Common underfloor heating mistakes and how to avoid them – While commissioning
Once installed correctly it’s time to turn on the Underfloor Heating (UFH) system. But very often, even when the right steps have been taken during installation, there can still be some roadblocks at the time of commissioning. Filling and commissioning a UFH system is critical to ensure optimum performance over the years, but often, some key aspects of system commissioning may be overlooked. Mistakes are easy to make, but by following the advice below, you can minimise the risk of poor UFH system performance.
Mistake one: It never pays to assume
It’s all too easy to turn on an UFH system and expect it to work, even though the valves, gauges, and other key components of the system have been properly set. The first step for commissioning any system is to set the relevant flow rate for each circuit, as well as the overall blended temperature. If you bypass this stage, the UFH system may operate inefficiently or worse, it may not operate at all. If you’re a dedicated Speedfit-fitter our team of highly trained engineers can provide you free advice and guidance whenever you install our UFH system.
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Mistake two: Short-circuiting the electrician
Although their roles are very different, it is critical that plumbers and electricians collaborate on any UFH project. All wiring centres for UFH systems will be different and it can be risky to assume an electrician will always have the correct tools for the job. Whilst a three-core cable will control most UFH systems, if a customer is using an Aura dial thermostat and wishes to utilise the grouping feature, two more wires are needed to bring the total to five cores. This can often be missed. Overlooking these additional wires would limit the functionality of the thermostat and cause it to operate outside of the desired group. In this instance, a re-wiring of the system or a change to the electrical specification to a wireless system is the only option; adding cost and delays to a project.
Mistake three: Co-ordination for wireless systems
When installing our wireless JG Aura UFH system it is important to install co-ordinators, which co-ordinate individual components on wireless UFH systems or TRVs. Without these, the components won’t be able to communicate.
Mistake four: Leaving the thermostat on default settings
Even when you’ve installed the UFH system completely by-the-book, there’s no guarantee that it will run as it should if you forget to set the thermostat correctly. When purchased, every thermostat will have the temperature and timing sequence pre-set for the average homeowner. However, not every homeowner wants the same level of UFH activity and to work well, the thermostat must be set to the correct date and time. This will enable it to efficiently switch its settings from weekdays to weekends. Otherwise, it may turn on at the wrong time, on the wrong programme. For a wireless thermostat remember to set the wireless system first and then the co-ordinator around the rest of the system. Always ensure that you set every thermostat, and don’t overlook any.
There you have it – a very simple four-stage guide to an effective UFH commissioning. By avoiding some of the most common mistakes we have highlighted, you can ensure that an effective and high performing system has been installed, and there aren’t any callbacks. UFH installation can be tricky and as with anything, it pays to take a little bit more time to carry out the necessary checks.