If you plan on having underfloor heating installed in the future or even if you are just considering it as an option, then read on as we break down the cost of the install, the length of time and materials needed.
Would you like to benefit from straightforward and exceptionally clean indoor heating?
If so, underfloor heating may be just what you’re looking for.
Many homeowners have installed underfloor heating in their home because it can warm the room in a very even manner.
It also allows you to free up space in the same room since you won’t need any radiators!
Underfloor heating is also perfect for achieving a minimalist aesthetic as it is made up of a circuit of hot water pipes or electric cables which are fitted beneath the floor.
In this cost guide, we’ll break down how much you’d pay to have different types of underfloor heating installed as well as exploring a range of relevant topics, from the installation process itself to whether you can perform this work as a DIY project.
This article will prove very helpful if you plan on having underfloor heating installed in the future or even if you are just considering it as an option.
The average cost will land somewhere in the range of £1500 to £3000 to install underfloor heating.
For a new build property, the full installation cost will land around £2500 to £3000 for wet underfloor heating or £1000 to £1500 for electric underfloor heating, also known as a dry system.
If you also require a home renovation, wet underfloor heating will cost about £4000 to £4500 while it will end up about £1500 to £2000 if you’d prefer electric underfloor heating.
As for the sizes, the cost of installing underfloor heating in the case of an electric system will end up about £120 to £150 per square metre while a wet underfloor heating system will land around £90 to £110 per square metre.
As for the labour costs, it will land around £250 to £350 per day.
When it comes to the supply costs, it would land around £20 per m2 for electric wires, £18 per m2 for electric pads or £25 per m2 for the wet underfloor heating materials.
There are a range of factors that can impact on the overall cost. For instance, the most important cost-affecting factors are of course the type and the size of underfloor heating. In addition, the type of floor will also shape the total cost.
Other cost factors are the location of your property and ease of access to the installation area.
As for the former, this is the case because labourers charge different rates in different parts of the country.
For example, heating engineers charge about £40 per hour in Birmingham or approximately £50 to £60 in London.
However, their fees land around only £35 in Newcastle and £30 in Belfast.
|Property||Type of Underfloor Heating||Total Installation Cost|
|New build property||Electric||£1000 to £1500|
|Wet||£2500 to £3000|
|Home renovation||Electric||£1500 to £2000|
|Wet||£4000 to £4500|
There are two options when it comes to underfloor heating, namely wet systems and dry systems.
In this section, we’ll break down each of these systems and look at their pros & cons, costs and other important details such as which is cheapest or most expensive.
Water underfloor heating or a wet system consists of an arrangement of pipes to provide the above room with heat.
These pipes are connected to a heat source, most often a boiler through a manifold.
Sometimes solar thermal energy or a heat pump is used as an alternative source of energy.
Wet systems, as with dry underfloor heating, heat the room by releasing heat which travels vertically from beneath the floor.
Wet systems are by far, the most popular option.
The underfloor heating prices will end up between £2500 and £3000 in the case of a new build property or £4000 to £4500 where a home renovation is needed.
This is the most expensive type of underfloor heating. It is also generally the most challenging to install.
However wet underfloor heating does come with lower running costs.
✔ Lower running costs.
✔ May be more suitable for certain installation areas.
✖ Generally more costly.
✖ More difficult to fit.
Electric underfloor heating (dry system) is powered by electricity that is supplied through heating cables.
These cables expand across the area beneath the floor and in loops.
The temperature can generally be controlled by an underfloor heating thermostat, allowing for a variation in warmth for each room.
Dry systems can heat up particularly fast. Further, a dry system is arguably the best option for a home renovation.
It’s also a great choice for a wide range of floor types.
The electric underfloor heating installation cost will end up about £1000 to £1500 in the case of a new build property or about £1500 to £2000 where renovation work is needed.
This is the cheaper of the options and dry systems tend to be easier to install. Dry systems however, are not as popular.
✔ Less costly.
✔ Perfect for a home renovation.
✔ Easier to install.
✖ Not as commonly used.
Let’s take a look at what installing underfloor heating entails. We’ll now break down each of the steps involved in the process:
After reading through the previous section, you may have a better idea of what type of underfloor heating is for you.
You may wish to take a look at what is available on the websites of various UK suppliers.
It’s important that you choose an underfloor heating that meets your needs and preferences, is within your budget and will be a good match for your property.
Once you have made up your mind, you will need to contact a heating engineer.
You’ll want to find a contractor who is experienced and ideally has positive feedback from previous customers, if accessible (e.g. on their web page, if they have one).
You will need to work out whether you are going to have the suppliers drop off the materials at your property or if you’d like the heating engineer to deal with this for you, assuming that they offer this as part of their service.
So, what about planning permission? For an existing property, planning permission is not needed to have underfloor heating installed.
With that said, if a new property is being constructed or your home is being extended, planning approval will be needed.
As for the building regulations, part L is applicable in this case which covers the conservation of fuel and power.
Prior to fitting the underfloor heating, it’s important to check that the installation area is correctly insulated.
This is to ensure that the efficiency of your heating system will be protected.
The subfloor should be cleared of any dirt and debris.
It is essential that appropriate insulation materials exist beneath where the system will be installed.
This will prevent heat loss via the subfloor.
Regardless of whether it is wet underfloor heating or a dry system being installed, the process of removing the existing floor will be the same.
It is also the first practical step of the installation itself.
How the floor should be pulled up will depend on whether it is tongue and groove or click flooring.
In the case of the first option, it will be nailed down via the tongue as this keeps the boards connected.
The nails must be pried out using either a crowbar or another appropriate tool.
This will release the boards from their position.
This work should start with the perimeter trim and then the tradesperson should move onto the row of boards nearest the wall.
The crowbar should be placed against the subfloor as soon as the first board has been taken out.
This will allow for reuse and prevent harm being caused to the flooring.
In the case of click flooring which is a popular installation method for laminate flooring, the contractor will need to find the point where the installation ended which is generally a corner board before prying it up.
Next, they can move along the full row that is next to the wall and remove each piece at a time.
The individual boards can be separated by being flipped over and unclicked at the bottom.
The next step of the process will vary greatly depending on which system you go with.
To simplify it, let’s break this part down into mini steps for each system.
Next, screed might be added as is often the case with a wet floor and sometimes the case with a dry floor. Screed is a thin layer of fine material that is laid down atop a subfloor.
Regardless of the type of underfloor heating, the process of adding screed will be the same. Firstly, the pipes or cables must be checked to ensure that they are firmly in place and that any insulation material is laying flat along the subfloor.
Expansion joints must be fitted. Either a fast-flowing liquid screed or a semi-dry trowelling screed should be laid down and in such a way that meets the guidance of the manufacturer. The screed should be given about one week to dry before the heating system can be turned on.
Any cleanup work that is needed can now take place. Beyond that, you may wish to have some additional jobs performed.
For an average size room, to have wood flooring installed would likely cost somewhere between £600 and £1200.
If you’d prefer laminate flooring, you can expect the total installation cost to end up around £300 to £500.
It may cost around £150 to £250 to apply for planning permission or £200 to £500 for building regulations approval or/and inspection.
Thankfully you can perform most of an underfloor heating installation by yourself.
This could save you a lot of money although you should only do so if you are absolutely sure you know what you’re doing.
As discussed in the previous section, planning permissions usually do not apply unless there is renovative work involved.
Also, if you live in a listed building, you should contact a professional or your local council.
As for building regulations, some do apply and you will need a building control officer to sign off on your work.
With a dry/electrical system, an electrician will be needed to connect your new heating system to the mains.
In the case of a wet system, the central heating network and primary water supply must be connected by a qualified plumber unless you are absolutely sure that you can do this yourself.
As with any DIY project, there are a list of hazards and dangers involved.
For instance, there is the possibility of installing the underfloor heating incorrectly.
Fixing this could be expensive or if any issues go unnoticed this could prove a long-term hazard in of itself.
When dealing with pipework and any sharp or heavy tools, there is also a risk of injury.
It’s important that you take the right safety precautions before delving into work like this.
As with any installation, there are a range of disadvantages which you should consider and a list of possible issues that may arise.
Disadvantages of Underfloor Heating:
If an application for planning permission or building regulations is rejected, you can apply again and will likely receive feedback explaining why the initial application was unsuccessful.
This will make it easier on the second attempt.
Yes but there are many essential steps that cannot be missed.
For one, prior to fitting insulation, underfloor heating coils cannot be fitted directly onto a concrete floor.
When fitting underfloor heating on to a concrete floor, please follow the manufacturer’s instructions and only perform work that you are permitted to undertake by yourself.
As discussed in this article, in many cases, at least some of the work must be performed by a professional.
This must be performed by a qualified electrician.
Underfloor heating can be connected to its energy supply by taking the connection supply to the consumer board.
Alternatively, a main ring spur might be used instead. The power should come from the mains.
It will really depend on a range of factors but in most cases, it should last for 50 years or more.
Dry systems, also known as electric underfloor heating are the cheaper option.
Underfloor heating should take about 25% off your energy bills!