Which type of flooring is best for underfloor heating?

Not all types of floor finishes are compatible with underfloor heating systems and this is because of the thermal conductivity of some materials.

The objective of underfloor heating is to transfer heat from the system into the room and some floor coverings can restrict this movement of heat.

Flooring materials such as tiles and vinyl floor coverings are low resistance and are therefore ideal for underfloor heating. Meanwhile, thicker finishes such as certain types of wood and thin carpets have medium resistance which means that some of the heat is retained and therefore the heating output limited.

Types of flooring - how do they fare for underfloor heating?

The best type of flooring to use with underfloor heating tends to be tile or stone. However, Grant has a range of compatible systems for almost every floor finish from including vinyl, laminate flooring and solid hardwood flooring.

We’ve highlighted some of the common flooring types and how well they work with underfloor heating.


Carpets have a low heat transfer and if you are considering laying carpet over an underfloor heating, you must check the total thickness of the carpet tog and underlay. Any carpets and overlay which are over 2.5tog are not suitable for an underfloor heating system.

Tile, Stone & Polished Screed Flooring

Tile, stone and polished screed flooring are materials that enable excellent heat transfer and ideally suited for use with underfloor heating. These types of floor covering can be heated to up to 29°C.

Laminate & Engineered Timber Flooring 

Engineered timber and laminate flooring has an average heat transfer and performs well with changes in temperature. These types of floor covering can be heated up to 27°C. 

Solid Hardwood & Softwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring, both hard and soft, has an average heat transfer. It is important to note that changes in temperature can cause warping with this type of flooring. When installing a solid hardwood floor or softwood floor with underfloor heating, care should be taken when specifying the board width and thickness.

Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl flooring has a good heat transfer and as a type of floor covering, it tends to be robust and hard wearing. Vinyl can be heated to up to 27°C and it is important to note that it is not recommended for high heat loss areas, such as conservatories, where the floor temperature needs to be higher. 

When choosing a suitable floor finish to lay on top of an underfloor heating system, homeowners and their installers should always check with the flooring manufacturer to confirm compatibility. 

If you are looking for underfloor heating, both Grant's Uflex underfloor heating and low profile underfloor heating systems are ideally suited for a variety of flooring types.

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