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Floor Heating Installation Under Hardwood

hardwood installation image

Recently a homeowner from Vancouver, Canada installed a WarmlyYours electric floor heating system under hardwood flooring. The radiant heating system was installed in the entire house as a sole source of heat. Under nailed hardwood, WarmlyYours green mesh rolls are typically installed between sleepers which are spaced out every 19 inches. Sleepers are strips of wood approximately 1" wide. They are installed to create lanes which allow placement of the 18" wide floor heating mesh. The mesh is then covered with self leveling cement up to and even with the top of the sleepers.

The flooring installer or do-it-yourselfer then nails the hardwood floor to the sleepers. In this case, however, the homeowner decided to lay sleepers every 6 inches instead of every 19 inches. One of the many advantages of the WarmlyYours system is the ability to customize the roll design to fit the room's specific layout or to accommodate the homeowner's preference for heating coverage. As you can see in the picture (right), the WarmlyYours roll was cut and turned every 6 inches, snaking back and forth throughout the entire room.

Thanks to the assistance provided by WarmlyYours support team, who guided the homeowner throughout the installation process, the homeowner completed the job successfully. We have just followed up on this project and the homeowner couldn't be happier with the new heated wood floor!

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just wondering whether the space between the sleepers can be left open (not filled up with thin concrete mixture) and if yes, what are the eventual cons?

Thank you in advance

Hi Dobry,

We cannot recommend installing our electric radiant floor heating system under hardwood without the use of thinset cement between the sleepers. Without the cement there will not be a thermal battery to spread the heat evenly from the heating cable. The wires would also be exposed providing a tiger stripe effect on the floor (heat-cold-heat-cold etc.) and may be unsafe to operate. We cannot recommend foregoing the use of thinset cement with our Tempzone product regardless of application. The cement will allow the heat to build up and spread evenly across the hardwood floor.

If you would like, our Design Team can look at your room dimensions and design a system for your needs. You simply need to fax us a floor plan at 800.408.1100 and indicate the direction of the wood (south-north or east-west for instance). We'll then get back to you with a quote and customized installation plan that you can review to better understand how the electric floor heating system would be installed.

Hope this helps!

What is the purpose to using a 6" gap as opposed to a 19" gap between sleepers?


Great post. There are several ways in restoring or repairing hardwood floors. Here in Dallas hardwood floors are always the best choice in wood flooring.

As well as these simple tips that are easily implemented and that many more people should be carrying out there are also some larger methods that could be implemented such as installing an alternative heating message that will provide economical gain for the consumer by reducing their hot water bills but will also help the environment, one option would be a system such as an air source heat pump from http://www.blazes.co.uk/central-heating.aspx

Thank you for sharing a well-written article on how to install hardwood.

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