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Old 09-29-2006, 03:08 PM  
Jerome
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Default Best Heating Option

We have a 1,200 sq. foot condo. It was built in 1982 and has radient heating in the ceiling. The radient heat hasn't worked from years and we weren't even able to locate the manufacturer online. I would think this would be costly to repair since it would involve opening up the ceiling, is that correct?

We do not have any gas in the unit, only electric. Beyong replacing the radient heat, and baseboard heaters, what other electric based options do you think would be worth looking at?



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Old 09-30-2006, 06:35 AM  
bethany14
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radiant heating in the ceilings? Does that do anything for the lower floor?
As for your options:

If you're lucky on the positioning of your condo's out-facing walls, you can take advantage of the sun. http://www.motherearthnews.com/energy-efficient-heating-cooling/solar

Here's an aussi article with tools to help you figure out your needs. Of course, the links to products are aussi companies, but you should be able to find US versions easily enough.
http://www.choice.com.au/viewArticle.aspx?id=100340&catId=100519&tid=100008 &p=1&title=Your+heating+options
And here you'll find some radiant baseboard (minimal installation) options.
http://www.electricheat.com/radiant/prods.html

Good Luck and Happy Researching!

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Old 09-30-2006, 10:54 AM  
glennjanie
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Hello Jerome and Welcome to the Forum:
The ceiling radiant heat is typically a thin cable placed between two layers of sheetrock; and yes, repair is virtually impossible. The baseboard heaters are a viable alternative because they feature individual room thermostats--you can turn rooms off that are not occupied.
There are a couple of alternatives that work with electricity. The air to air heat-pump is the easiest to install and the new high efficency models do a bang-up job. The ground source heat pump is the "greenest" and most efficient but would require underground lines burried in the yard. The lines can be either horizontal, in long trenches or they can be vertical, placed in wells 150' deep. Each ton of capacity requires 500' of trench line or 150' of vertical line.
The problem is, in a condo, you normaly don't own the ground outside. Your boundries are usually the paint on the walls and the carpet on the floor. However, you may be able to start a community co-op where everyone goes to a geothermal systme and wells could be drilled all around the condo complex (the holes are spaced 15' apart). That should be plenty to chew on for a while, I wish you success in your quest and please let us know how you work it out.
Glenn

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