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Heated Tile Floors

 


Under tile heated floors are an electric warming system to change cold tile to warm tile underfoot.  They are economical to run, require no maintenance when properly installed, are luxirious and add to the spa-like experience many people want in a master bathroom today.


  


How much do they cost?

A good rule of thumb is figure about $25 a square foot for heated flooring



This figure  would include - 

Installation labor - is the cost of installing the heated floor mat material properly to the subfloor prior to covering with a protective layer of thinset or floor leveling compound.
  

Electric Mat Materials - are the cost of the actual custom mat made to fit the proportions and dimensions of your bathroom. A quality heated floor starts with a name-brand quality manufacturer who produces a product that will not fail years down the road.
  



 Thinset / floor leveling materials -
are the costs of the labor and the materials to cover the heated floor mat with a protective layer of thinset or floor leveling compoud so that it can be tiled over. Many fly-by-night outfits skip this step and instead try to tile directly over the mat and then run the risk of the mat being damaged and the entire heated floor being useless.
  

 

A programable thermostat - is essential for a useful heated floor. Keep in mind it takes on average 45 minutes from the time you turn on a heated floor to the time it reaches operating termperature. Fly-by-nighters often skimp on the thermostat and instead install a simple on/off control. Leaving the customer to discover how frustrating an installation like that is. A proper installation includes a programable thermostat so that the floor can be programmed to turn on before you wake up in the moring and turn itself off again when not needed. Proper thermostats will ahve up to 4 different programable on/off cycles and be GFCI protected at the unit, saving the hassel of ever having to go outside  to the electrical panel to reset a ground fault.
  


  
Basic Wiring - this is a very gray area in costs. No heated floor should ever be piggy-backed on an existing bathroom electrical circuit. The bathroom circuit traditionally is the most over loaded circuit in most houses and adding a heated floor to it probably will cause tipping of the circuit breaker sooner or later as the floor cycles and over-loads the circuit.

A heated floor on a dedicated circuit always ensures your floor will always work and your bathroom outlets won't suddenly trip when a hair dryer or curling iron is used.

The wiring for a heated floor could be as simple and inexpensive as $400, or as high as $4000.00.

The least expensive wiring is going to be when the existing circuit panel for the house has empty breaker space in it and is close by to the location of the bathroom so that running the wiring from the panel to the bathroom is cost effective. The most expensive scenario would be when the panel is full and the homeowner has to do a service panel upgrade where the entire panel is replaced with a larger capacity one, coupling that with a very bad location, requiring lots of labor and materials to get the dedicated wiring to the bathroom from the panel.

Additionally - homeowners should be aware that heated floors increase the thickness of the bathroom floor due to the extra layer of floor mat material and thinset. Butting of bathroom tile floor to adjacent flooring such as in a bedroom may not be flush unless special techniques are used by the installer. Rocky Mountain Bathrooms always installs what are known as carpet ramping when a heated tile floor butts an adjacent carpeted floor which is the most common occurance. By taking this extra step we ensure a flush transition between the different flooring materials, this leaves a professional finish to your project, but I've yet to witness a single competitor who even is aware of this technique. We also commonly get called in on lots of faulty heated flooring installations from the cheap price guys who piggy-back heated floors on existing bathroom circuits and leave the customer holding the bag when it comes to the fire hazard and the inconvenience of circuit breakers tripping all the time.

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