In this issue of TILE, we take a look at radiant floor heating. Art Mintie from Laticrete has written our Technical Focus (page 32), which outlines the two types of systems as well as explains how simple electric radiant floor warming systems are to install. The system is also cost effective and offers customers many benefits.

“Quite frankly, electric radiant floor warming is not a product that should overwhelm anyone,” said Mintie. “In fact, it is not difficult at all to install. If distributors, retailers and contractors know more about this system, they all will be able to enjoy selling it — and, recognize more profits in doing so. There are research statistics available documenting that virtually all homeowners who have electric radiant floor warming systems absolutely love having them.”

And who wouldn’t love walking on a warm tile after getting out of the shower in the morning? Manufacturers are realizing this as well, and as a result, there is an assortment of radiant floor heating products on the market today. It seems in recent years, more products catering to this market have been developed. To learn more about them, turn to the Radiant Heating Product Showcase on page 12 of this issue.

Mintie also points out there are factors to consider when installing these systems. “While most electric floor warming systems on the market today are compatible with any tile finish, there are certain installation products that work better than others,” he said. “In particular, high-performance ANSI A118.15-compliant latex thin set mortars are designed for optimal performance when used in conjunction with electric floor warming systems. In addition, the use of self-leveling underlayments can also be used to encapsulate electric floor warming systems when the substrate requires attention. Finish off the tile installation with a high-performance ANSI A118.7-compliant cement-based grout or easy-to-use epoxy-based grouts for even better performance and ease of maintenance.”

As with any tile installation, it is important to be aware of tile standards before beginning. The Tile Council of North America (TCNA) works diligently to keep industry members aware of changes and updates to standards. The TCNA Handbook Committee recently approved eight new installation methods and several updates and clarifications to existing guidelines of the 2015 TCNA Handbook. The TCNA Spotlight (page 38) addresses the change to language about mortars designed for large-format and heavy tiles.

If you will be at Coverings next month, stop by the TCNA booth. They are handing out free digital editions of the 2015 Handbook. Additionally, Eric Astrachan will be discussing the changes in his keynote session, which takes place during the show.

And speaking of Coverings, many of the radiant heating products featured in this issue should be found on the show floor. There will also be a host of new product introductions during the international tile and stone exhibition. If you are attending, take the time to talk to exhibitors and learn about their new tile collection, or installation or maintenance product. It might be just what you need for your next job. The TILE staff will be in Orlando, so look for a full report of the show in our next edition.