Streamline Design Ltd, British Columbia

Kevin Simoes of Streamline Design Ltd tells of his first experience using Warmboard. The Gabriola project is a post-and-beam home in British Columbia and features over 3000 square feet of Warmboard-R.

“We chose Warmboard for its ease and its convenience. The structure was built on an island, so we knew the construction costs were going to be high. Costs for using concrete for the radiant heating were especially high, so we knew that would not be a viable option. In fact, Warmboard was the cheaper option and definitely had a positive impact on the budget. Combined with its performance claims, Warmboard became the natural choice.

Working with the Warmboard has been a great experience. The design team was fantastic. They were responsive and easy to work with. They answered our questions promptly and produced working drawings very quickly. And while we provided only the architectural design (we were not the installers), the feedback from the contractor was very positive as well. The installation drawings provided were very helpful and easy to follow, and they were pleased with how quickly and easily [the panels] went down. The ease and speed of the installation was actually one of the great benefits with Warmboard. It definitely made an impression.

The homeowner was very pleased with the install and subsequent system performance as well. They have also remarked that they have really noticed the savings on heating costs.

Overall, we have had an incredible experience work with Warmboard. The team is very professional, easy to work with and always happy to help educate architects, installers and the clients. And you have a great product! The team at Streamline has been very pleased to team up with Warmboard on additional projects and we look forward to specifying the product on many jobs in the future.”

Kevin Simoes
Streamline Design Ltd.

Sustainable Edge, Toronto

In this Warmboard Works we hear from Mario Kani of Sustainable Edge, an Engineering firm in Toronto, Ontario.


For over a decade we have been using hydronic radiant heating and cooling in ceilings. The benefits of a fully hydronic house with moderate heating and cooling water temperatures and no recirculated forced air are many, including: 

  • Complements low energy envelopes which require lower heating and cooling capacities
  • Provides better comfort
  • Delivers healthy indoor air
  • Promotes minimum noise in living spaces
  • Requires minimal and smaller ductwork (ventilation only)
  • Results in lower distribution energy (by using a pump instead of a fan)
  • Increased flexibility for thermal supply source such as solar or geothermal energy

Locating the radiant cooling on the ceiling provides the maximum output for a specified design surface temperature. While we have designed several projects using concrete radiant ceilings, we have found that for wood construction, Warmboard is a natural match for ceiling installation, placed just behind the drywall. Warmboard is also an ideal candidate for radiant heating in the ceiling as well, able to provide either low- or high-intensity heating during winter months.

The principle of ceiling cooling is based on average surface temperatures between 60ºF to 70ºF over a large surface area, resulting in draft-free, low-intensity cooling. The cooling surface temperature needs to be high to avoid surface condensation. This system only does sensible cooling of the living space (i.e. no moisture removal) so that dehumidification needs to be done separately. For a successful ceiling cooling installation, the project’s attributes should be as follows: 

  • A high performance thermal envelope to minimize cooling loads through careful glazing selection and summer shading,
  • Significant envelope airtightness
  • 100% outdoor air ventilation without recirculation (also known as DOAS: dedicated outdoor air system )
  • Ventilation heat recovery (preferably an ERV)
  • Dehumidification of outdoor air with 45ºF to 50ºF chilled water (e.g. directly from ground water or via ground source heat pump) resulting in drier ventilation air than room air.

We look forward to using Warmboard–R, the thinner retrofit product in our next radiant ceiling project.


Mario Kani, B.A.Sc., M.A.Sc., P.Eng., LEED® AP
President, Sustainable EDGE

 

124 Merton St., Suite 507
Toronto, Ontario
Canada M4S 2Z2

contact [at] s-edge.com
416.477.2625

Sustainable EDGE designs using an integrated, holistic approach to system flows. Combining energy, water, air, nutrient and organic resources in their engineering methodology allows their clients to achieve the lowest possible greenhouse gas (GHG) and environmental impact. And where possible the project will make positive contributions to society and the environment.

Sustainable EDGE believes in good design, enlightened by sustainable principles and fitting best to the dynamics of each building goals.

They offer the following Consulting, Designing, Planning and Net Zero engineering services.

 

Homeowners Jeremy & Callie, Kansas City

In this Warmboard Works post we talk to Jeremy and Callie, homeowners who are in the midst of remodeling a 100 year old commercial building into their dream home. The West Bottoms Project is not your run of the mill remodel and these innovative DIY'ers are using Warmboard to bring ultimate comfort to this unique project. Bonus – they documented much of their construction in a photo essay, which can be found here:


“There are probably 400 reasons why we chose Warmboard, but I’m sure you’ve heard all of those before! I of course read a ton about the product and thought it would be an amazing luxury to have, but I figured it would actually be a bit too expensive – something I’m sure you guys hear all the time, right?

Our building is in the coolest neighborhood in Kansas City – called the West Bottoms – andwas originally built as a Horse Stable and Warehouse / Carriage House. It’s got a pretty interesting shape that comes from the railroad tracks that ran up to the loading dock doors on both the West and South walls (we have 7 loading down doors).

Because of the size of our building (the first floor is approx 6,000 sq ft), the 10 foot tall basement (also 6,000 sf ft) and the really high ceilings (about 25 feet in the main room), we knew heating the space adequately was going to get interesting.

The ceilings in our building are beautiful. 100 year old wood, amazing trusses and greatheight (probably too high, but whatever!). But having to hang duct work, seeing tubes everywhere would look like a mess and hide a lot of the charm of the building. It would have driven me crazy, and it would look hideous. So from an aesthetic standpoint it just wasn’t going to work.

Also, having hot air blowing down from our high ceilings, coming down to about 8 feet, then making a u-turn and heading back up towards the cold roof? No thanks. I had visions of us freezing on our couch with the roof being a toasty 80 degrees. So forced air wasn’t going to work on a functional level either.

Still, thinking our options were limited, we called in a slew of HVAC/Mechanical contractors. All came back with a horror stories of us needing multiple, monster heating and cooling units (that would go where? who knows.) to blow A LOT of air to POSSIBLY get us to a comfortable temperature. We then slogged through the data and crunched the numbers they gave us and the prices really skyrocketed. Suddenly, the thought of “Warmboard being too expensive” weren’t such an issue any more and it quickly became the best option to heat the building.

My wife Callie and I, along with some family and friends, have done 100% of the installation ourselves (We mostly pay our laborers in a combination of pizza, barbeque and gratefulness)! The plans you provided were amazing! As the project progressed however, there were a few issues with our structure we hadn’t really expected. But that’s the great thing about Warmboard–R – it was really easy for us to make adjustments on the fly, cut custom pieces or execute some custom routes to get around these situations. It’s one thing I really wasn’t expecting. This really is a great building tool! One that’s not meant to snap into place or it’s not going to work, but a panel that provides amazing flexibility in the design layout. The whole process was very intuitive. And anyone can easily grab 2 or 3 panels and carry them to where they need to go. We invested in 6 pairs of knee pads, 4 new drills and a TON of screws and it actually went fairly quickly, all things considered. Especially for a ragtag group like us. Moving forward, we will be hiring a professional to connect the boilers and the manifolds, run tests, etc. But as for all the panels, the tubing – we did all of it ourselves.

Callie and I are coordinating all the work on the job. It’s a monster project, but so far sogood. Things are moving forward quickly and we’re hoping to spend Thanksgiving there this year – just in time for the 100th birthday of the structure. We’ll have everyone there too and are looking forward to being really toasty!”

– Jeff and Callie Bennet

 Callie and Jeremy install the first few Warmboard-R panels into their new home.

Callie and Jeremy install the first few Warmboard-R panels into their new home.

 Framing up the interior.

Framing up the interior.

See dozens more photos and a few videos over at the westbottomsproject.com

DG Custom Built Homes & Remodeling, LLC., NEW YORK

“DG Custom Built Homes & Remodeling recommends Warmboard as our first choice for radiant heat. Installed properly, radiant heat only uses energy when and where it’s needed. We like to zone each room individually; which saves money and eliminates having cool and hot spots develop as each part of the home heats and cools differently throughout the day. Warmboard goes in during framing and acts as a subfloor so there are no additional steps needed as with other products. Warmboard has a great support system from design to installation. The design team takes all the guesswork out of material to purchase and layout in the field. In addition to providing with a complete material list, their local rep stops by our job sites to ensure the installation is going smoothly.

As the owner of DG Custom Built Homes and Remodeling, I personally have built my home using Warmboard as the only source of heat. My home never feels cold or overheated. I spend 1/3 of what I used to spend on my previous home which was much smaller.Warmboard would be my first choice every time.”

– Desmond Greaves, Owner of DG Custom Built Homes & Remodeling, LLC.


DG CUSTOM BUILT HOMES & REMODELING, LLC.

13 West Bay Shore Road
Bay Shore, NY 11706
631-253-0728 (office) / 631-457-2856 (cell)
www.dgcustombuilt.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/dg.custombuilt

Dorgan & Zuck Contractors, PENNSYLVANIA

Dorgan & Zuck Contractors has been in business for 31 years and is experienced with many types of construction projects. We have encountered many suppliers, sub-contractors, and products; some standard and some brand new and untested.

For various reasons we had never been able to work with Warmboard products before. An architect out of Manhattan, New York who was a C.M. on a multimillion dollar restoration project where we were the G.C., recommended Warmboard products for the various floors in an Historic farmhouse. The client had made his mark in the world by having a very high standard and uncompromising view. This necessitated a need on our part to have a support team and product that could provide the information, design, efficiency, and ease of use to satisfy these demands. [Your Sales staff] and Warmboard products met and exceeded those requirements. The floors were of various natural wood, tile, and granite, and all experienced great results.

Warmboard and their staff were accessible, informative, and adaptable and in the end, helped make us successful in that area of need. We are glad to have worked with Warmboard and hope to use [Warmboard] in other projects.


Dorgan & Zuck Building Contractors, Inc.
325 Cottage Hill Road
York, PA 17401
Phone: (717) 848-2932
Fax: (717) 843-4293
www.dorganandzuck.com

Helios Roofing, Helios Construction, BRITISH Columbia

In this Warmboard Works we hear from Louis Lu of Helios Roofing in Burnaby, British Columbia.


“The existing house has 2 stories and 50 years old. The previous heating system used forced-air heat, and the ducting was claiming a lot of space, especially in the attic. The owner wanted to increase the available space inside the house, but were not able to change its physical size of the structure. The homeowner was considering radiant heating as an option.

We had the architect and interior designer to do some research on radiant heating, and they foundWarmboard. The architect recommended Warmboard-S because it could be used as the subfloor and the control systems would take up a minimal amount of space. The homeowner agreed and the project began.

We gutted the entire interior of the house and rebuilt with LVL beams (and Warmboard) to create open spaces throughout. We completely transformed an traditional single-family house into a modern smart home, with all the latest technology built inside.

Along with Helios Homes and Contracting Ltd., we redid the structural, the framing, the roof, insulation, drywall the landscaping and even the swimming pool. The house contains all new plumbing, heating, lighting and an array of smart entertainment features (alarms, 3D home movie theater, smartphone and touch screen home monitoring systems, retractable vacuum system, zoned background music via bluetooth, and a piano stage with wireless mini microphones inside) along with a cigar and wine cellar, gym, sauna and massage table, pool table and more. It is an incredible 6000 square foot home, and it is all covered with Warmboard.”

Coastal Construction Management, CONNECTICUT

We received a great letter from Michael Scarpa at Coastal Construction Management, LLC in Pawcatuck, Connecticut. It’s his first project with Warmboard, and things are off to a great start. We’ll be following up with him in the months ahead for an update.


"I had heard about Warmboard subflooring, but assumed it would be too cost prohibitive to use – until I sat down and did a price comparison to Quik Trak product. I was surprised to find that Warmboard was actually less expensive. The equalizer comes from the labor to install Warmboard. I pay my framing crew to install a subfloor, whether it’s a standard T&G or Warmboard, so there is no cost variance, or perhaps a small increase depending on the amount of custom routing required. But, using Warmboard, I don’t have to pay my plumbers to install a Quik Trak panel system at the rough-in stage of the project – which, at plumbing rates, can be very expensive and time consuming. This savings more than makes up for the added cost of the Warmboard panels. Installing the tubing is about equal, with a slight edge to Warmboard due to the 12” spacing compared to the 8” for Quik Trak (less tubing equals less labor). All this said, it’s really the performance that is going to blow the competition away.

 Warmboard-S installs over joist on this ocean-front property.

Warmboard-S installs over joist on this ocean-front property.

This is our first project using Warmboard so I’m really eager to hear the client’s comments on comfort and feel. I’m confident they’ll be impressed.

All of my dealings with Warmboard so far have been nothing short of impressive.


Coastal Construction Management, LLC.

CCM LLC is a full-service construction company located in Pawcatuck, Connecticut. CCM offers Cost-Plus Construction – based on actual costs plus a pre-determined percentage. This type of construction fee offers substantial savings and peace of mind to the homeowner. The homeowner saves through reduction of the contractor’s profit and overhead as some of the contractor’s risk involved in fixed-price contracting is assumed by the homeowner. The owner receives the direct benefit of the contractor’s considerable discounts. The homeowner is provided a detailed breakdown of expenses.

Michael Scarpa
Coastal Construction Management LLC.
266 South Broad Street
Pawcatuck, CT 06379
1.860.599.8781
coastalconstructionmanagement.com


To see how Quik Trak performs against Warmboard, see the video below.

 

 

Geo Source One, Ohio

In this Warmboard Works, Jeff Persons of Geo Source One Inc. talks to us about his renovation of the “Rock House”. Located on property obtained through a land grant from the American Revolutionary War, the home was built while the area was still Indian Territory. Rather than tearing the home down, the structure was maintained and underwent an extensive renovation. The structure is entirely radiant heated and has a total of 8 zones to maximize comfort and control.


“We are geothermal systems contractors, and geothermal equipment is a perfect match for Warmboard. We’re strictly low temperature hydronics folks here, we don’t get into a lot of high temperature type situations. Because we’re working with high-efficiency condensing boilers and so forth, it’s important to keep those temperatures as low as possible.

Warmboard has been excellent to work with. It is the very best way to utilize geothermal equipment for managing a radiant floor particularly when you’ve got wood frame construction.

Also, just the ease of tubing installation in a Warmboard project. I like being able to use the linoleum roller to press the tubes into the channel and follow things around; and it’s not difficult to route new channels to get from one area to another.  The whole ease of working with the product really stands out to me, not to mention your team has always been excellent.  I credit you folks with your patience with homeowners and architects that make changes and then the drawings have to be repeatedly changed. In some instances we’ll have revision 1, revision 2, revision 3, and every time it comes back and its perfect.

 

This is not our first rodeo with Warmboard; we’ve had others, all of them excellent. I’m about to make a trip back to Ohio to finish off another project that used Warmboard in several areas. I’m looking forward to that visit and getting that project off of our books to make room for the next [Warmboard] one.”


Geo Source One Inc. provides Columbus, Ohio geothermal products and solutions and are proud to be the full service provider for WaterFurnace brand products in the Columbus, Ohio community. Their geothermal resource center has a lot of information on the benefits of what the Earth has to offer. Whatever your needs are, routine maintenance, equipment repair, or a complete comfort system, their highly trained staff has the expertise to help. Let them install a geothermal solution that utilizes the clean, green, renewable energy stored in your backyard to provide savings of up to 70% on heating, cooling, and hot water costs.

geosourceone @ rrohio.com

www.geosourceone.com

vivZ architects, EDMONTON

In this Warmboard Works we hear from Vivian Zhao of vivZ architects in Edmonton, Alberta. In 2015, Vivian used Warmboard in a 12 unit condominium unit in Edmonton. Here’s what she had to say about her experience with Warmboard.


 Grovenor Condominiums. Edmonton, Alberta

Grovenor Condominiums. Edmonton, Alberta

“With this project we used to 2 lots and combined together. The result is 12 townhouse units with a shared basement and underground parking.

We wanted to use infloor heating from the very beginning. One of the managers on the project had heard of Warmboard (but not used it), and thought it might be a good option, allowing for much faster installation, especially compared to the alternative, gypsum concrete.

So I started to look into Warmboard. And aside from the benefits of having a faster installation, there were many other benefits as well. You can use a much wider variety of floor finishing materials. I read through all of your online material and contacted your sales rep in Vancouver. I then flew out to Vancouver with my husband, and we met with your sales rep who showed us a couple of active Warmboard jobs in the area. It was very helpful to go on site and see the Warmboard still exposed. And we were able to see the control systems as well. This was very helpful. At that time I felt it would be the right product for our project. I began working with your design team in California, and soon after we were making payment and coordinating the shipping.

Working with design team was good. The team was very cooperative in designing the system efficiently as to keep costs under control. They were very helpful.

Much of the construction took place during the winter. So we put the panels in put could not yet put in the tubing because of the freezing temperatures in Edmonton. It’s just not possible. We did cover the panels a couple of times during the construction process with Rahm board, first during the winter and again in the summer after the tubing was in. This did cause additional labor for us, and it was time consuming. We would have loved to be able to rent cover panels from you as a temporary covering. Obviously in a smaller house, this wouldn’t be a big deal, but on a large multi-res project like ours, we think this would be a good thing to offer in the future.

This occupants of the building have been living with Warmboard now for 2 full heating seasons, and I can tell you the performance works very well. It is very satisfying. Our residents are amazed and how comfortable it is. And our gas bill is very, very low. Warmboard is saving us a lot of energy for sure.

I would definitely recommend Warmboard in the future and hope to use it in more projects.


 

vivZ architecture
14021 23 street, Edmonton
780.908.2637

JC Heating and Cooling, ILLINOIS

For this Warmboard Works we spoke with Jerry Chwierut of JC Heating and Cooling in Hodgkins, Illinois.   

"There are many aspects to look at when choosing the right product for our clients. Our company’s success comes from quick response and reaction time to our customers needs as well as our own fulfillment and productivity. The Warmboard company and products were very much in line with ours. Working with Warmboard has been a great experience. They offer great pricing along with a high quality product.   

Warmboard is affordable, but it is among the more expensive radiant heat systems. But this is due mainly to its general excellence of standard, especially with its thick aluminum.  One of our great experiences with Warmboard was the ease of installation process. Compared to Complete Radiant, it is unbelievably convenient, without any additional work input, where the other product requires extra labor in trimming or gluing with additional installations. Working with Warmboard cut down our working times allowing us to do a better quality job overall and to be more productive on the site.”

 Tubing channels are lined with our alignment pins, and Warmboard-R is screwed down over the existing subfloor.

Tubing channels are lined with our alignment pins, and Warmboard-R is screwed down over the existing subfloor.

 Warmboard panels are cut, aligned and installed over the subfloor.

Warmboard panels are cut, aligned and installed over the subfloor.

Our company is happy when our customers are satisfied. I would recommend Warmboard not only to our customers, but definitely to our own households and businesses which are looking for a good quality product of an upper grade. Warmboard, besides the aspects we have mentioned earlier, is a reliable radiant heating system with a smart design and energy efficiency. Our customers are satisfied with the decreased energy use, and we appreciate the quick installation time."

 12" on center tubing channels hold the tubing in place and make the installation process must faster. And, Warmboard's 12" tubing spacing outperforms other systems with even double the amount of tubing.

12" on center tubing channels hold the tubing in place and make the installation process must faster. And, Warmboard's 12" tubing spacing outperforms other systems with even double the amount of tubing.

 Repeating, consistent tubing pattern makes tubing installation fast and convenient.

Repeating, consistent tubing pattern makes tubing installation fast and convenient.


Jerry Chwierut 
JC Heating and Cooling
7099 Santa Fe Dr, Ste G,  
Hodgkins, IL 

Web: http://www.jccomfort.com/ 
Email: information@jccomfort.com
Phone: 312.471.1221

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JC Heating & Cooling, Inc. is a family owned company founded in 1997 on the principle that the business would be based on three fundamentals – Quality, Honesty and Integrity. This continues to be their business model. JC Heating & Cooling, Inc. is dedicated to building a team of outstanding individuals committed to provide premium quality products & service while delivering the highest level of value with constant focus on 100% customer satisfaction.

Pro-Star Mechanical, BRITISH Columbia

Wilf Scheuer of Pro-Star Mechanical talks to us about a unique build on top of a mountain on Gulf Island in British Columbia.

“We’ve been quite happy with our Warmboard experience, had no issues whatsoever. It was easy to work with, and we’ve done a number of Warmboard projects. I think we may have done the first Warmboard ever in BC and we recommend it highly.

Warmboard was a good product for this particular job because it’s on a remote access Gulf Island.  The project is on the top of a mountain above Mayne Island, so it’s quite cold up there as compared to being lower down. It took them five years to finish the job, but it’s a really beautiful architecturally designed home, the best views in the world I’ve ever seen. It overlooks the ocean, Active Pass, and the other islands.

So when talking to the client we gave different options and both the client and ourselves found that Warmboard was the best solution. The owner wanted a high quality system that was compatible with a geothermal heat pump because we drilled three holes 350 FT deep into the mountain.

With the combination of Warmboard, geothermal and the water furnace heat pump he’s got an excellent system that runs reliably and is economical. It’s economical to heat the home as compared to other fuel pipes in the Gulf Islands, which would normally be oil, propane or straight electric, so he’s probably saving 70% of heating costs as compared to traditional sources and it has really good performance.

We find that the heat is very, very even throughout the home and is quite satisfying. It has a lot of glass in there too so in homes with large amounts of glass it’s important to have good distribution systems for your radiant heat so that heat is applied evenly throughout the home so you’re not getting cold sitting by a window.

 

Overall, Warmboard seemed to be a really neat package that had good performance of heating; he liked the idea of a smooth floor, extra structure, and that he could use it for temporary heating even before the floor was finished.  

Aside from the fact that Warmboard gives you very even heat, it seems to move the job along quickly. For the heating contractor it gives you a good guide for installing.  The installation ease and performance of the product is superior to other methods like concrete topping or stapling underneath and insulating. With Warmboard you just have to snap the tubing in there with a rubber mallet.

We’ve worked with Uponor quite a bit and Watts, and in slab, under slab, under joist, topping on top of plywood, ceiling radiant, wall radiant, virtually every way of possibly doing it, and I think the Warmboard situation probably is the simplest and easiest… an elegant solution to radiant heating a home.”


Pro Star is a family owned and operated full-service mechanical contracting business dedicated to serving the HVAC needs of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Island communities with honesty and integrity since 1988.

Victoria @ prostar-mechanical.com
www.prostar-mechanical.com
Find them on Facebook

Winterburn Construction, California

"Warmboard has become my company’s and my client’s preferred radiant flooring heat option over the last fifteen years.

Warmboard makes installation of their product easy for first time users. The product is delivered directly to your construction site equipped with plans for layout and an installation kit. You will need two people to install the product with ease; simply follow the plans provided, each sheet fits together like a puzzle and installation actually becomes fun. One tip to first time installers: frame exterior walls, install tubing then frame interior walls.

From our engineering and building perspective there is no comparable product. Warmboard, replaces traditional subfloor and reduces the weight factor of gypsum concrete, thus significantly lowering engineering and construction costs. Ultimately, you’re provided a superior subfloor material.

From our client’s perspective, we have only had positive feedback. Warmboard radiates the heat back up instead of into the flooring system; it’s covered with a sheet of aluminum that reflects the heat upward. The energy costs for our clients are significantly lowered by Warmboard’s energy efficiency.

Architects, engineers, builders and homeowners I’ve worked with like Warmboard because it lowers building costs providing the client with a substantially superior product to traditional radiant heat flooring."

John Winterburn
Winterburn Construction
831.462.5792
winterburnconstruction.com

 

The Yellow House: For Adults with Autism, COLORADO

The Yellow House in Carbondale, Colorado is a unique project designed specifically for adults with autism. As such, extensive design considerations were made to ensure the house would accommodate individuals with a wide spectrum of sensory sensitivities. One factor of particular importance is air movement, which some individuals have a heightened sensitivity towards. Warmboard provided a huge benefit over forced-air systems in this regard. Also of concern is the climate. Located just a few miles from Aspen, the Yellow House required a heat source that would be able to quickly and efficiently heat a home when the weather changes rapidly or drops to single digit temperatures.

 

Scott Schlicter
House Manager

The Yellow House is something that has evolved over the last decade or so. Eleven or twelve years ago they started a summer sports program where they would rent dorms at a local college. These summer camps eventually evolved into skiing and snowboarding camps in the winter. Flash forward and all of these 12 and 13 year olds who had been coming to camp for years and years were growing into young adults with no place to go for the assistance and support they need. Basically, we’re trying to find a solution, other than a group home or institution, for all of these people with autism entering adulthood; which is starting to number in the millions every year. We are trying to find a new solution; one better than the old institution and group home system from the 50’s and 60’s which has never really been overhauled. For some of these young adults with more pronounced behaviors, it’s hard for them to live in a community or home because most will kick them out if they run away, self-injure, etc. So we are trying to design a model that is a safe place for these adults who would otherwise be institutionalized. A lot of that was accomplished through the construction; planning space and color schemes. This includes anything from the safety of windows and blinds on the interior, to EMF free zones in the bedrooms, heated floors, sound-proof walls, and close monitoring systems with cameras in the public areas and microphones in the bedrooms to conserve privacy in their private places. The remodel was extensive – every single wall and floor was moved except for the stone living room; even the stairwell was moved. There is huge demand for houses like these. Four months in, a young woman that I teach skiing to was having some behavior issues and came and spent time at the Yellow House. Now her father is willing to foot the bill for a second one; and that’s only four months in. He is like so many parents we encounter. They make it through those teenage years and then their child is in their 20’s and all of a sudden their parent’s are like, ‘Now what do I do? They’re adults and they’re going to outlive me.’ We haven’t even really finished the Yellow House yet but we’re already in plans for a second because there is so much need. We must figure out how to care for this group of people who are physically healthy but need assistance mentally. These folks are going to live to be 80 or 90 just like everybody else. Warmboard is great. We have it in our ADU as well as the main house and I love the theory behind it. It just makes sense to heat where your feet are and you are, and not to blow hot air into a room and into the ceiling. It also provides some insulation, because there are lots of people that like to jump as part of their ‘stimming' (self-stimulation) and it helps with the sound so that it doesn’t sound like a beating drum when you’re jumping on the second level. Warmboard has been really responsive and comfortable. It’s fun when people who aren’t used to heated floors, or Warmboard, stay in the house and they say, ‘Oh, this is really nice.’ It’s just been wonderful.”

Jim Pidcock
High Mark Development
Builder

“Every person who is on the autism spectrum has a unique set of experiences, and so we have to cater to that and try to minimize the effects of the sensory issues. We did a lot of research with EMF (electromagnetic frequencies) and minimizing electric current running through the house through different types of systems. The heating is a big deal with that, so while it may just be coincidence that Warmboard is helpful negating some of the sensory issues, that’s important to point out. That was part of the process, sitting down as a design team and concluding that Warmboard was really going to help negate some of these potential sensory issues. Also, we do a lot of radiant in-floor heating in this part of the country, and its pretty easily sold in terms of the concept. We are at a higher altitude and generally our winters are colder than in other parts of the country. Once people get used to it, they kind of get spoiled to it. That was certainly one of the factors. Another thing that probably had a lot to do with our decision was the ease of installation. While a couple of my contractors were familiar with Warmboard, others were not, but the installation kit made it easy for everyone. They thought it was going to take much longer than it did, and it actually took less time than anticipated. That was definitely helpful. The design process went well, and what we ordered is what showed up. The plans were well thought out, the product works well and we were able to tailor everything to our specific project. I think that’s a huge deal. With a forced hot air heating system, if you’re going to keep a house warm, you’ve really got to run the thing a lot - especially in this climate. If it gets down to low temperatures, twenties and teens and zeroes, and less, the heating system is going to be running a tremendous amount of the time. The radiant heat allows for less movement and less sensitivity to it. And I know in the future we’ll be using your product again regardless of whether it’s a house that involves people with autism or just a run of the mill project. The design and considerations of the Yellow House are for a very specific clientele, and while we build for anyone, this project is… I don’t want to call it unique, but it’s certainly rare. That being said, there is a high prevalence of people on the autism spectrum, and every year there are more and more people, so as we get into the future houses such as this one are going to become more common.”

Steve Novy
Green Line Architects
Architect

“We like the idea of using radiant heating in the floor. It’s an efficient system, as compared to other heating options, because you’re heating the floor itself and the space people are occupying. Because this was a remodel, we also liked that we didn’t have to tear out the floor, we could simply install Warmboard on the existing sheathing. It was pretty straightforward and added some strength and additional structure to the floor. We felt this was a much better alternative to a Staple-Up kind of condition because we know that Warmboard allows for a better distribution of heat over the entire service. Also with Staple-Up it’s hard to get access either from the floor joists or the room below. And comparing it to radiant tubes being put into a gypsum concrete or lightweight concrete slab, here we didn’t have to factor in additional loading from the slab, so that was nice. We didn’t have to think about the extra weight concrete would add to what is essentially a turn of the century structure. Plus the ability to get an efficient in-floor heating system that’s hydronic; I think that’s the ideal scenario for us. We get better zoning with hydronic, and in addition to the points mentioned earlier about heating the space that people are occupying, with forced air you get stratification and other issues. Not to mention the fact that we didn’t have to put in a lot of ductwork. We paired the radiant in-floor heating system with an HRV, and the HRV ducting is simple, just six inch solid and flex ducts which are easy to route in an existing structure. I like the concept of Warmboard and I’ve been trying to find a good project for it. Now that we’ve done a successful installation we’ll certainly recommend it again. I’d like to follow up with the contractor and see what the costs are but I believe it’s going to be very comparable to other types of radiant systems, especially in remodel situations. As you know, this is a unique project. And it’s a fascinating to see how the needs of people with autism differ from a more typical kind of project we are involved in. We learned a great deal and will continue to learn as we evaluate how the Yellow House performs. I’m just happy that we’ve been able to use good mechanical and electrical systems that meet their needs. We also looked into a lot of other things such as the durability of products and the ease of cleaning various surfaces, and Warmboard fit well into that entire spec scenario. There was a side benefit to the aluminum in Warmboard. We were thinking we might have to shield between floors, but decided it was unnecessary because we already have an aluminum layer as part of Warmboard, so that’s kind of a neat thing. We’re very excited about getting to use the product and will certainly be recommending it in the future. We’ll also be evaluating the performance over time so we should check back in a year or so and see how everything’s working. We are looking forward to doing more projects like this to be honest with you.”

 

Sobek Architects, Wisconsin

In this Warmboard Works we hear from Marc Leveque of Sobek Architects speak about his thoughts on Warmboard and its competitors. Marc is a seasoned architect who has amassed a wealth of knowledge on building materials from his 40 years in the industry.


“I wanted to let you know that people’s reaction to it is REALLY impressive. That’s the truth.  No negative on it at all. So good product, and good for you guys, I’m glad you make such a nice thing. I want my clients happy and your product really brings that about every single time.

I always recommend Warmboard to my customers because it’s a replacement product. With Warmboard you can substitute it for the subfloor, which keeps costs down. That appeals to me. When you use cement floors they go on over the subfloor, which is a redundancy. And then you still have to adjust your framing, stud wall heights, and the list goes on. With Warmboard, those extra considerations are non-existent.

Warmboard is, in a kind and decent way, a boring product. It’s perfect; you don’t even know it’s there. That’s why I love it. You install it, no other structural parts are needed, and it solves several problems. That to me is the selling point. Every other product that you get in the market is an add-on, costs are always rising and everybody is pricing their way out of the market.

Warmboard did nothing to enhance or take away from our projects. Most people would think that’s not very nice to say, but it’s a mega compliment. Warmboard didn’t get in the way. It solved a lot of problems without making an architectural statement.

When you have a garage door with all sorts of square boxes in the garage door it makes an architectural statement. When you have a flat skylight in your roof, that’s architecturally neutral. Warmboard is architecturally neutral which makes it easy for me to work around. I’m not interested in changing the shape of my roof, or changing the shape of my floor. That’s what makes it perfect, because it’s not in the way.

Warmboard is one of the best products I’ve ever seen, and I’ve been doing this stuff for over 40 years. Everything on the product is so elegant. It’s so out of the way that you don’t notice it; that’s how good it is.

I had a client that said ‘I want a house that is so great that every boat on the lake stops to look at it.’ And I said that’s a nice dynamic, try this…how about that they drive by and it’s so perfect they don’t notice it, but they come back because they know they have seen something wonderful. Warmboard is that. People walk in, they’re comfortable, they’re happy, they love the house. And Warmboard is a part of that, but it’s so inconspicuous that you don’t notice it. That’s what makes it a winner.

I keep samples of Warmboard in my office. When I show clients what it is, and how great it is they say, ‘I’ve gotta have that.’ Everybody that I know of that has it loves it and there is no way they would ever change it. I have clients tell me ‘it’s like walking on a beach’, and ‘go ahead and try to take it away from me!’"


Sobek Architects is located in Hazelhurst, Wisconsin and provides professional architecture designs, housing and planning solutions for residential an commercial spaces. Sobek Architects also offers the following services:

• Residential
• Commercial
• Hospitality design
• Multi-family housing
• Remodeling planning
• Drafting services
• Home designing
• Building design

They can be reached at 715.356.5170.

The Boiler Guys, Toronto

In this Warmboard Works we hear Alex Genzer of The Boiler Guys speak about a remodel project in Toronto. They had initially chosen an alternative radiant heating method for their home but decided to make a last minute switch to Warmboard due to several concerns about Staple-up.

 Toronto Skyline

Toronto Skyline

“I’ve done a couple of Warmboard jobs now and they’ve all been really good. With this job we were originally asked to do Staple-up throughout the whole house, but there were several concerns with the floor which the original general contractor didn’t notice. The quick and easy solution was to put in Warmboard.

Once we made the switch, it went very smoothly. Probably the quickest install I’ve ever done. The people doing the subfloor were able to put it down in about a day, and then I came in and laid the tubing down.

The great thing about Warmboard is that the tubing took me only a couple of hours to lay down. It literally clips right into the grooves. I ran it to the mechanical room and had it pressurized all within a couple of hours, whereas other systems you usually have to budget the whole day.

The fact that we can install the systems very quickly compared to traditional ways is a definite benefit when using Warmboard. Speed of install is so precious here. You’re not on your knees as long, and the tools are much simpler. We don’t need zip ties, we don’t need staples, and they have that weighted roller for the tubing. It literally takes one person with an unwinder and PEX. It goes down as quick as anything else, and it’s cleaner than anything else. Not to mention it actually looks cooler because the pipe is dead straight, absolutely straight, and then it turns and the radiuses are perfect. Even the ‘Wow Factor’ you get when the customer sees the nice, new job is something you just don’t experience with Staple-up.

I’ve also noticed that the average temperature for water with Warmboard is lower than Staple-up or Onyx systems. We can do around 80 or 90 degree water temperatures with Warmboard whereas any other system you’d have to do up to 140 degrees. Everyone in the hydronics trade knows that the lower the water temperature the more efficient [the system] becomes, and Warmboard has the lowest water temperatures. It just does.

A lot of people are initially deterred by the fact that it is a more expensive product. But then you compare it to other systems that require other stuff. For instance engineering has to be done differently, we need to create bigger joists, we need a floor leveler, etc., – it just becomes a big nightmare. When you really compare it, it’s around the same price at the end of the day.

So when other customers are talking about the price I let them know that when they choose this product early on, the initial part of the job might be a little more than doing in-floor concrete or Staple-up. However, when you consider the fact that we don’t need all of those other trades to accomplish the same thing, it actually ends up being around the same price. And once I install it the customers love it. They love it and we love it.”

The Boiler Guys fulfill jobs of any capacity whether it is boiler repair, Warmboard installation, radiator replacement, in-floor radiant heating, snowmelt or any service to do with hydronic heating. The products they use are of the highest quality. The manufacturers they work with stand by them to provide the best customer service and the most effective solution for cost and energy efficiency.  The Boiler Guys’ seasoned knowledge and years of experience is there to help ensure every client makes a wise, informed decision with each project. This is Alex and his team’s mission, and it’s their vision to continue to serve for years to come. Find them at theboilerguys.com or call 1-877-836-6708.

Michael Diacon, SASKATCHEWAN

This Warmboard Works features the addition/renovation of a home in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan by the homeowner. The project included an overhaul of the old heating system to make way for a more effective, energy efficient alternative.


It was during the renovation and addition to our house that we decided to a look at updating our heating system.  One of my sisters had had in-floor heating in a couple of her houses, so I was familiar with the concept and had always enjoyed it.  After some research we decided to go with in-floor heating, partially due to efficiency; furnaces tend not to be as efficient as hot water heat, and partially due to the difference in comfort.

This prompted research into the various methods of in-floor heat: staple-up, lay-down, the one where you pour concrete over top, etc. And then I came across Warmboard.  As I continued researching I realized that Warmboard was the most efficient at distributing heat. That’s what sold me in the end.

I did the majority of the installation work myself, however I did have a couple of individuals with some experience working on construction projects. They were impressed with how easily the Warmboard-R went down, as well as how heavy and sound the Warmboard-S panels were. Everyone that either helped with the installation process or witnessed it was quite impressed with the ease of it all.

Most remarkable though, is the follow-up from the company. Warmboard has been in touch with me many times over the course of the project. Right from the beginning when I first sent the query in, through the completion of the project, down to an email a few days ago asking for feedback and input. The company looks after you every step of the way.

I turned the heat on in March, so we’re just ending a full year of heating. It’s been wonderful to walk from one area to another and feel nice, comfortable warmth. Even my wife has commented how evenly heated it is, and the lack of cold spots. I’ve also noticed that when I don’t have all of the loops on, as I walk from one area to another I can actually feel the difference walking from a warm area into a cool one. Not just the heat on the floor, but the actual space itself feels much cooler. I’m very impressed with how well it keeps the whole house warm.


Michael Diacon is a journeyman electrician with 30 years experience, currently working for SaskPolyTech training 2nd, 3rd and 4th-year apprentices as well as running an electrical contracting company, 4D Electric, with his daughter and son-in-law.

306.631.4867
WWmdiacon7 [at] icloud.com

Jason Mancuso, CALGARY

This installment takes us to Calgary, where homeowner Jason Mancuso discusses his experience with different radiant heat methods, and why he chose Warmboard for inclusion in his 5,100 square foot custom home.

 Downtown Calgary

Downtown Calgary

We knew from the very beginning that we would be using in-floor heating in our home. Living in a radiant floor heated house is not new to me so I was familiar with the upfront costs, as well as the long-term benefits. I had built a couple of homes with my dad, tried a few other methods, and then we sort of stumbled upon Warmboard.

I liked the different approach that Warmboard took. We have experience with placing pipe underneath the house, and we’ve also put it into Styrofoam and then poured lightweight concrete over-top. By contrast, Warmboard is a different method, and even before using it I could see that it was a lot easier for installation. It took a lot less prep as far as the framing is concerned, and it doesn’t change anything about the construction process.

The whole installation process is very natural. There wasn’t much prep-work needed. You already have to lay down a tongue and groove subfloor, so nothing really changes from the construction side until you put the piping in. After speaking with the contractors and different framing crews they confirmed that the procedure of building the house was the same as they were used to. There’s no interruption, no waiting for things to get done so that a contractor can come in. Everything flowed the way that it should. That was probably the best part about Warmboard, that it was very natural to the building process.

The only thing I would maybe do differently, through no fault of the product, is that through construction you get a lot of dirt and debris into the channel-way. By the time you’re ready to lay the pipe down you will have to spend some time vacuuming and cleaning to make sure the channels are nice and smooth. A bit of that was because we were building through the winter months, which obviously tend to be muddier and dirtier. Next time I will consider laying some ¼” sheeting over top immediately after it’s put down to protect it and minimize the dirt that gets in the grooves. It’s not really a fault in the product; it’s just a factor of when we built and how building procedures go.

We’ve been in the house for about 6-7 months now, so we’ve been able to experience the heat, especially right now in the colder winter months. We’re starting to get some –20ºC (–4ºF) days and the Warmboard has been great.

My parent’s house, where I grew up, had the pipes laid underneath the floor into concrete on the basement level, and in my parent’s temporary home, it was done with lightweight concrete over-top. In both cases, the response time was slow – between 1-2 hours. If you tweak the temperature you’re not going to feel it for a long while.

Now that we have Warmboard, you tweak the temperature and within 20-30 minutes you’re definitely feeling the house really increase in temperature. It’s much more responsive, much quicker, which in turn means you can turn it up a degree or two, warm it up, and turn it right back down again. You don’t have to leave it on for two hours, which keeps energy costs down.

I would recommend it; I might even use it in a future project. It’s not necessarily a product I’d use in a home I just plan on reselling. But as far as my own home, it’s probably one of the best features of the house. The house is very consistent, very clean, no dust floating around because there is no forced air. I would recommend to anyone building their own home to definitely use hydronic heat, and then furthermore to use Warmboard. It’s just a great way to heat your home, especially in our parts of the world where we get six plus months of subzero temperatures. And it definitely does keep your heating bill down, I can tell you that much.