LESLIE: Mike in California has got a question about a floor covering over concrete. What project are you working on?
MIKE: I have a question about radiant-heat floor heating.
MIKE: What kind of coverings – floor coverings – can I put over concrete?
TOM: Oh, you can put any kind of floor covering over concrete that you want. It doesn’t get so hot that it affects the floor. You could have carpet, you can have tile, you could have engineered hardwood, you could have real hardwood, you could have laminates.
LESLIE: Well, real hardwood, Tom, doesn’t it have to be a specific cut of the grain?
TOM: Well, obviously, it has to be a prefinished, lock-together kind of a product because you can’t nail into it. That’d be bad. Might pierce those pipes. But I think you could use engineered hardwood if you have any question and that will look just like the real thing. In fact, it is the real thing. It’s just a manufactured product.
MIKE: And will the heat penetrate the manufactured wood or …?
TOM: Oh, absolutely.
LESLIE: Oh, yeah.
MIKE: Put the plumbing inside the concrete – 3 inches of concrete.
TOM: Yeah. Oh, absolutely. If it can get through a couple inches of concrete, it sure can go through another ½-inch of flooring.
MIKE: OK. Alright. Thank you.
TOM: Once it warms up, you’re good to go. It’s very comfortable heat, too. So that’s a good choice for a floor covering over concrete.
MIKE: OK. Alright. Thank you. Oh, that was the other question. Is it practical? Is it more practical than central air or something like that?
TOM: It’s an investment. It’s a hydronic system, so if you’re going to put hot-water heat in, you’re going to have to put a ducted air-conditioning system in. So it’s kind of like you have to put two systems in. But those of us that have those systems love them. I’ve got old-fashioned radiators in my 1800s house and I’ve got a ducted air-conditioning system. And you get the best of both worlds. So, it’s going to be – it’s really a question as to whether or not it’s practical for you. But it doesn’t get any better than radiant heat. It’s just amazingly comfortable stuff.
MIKE: OK. Alright. I appreciate it. Thank you.