It’s about Comfort…Not Heat

Jul 2, 2019

Runtal North America, Inc. and its parent company Zehnder Group AG have been providing radiant comfort heating products to the residential, commercial, and institutional global markets for over 60 years.  It’s fair to say, we know a thing or two about comfort and heating systems.

Runtal Electric Baseboard and Wall Panels are radiant heating products. Not to be confused with traditional baseboard products which transfer heat via convection (heating up the air). This is a very important distinction when it comes to comfort, efficiency, and indoor air quality.

A radiant heat source provides comfort to the room occupants directly. This direct method of transferring heat is commonly known as the “radiant effect.” Products which use convection (hot air rises) have to bring the entire space (room) air temperature up to a satisfying level before comfort is reached. An indirect method of reaching comfort.

runtal radiant heat

Why is this IMPORTANT?

Comfort – Runtal Radiant Electric Baseboard transmits heat directly to the occupants and objects in the room. The means a comfort level can be reached at lower air temperatures. Similar in many ways to standing in the sun on a cool day. Anything in the room which is near the radiant baseboard now becomes warmer and transmits that heat into the space also. This is especially relevant to rooms with hard surfaces such as hardwood floors, kitchens, and bathrooms.

Efficiency – Because of the “direct radiant effect” and heavy steel construction of Runtal Electric Baseboard products, they are very efficient. As mentioned, comfort is the goal, NOT hot air. Occupants will experience comfort at lower room air temperatures, which means less energy wasted trying to make “hot air”.  Further, because of the heavy steel construction, the baseboard itself becomes a “heat storage” source. Once it is heated up, it retains heat for a much longer time than traditional, light sheet metal products.

Heat Output Ratings and the Radiant Heat effect – For Runtal Electric Baseboard which is installed along the outside wall of a space, published ratings should be increased by 15%.  Per I-B-R /GAMA heat transfer test procedures, “this added percentage is credited to the baseboard unit because this type of radiation is usually installed at low levels where maximum heating effect results.”

Indoor Air Quality and Health – As mentioned above Runtal Electric Baseboard products do NOT rely on air flow as a primary means of reaching comfort. As a result, they do not promote the spread of indoor airborne particulate (dust, mites, pet dander, allergens) such as traditional convection baseboard.