How Does Radiant Heating Work?

Feel a chill? Have cold feet? You can set your thermostat higher, but you’ll still have to make sure you’re in that one comfy place by the heating vents to stay warm. Imagine if you could walk around your house, feeling that same amount of relaxing heat, everywhere. If you had radiant heating in your home, this pleasure would be yours.


But, how does radiant heating work? How does it compare to the air-based heating systems used in most North American homes? Let me explain.


With a forced-air heating system, you have hot and cold spots throughout a room. In the forced-air diagram (left), the air that rises out of the vent is significantly warmer compared to the air that reaches the floor again. When the system cycles off, the warm air cools quickly. In the radiant heating diagram (right), warm water flowing through pipes in the floor radiates heat to all the objects in the room. Since all the objects become a little bit warmer and hold the heat longer than air, they surround you with gentle, consistent heat. Fluctuations are gone and you are at comfortable equilibrium with your environment.

Read more about how radiant heating delivers exceptional comfort here.


Since radiant heating surrounds you with warm surfaces, you can actually lower your thermostats by as much as 4°F (2°C) without sacrificing comfort. And that’s not all: Water transfers heat energy much more efficiently than air, lowering your energy consumption by as much as 30%.


Radiant heating is one thing you shouldn’t get cold feet about. To find out more about radiant heating and how you can get it in your home, check out REHAU’s website.


By Kathryn Miller, REHAU Communications