Hydronic heating is a process of transferring heat via hot water, most simply by utilising pipes and radiators.
But in it’s most effective form it is used for heating the concrete slabs under our feet. This completely unobtrusive method uses the concrete slab to store heat gained from solar exposure in the thermal mass of the floor which slowly radiates and convects it back into the interior as the temperature drops in the evening. Solar heated water is pumped – unless the collectors can be positioned below the level of the slab on sites with substantial slopes – from collectors on the roof through pipes cast into the concrete floor slab during construction. The energy to circulate the water is very low and the savings on heating costs can be dramatic.
Once this pipe work is installed in the floor it can also be used to run cool water from a bore to take out heat gained in the thermal mass during the day in summer.
In a similar way to reverse cycle water heaters solar heat can be concentrated by heat pumps and stored in the floor’s thermal mass or used to heat water and swimming pools.