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What is underfloor heating?

Underfloor heating is a way of heating a home through strong and flexible tubing that is embedded in the floor. It is efficient and affordable, offering numerous advantages over radiators.

There are various types of underfloor heating systems available. The best underfloor heating solution for you will depend on a range of factors including your project type, your current heating system and energy source.

  • Suitable for most properties
  • Energy-efficient
  • Maximises space in the home
  • Luxurious feeling of warm floors
  • Flexible control through zoning areas of the home
What is underfloor heating?

How does underfloor heating work?

Underfloor heating essentially works by turning the floor area into a giant, efficient and invisible heat emitter. Heating tubes or cables are installed beneath the floor, which heat up, to warm the room from the ground up. Strong, flexible tubing is used for warm water underfloor heating systems, whilst cables are used in electric underfloor heating systems.

Because warm water underfloor heating covers such a large surface area, it is able to use much lower water temperatures than radiators. This helps to improve efficiency – especially with a heat pump – and also better heats a room as there are no cold spots.

How Does Underfloor Heating Work

Why underfloor heating design matters

We design your system to suit your home so that your underfloor heating performs as expected.

Our design process takes into account room-by-room heat loss, optimised running efficiency, and other critical factors to ensure your system heats your home in a better way.

  • A designed underfloor system will be responsive and achieve the perfect temperature – not too hot or too cold.
  • Maximum efficiency can be achieved by optimising the system to produce the right amount of heat with minimal energy use.
  • Your installer will receive a detailed tube layout and electrical drawings, simplifying installation.
  • Each room can be set to a different temperature, giving you complete comfort.
  • Because we calculate the amount of tubing and materials required, any excess is kept to a minimum – reducing waste.
Why Underfloor Heating Design Matters

Underfloor heating vs radiators

Although radiators have long been the usual choice for those looking to install heating, they may not be the most efficient solution for you.

In fact, the average radiator-heated household in the UK generates around 2,745kg of CO2 per year from heating. Whereas, a water based underfloor heating system can be around 25% more efficient to run, cutting the average emissions to only 686kg of CO2 per year.

Underfloor Heating Vs Radiators

The benefits of underfloor heating

There are a wide range of benefits to installing UFH in your home. From energy efficiency to a luxury feel, we take a look at the biggest advantages of heated floors.

The Benefits of Underfloor Heating


Underfloor heating is extremely flexible. It can be installed in any property type. From new builds to renovations and extensions, there is a solution to suit! You can install UFH in one room or multiple rooms, and you can even have underfloor heating upstairs.
Easy to install UFH

Warm, heated floor

One of the main benefits of underfloor heating systems is how they feel. Heat gently emits upwards from the floor, making cold floors feel warm underfoot. UFH systems produce an even warmth, eliminating cold spots and draughts common with radiators.
UFH benefits - Warm Heated floor

25% more efficient

Warm water underfloor heating uses far lower flow temperatures than a radiator system. By covering a larger surface area it is still able to heat the room effectively, using less energy in the process. For this reason, underfloor heating efficiency is around 25% more than radiators and up to 40% more efficient when paired with a heat pump!
UFH benefits - energy efficient

Space saving & discreet

Underfloor heating systems are ‘invisible’ as the tube is hidden beneath the floor. This eliminates the need for radiators, freeing up valuable wall space. UFH is ideal for open plan living, smaller homes, and rooms such as kitchens and bathrooms where space is at a premium.
UFH benefits - UFH is hidden

Safe & healthy

Underfloor heating has no exposed hot or sharp edges. This makes it a safe option for young children and the elderly. UFH is also great for allergy sufferers as it provides warmth free from draughts and dust movements that can aggravate certain conditions.
UFH benefits - UFH is safe

Kind to the environment

As a low temperature heating system, underfloor heating uses less energy than traditional high temperature systems like radiators. This can help you to reduce your carbon footprint – even more so when installed alongside a heat pump.
Reduce your carbon footprint

We’re here to help you with your project

For expert advice on underfloor heating and renewables, contact us today.

Underfloor heating myths

There are a couple of common misconceptions surrounding underfloor heating that we often encounter. From leaks, to repairs, to efficiency, there are all sorts of Underfloor Heating Myths out there, and the sooner they’re dispelled, the better!

We’ve worked hard over the years to disprove these myths ourselves. Whether that means pressure testing systems, removing joins beneath the floor or making sure all serviceable parts are located at the manifold above the floor, we’re proud to go the extra mile to prove common misinformation wrong.

Still struggling to tell fact from fiction? Drop us a line and speak to one of our UK based experts. As the longest running underfloor heating specialist in the UK, we’ll be able to help!

Underfloor Heating Myths

Water vs electric underfloor heating

Both warm water and electric underfloor heating systems may be suitable options for your project. However, it is definitely important to weigh up the pros and cons of water vs electric underfloor heating before making a decision.

Warm Water Underfloor Heating:

  • Works by heating water-filled tubing beneath the floor.
  • Provides warmth without heating water to high temperatures due to its large surface area.
  • Is a highly efficient and can be used to heat the whole home.

Electric Underfloor Heating:

  • Generates heat via a cable system installed beneath the floor.
  • Is cheaper to install than a wet system.
  • Due to higher running costs, is best used in smaller spaces.
Main Types of Underfloor Heating

Compare Underfloor Heating Systems

Warm water/wet underfloor heating Electric underfloor heating
Project suitability Suitable for all types of project including new build, renovation and single areas Recommended for smaller spaces, like a bathroom, due to running cost.
Running costs Low long-term running costs Around 3x more than warm water underfloor heating
Installation costs Higher upfront cost than electric UFH but much cheaper to run Generally cheaper to install
Installation time Varies depending on project size and UFH system Install in a single room in just a few hours

Underfloor heating options by project type

One of the main factors that can affect your choice of underfloor heating system is your project type.

The Ultimate Underfloor Heating Buyer’s Guide

Find out how to choose the right underfloor heating for your home.

Download free guide

The Ultimate Underfloor Heating Buyer’s Guide

Our Underfloor Heating Range

We understand that every underfloor heating installation presents its own unique characteristics and challenges, whether it is a new build project or renovation.

That’s why, over the past 30 years, we have designed our systems to be as versatile and adaptable as possible. From time-saving dry system FastDeck® to low build up, retrofit product LoPro®Max, we’ve worked hard to create a variety of systems that can work in a range of scenarios.

Read on to find out more about underfloor heating design, benefits and the pros and cons of the different systems available.

Water underfloor heating

Water underfloor heating is a popular choice for many projects as it maximises space in the home, creates the luxurious feeling of warm floors and can improve heating efficiency by up to 25%.

In addition, when you get your system with Nu-Heat, we provide a bespoke design to help you get the most out of your system, alongside lifetime technical support from the underfloor heating specialists, making wet underfloor heating a great choice for your project.

Screed OneZone

Electric underfloor heating

Electric underfloor heating is a great option for anyone looking to heat a small area such as a kitchen or bathroom.

As it creates warmth via a cable system beneath the floor, electric underfloor heating is extremely responsive and offers a great heat output. Due to higher running costs however, it is best used in small spaces where it is not possible to install water underfloor heating.

Electric radiant underfloor heating

Having lived with underfloor heating, I can’t see how anyone wouldn’t want to.

Ann and Wyndham Collins, Nu-Heat customers

Shearwaters at sunset

Underfloor heating specialists

Nu-Heat has been designing and supplying underfloor heating systems for more than 32 years. We are experts in our field.

Bespoke heating design

Our underfloor heating systems are designed and overseen by our experts, to meet the specific needs of your project.

Award-winning service

With our award-winning customer service and support, we ensure you get the best underfloor heating system for your project.

Lifetime tech support

We offer lifetime tech support on our underfloor heating systems, so you can rest easy knowing we are always on hand to help.

User-friendly guides

Our helpful guides and manuals cover everything from installation, set up and the running of our UFH systems.

Warranty protection

We offer comprehensive warranty protection with all of our UFH systems, with long warranty periods for added peace of mind.

Registered Installer Network

Our Registered Installer Network helps you to find local professionals with expertise in installing underfloor heating and renewable systems.

Specialists in renewables

Heat pumps are the perfect partner for underfloor heating systems, as UFH works at a lower temperature. Nu-Heat are experts at combining the two technologies.
Underfloor heating
80000 +
UFH systems supplied
Over 29 years experience
32 years’
heating experience
Heat pump installs
8000 +
renewable systems supplied

Want help finding the right underfloor heating solution?

We would love to speak with you to discuss your project. If you have a question about your existing Nu-Heat system, our technical support team are at hand.

Underfloor heating FAQs

Is underfloor heating eco-friendly?

Yes, underfloor heating typically runs at far lower flow temperatures than radiators, meaning the boiler can operate more efficiently. Underfloor heating also works particularly well with other eco-friendly, low temperature technologies like heat pumps.

Which is better: electric or water underfloor heating?

Both warm water and electric underfloor heating have their advantages and disadvantages, depending on the needs of your project.

You can expect warm water underfloor heating to be more cost effective to run, but to have a higher upfront cost, whereas electric underfloor heating is generally cheaper to install, but far more costly to run.

So, for heating a whole house, warm water underfloor heating would be more cost effective in the long run. However, to heat a small single room like a bathroom or kitchen, an electric underfloor heating system may be more suitable.

Find out more about the differences between electric and warm water underfloor heating.

How does underfloor heating work?

Underfloor heating works by passing warm water through a series of pipes in the floor. This gently heats the floor and emits heat out into the room.

Unlike radiators which heat the air around the radiator, which then rises to the ceiling creating a convection current, underfloor heating delivers radiant heat across the whole of the floor area, delivering the heat more efficiently to where you need it.

Can underfloor heating be used with heat pumps?

Underfloor heating can be used successfully with heat pumps, due to them both working most efficiently at lower temperatures. We provide air source heat pumps and ground source heat pumps, which can be fully integrated into your underfloor heating system.

Can underfloor heating run off combi boiler?

Yes, our warm water underfloor heating systems can be fed from any boiler system.

Can I use underfloor heating even if I am off the gas grid?

Yes, in fact, it is recommended! Underfloor heating works extremely well with heat pumps, because it emits heat from such a large surface area, it means can pair your UFH with an air source heat pump or a ground source heat pump for a more environmentally-friendly solution, getting peak efficiency from both your heat pump and underfloor heating.

Do I need to dig up my floor to install UFH?

No. If you are renovating, you don’t need to dig up your floors to install UFH!

There are various different systems and installation options, including low profile overlay solutions, like our LoPro® range with a height build-up as low as 15mm. These are simply installed over existing solid or timber floors. Your choice of tiles or laminate can then be laid directly over the system.

How do I control my UFH system?

How you control your UFH depends on the type of system you have. Screed UFH is usually left on with a setback temperature. This helps the concrete slab to act as a thermal store, avoiding long heat up times and keeping running costs low. Retrofit UFH heats up and cools down quickly, so can be controlled more like a radiator system.

Find out more about controlling your underfloor heating system.

What warranty do I get with Nu-Heat for underfloor heating?

Any pipework supplied by us for use in our systems is guaranteed with an insurance backed warranty for 50 years. Our other plumbing and electrical components offer warranty periods ranging from 2 to 10 years.

As well as this, all Nu-Heat systems come with lifetime technical support from our Technical Support Team who can help with any queries you may have.

What can go wrong with underfloor heating?

Underfloor heating is an established and trusted way to heat a home, and when you get your system from Nu-Heat you are also getting lifetime technical support from a dedicated Technical Support Team. Not only this but your system will be backed by our product guarantees, giving you the peace of mind that if anything does go wrong, we’ll be here to help.

Can my underfloor heating system leak?

It’s incredibly unlikely that the system will leak.

Our Fastflo® heating tube is strong and durable, manufactured in line with the highest European Industry Standards. This is covered by a 50 year warranty with the first 10 years being insurance backed, covering complete cost of any remedial works and reinstatement in the very rare event of a manufacturing fault.

We also design systems so that the tube only ever connects at the manifold – there are no joins under the floor whatsoever – meaning there are no weak points where leaks can occur.

Can underfloor heating be repaired?

Yes, as all serviceable parts are located above the ground at the manifold, repairing underfloor heating is usually pretty simple. Additionally, when you work with Nu-Heat, your system will come with lifetime technical support from our dedicated Technical Support Team who are on hand to help if you need them.

Do I get lifetime support with Nu-Heat?

Yes, we have a dedicated Technical Support Team who are happy to help with any technical queries you may have, what’s more, this support is available for the full lifetime of your system.

How important is an underfloor heating design?

A good underfloor heating design is essential. When you get an underfloor heating design from Nu-Heat you can be sure that all heat losses, characteristics and requirements of your project have been fully analysed, calculated and taken into consideration.

This allows us to create a design for your system that will ensure it works at peak efficiency, keeps running costs down and warms the property effectively all year round.

How much does underfloor heating cost, is it expensive?

This depends on the size of the property and the most suitable underfloor heating system for the project. Underfloor heating is around 25% more energy efficient than radiators – it can actually save money on your heating bills. For more information, including average prices per m², see how much underfloor heating costs to run.

What floor coverings can I have with underfloor heating?

Underfloor heating can be used under most floor coverings, including carpet, tiles, engineered wood, vinyl and laminate flooring. If you’re unsure check the suitability with your flooring supplier. Read more about the best floor coverings for UFH

How long does underfloor heating take to warm up?

Does underfloor heating warm rooms up faster than radiators? Retrofit underfloor heating that sits on top of the floor warms up very quickly, on par with a radiator system. UFH that is set within a screed can take longer to heat initially, but retains its heat for longer and is easily programmed to provide the right amount of heat exactly when needed.

How long does underfloor heating take to heat a room?

When installed correctly, underfloor heating can heat up in as little as 30 minutes, though this can vary depending on the type of system you have, how cold the room is to begin with and other factors.

How is underfloor heating installed?

Underfloor heating is usually installed by a plumber or a Nu-Heat Registered Installer, but some DIYers choose to fit most of the system themselves, with signoff from a qualified plumber and electrician, as our manuals are fully comprehensive. The specific installation steps vary depending on the system. Find out how to install UFH.

Can you put furniture over underfloor heating?

Yes, as the surface temperature of the floor will only reach 29°C, it’s safe to put furniture wherever you want.

How do you maintain underfloor heating?

Once your underfloor heating is installed there is very little maintenance involved. Like most heating systems, it’s a good idea to have the system checked annually just to make sure it is working as it should be.

Use our find a local service partner page if you’re looking to maintain your system and are looking for someone to carry out a service for you.

How do underfloor heating manifolds work?

The manifold is the distribution point for all the pipework going into the floor. If a room requires heat, the thermostat will send a signal to a valve on the underfloor heating manifold which will open and allow warm water to circulate in the floor heating the room.

Does underfloor heating add value to a house?

Yes, underfloor heating can add value to a house as it offers a more efficient heating system, the luxurious feel of warm floors and a lot more flexibility in interior design.

Is underfloor heating better than radiators, can I use both?

UFH can replace radiators completely, or work alongside them, depending on your type of property. New builds are ideal for installing underfloor heating throughout – it’s 25% more energy efficient than radiators. UFH can also be installed on all floors of your renovation property.

Can you run underfloor heating off a radiator?

Yes, as long as you have a two-port zone valve to separate the underfloor heating and radiator systems, you can run the two from the same boiler.

Can I replace radiators with underfloor heating?

Yes, underfloor heating is a great option if you are looking to replace a radiator system. If you are considering this, it’s a good idea to speak to a Nu-Heat Account Manager, who will be able to talk you through the best UFH options for your project.

Can you have radiators and underfloor heating?

Yes. It’s very unlikely you will need to have radiators and underfloor heating in the same space, but it’s possible to run a radiator circuit and an underfloor heating system in the same house from the same boiler. Many people choose to have underfloor heating downstairs and radiators upstairs, for example.

Do you still need radiators with underfloor heating?

In a well-designed underfloor heating system, the heat output should satisfy the full heating demand of the property, so there should be no need for radiators or additional heat emitters.

How many KW and what wattage do I need for underfloor heating?

Energy used depends on a range of factors, including the size of your home, insulation levels, and the type of underfloor heating system you install. We use state-of-the-art software to ensure your UFH is designed to be energy efficient.

Do I need to install additional insulation with underfloor heating?

As with any heating system, if the property is poorly insulated it will require more energy to keep it warm. We would always recommend improving insulation if this is possible, as this helps to create a more efficient system that keeps running costs low.

When retrofitting underfloor heating, it’s often not necessary to add insulation to a concrete slab as downward heat loss is minimal. If, however, you will be installing UFH over a suspended timber floor with a void beneath it, insulation is absolutely essential.

When designing your bespoke UFH system, we take into account your property’s construction, insulation and glazing levels to ensure the system will perform.

Our ultimate guide to UFH and insulation offers further information.

How long do underfloor heating parts and components last for?

Our UFH tubes come with a 50-year product warranty, with the first 10 years insurance backed to cover any remedial works. Underfloor heating manifolds have a 10-year warranty, while electrical and plumbing components have 2-year warranty.

Can I use my existing thermostat with underfloor heating?

If you’re adding underfloor heating to your existing central heating or radiator system, you will need a separate thermostat for UFH. However, our underfloor integrates with an existing system, or you can control your UFH and central heating together by fitting a radiator manifold. We offer a wide range of underfloor heating thermostats, from standard dials to smartphone-controlled wireless models.

How is underfloor heating controlled?

Underfloor heating is usually controlled by wall-mounted thermostats. Nu-Heat systems typically have one thermostat per room, allowing you to control the temperature of each individual room. For further flexibility this can also be paired with our neoHub+ which allows you to control your heating from your phone, no matter how near or far you are, as well as integrate your controls with GoogleHome, Apple HomeKit or Alexa.

Is underfloor heating safe and good for my health?

Underfloor heating is safer and healthier than radiators, as exposed hot surfaces are hidden and dust traps removed. They offer a controlled and comfortable heat source, helping to eliminate draughts and cold spots in your home.