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How To Install Heated Floors


Heated floors, also known as radiant floor heating, are an efficient and luxurious way to heat your home. Unlike traditional heating methods that warm the air, radiant floor heating provides direct heat to the floor, which then radiates upwards, creating a comfortable and even temperature throughout the room. This system can be installed in various types of flooring, including tile, laminate, and even hardwood.

Types of Heated Floor Systems

There are two main types of heated floor systems:

  1. Electric Radiant Floor Heating

    • Utilizes electric heating cables or mats embedded in the floor.

    • Ideal for smaller areas or retrofit projects.

    • Easier to install but may have higher operating costs compared to hydronic systems.

  2. Hydronic Radiant Floor Heating

    • Uses hot water pumped through tubing laid beneath the floor.

    • More efficient for heating larger areas.

    • More complex to install and usually recommended for new construction or major renovations.


Can You Install Heated Floors Yourself?

Installing heated floors yourself can be achievable, especially if you're handy with home improvement projects. Ideally, you have PEX heating tubes pre-installed when your concrete floor was first built. In that case, you can use our RMS pre-assembled boiler panel to connect the in-floor tubes and quickly have heated floors. RMS allows you to DIY the radiant floor heating connection or it will save your plumbing and heating professional significant time.


Here's a simplified rundown for electric radiant floor heating:

  1. Plan and Prep:

    • Choose your installation area, avoiding spots under furniture or fixtures.

    • Ensure the subfloor is clean, level, and free of cracks.

    • Lay down insulation for better efficiency.

  2. Lay the Heating Elements:

    • Unroll heating mats or position heating cables according to your plan, securing them to the subfloor.

  3. Electrical Expertise Needed:

    • Connecting the heating elements to the thermostat and power supply is crucial. If you're not comfortable with electrical work, consult a qualified electrician for this step.

  4. Testing and Finishing Touches:

    • Test the system before covering the elements. Once everything functions properly, install your chosen flooring material. Perform a final test after installation for complete peace of mind.

Is it Expensive to Install Heated Floors?

While the upfront cost can be a factor, installing heated floors doesn't have to break the bank. Our recommendation is to install the tubing during the initial construction as they are a small additional investment compared to the new concrete floor. Once the tubes are installed, it’s very easy to use our RMS pre-assembled boiler panel to hook up your radiant tubing and turn on the heat.

For more traditional projects, here's a breakdown:

  • Price Range: The cost depends on the system type (electric or hydronic) and the area you want to heat. Expect a range of $8 to $20 per square foot.

  • Project Cost: For a typical room, you might pay anywhere from $1,500 to $6,000, with an average of around $4,000. More extensive projects or complex installations can push the cost higher.

  • Long-Term Savings: Don't forget the potential long-term benefits! Heated floors can be more energy-efficient than traditional systems, potentially leading to cost savings down the line.


While the initial investment might seem high, heated floors can be a worthwhile upgrade for your home, offering both comfort and potentially lower energy bills in the long run.

Do You Need an Electrician to Install Heated Floors?

The easiest way to install heated floors yourself is to have your concrete contractor include the heating tubes when the concrete is initially poured. Then you can DIY connect the tubes at a later point when you are ready to upgrade to heated floors. Our RMS pre-assembled boiler panels will make this a great DIY project. While electric heated floors can be DIY-friendly, the key step is the electrical connection (thermostat & power supply). Here, consider hiring a qualified electrician for safety and proper installation. For complex hydronic systems or if unsure, consult a professional for the entire project. Your toasty toes will thank you later!

Pre-Installation Considerations

Before beginning the installation of a heated floor system, several factors need to be considered:

  1. Flooring Type

    • Ensure that the type of flooring you choose is compatible with radiant heating. Some materials, like thick carpets, can act as insulators and reduce the system's efficiency.

  2. Insulation

    • Proper insulation is crucial to prevent heat loss and improve the efficiency of the heating system. Insulation boards or underlayment should be installed before the heating system.

  3. Power Supply

    • For electric systems, ensure that your electrical panel can handle the additional load. Consult an electrician if necessary.

  4. Room Layout

    • Plan the layout to avoid placing heating elements under fixed fixtures like cabinets and appliances, as this can cause overheating and reduce system efficiency.


Step-by-Step Installation Guide

Electric Radiant Floor Heating

Materials Needed:

  • Electric heating mats or cables

  • Thermostat

  • Insulation boards or underlayment

  • Floor sensor (for temperature regulation)

  • Tile adhesive or thin-set mortar (if installing under tile)

  • Multimeter (for testing electrical connections)



  1. Preparation:

    • Clean the subfloor thoroughly to remove any debris.

    • Install insulation boards to improve energy efficiency.

  2. Layout Planning:

    • Lay out the heating mats or cables according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

    • Avoid placing heating elements under fixed objects.

  3. Installing Heating Mats/Cables:

    • Secure the heating mats or cables to the subfloor using adhesive or staples.

    • Ensure even spacing to provide uniform heating.

  4. Electrical Connections:

    • Connect the heating elements to the thermostat and power supply according to the wiring diagram provided by the manufacturer.

    • Use a multimeter to test the resistance and continuity of the heating elements.

  5. Installing Floor Sensor:

    • Place the floor sensor between two heating cables or within the mat, ensuring it is not in direct contact with any heating element.

  6. Applying Tile Adhesive:

    • Apply a thin layer of tile adhesive over the heating mats or cables if installing under tile.

    • Ensure the adhesive covers the heating elements completely.

  7. Laying the Flooring:

    • Install the chosen flooring material over the adhesive, ensuring it is level and secure.

  8. Final Electrical Testing:

    • Once the flooring is installed, perform a final electrical test to ensure the system is functioning correctly.

  9. Programming the Thermostat:

    • Set the thermostat to the desired temperature and program it according to your heating needs.


Hydronic Radiant Floor Heating

Materials Needed:

  • PEX tubing

  • Manifold

  • Boiler or water heater

  • Insulation boards or underlayment

  • Circulating pump

  • Thermostat



  1. Preparation:

    • Clean the subfloor and install insulation boards.

  2. Layout Planning:

    • Plan the layout of the PEX tubing, ensuring even coverage of the area.

  3. Installing PEX Tubing:

    • Secure the PEX tubing to the subfloor using clamps or staples.

    • Maintain proper spacing as per the manufacturer’s guidelines.

  4. Connecting to the Manifold:

    • Connect the PEX tubing to the manifold, which will distribute the hot water throughout the system.

    • Ensure all connections are tight and leak-free.

  5. Connecting the Boiler/Water Heater:

    • Install the boiler or water heater and connect it to the manifold.

    • Install the circulating pump to ensure efficient water flow.

  6. Filling and Testing the System:

    • Fill the system with water and test for leaks.

    • Purge any air from the system to ensure smooth operation.

  7. Laying the Flooring:

    • Install the chosen flooring material over the PEX tubing, ensuring it is level and secure.

  8. Programming the Thermostat:

    • Set the thermostat to the desired temperature and program it according to your heating needs.


Maintenance Tips for Heated Floors

  • Regular Inspections:

    • Periodically check the system for any signs of wear or damage.

  • Thermostat Calibration:

    • Ensure the thermostat is calibrated correctly to maintain optimal temperature settings.

  • Leak Detection (Hydronic Systems):

    • Regularly inspect for leaks in the PEX tubing and manifold connections.

What is Radiant Made Simple?
Radiant Made Simple (RMS) offers a user-friendly and affordable way to enjoy radiant floor heating comfort in your home. The system is ideal for new construction or remodeling projects, particularly in spaces like bathrooms, basements, studios, shops, or garages.

Here's what makes RMS stand out:
Pre-assembled panel: Forget complicated setups. The RMS system comes as a complete panel, ready to connect to your existing in-floor tubing.
DIY friendly: The all-in-one design allows for easy installation by yourself or a contractor. Simply mount the panel, connect it to your piping, and plug it in for radiant warmth.
Cost-effective: The RMS system is designed to be more economical than traditional radiant heating solutions from big-box stores that require multiple components.
Scalable coverage: Whether you're heating a small bathroom or a larger multi-zone area, RMS panels can be configured to handle spaces from 300 square feet up to 4,100 square feet.

​Installing heated floors can significantly enhance the comfort and efficiency of your home heating system. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can ensure a successful installation and enjoy the benefits of radiant floor heating for years to come. Whether you choose an electric or hydronic system, proper planning and execution are key to achieving optimal performance and comfort.

Contact us today for a free quote for the system that is perfect for you.

Efficient Radiant Floor Heat Systems

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