How Much Does Underfloor Heating Cost in London?

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May 10, 2024

There are various ways to heat a room, which can make it difficult to decide which option is right for your property. When the cold winters hit, heating your home is a priority and you’re likely wanting to do so in an eco-friendly way, whilst also ensuring that your heating bills stay affordable.

In this blog, we have taken a look at the differences between wet and dry systems for underfloor heating, how much they cost and if they are more efficient than radiators.

Average Costs for Underfloor Heating in London

It’s hard to determine the exact cost of underfloor heating in London, as there are so many variables to take into consideration, such as the type of underfloor heating and how well-insulated the property is. This is why it’s a good idea to look at the average costs, to give yourself a rough idea of what you can expect to spend and how much you should budget for your project.

Total Costs

The average cost of underfloor heating in London can vary hugely, ranging from as low as a couple of hundred pounds for small and simple projects, and up to £10,000 for larger and more complex undertakings.

There are a range of things that impact the cost of underfloor heating in London, such as the type of heating system you choose and the size of the room. You should expect to pay between £60 to £135 per m² for underfloor heating installation in London.

Cost per M²

One of the easiest ways to determine the cost of underfloor heating is to look at the average cost per square metre. This can start from £35 per m² for electric underfloor heating, and rise to £80 per m² for a warm water system.

Factors Affecting Costs

There is no denying that underfloor heating systems offer warmth and comfort, and they add a sense of luxury to a home. Though it’s hard to know exactly how much underfloor heating costs in London before you speak to a tradesperson, understanding the factors that influence the cost is key.

Type of System

One of the key things that impacts the cost of underfloor heating installation is the type of system you choose. There are two main types, electric and water.

  • Electric systems are generally more affordable to begin with, as they involve simpler installation procedures and do not require a separate boiler.
  • Water systems are often more energy efficient and cost-effective to run in the long term, but their installation tends to be more expensive due to the need for a boiler and intricate piping.

House Type

The type of house plays a significant role in determining underfloor heating installation costs, especially when it comes to layout. Homes with multiple rooms or floors will require more extensive heating systems, increasing both material and labour expenses.

Homes with a simpler layout – for example, if the underfloor heating is only being installed on one floor or in a handful of rooms – tend to be cheaper projects.

The type of house, such as detached or semi-detached, can also affect installation complexities and costs. For example, fitting underfloor heating in an existing property may involve more work than installing it during construction.

House Size

A large house with a double garage

Unsurprisingly, the size of your house will impact the cost of installation. This is simply because large homes require a large heating system, which means more parts, more labour and a more complex project.

Flooring and Additional Work Required

The choice of flooring material and any additional work, such as work to prepare the site, can significantly impact installation costs.

Underfloor heating is compatible with various flooring types including tiles, hardwood, laminate and carpet. Plus, if your existing flooring needs to be removed or if subfloor modifications are necessary to accommodate the heating elements, these factors can add to the overall installation cost.

Cost Breakdown

Heating System

There isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ cost for the heating system itself, as there are a lot of variables to take into consideration. You should expect to pay between £60 to £135 per m² for underfloor heating installation in London, and this includes the system and labour.

Thermostat and Controls

In addition to the cost of the heating system itself, you will also need to factor in the cost of the thermostat and controls. The cost of a thermostat can vary depending on factors such as brand, features, and whether it is programmable or uses smart technology. On average, you can expect to pay around £50 to £150 for a basic thermostat, with prices increasing for more advanced models with additional features.

Installation

The cost of installation changes depending on the amount of labour needed, with larger and more complex projects costing more. You can expect a tradesperson to charge around £45 per hour to install underfloor heating.

To install electric underfloor heating as part of a property renovation, you should expect to pay between £480 and £720 for labour, and between £240 and £480 for labour if it’s part of a new build project. To install water underfloor heating, the average cost of labour for a renovation is between £1,200 and £1,680. The price goes down if you’re building a property from scratch, with the cost of labour ranging from £960 to £1,440.

Flooring Costs

The cost of materials is one of the biggest expenses when it comes to having underfloor heating installed in London. The cost of materials for electric underfloor heating in a new build property starts from £2,100, and £3,600 as part of an existing property renovation. For wet underfloor heating, the cost is considerably higher, starting at £4,800 and £9,000 respectively.

Insulation

Insulation is essential for maximising the efficiency of underfloor heating by minimising heat loss through the floor. The cost of insulation materials can vary depending on the type and thickness required, but you can expect to pay around £5 to £10 per square metre for insulation boards or rolls.

Different Types of Underfloor Heating – Costs

Underfloor heating cables

There are two main types of underfloor heating; electric underfloor heating and warm water underfloor heating. Though these two types perform a similar function, they do have some key differences, and this leads to varying costs.

Electric

Electric underfloor heating works by installing heating cables or mats beneath the floor’s surface. These heating elements are connected to the electrical supply and controlled by a thermostat.

When the thermostat detects a need for heat, it sends a signal to the heating system, activating the electric current flowing through the cables or mats. As electricity passes through the heating elements, they generate heat, which is then transferred to the floor above. The warmth radiates evenly across the floor, rising upwards to heat the room and providing a comfortable living environment.

The cost for electric underfloor heating varies, but you can expect to pay between £60 to £80 per m² as part of a property renovation. This cost is slightly less if you are installing electric underfloor heating in a new build property, dropping to between £50 and £75 per m². This is because it’s slightly easier to install underfloor heating as the house is being built, rather than having to add it to an existing structure.

One of the main advantages of electric underfloor heating is that it offers precise temperature control and quick response times, making it an efficient and effective heating solution for a wide range of properties.

Warm Water

Warm water underfloor heating – also known as wet underfloor heating – operates by circulating warm water through a network of pipes installed beneath the floor.

A boiler or heat pump heats the water, which is then pumped through the pipes and evenly distributes heat across the floor surface, warming the room from the ground up. A thermostat controls the water temperature and flow rate, allowing you to adjust the heating settings to suit your preferences.

Warm water underfloor heating systems are energy efficient and can be powered by various heat sources, including gas boilers, electric boilers and renewable energy systems, such as solar panels or heat pumps. They provide consistent warmth throughout the space and are particularly suitable for larger areas or properties with high heat demand.

The cost for a warm water underfloor heating system varies, but you can expect to pay between £135 to £185 per m² in an existing property. Like electric underfloor heating installation, this price is slightly less if it’s being added as part of a new build, dropping to £120 between and £135. Again, this is because it’s easier to install underfloor heating at the construction stage.

Electricity & Running Costs

When it comes to the running costs of underfloor heating, there are several factors to consider. This is the type of system you choose, whether it’s a boiler or a heat pump. Both water and electric underfloor heating systems can be regulated to avoid unnecessary heat usage, reducing the amount of energy wasted. For example, there’s no need to leave the underfloor heating on for long periods of time, especially when good insulation is in place.

In a typical 4m² bathroom, heated for four hours a day, the average monthly cost to run the underfloor heating would be around £10. For a room of around 10m², you can expect to spend around £35 per month, if you have the heating on for four hours per day. Of course, this is an average cost, and the actual amount could vary based on the exact electricity costs.

One of the key advantages of opting for water underfloor heating is that it’s cost-effective over time. By using a high-quality floor levelling solution, you can significantly reduce the required flow temperature, potentially saving around £10 per year for every degree it’s lowered.

Underfloor Heating vs Radiators

When it comes to keeping your home warm and cosy, you have to decide between underfloor heating and radiators. They both have their pros and cons, which we have taken a look at below.

Heating Efficiency

Underfloor heating works by emitting heat evenly across the entire floor surface, providing a gentle and consistent warmth that rises gradually throughout the room. This results in a more comfortable environment with fewer hot and cold spots compared to radiators, which tend to heat the air directly around them. This can create temperature variations.

Installation Costs

When it comes to installation, underfloor heating tends to require a higher upfront investment compared to radiators. The process involves laying heating pipes or electric mats beneath the flooring, which can be time-consuming and may require adjustments to the subfloor.

On the other hand, radiators are relatively straightforward to install and can be easily fitted onto existing walls with minimal disruption.

While the initial cost of underfloor heating may be higher, many homeowners view it as a worthwhile long-term investment due to its energy efficiency and comfort benefits.

You should expect to pay between £60 and £80 per m² for an electric underfloor heating installation, and between £120 and £135 per m² for a water-based system. The average cost of having a gas central heating system with radiators is £3,000.

Running Costs

When it comes to running costs, underfloor heating tends to be more efficient than radiators, particularly when used in conjunction with a modern boiler or energy efficient heat pump. By heating the entire floor space at a lower temperature, underfloor heating can help reduce energy consumption and lower monthly bills.

Radiators, on the other hand, can be less energy efficient due to their reliance on higher temperatures to heat the surrounding air.

On average, you can expect to pay £2.90 per hour to run electric underfloor heating, and £2.10 for a water-based system. This is slightly more than radiators, which cost between £2.00 and £2.10 to run per hour on a gas system. Though cheaper, radiators tend to cost more to install, so underfloor heating usually works out as a better investment in the long run.

A kitchen with underfloor heating

DIY vs Hiring a Professional

When it comes to having underfloor heating installed in London, you can choose to hire a professional, or you can opt to handle things with a DIY approach. There are pros and cons of both, and the right option for you will depend on your skill, experience and understanding of DIY.

Pros of DIY Underfloor Heating Installation

  • Cost Savings – Installing underfloor heating yourself can save you money, as you won’t need to pay for labour and other costs associated with hiring a professional.
  • Flexibility – With DIY, you have complete control over the installation process and timeline, allowing you to work at your own pace. You aren’t subject to delays caused by anyone else, such as a tradesperson having other commitments.
  • Learning Experience – If you are someone who enjoys learning new skills, a DIY approach to underfloor heating could provide an opportunity to learn something new and gain knowledge about heating systems.

Cons of DIY Underfloor Heating Installation

  • Lack of Expertise – There’s a high chance that you are lacking the technical knowledge and experience required for proper underfloor heating installation, which can lead to problems further down the line.
  • Safety Risks – Improper installation can pose safety hazards such as electrical shocks or fire hazards, which are more likely to occur if you don’t have the experience of a professional tradesman.
  • Time Consuming – A lot of DIY projects are time-consuming, especially if you have limited experience, and installing a heating system is no different. It’s likely that a DIY approach will take a lot longer, leaving you with disruption for longer than is necessary.

Pros of Hiring a Professional for Underfloor Heating Installation

  • Expertise – Professionals have the necessary skills, knowledge and experience to ensure proper installation and optimal heating performance.
  • Safety – When you hire a professional, you have peace of mind that they are going to adhere to industry standards and safety protocols, minimising the risk of accidents or hazards.
  • Efficiency – Though installing underfloor heating does take time, hiring a professional will speed up the process. This saves you time, and also ensures that you have heating installed as soon as possible.

Cons of Hiring a Professional for Underfloor Heating Installation

  • Cost – Professional installation tends to be more expensive than DIY due to labour costs and service fees, which you don’t have to think about if you’re handling things yourself.
  • Limited Control – You may have less control over the installation process and timeline when you hire a professional, as the installation depends on the availability and schedule of the tradesperson.

Finding Someone to Install Underfloor Heating

A lot of people make the mistake of assuming that finding someone to install underfloor heating is a daunting task, but it really doesn’t need to be.

Thanks to online platforms, such as The Page, and people leaving reviews online, finding the ideal tradesman has never been easier. There are a range of ways to find someone to install underfloor heating, such as asking friends and family for recommendations and searching online.

Whatever route you take, you need to ensure that you are working with a trained and experienced professional, which The Page can guarantee.

The Page

With The Page, finding a tradesperson to install your underfloor heating is simple.

All you need to do is hit the button below and submit an inquiry detailing the specifics of your underfloor heating project, and The Page will match you with a bespoke list of skilled tradesmen in London, all of whom are ready and able to help.

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