Can you put underfloor heating in a caravan?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Can you put underfloor heating in a caravan? We will discuss the requirements for installing underfloor heating in a caravan, but also the pros and cons of this type of heating system. 

Can you put underfloor heating in a caravan?

Yes, you can put underfloor heating in a caravan. Some caravan models already have an underfloor heating system installed, so make sure you check with your manufacturer whether this is possible for the model you already own. 

The installation of underfloor heating in a caravan is a wise choice when it comes to heating systems. Its energy efficiency and high performance place it in the first position for savings. However, its installation, compared to other heating systems, can be expensive. 

That is why we have thought that before you decide to carry out this type of installation, you need to know that there are certain requirements. Read about them in the table below.

Requirements for the installation of underfloor heating in a caravan

RequirementsExplanation
HeightThere must be a minimum height so that the layers of the installation can be installed, with the insulation and the pipes. Approximately 8 cm are needed between the bottom and the upper surface.  
Floor transpirationThe floor must have the ability to transmit heat, otherwise, it will not pass into the room and the main advantage of this heating system will be lost.
Solid structure The ability to hold the extra weight of the entire installation.If it is a house there are usually no problems, when it comes to caravans and mobile homes, however, the structure must be verified first.

What will you need to put underfloor heating in a caravan?

The installation of underfloor heating is a job carried out by technical professionals in this sector. The installation of underfloor heating has some difficulty since there are several components that intervene. Each of them must be placed correctly. If not, we may incur frequent breakdowns. The components that make up the underfloor heating installations are the following:

  • Polyethene tubes: These high-density tubes are cross-linked by radiation with electrons. The width of these pipes ranges between 6 and 10mm. The hot water will circulate through these, allowing the transmission of heat.
  • Insulation plates: these plates are responsible for thermal and phonic insulation, that is, to dampen the noises that are produced. The piping circuit will be subject to these plates, there being different measures for the separations between them.
  • Peripheral insulation: this insulation makes the mechanical and phonic separation on the motherboard. It is made up of rigid strips of expanded polystyrene.
  • Fixing clips: using these clips, the pipes will be fastened to the insulation plates. They are self-piercing staples that are nailed on dowels in the curved parts of the tubes. Thanks to them they remain fixed in their position, thus achieving a homogeneous distribution in space.
  • Manifolds: the piping circuits are connected to the flow and return manifolds, by means of regulation valves that include an adapter. The return valve uses a lockshield with a specific fitting. There may also be an automatic drain and a tap for draining. The collectors are fixed to the walls with metal brackets.

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Advantages of installing underfloor heating in a caravan

We are going to start with the advantages of installing underfloor heating since these are the ones that make it a wise choice if we are looking for efficiency and energy savings.

1. Very high performance. Underfloor heating installations work through a system of pipes through which water circulates. These pipes can have a thickness ranging from 6 to 10 mm. Therefore, they are very thin pipes, so the flow of water that circulates through them is small. 

As the amount of water is small, the energy that will be required to heat it is very low. This moves between 30º and 45º, which in comparison with other systems that work at temperatures that reach 80º, is very efficient.

2. Reduction of consumption. By working on the installation of underfloor heating at low temperatures, a significant reduction in energy consumption is achieved. The high cost of other heating systems is due to the fact that they need to reach very high degrees to be able to transmit heat. 

3. Possibility of working with renewable energies. This heating system allows the possibility of connecting it to renewable energy sources. In this way, it could work with heat pumps with geothermal or aerothermal, as well as solar panels. 

4. You save a lot of space. The underfloor heating only needs a box in the wall and installation under the floor, so it is not necessary to rethink changes to take advantage of the heat. 

5. More comfort. This distribution of heat occurs uniformly, therefore all rooms and all parts of the caravan are heated with the same intensity. Thanks to this homogeneous heat transmission, the feeling of comfort is increased throughout the motorhome.

Disadvantages of underfloor heating installation in a caravan

1. High initial outlay. The cost of installing underfloor heating is initially high. In addition to being a job of a certain length, it needs to be done by professionals who are specifically dedicated to it, since any mistake can cause problems in the future. The average price of underfloor heating can be $50/ m2, not including the materials that will go on the circuit.

2. Limited installation. The problem that occurs in many caravans is how to install underfloor heating. This is because not all caravans are suitable for it, since the floor must have a certain height to be able to correctly install a radiant floor. 

3. High technical knowledge. As we said, how to install underfloor heating is a question that many people ask themselves. But this work should only be done by those who know the work perfectly. To avoid future problems and breakdowns, it is recommended not to find out how to install underfloor heating yourself but to hire experts in the field.

4. Little adaptability. The installation of underfloor heating is not compatible with those climates in which very sudden temperature changes occur. Due to this, this heating system will be used in those areas where it will be connected continuously. Otherwise, frequent switching off and on will be detrimental to the system itself.

Conclusions

The choice of a suitable heating system will be something to take into account when we acquire our caravan, but this will not be the only factor that we must check because, as we have indicated, more than the system that we choose itself, the design and placement of the elements matters. 

But before jumping to any conclusions, consult your caravan’s manufacturer or a specialised team and decide whether installing underfloor heating in your caravan is worth it. 

If you have any questions for us, please feel free to get in contact!

FAQ on Can you put underfloor heating in a caravan?

Are caravans cold in winter?

Yes, caravans can get quite cold in winter, but this doesn’t mean that you cannot travel during the cold time of the year. As long as you are well-prepared, you can live and travel in a caravan no matter the weather. 

Should you cover a caravan in winter?

Yes, you should cover a caravan in winter with good quality, breathable and light caravan cover. A caravan with a protective cover can be safely stored inside and outside, no matter the season, but especially in winter. 

How to protect a caravan in winter?

The first solution is the most economical: the protective cover. It covers a caravan that usually sleeps outside. It is never advisable to leave a motorhome outdoors for a long period, it is damaged and degrades more quickly (bodywork, gaskets, batteries, tires, etc.)

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