Retrofitting underfloor central heating… Is it possible? The answer is yes. On my heating crusade I stumbled across a new product (new in New Zealand that is) called Variocomp which is made by Variotherm or is that the other way around.
Variotherm’s floor heating systems turn cold stone, tile, laminate or wood parquet floors into comfortably warm surfaces. They provide a cosy warmth: in living areas, hallways,
kitchens, bathrooms and offices.
I know, I know… it sounds like underfloor heating… I can envisage people hitting their heads on their desks, swearing at me through their screen and looking for the “escape” button… but wait!
The Variocomp system is warm-water based. It is therefore cheaper than electric underfloor heating systems which I have to say is the curse to my heating crusade. Mention underfloor heating to a Kiwi and they will instantly perform the pub haka searching for their wallet.
Back to Variocomp. The system, which can be placed on top of your current concrete pad, is as responsive as a radiator due to the shallow depth of the applied screed. How good is that? So its not a radiator and its not strictly underfloor so its basically a radiator floor. The best of both worlds.
Eureka… The holy grail of heating… I hear you cry… Before you pick up the phone or start hammering the internet there is one snag. It looks like a pretty pricey system to install. I am still not sure if the initial outlay makes it worthwhile to Jo Average, like me. Radiators are still the better alternative in my eyes.
Variotherm is gaining market share in Europe and America so there has to be something to the internationally accepted heating system. If you are interested finding out more I’d take a look at Central Heating New Zealand. The company seems to be the only supplier and installer of the Variotherm suite of products.