Winter is here. And so are the cold floors.
But staying warm does not have to be difficult no matter where you are. Because we bring to you this handy guide to help you stay warm (with the perfect balance of temperature and humidity) as long as the winter gods are active.
No matter which state you are in, we can help you create the ideal cozy atmosphere inside your house this winter. How? The answer lies in installing the best floor heating system.
There are basically two different types – heating mat and heating cable. But which one is ideal for your house? Let’s find out.
Best Electric Radiant Floor Heating System Summary
If you are running out of time and have already felt the cold throbbing on your feet, then this table is for you. We have listed the best electric radiant floor heating systems available in the United States right now.
|Best Floor Heating System 2019|
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| #1 - Heatwave Electric Floor Heating System||Read My Review|
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| #2 - HeatTech Electric Floor Heating System||Read My Review|
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| #3 - Warming Systems Electric Tile Radiant Floor Heating Mat||Read My Review|
Easy To Install
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| #4 - Heatwave Floor Heating Cable||Read My Review|
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| #5 - SunTouch WarmWire Floor Heat Cable Kit||Read My Review|
Just go over their unique selling points (USPs) and top features and make a quick decision. The best way to use this guide is to:
- First pick your selection from this comparison table
- Check out the product review of your selection below
- See if it has made our “best of the best” recommendations list in the summary section
- Obliterate cold floors in your house
Top 10 Best Electric Radiant Floor Heating Reviews 2019
These electric radiant floor heating reviews will give you a strong idea about which systems are ruling the roost right now. The top systems have some of the most exciting features like preset temperature control and touchscreen thermostat.
Why Trust Us?
Our panel of testers took close to 4 weeks to test out these systems. These reviews were then composed on the basis of their test results and overall verdict. So, you can be sure that this is the only guide you need to check this winter to keep your cold floors warm.
To make the selection easier, we have first reviewed the mat systems and then moved to the cable ones. If you have a personal inclination to either, check out their particular reviews and make your decision.
#1 – Electric Floor Heating System By Heatwave
Indoors; all types of tiles with moderate weight. Also suitable for bathrooms and kitchens, but with cement-based mortar.
- Programmable thermostat with a very clear display
- Thin profile means suitable for all types of tiled/stoned flooring
- Can be used for weeks/months at one go without the need to switch it OFF
- Limited lifetime warranty
- Might require external support during installation
One of the best floor heating systems in the market today comes from Heatwave, an American electrical company that has been around for more than two decades. (Heatwave is a sub-brand of Heatizon Systems.)
Its thin-profile electric floor heating mat adheres to the floor like butter falling from the table, and can be installed by carefully following the instructions. Because it has been tested and rated for use in both dry and wet areas, you are looking at a single solution for all the rooms in your house. The kitchen, the bathrooms – you name it!
What really puts it ahead of its competitors is the complementary thermostat that can be programmable as per your requirements. It takes the floor temperature (as opposed to the room’s) into consideration to give you accurate readings.
The Heatwave Electric Floor Heating System warms up in less than 30 minutes, can be left ON for as long as you want, and is rated for moderate weight (tiling and mortar) to suit your indoor needs. It does not get better than this.
#2 – Electric Radiant Floor Heating System By HeatTech
Indoors and outdoors (sit-out areas) on tiled floors; also suitable for concrete floors.
- Adhesive back panel
- Comes with Aube 7-day programmable thermostat
- 25-year warranty
- Warranty requires installation from a professional electrician
Equally good as the Heatwave model above, this heating mat is known for its sticky adhesion that just aids in the installation process.
You are looking at a 20-square-feet mat that is not only cheaper than the above model we reviewed but also comes with a branded thermostat. It has the Aube TH115-AF-120S digital programmable floor sensing thermostat and sensor which is far superior to the ones that come with any other models on this list. Just set it up once and forget about it.
You don’t need to worry about this heating map as it has a warranty period of 25 years provided you take the help of an electrician to install it.
The HeatTeach radiant floor heating mat is super easy to install for a DIYer, heats up in about 20 minutes, and comes with a huge surety for you to not miss it. It’s the perfect price for anyone who’s new to these heating systems.
#3 – Warming Systems Electric Tile Radiant Floor Heating Mat
Indoors and outdoors; both bare concrete and tiled floors.
- Easier instructions in the user manual
- High-quality wires and mesh
- Heats up in less than 20 minutes
If the HeatTeach had an older cousin with almost the same features, it would be this electric heating mat from Warming Systems. It is around 25-square-feet big and is equipped with almost the same set of features to give you respite from cold floors.
But what sets it apart from its cousin and other models on this list is the higher quality of its wires and mesh. The thinset that we used to cover the wirings (matside down on the concrete) heated up more quickly than with other mats, which certainly reduces the total heating-up time as well as the power consumption.
Warming Systems has really put the full value to this heating mat, which although is supported by the Aube TH115-AF-120S thermostat, works wonders than those that are priced highly.
If you are a DIYer, then this Warming Systems Radiant Floor Heating Mat is the perfect choice for you as the instructions are very clear for any householder to follow. You simply cannot go wrong with Warming Systems.
#4 – Nuheat Standard Mat Floor Heating System
It is ideal for all types of tile and stone flooring, both indoors and outdoors.
- 25 years of limited warranty
- Thinnest mat profile
- Easy installation
- Does not come with a thermostat
- Takes 45+ minutes to warm up
If you’re particular about the floor height rise and do not want to stand taller after the installation (no kidding), go with Nuheat. Its ultrathin profile (thinnest among the models on this list) and mat design ensure that your floor does not rise much AND that you get superior-level heating.
In everything else, Nuheat competes with the other models. But, what we especially like about it is the clean mat design. The mat is not a mesh; rather a carpet with abrasive surfaces on both side that will blend with the mortar and thinset.
One major downside is that it takes more than 45 minutes to get a temperature rise of 20-degree Fahrenheit. Although that is worth waiting, what adds to the discomfort is the lack of a complementary thermostat. (You can, however, buy one manufactured by Nuheat that perfectly goes with this model.)
Overall, if you are looking for a no-hassle heating mat that does not add a huge layer between your floor and ground and can afford to wait for some time, then this Nuheat electric floor heating mat is for you.
#5 – SunTouch Mat Floor Heat Kit
Indoors as well as outdoors for most types of flooring except wood and laminates.
- Touchscreen thermostat
- Automatic ON/OFF
- Timer function
- Complementary LoudMouth alarm
- Takes slightly longer to heat up (30+ minutes)
The floor heating mat by SunTouch is as close to automation that we’ll get at least in the current year. You just install this, plug the wires through the touchscreen thermostat, and forget about the concept of cold floors. It is that simple and effective.
With compatibility for both tile and stone flooring, this underfloor heating mat is best known for its SmartStart technology. It can be set to start automatically at the desired time so that by the time you reach home from work, your floor is already warm enough. The SunTouch thermostat also has automatic switch ON/OFF function to add to the automation.
Finally, it comes with a LoudMouth alarm, which when connected warns you about discontinuity or error in the wiring of the mesh before you complete the subfloor/mortar filling.
All in all, the SunTouch has got all that a modern household would look for in a heated floor mat and that safely justifies the higher price. It is one of the best radiant floor heating systems to have ever graced the market.
#6 – QuietWarmth Electric Floor Heating System for Floating Floors
All types of modern flooring such as laminate, vinyl, engineered wood, cork, and bamboo. Does not require mortar support.
- Does not automatically shut down in case of any errors or wire breakage
- Low power consumption
- Works with different types of modern flooring
- The most affordable priced model on this list
- The complementary thermostat is outdated
None of the five other models that we reviewed above are suitable for wooden or laminate floors. And yet a few households prefer to shun the tiled floor and go with these modern types. That is where QuietWarmth comes in; perhaps the only brand that understands your peculiar needs.
Its conductive heating (with ink technology) is 100% perfect for modern floorings such as floating laminate, engineered wood, floating tile floors, luxury, vinyl, cork, and even bamboo. The plug-and-play setup makes it so easier to install that your non-technical spouse will be able to put it up in no time.
What we also love about it is its low power consumption, meaning this system won’t go heavy on your power bills.
If you are looking for the best underfloor heating for laminate or plan to do any of the above type of flooring in your rooms, you should just close your eyes and hit “Buy”. The 3-year warranty will never come to use, we promise.
#7 – Heatwave Floor Heating Cable
Indoor floors; bathrooms, kitchens, basement, and other rooms with crooked shapes. It works on all types of flooring including laminate.
- Very easy to install
- Helpful customer care line
- Limited lifetime warranty
- Numbers in the thermostat is difficult to read
This Heatwave floor heating cable is a low-cost alternative to a mat, which is super-easier to install and maintain. It has all the dings that you would expect in a heating cable, plus comes with cable strapping for a more secure installation.
What we really like about this Heatwave model is the customer support. While testing, one of our experts had a query about the connection bit. So, we tried their customer care line (mentioned in the user manual). Not only was the personnel prompt but she was also technically sound. She understood our doubt and gave proper directions to solve the issue.
You may need the customer support line because installing a cable heating system can get slightly tricky. But all is well with this heating system from Heatwave because we could reach all the nooks and corners (especially in the bathrooms) of the house to fully equip it with the system.
The thermostat that comes with the model is not so user-intuitive. The digit display can sometimes be hard to read. So, we recommend getting a spare thermostat (around $15) and connect them both.
If you prefer heating cables over a mat, then your hunt for a system to get rid of cold floors ends here. Just hit the “Buy” button and Heatwave Floor Heating Cable will ensure that your system arrives in no time – before the winter becomes crazy.
#8 – SunTouch WarmWire 120V Floor Heating Cable Kit
Wet floors for both indoor and outdoor installation. Works well for stone/tiled floors.
- Perfect toast-like warmth on wet and dry floors
- Easy setup plus complementary testing tools like LoudMouth alarm
- High cost (but can cover up to 70-square-feet)
We already know that SunTouch is ahead of its competitors when it comes to technology. And its heating cable is no different – superior wires and fully programmable thermostat support.
If the high price tag is turning you off, then you need to think again. Because SunTouch is already known to provide the best type of floor temperature through the use of automation. You do not have to worry about overheating; the thermostat switches ON and OFF automatically to provide you with the right amount of warmth – perfectly toasty floors – whether it is your bathroom or your living room.
Plus, in the price, it gives you about 70-square-feet of cables to cover your floors. A couple of these will be enough for each of your kids’ rooms.
This heating cable is ideal – more than heating mats – for wet floors. So, if you are having second thoughts about putting that mat on the bathroom, give SunTouch a try.
#9 – Warming Systems 120 V Electric Tile Radiant Floor Heating Cable
All types of indoor flooring provided it is supported by cement-based mortar.
- Uses plastic cable guides to secure the cables onto the floor
- Good-quality thermostat
- Takes 20+ minutes to warm up
This Warming Systems heating cable does what it is supposed to do and in the best way possible. It takes about 20 minutes to heat and can cover all corners and sides of your house without overwhelming your budget.
It is slightly different than other cable systems in a way that adds more durability to it. Instead of stickers, it uses plastic cable guides to secure the wiring onto the subfloor. We tested this out on our garage and found that it improves the finishing a bit better than other cable systems.
And lastly, the complementary Aube Thermostat # TH115-AF-GA is easy to set up and program.
All of which makes this heating cable one of the best floor heating systems around. The ‘Made in USA’ mark definitely makes it a crowd favorite.
#10 – HeatTech Electric Radiant In-Floor Heat Heating Cable
All types of indoor concrete flooring.
- High density of heat dissipation
- Low cost
- Takes close approx. 60 minutes to heat up
This HeatTeach model is cheap, has the usual rings and bells, and comes with a 25-year warranty. If you are a first-timer and are just playing around with your debut floor heating system, this is the one to get.
But don’t be mistaken – it is also one of those models that advanced hobbyists depend on because of its heat density and dissipation powers. The wires are strong enough to carry them through.
However, it is probably the only model on this list that takes the most time to provide the desired temperature. You are looking at around a full hour to get the temperature that you want. Nonetheless, it dissipates a good density of heat that will be great enough to enjoy during chillier colds.
Whether you are in Alaska or Ohio, this HeatTech Heating Cable can manage the temperature all right without stressing on your supply mains.
Floor Heating System Review Summary
Those were the electric radiant floor heating reviews of some of the best systems in the market right now.
We know you have gone through them in detail and have already made your choice. But, just in case you have not or if you want to validate your selection, here is what our experts think are the top products in each of the two categories.
Top 3 Underfloor Heating Mat Systems
We’d go with the top three bestsellers – Heatwave, HeatTech, and Warming Systems. All of them are in the same range and have great capability to keep your cold floors warm for long.
While HeatTech is the most popular among the six models of systems we reviewed, we are inclined to side with Warming Systems. It is the quickest when it comes to heating up and has an overall high-quality mark to it.
- Best Quality: Warming Systems Electric Tile Radiant Floor Heating Mat
- Affordable: 120V Electric Radiant Floor Heating System By HeatTech
- Good Value: Heatwave Electric Floor Heating System
But if you are interested in heating cables, go for one of these two…
Top 2 Floor Heating Cable Systems
Heatwave and SunTouch take the pie among the best electric radiant floor heating through cabling. SunTouch is a technologically-driven product and is preferred by today’s tech-savvy users.
While both are easy to install, during our testing, we found the SunTouch model to be easier.
- Advanced Functions: SunTouch WarmWire 120V Floor Heating Cable Kit
- Easy to Install: Heatwave Floor Heating Cable
Finally, even if your selection does not match with ours, it’s completely all right. We have ensured that each and every model that we featured above will live up to your expectations and will give you long-term relief from cold floors.
How To Choose The Best Radiant Floor Heating System?
If you are new to radiant floor heating systems, here is some useful information to help you get up to speed.
Heating Mat vs. Heating Cable
These are the two types of electric radiant heating systems. While both work on the same principle of heat conduction, the only difference between them is their layout.
A heating mat has a pre-spaced layout (usually rectangular) which has limited customizing options. You can trim some types of mats (the QuietWarmth model, for example) but you cannot narrow them down. This makes it difficult to lay a heating mat in hard-to-reach places in kitchens and basements which have odd angles and turns.
A heating cable satisfies that purpose as it usually ships as a spool that can be laid out in any shape that you want. This is the reason why heating cables are preferred for bathrooms where you can easily cover the areas and turns around the water closet, the bathtub, and wash basin.
The cold can seep in from any direction, so it is important to thermally insulate all the areas. This gives the heating cable an upper edge over the mat in some cases.
However, both have their own sets of pros and cons…
Pros & Cons Of Heating Mat vs. Heating Cable
A heating mat is easier to install than a cable. Since the heating wire is already aligned (with scientifically tested gaps between each lining of wires) in the mat, you just have to lay it between the thinset and mortar below the main flooring. This is perfect for a DIYer or someone who has basic knowledge about masonry and electricals.
In this regard, the heating cable requires more hands and patience. It is also a time-consuming process as you have to first lay the cables in the designated area and then properly align them so that all cables have equal distance between each other.
Heating mats are perfect for indoor areas with tiled and stone floors. Whereas heating cables go well with wooden and laminate flooring where you don’t need the support of thinset.
Our top pick for heating mat would be the one by Warming Systems as it has the best quality of wiring. This, in turn, helps it to heat up quickest.
For heating cable, our top pick would be the one by SunTouch. We really enjoyed walking on the toasty, warm garage floor after we installed it during the testing period. If you are looking for the perfect floor temperature, go with these two.
If you have any reservations with these two models, you can also take a pick from our top electrical radiant floor heating system recommendations above.
Tips For Buying The Best Electric Underfloor Heating System
Here is a list of miscellaneous information that will help you make a wiser purchase. These involve tips about safety, during the purchase, and during the installation.
- If it does not hurt your budget and does not come as a complementary accessory with your selected model, get an alarm (LoudMouth, approx. $10) separately. This will help you carry out the installation without a hiccup
- If you do not want to spend extra, make sure to do continuity checks after laying each section. It will consume time but it’s better to be safe than sorry
- It is also a good idea to get a tester unit that will periodically test your heating mat/cable for any error and warn you. While these systems can be repaired, most of the times they diagnosed too late for anything to be done with them. In these cases, a tester will save you some good dollars
- It is not advised to cut or trim the mesh in a heating mat. Always go for smaller sizes
- If you do not wish to cover entire floors, make sure to use a trowel with groves that are at least half an inch deep. This will make sure that your floor does not sag where there is no mat/cable
- We recommend you to invest in a spare thermostat/sensor to go with the one that came with your system. This will safeguard the heating system should the primary one fuses off
- If your house was built in the 1980s, you may need a different thermostat specially meant for older houses. The customer care of the manufacturer will guide you with the best solution
We hope this short guide has made your life easier in buying the best floor heating system. We know that online shopping is not easy these days. Which is why we take extra efforts when it comes to technical products like these.
The key to finding the best electric radiant floor heating for your home is to go through these reviews one by one and then shortlisting the top 3 based on parameters such as quality, pros and cons, the manufacturer, and lastly, the price. Then cross-check your selection with our top recommendations and choose the one that best works for you.
Let us know about your pick and your experience in the comments below.