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Radiant Cooling

CMadatMe Member Posts: 3,086
Just came across the new Uponor Radiant Cooling Design Manual and thought I'd share it.
"The bitter taste of a poor installation remains much longer than the sweet taste of the lowest price."


  • heatpro02920
    heatpro02920 Member Posts: 991
    edited May 2013
    I sat in on a

    "conversation" between another contractor and a "pex" rep, a while back when radiant floor cooling was even less heard of than it is now {in new england}, I stay away from the big commercial jobs, the biggest I will go is 40 tons and that has to be an easy job for me to price it like 4-10ton roof top units... I find big commercial jobs just don't produce profits worth the trouble.. anyway that is a conversation for another thread...

    So I'm introduced to everyone and we sit down for lunch, what I got out of this meeting was 12btu per sq ft, so in my mind I'm thinking 1/2 the load {unless you have a glass ceiling, than you can double that number but obviously your load will probably triple due to having a glass ceiling...}. So in other words, you will still need to run duct work and supply half the load with a fan/coil/condensor...

    I did get to glance through some other designs that guys had come up with in commerial buildings using a type of air gapped floor ,think of it like a floor with an airspace under neath of it and a fan unit the criculated that air into the occupied space above it, so you took energy from all around the floor, but it looked VERY expensive and hard to make happen, these systems would be in more of the "we got a 159 million dollar business loan to build a building lets see how fast we can spend it...." type of job.... Which in this economy isnt getting put up around here.....

    Now if they could design a residential system that could offer around 29-BTU a sq ft with no need for baseboard that would be great, I would sell much more radiant heat and that would make me very happy. I'm sure its possible, just run ceilings and floors with 50 degree 5/8" tubing{can you say direct pump geothermal}.... But it is hard to wrap your mind around how it works, although we have no trouble imagining how heat radiates we do have trouble imagining cooling with no air moving devices, ie FANS...

    Interesting find Chris, I'm bookmarking
  • CMadatMe
    CMadatMe Member Posts: 3,086
    Involved A Residential Job

    Right now with a customer. Radiant Cooling using a Chiller with SpacePak AirCells for back up. Floor will give 11 btu/hr sqft for cooling. Geo Thermal with Vitodens 200 as a backup boiler for the radiant heat as well as the Solar domestic hot water. Another Vitodens 200 boiler doing the snow melt and 2 fish ponds. Control Package is Taco I-Worx for everything. Also have HRV's.

    The radiant cooling will handle the load for 90% of the cooling season. Why 29 btu/hr sqft for radiant heat? I've never in 25 years needed that many btu/hr per sqft out of a floor.
    "The bitter taste of a poor installation remains much longer than the sweet taste of the lowest price."
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,546
    Pricey pricey

    To me the real market is people that have existing radiant heat floors, ceilings that are older homes with no conventional ductwork. They don't care for the mini split on the wall, conventional in the attic is not really efficient, no room in the basement.

    Handling the latent loads is what puts the cost out there. The customer starts thinking if I have to run ductwork may as well go conventional in the attic.

    Lets face it a chiller some ductwork, and a few air cells which are only good for a ton a piece, control strategy, and your over conventional ac cost. Especially with space Pak tubing.

    I'm there now I got radiant ceilings, and floors. Both in some rooms. And conventional in the attic is going to be way cheaper. Would love to be able to use a system that's in place, but just can't pipe a chiller, and go.
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    latent loads

    are minimal about 98% of the time out here in the High Mountain West.
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,546

    Not so lucky SWEI. Well except for last year with drought conditions,
This discussion has been closed.