Your Wood Floors and Underfloor Heating

One of the nicest ways to enhance any kind of real or engineered wood flooring is to install underfloor heating, but before doing so, it’s important to understand the two main underfloor types of heating that are available.

Wet and Dry Underfloor Heating

A wet underfloor heating system sees a pipe being installed underneath a floor, and then warm water being pumped around the pipe, which heats the floor. These systems work with the central heating system of a home.

A dry underfloor heating system involves the installation of an electric heating cable under a floor. When electricity is turned on, the cable produces heat.

More about Wet Underfloor Heating

A wet underfloor heating system is best for new builds or where a new extension is being built. This is because wet underfloor heating needs to be embedded into a floor. As well, it may require an adjustment to floor height. As well, this type of underfloor heating may require maintenance like boiler services, depending on the heat source.

Small areas of flooring where wet heating is desired can be installed by tapping into a local radiator. Larger areas needing wet heating will benefit more from a standalone system, which may require a larger boiler than what is currently present.

More about Dry Underfloor Heating

The dry underfloor heating system is best when you wish to add it to an existing floor. As well, dry underfloor heating works well when installed for the purpose of providing additional heat when an existing heat source has reached its capacity because no upgrading of the boiler is necessary.

Dry underfloor heating does not rely on any other heating system in a home, such as wet systems do. Once this kind of underfloor heating has been installed, no further service or maintenance is necessary.

Considerations for installing Underfloor heating with Wood Floors

When thinking about installing underfloor heating for the wood flooring in your Bedford home, you must remember that the floor material will be in very close proximity to the source of heat. During colder months when more heating will be required, this means your floors will receive continual heat exposure, essentially becoming a huge radiator. This can cause your flooring to become dry.

A direct correlation exists between the temperature of the air, the moisture content of the air and the moisture content of your floor. The relative humidity of the air as well as its temperature will have an impact on your flooring, and when combined with the amount of heat or humidity generated by your underfloor heating, will impact it even further.

The relative humidity in any home where underfloor heating is being installed for wood floors should be no less than 40%, and no more than 60%. Moisture content in walls is another important consideration; this number shouldn’t be higher than 8%.

The general operating environment of any wet or dry heating system should be between 18 and 24°C. As well, the interior must be free of any ingression of moisture due to leaks in windows and other common causes.

When installing any kind of underfloor heating with wood floors, it’s critical to fully commission and pressure test before the actual floor is fitted. As well, a heating system must be calibrated with the purpose of restricting the floor temperature to 27°C maximum.

Any wooden flooring installed over underfloor heating is required to be kiln dried to between 6 and 8% by British Standards 8201:2011. This is because the moisture of a wooden floor will drop in certain conditions of humidity and air temperature, which can place it at risk of damage.

Any wooden flooring having over 8% moisture content that is installed over underfloor heating will require additional water to be introduced to prevent the floor from drying out. Humidifiers can help to regulate relative humidity.

Take a Chance With Dark-Coloured Flooring

Carpeting is certainly a great way to increase the comfort of your flooring underfoot, but when you want to give your décor a boost and give rooms new life, a more dramatic change in the form of dark flooring may be just the thing.

Won’t Dark Flooring Make a Room Look Smaller?

The myth about dark flooring decreasing the size of a room is just that: a myth. In actuality, dark flooring can make a room look far larger than it actually is. But the key to doing this successfully when used in the proper way.

What Darkness Does

Dark flooring adds plenty of drama to a room. Imagine a black floor with white walls and bright furniture. This contrast alone can add to a room’s ‘wow’ factor. Interestingly, dark flooring can also bring added intimacy to certain rooms like a bedroom or study.

Choosing the right Type of Dark Flooring

Dark flooring is available in laminate, timber or engineered wood flooring, and can be seen in many Bedford homes. And whether your home is a contemporary or period property, dark flooring can be the ideal choice.

However, not all dark flooring is the same. Choosing high-gloss flooring will mean a lot of maintenance. As well, any damage will show readily on dark flooring with high gloss. Therefore, this type of flooring isn’t the ideal choice for homes with pets and children.

If you live in a period home, you can still install dark flooring, However, when doing so, you may want to consider dark brown variants, as these may be a better fit. Planks that are narrow with much detail in the grain are best suited to period designs. If a farmhouse-style property is being fitted with dark flooring, you may wish to consider Matt flooring for a less polished look.

Divided We Stand

Designing with dark floors is a great idea which can net you a modern look as well as rustic charm. Consider combining dark flooring colours to split the sections of a room instead of employing furniture for this purpose. Doing this can be ideal where you want to separate a large room without having to place a physical barrier there to do it. Another way to do this when dark flooring is laid over a large area is to break it up by adding a colourful area rug.

For instance, the flooring around a table in the dining room can be a different colour than the flooring in the rest of the dining room. You can also consider dark flooring for the majority of a floor’s area, with other dark flooring laid around the edges as a border. You may also wish to consider making unique shapes with flooring, and then laying them amongst a solid background of flooring in a different colour.

Another way to divide flooring is to use light and dark flooring interchangeably. This will also create contrast and add drama.

Tips for Dark Flooring

Contrast is key when using dark flooring. Always create a contrast between your dark floor and the rest of the room. You can achieve colour, contrast and size balance in a room with dark flooring by sticking to neutral tones like beige, greys, and other muted shades for your furniture and walls.

Dark flooring is a wonderful way to transform the look and feel of any room in your home. And there are virtually limitless options, both for flooring options and dark flooring design ideas. Before installing any kind of flooring in your home, it’s always best to first get flooring samples and then take them home to see how you feel about their colour and texture.

Is there a “Right” Carpet Colour?

Carpeting is a major home purchase. But just as important will be the carpeting colour you choose. After all, your carpeting is an investment that you will have in your home for a number of years, so it should be something you love, as well as something that matches your personality.

Colour Schemes and Trends

The right colour of carpeting for you will be the one which works with your current colour scheme, or one that will also work with a colour scheme you have planned for the future. Of course, there are many exciting trends hitting the carpeting world these days. But should you follow them? An interesting fact is that the flooring trends of today echo the clothing trends of a couple of years ago.

There are ways to follow carpeting trends without having to rip up your entire household installation. You can use rugs in trendy colours and place these over your carpeting. Or, you can choose to place trendily-coloured items around your room in the form of accessories rather than concentrate on your carpeting at all.

Amount of Use

How often you actually use a room can help you determine the right colour of carpet for it. For example, a white or lightly coloured carpet may not be the best choice for a room where lots of activity will take place as these colours will show dirt and stains. However, a lighter coloured carpet can work well in formal rooms that are only used during special occasions.

Amount of Light

The amount of light which enters the room being carpeted will be another item to consider when choosing colour. Rooms receiving lots of natural light will show a carpet’s true colour, and so here, it’s important first to test how a carpet will look in this intensity of natural light by bringing a sample home and observing the colour in the room you plan to install it.

Conversely, rooms that don’t receive a lot of natural light may benefit most from carpets in lighter shades as darker colours will only add to the existing darkness of the room.

Room Size

The size of the room will also help to dictate which colour of carpet is most suitable. For example, if you have a large family room but wish to give it a cosy atmosphere, a carpet that’s in the mid to dark range can help to accomplish this. If the room you are carpeting is small, however, then a light-coloured carpet can serve to make it feel larger than it actually is.

Colour Psychology

When choosing carpeting for your home, you should also consider colour psychology, or how colour affects mood. Cooler colours like blue and green tend to create a calming effect, while warmer colours like brown and red can make you feel energised. Why does colour psychology matter? Let’s say that after a hard day you like to unwind in your family room. If the carpeting in your family room is red, you may experience difficulty with settling down. And you may even get the urge to snack on something sinful, as red is known to encourage the appetite.

Store Lighting

Choosing the right colour for your home’s carpeting also involves understanding the differences between certain types of lighting. The store from which you purchase your carpeting will likely have lighting that’s much different from what you have at home. This is why it’s so important to get carpeting samples and take them home with you before making a final decision.


Is a Stainmaster Carpet really better than Westex Carpets? This depends on many factors. Some carpets carry a guarantee that is transferable from owner to owner, which can add to the resale value of your home if you ever choose to leave. Others offer much in terms of durability and colour-fastness.

Choosing carpeting for your home doesn’t have to be a confusing task when you keep the above points at top of mind.

Concrete Flooring and Carpeting

Concrete flooring isn’t generally considered to be an attractive type of flooring. Usually, concrete serves as a sub-floor for the subsequent installation of flooring. Carpeting can provide a concrete floor with an elegant look, as well as plenty of comfort, as it insulates against cold and dampness. But is it enough to simply purchase carpeting, and then lay it right over your concrete floor?


Moisture presents one of the most significant challenges when it comes to laying carpet directly onto concrete. Concrete holds moisture, absorbing it from underneath. But if the air in the room is also moisture-laden, dampness can quickly go to work on carpet, rotting it over time.

Where dampness is a concern, a synthetic carpet may be the best choice because it is less likely to absorb dampness than, for example, a natural seagrass carpet. In addition, a carpet having synthetic fibres is better able to take the chemicals in heavy-duty cleaners, making the clean-up of stain-causing spills far easier.

Carpet Backing

If choosing to lay carpeting directly onto concrete floors, the backing of the carpet will be critical. Synthetic backings are best, as they will automatically resist moisture. This is very important when laying carpeting onto concrete, as the backing will be in direct contact with it. Carpet made from natural fibres do tend to hold more moisture, which makes them incredibly vulnerable to degradation via mould and mildew.

Do You Need Underlay?

Underlay is a very important choice when purchasing carpeting for any floor. This is especially true for carpet laid over concrete. Foam is often chosen for an underlay due to its general low cost, versatility and availability. But the porosity of foam makes it a poor underlay for carpeting laid over concrete, as moisture will transfer from the concrete floor to the underlay, quickly wetting and then rotting it. This wetness, once absorbed into the underlay can then transfer to carpeting, causing significant moisture damage.

When choosing an underlay for a concrete floor, the best choice is a rubber underlay that is anti-bacterial. But even here, not all rubber underlays are created equally. Some may not stand up to constant friction with concrete, and so some consultation with a professional can be a good idea.

Securing Carpet Over Concrete

When installed over other floors, carpeting is secured with adhesive strips. But concrete requires something more to keep it in place. Many times, the best solution for installing carpeting over wood flooring is to apply an adhesive over the entire floor before laying the carpeting down.

Insulation and Sealing

When not insulated, concrete floors can exude a lot of dampness and cold. That being said, it can be a good idea to consider the installation of underfloor heating system topped with a layer of insulation before laying the underlay and carpeting.

The moisture, dampness and cold emitted by concrete flooring may be lessened or prevented by sealing the concrete floor before laying underlay and carpeting. This may also help to make carpeting adhesives work more effectively, as sealing the floor will make it shiny and smooth.

Humidity Control

In addition to choosing an anti-bacterial rubber underlay, it may also help to control the humidity in a room where carpeting will be installed on a concrete floor. Although this will not solve the root cause of the dampness, it can work to lengthen the life of carpeting where no other options are available. Increased heat can also help with humidity levels, as can ventilation.

Where dampness is a real problem, the issue may be more significant than a good underlay and synthetic carpet can solve. In some cases, a concrete floor may need to be replaced by a floating timber floor before any type of flooring can be placed on top.