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Unread 12-27-2014, 09:24 AM   #1
Pat Peterson
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Looking for some opinions and options

I have a home project where I am going to install hydronic heating on top of an existing slab. I am planning on using wood floor joists (16" oc) screwed down to the slab and burying the pipe under 2" of mortar. That leaves me with a flooring base that has a combination of wood and concrete. I plan on tiling the floor surface throughout so that the heat penetrates into the house. Do i need a under-layment? What suggestions do you have for adhering the tiles to the surface?
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Unread 12-27-2014, 09:52 AM   #2
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Welcome, Patrick.

Why would you install wood joists if you plan to encase your hydronics in deck mud?

The best option I see is for you to install your hydronic tubes, fill between them with deck mud (mortar), lay a cleavage membrane and then a minimum of 1 1/4" of reinforced deck mud over that.

If you have access to the TCNA Handbook, that would be method RH117.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 12-27-2014, 10:53 AM   #3
Splinter
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You'd be smart to run over to HeatingHelp.com and ask about proper methods to install tubing over an existing slab... You dont want to waste half your energy heating the dirt below...
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Unread 12-28-2014, 05:34 AM   #4
Pat Peterson
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Thanks

Thanks CX, I will do some digging around for a copy of the TCNA manual. The reason I am adding the wood support is because of height. I need a thermal break between the slab and the floor and so I end up with room for only 1" of concrete over the pipe. This was advice given by another person.
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Unread 12-28-2014, 09:34 AM   #5
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'Fraid I still don't grasp the benefit of wood joists over a concrete SOG, Patrick. How would that provide a thermal break between slab and heating system?
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Unread 12-28-2014, 09:44 AM   #6
Splinter
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Im guessing wood joist, plywood subfloor and then mud on top of that. Gonna add a few inches to the floor height with that setup.
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Unread 12-28-2014, 12:02 PM   #7
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Pat, I'd recommend 1" or 2" polystyrene panels as a thermal break. 25 PSI panels should work well. Lowes branded panels meet ASTM C578 Type IV (25 psi rating) as does Owens Corning Foamular 250. I'd apply thinset under the panel to ensure all voids are filled. Use tapcon screws the fasten the panels to the slab. You should be able to set the tubing in a mud bed per CX guidance. I'd also take a look at the site Splinter recomended to verfy the thermal break method I described is appropriate for your purposes.

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Unread 12-30-2014, 09:06 AM   #8
Pat Peterson
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Thanks for all of the info. Before I proceed with the house plans any further I have concluded that it is best to look for a local tile installer. Probably best to get build specifications from two or three in order to get what I need.
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