Radiant floor recommendations?

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drumz

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I'm putting in a radiant floor in my basement that has a concrete floor and then tiling over the bathroom area and cork over the work area. I have chosen the Schulter DITRA-Heat system. It will be covering @ a third of the entire basement space.
Has anyone any experience installing these and might have some tips or recommendations or how well the system works?
A vaper bearer is just a thin mastic type thin-set product that you trowel on, right? And then you roll/adhere the pad that you weave the wires through and then you thin-set mortar and then tile, grout. The cork is floating and not sure if it should also be thin-set down and I'll deal with that when I get it. I have a dedicated 20A line so everything will be to manufacturer specifications.
Thanks in advance.
 

billshack

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One thing that you must do is to insulated the floor below the pipes, if not you will be trying to heat the world . Two inches of high density Styrofoam is recommended .
 

drumz

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One thing that you must do is to insulated the floor below the pipes, if not you will be trying to heat the world . Two inches of high density Styrofoam is recommended .
I can't do 2". It is only the floor I'm heating in an area not used often and with a 80" ceiling we will have to get by with the minimum. Thanks for your input!
 

Hamberg

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I've used both the NuHEAT and Schluter (Ditra) products. As matter of fact I'm sitting in my office which was (without doubt) the coldest room in the house but is toasty warm with my NuHeat flooring.

Preference wise, I'd lean towards the NuHEAT flooring as the membrane is a little thinner (but neither will add "significant" height) and the higher end thermostat (which is bloody expensive) is Alexa compatible. Both NuHEAT and Ditra membranes are also vapor barriers and you'll thin-set it right to the substrate.

Read (and follow) the instructions for a concrete install; any cracks can ONLY be in-plane! if you have riser-cracks they need to be fixed first.

Both company's membranes are decouplers which will help with future movement.

All of the ones we have installed were over plywood substrate but concrete is totally acceptable - if using the Schluter product you may want to look into the Ditra-Heat-Duo membrane which will give an extra level of insulation and help with directing the heat up rather than into the cement.

If you use the Schluter product I'd use their ALL-SET thin-set and make sure you follow their instructions for concrete.

We've set tile (usually baths) and hardwood (5/8" - 3/4") but never used a floating floor (like LVP or COREtec). I have COREtec in my basement (none-heated) and I know they do not warranty an install over a membrane. It would add height, but if you wanted to do it, I'd thin-set 1/2" HardiBacker to the membrane and install over that - should work fine.
 

drumz

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Thanks so much for such a informative answer, very helpful and I really like the idea of backerboard to give a super smooth surface over the substrate which will add a bit of height. I'm hiring a concrete guy to do the pan and was thinking we would just use a leveler and may now do both! And also thanks for the tips on Schulter and NuHEAT, sounds like NuHEAT might be a better deal because this is a room for guests and a craft area and not used much.
 

BuzzLOL

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My Dad built our slab house in late 1940's with copper tubing in the concrete. He used something called Zonolite under the slab. It's now considered dangerous to have inside a house where it was used in many attics. He used fibreglas insulation inside the house.
While a warm floor is nice in winter, it doesn't make it easy to add central air conditioning.
 
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