What is hydronic heating?


Quick Answer

Hydronic heating moves heat through the use of water from a point of production to a space to be heated. The moving water releases the heat upon reaching a heating device. Radiators are examples of hydronic heating systems and are often used in large commercial buildings.

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Full Answer

Hydronic systems often include loops for both heated and chilled water to provide heat and air conditioning. Heat is released through heat-emitting devices, including radiant ceilings and floors, which are designed to increase average surface temperatures. The systems allow for heating areas of a building to different temperatures.

Hydronic heating systems often use less energy than systems that rely on forced air. One reason for this is that hydronic systems do not affect air pressure in a room being heated. Forced-air systems cause small fluctuations in air pressure when a blower is operating, which sometimes causes leakage of heated air out of a room. Hydronic systems reduce temperature fluctuations within a room and the amount of heat lost through a ceiling. They also allow rooms that are not occupied to be kept cooler. In addition to heating, hydronic systems can also provide hot water and heat for special uses, such as swimming pools. The systems can decrease costs related to installation because fewer components are required.

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