Ceramic, slate and marble floors add beauty and value to any home, but they have the reputation of being cold underfoot. With the warm tiles system from Easyheat, available at your nearest Menards, that’s no longer a concern!
The heart of the system is an energy efficient heating cable embedded directly beneath the tile. It’s a great choice for new construction or remodelling. Stay right here and we will show you how this is done.
First of all, you need to determine the square footage of the area you want to heat.
In the case of a bathroom, subtract the area where tubs, toilets and cabinets will be located. Then, consult the chart on the Easyheat package to determine what size kit your need.
Secondly, Make sure your sub-floor meets the requirements of your tile manufacturer. The easy heat system can be installed over plywood, concrete or backer-board. Also, determine where to locate the electrical box for the thermostat.
Life is good with a good heating system. Therefore, it’s a good idea to have the cable run parallel with the longest wall of the room. Measure and cut lengths of metal strapping and nail or screw them into the sub-floor at 30 to 36 in intervals.
After doing that, you need to Install the end screw or nail at a slight angle to provide tension along the length of the strapping. To keep the cable from twisting, use a broom handle or something similar and suspend the cable reel from a ladder.
Pull the cold lead, which is the black section of cable, up into the electrical box with a fish cord.
You then do the same for the cable up until the cold lead splice is about 12 inches from the wall. Also pull the white sensor wire up into the box. To keep the cold lead from interfering with the laying of the tile, cut a quarter inch deep groove into the sub-floor with a chisel or utility knife.
Secure the cable with the flat ribbon strapping included in your kit. Secure the cable between the cold lead and where it meets the first metal strap with clips included in your kit.
Now start looping the cable through the metal strapping using every other slot as spacing. Carefully loop the cable making sure it does not come out of the loop on either side.
Keep the end of the loop about an inch from the metal strapping. Make sure to keep the cable taut and bend the tabs to hold the cable in place if needed.
If the half-of-cable marker appears before the half of area line on the sub floor, you will end up short of cable before you finish.
If that is the case, carefully remove the cable and start farther away from the wall or place less cable in low-traffic areas. If the half-of-cable marker appears after you have reached the halfway mark on the floor, you will have excess cable when you reach the end.
Surplus cable can be used up by reducing cable spacing to an inch and a half between runs. Consult the directions in your kit for further details.
Now place the white sensor wire between two sections of heating cable that are spaced 3 inches apart. You will have to cut a small grove into the sub-floor for the end of the sensor wire.
Secure the wire into place with the included clips. Before the finished floor is installed, check the electrical resistance of the cable and sensor wire with an ohmmeter to ensure no damage has occurred to either cable during installation.
Consult the directions for exact details. Now the cables can be embedded into place with a cement-based mortar compound. You can use either a thin-set mortar of self-levelling mortar compound, but check with a Menards floor coverings team member for a product that is right for your type of floor.
You also need to use a trowel to spread the mortar over the entire floor at a uniform height. Apply the mortar in the same direction as the cable to avoid disturbing the cable.
The top of the cable does not have to be completely covered. Once the scratch coat of mortar has dried the finished floor can be installed. Follow the tile manufacturers’ instructions for installation details. Once the mortar and grout have fully cured, the tile warming system can be energised.
Connect the power supply to the thermostat and warming cable according to the directions in your kit. You are now ready to enjoy a warm tile floor along with the satisfaction that you did it yourself. You will be able to bask in the full comfort of having an Underfloor heating system in the home.