My wife and I bought a foreclosed house a few months ago. This house had been part of mortgage fraud and we bought it at auction. Interesting life experience, to say the least. The finished basement was built with radiant heat tubing poured into the concrete. These pipes are designed to be hooked to a hot water heater so the warm water can provide radiant heat through the floors in the basement. I love radiant heat in basements. It makes the floor warm and the whole basement feels cozy. The heat radiates up to the rest of the house and it’s fairly energy efficient.
The radiant heat system in our basement was never finished, however. The pipes were there but there was no hot water heater, pumps, or thermostat. I started scouring the Web for information on radiant heat systems. There’s lots of sites selling radiant heat related bits, but it was VERY hard to find detailed info on the types of systems or what the options are for radiant heat. I wanted to educate myself on the pros and cons of different systems. Do I use a hot water heater? Maybe a boiler? Should hook it up with my potable hot water heater? I was full of questions and struggled to find anything useful. Until I stumbled on Radiant Floor Company. Their whole business model is around selling assemblies to help the DIY market install/upgrade/maintain their radiant floor systems. And their site has, hands down, the best information about radiant floor systems. It’s not the prettiest site in the world, but they have a great intro, then sections on each major type of system.
They provided me information that I couldn’t get anywhere else. And as a result I’m probably going to buy my parts from them (they are working up a quote for me today!). I’ll probably go with an on-demand hot water heater and a fully closed system. And they will get my business because they gave me the best information AND they have good prices. It takes BOTH info and price to make a sale on-line. Amazon gives me info through their customer reviews and ratings. Radiant Floor Co gives me info through great documentation and background info. This combo of price + info means that some providers will compete on information + reasonable price while others will compete on absolute lowest price with little info. I love this. It gives me, as a consumer, options.