool baths, real wood saunas and steam rooms geared to promote a true feeling of relaxation and well being. However, when it comes to deciding on your own home spa it is important to consider what you prefer the sensation of first. Do you prefer the relaxation provided by swirling water from body massage jets and bubbles or do you prefer to sweat it out in a sauna?
Be sure to allocate your space as simply and effectively as possible. Layouts that are warm, clutter-free and enclosed are best suited for true mind and body restoration rather than an open plan environment. So rather than spending your budget on knocking down structural walls and creating too much work, concentrate on a designated area and start creating your own cosy spa haven.
Log onto www.divapor.com to the full range of steam rooms, hydromassage whirlpool baths, and infrared saunas. With sizes and designs to suit all, you simply won’t be disappointed.
Source: Utopia Kitchens & Bathrooms – November 2009
A new resource has been launched to allow would-be plumbers to have a go at some do-it-yourself plumbing around the home. Not only is this an opportunity for those interested to develop their own understanding and skill set, it’s a great way to save money on that new shower enclosure installation you’ve been planning by completing the work yourself.
Heating and Plumbing solutions (http://www.heating-and-plumbing-solutions.com) provide an endless resource of guides from working with plumbing basics to more complex tasks such as installing a new bathroom suite or changing your boiler.
The service is available immediately for an annual fee of £30 per year. Considering the costs you may save doing the work yourself this really is a “no brainer”. There is even an online support service that allows you to discuss plumbing matters and any questions you may have with the experts.