Living in Canada means one thing—for at least half the year, the weather is cold, leaving your home cold. Heated flooring has become a popular option to help deal with cold feet throughout the icy Canadian winter. If you’ve decided to take the plunge and invest in one of the greatest home luxuries of all, you are probably debating between the two available options: water-based or electric. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, but which option will provide the largest return on your investment?
Also known as ‘dry’ heated flooring, electric underfloor heating can be a series of loose-fit wiring (best for small spaces) or ready-made mats that roll out for larger spaces. When it comes to installation, electric is suitable for DIY. It requires insulation to be installed below the mats or wiring to avoid losing heat to the ground. It’s also a more affordable option to install as it is suitable for smaller spaces and DIY installation, but will cost more in monthly hydro bills than water-based flooring.
Also known as ‘wet’ heated flooring, water-based heating consists of a series of pipes connected to your boiler that pump hot water around under your floor. Installation requires the knowledge of an expert, so you can’t DIY this style of heated flooring. It may require raising the level of your floor if there isn’t already enough room. And it’s more expensive upfront due to installation costs, but you can save money in the long run as water doesn’t need to get as hot as a radiator to heat efficiently.
Which is Best?
If you’re on a budget, electric flooring is your best option since you can potentially install it yourself or for much less than water-based flooring. That said, if you do have the money to invest in water-based flooring upfront, it might be worth it for the savings it will provide in the long run. Either way, having heated flooring will increase the appeal of your home to future buyers.