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new rad heat product ?...i bet h.r. could rig something up (j)

j_4 Member Posts: 59
..talking to a hardwood floor installer, he prefers when the HO allows an extra few weeks to let the wood a-climatize to the space it's going into....he says many times he's rushed into doing the floor before the wood is ready (he likes 1 week sitting on the subfloor bundled, 1 week after install/before sand & finish), so he tries to heat the room to accelerate the drying time....using a port-a-butane heater/blowers is unsafe in residential work...

what about using pex & warmboard w/grooves face down, and a portable electric water heater with a circ pump, valves, simple control...can the warmboard be walked on whith the tubes face down? he could use one of those Insta-Hot units with a small tank and circulator


  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106

    The key, I think, would be to get the wood acclimated to the conditions in your area. A moisture meter would be the best tool for him to check to hardwood moisture,as well as the subfloor he is covering.

    Becareful with those unvented LP heaters, as they generally will add a lot of moisture to the space. Moving air I have found is the best way to lower the moisture content, quickly. Actually a furnace seems to dry better than running the radiant floor, or a dehumidifier helps.

    Mickey Moore of the Oak Floor Association has told me of troubleshooting trips to costal areas where the hardwood arrived dry to spec, was installed, then took on moisture from the humid climate. He has seen wood swell and move enough to push the sill plates 2 inches off the side of the house! So the moisture is very important. You can never stop the movement of wood as the weather changes. Minimize the effect by using narrow boards T&G joints to accept movments. Engineered, laminated flooring works better, in my opinion, but the "look" is not for everyone :)

    The bottom line, to me, is to make sure the homeowner understands how hardwood behaves, regardless of the heating system type. Send them to some of the wood floor websites for a good explanation.

    One of the challanges of upsidedown Warmboard would be tube location. There is only about 1/2" of wood below (or above in your case)the tube. Nailing would be a challange. Also that nice aluminum layer would be on the wrong side.

    hot rod

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