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Electric Radiant Ceiling Heat: Red Hot Retrofit
A U.S. Department of Energy sponsored study found that radiant heat
panels were  52% less expensive to operate than electric baseboard heat
and 33% more cost effective than air to air heat pumps. The study
concluded that “energy savings would be obtainable in a great portion of U.
S. households".

The radiant panels made by Enerjoy are about 1 inch thick, and range in size
from
2’x2’ to 2’x8’. They are textured to look like the ceiling and can be painted
to match the room’s decor with any quality water based acrylic paint.

The panels operate at 150-170 degrees F., and radiate heat to objects and
people in the room. The panel itself reaches operating temperature in only
three to five minutes.

Advantages of Electric Radiant Ceiling Heat
Heat loss from ducts, even insulated ones, reduces the efficiency of forced
air systems. Additional leakage is created by the internal air pressure
generated by forced air systems. No ducts, no pressure, no leakage
problems.
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Red hot as in sales, that is.

The reasons behind the
increasing popularity of
radiant heat panels are ease
of installation, quick warm up,
dust free heat, and low cost
relative to other retrofit
heating systems.

For the same price as a pellet
stove, you could heat a 1,500
square foot home and not
have to deal with locating,
storing and lugging 40 pound
bags of wood pellets.
Recessed Radiant Heat Ceiling Panel
The quick response time of radiant panels will return an unoccupied room to a
comfortable temperature in minutes.

Radiant Heat Panel Applications
Radiant heat panels are an excellent source of heat for bathrooms (no more
foggy mirrors), log homes, gazebos, screened in porches and stables. If you’
re heating a greenhouse, radiant heat will protect your plants in the absence
of sunlight by maintaining root temperatures.

Replacing a wood stove with ceiling mounted panels in auxiliary buildings such
as workshops or studios allows the use of all available floor space.

Radiant Heat Panel Installation and Cost
The low amperage requirements for ceiling heat panels can usually be
provided by existing 120 or 240 Volt circuits. The 30%-70% wattage
reduction over electric baseboard heating eliminates the need for dedicated
wiring. Wherever a single panel is installed, the existing 120-volt capacity
circuit is usually adequate for the additional load.

Installation of radiant heat panels typically costs between $1.25 and $1.50
per square foot of heated space. For a 1,500 sq. ft. house the estimated
cost would be $1,900 to $2,300. That's considerably less than the cost for a
complete forced air system.

Disadvantage of Radiant Heat Panels
The major limitation of radiant heat panels is the absence of a cooling
function. Installing a ducted central air conditioner would undermine many of
the advantages of using radiant panels.

One way around this would be to install a mini-split air conditioning system.
The mini-split, like radiant panels, is also a cost effective retrofit solution and
can be zoned to cool only occupied rooms.

If controlling heating costs is your primary concern, radiant heat panels offer
an easy, cost effective and healthy way to retrofit your home with
comfortable, reliable heat.
Since the need for a blower to
circulate heat is eliminated, so is the
cost of electricity to run the blower
motor. Without a blower, there are
no filters that need to be replaced.

Heating without moving air also
eliminates drafts and prevents dust
and pollen from circulating while
maintaining the air’s moisture
content. Radiant heat panels require
no maintenance or service because
there are no moving parts.

With separate thermostats for each
room, zoned heating is easy as
turning a light switch on and off.
Significant energy savings can be
realized by allowing only the
occupied areas to be heated.
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