Today, many homeowners prefer residential heating systems, in which the leading place is given to warm water floors. Using the thermal energy of a liquid heat carrier, it is possible to achieve high quality indicators in home heating. The very design of the heating system, at first glance, gives every reason to consider this method of heating effective. The principle of operation of water floors is fundamentally different from traditional heating methods. In this situation, the functionality of each element, device and device included in a single set of equipment is important.
The high-quality operation of the heating system largely depends on how competently the coolant is consumed in pipelines of water floors. Underfloor heating collectors cope with this task, which, together with flow meters, ensure the rational distribution of boiler water to the heating circuits. What is the technological connection «collector — flow meter», how important are its functions, and how does it work? We will try to get acquainted in more detail with these and many other questions.
Underfloor heating and the space occupied by a collector with flow meters
A feature of a warm floor as a heating system is that the heated coolant, moving along the heating circuit, transfers part of the thermal energy to the floor surface. Thus, due to floor heating, heat is transferred to the air mass circulating inside the room in the direction from bottom to top. A number of devices are involved in the supply of warm water to the heating circuits, the intensity and flow rate, including:
Control over the distribution of the coolant is carried out by a flow meter for underfloor heating. This device plays one of the key roles in the operation of the entire pumping and mixing group. Underfloor heating collectors are designed to supply hot water and collect waste heat carrier for its further use in the pipeline of the heating system. In the pumping and mixing unit, the hot water coming from the heating source is mixed with the coolant returned to the circuit — the return flow. The functionality and efficiency of heating floors are based on this principle of operation.
Together with the operation of safety valves, rotameters are designed to control the temperature of the coolant in separate circuits of the water floor. Thanks to these devices, the necessary volume of prepared water entering the warm water floor system is provided. In other words, this equipment monitors the amount of coolant in the water heat pipe, and therefore the functionality of the entire heating system.
A rotameter or, if we give a full definition of this unit, a float rotameter, at first glance, is an ordinary mechanical device. The design of the product is based on a plastic case (there are models made of brass), inside of which a polypropylene float is placed. The case is equipped with a transparent flask, on which a marking scale is applied. Moving the float up and down inside the device indicates a certain value on the scale, which can be used to judge the volume of coolant circulating in the piping system — is it enough for the full operation of the heating circuits.
From the point of view of theory, the heating system can work without this device. In this case, you will have to manually adjust the volume of water entering the circuit, based on personal feelings when the air temperature in the room changes.
On a note: by the sound of a running pump and by the intensity of heating a warm floor, one can judge the degree of usefulness of the supply of hot coolant to all heating circuits.
Refusing to use a flow meter when installing underfloor heating is fraught with the following problems:
- separate contours of the water floor will be supplied with a heat carrier without taking into account the characteristics of the room, as a result of which the temperature values of the floor surface of heated rooms will differ;
- the consumption of the energy carrier used to operate the heating devices (electricity or gas) will be increased.
For example, you plan to heat the bathroom and the children’s room at the same time. An autonomous gas boiler will heat the water for the bathroom and the nursery in the same way, in the same temperature regime. However, the bathroom is smaller and will require less boiler water to heat it than to supply a warm floor in a nursery. It is possible to achieve an optimal supply of heat carrier for underfloor heating in each room using a flow meter. Therefore, due to the operation of this device, it will be possible to achieve individual temperature values \u200b\u200bfor comfort in the bathroom and children’s room.
Evaluating the operation and principle of operation of the device, we can draw the following conclusions:
- the device functions completely autonomously, without requiring additional power sources;
- the principle of operation of the flow meter allows you to create the optimal flow of coolant for heating circuits, significantly reducing the energy consumption of heating devices;
- the design of the device provides visual control over the amount of water in the pipelines;
- the collector, together with flow meters for underfloor heating, greatly facilitates the control over the operation of the entire system, is easy to install and unpretentious in maintenance.
Important! The device is mounted strictly in a vertical position, simply by screwing the device into a special collector socket. The device is fixed with a union nut.
On a note: when installing a warm floor, try to achieve the same length of the heat conductors of all water circuits — despite possible differences in configuration, this greatly simplifies the adjustment of the entire heating system and allows you to achieve optimal temperature parameters.
The principle of operation of the flowmeter. Installation and setup
When installing the collector and connecting the heating circuits of underfloor heating, the flowmeter is placed on a collecting comb, into which waste water enters. When the temperature of the coolant reaches the set value, a valve is activated in the back of the collector, narrowing or completely blocking the gap for water to enter. In order for the system to work according to the described scheme, the pump-mixing unit and the collector are equipped with thermostats.
In order for the water level in the transparent flask to coincide with the horizontal divisions of the scale, the device must be in a vertical position. Therefore, for the normal operation of the control group, the collector should be installed using a plumb or bubble level, achieving a strictly horizontal position of the equipment components. Installing a collector with deviations can cause incorrect operation of the heating equipment.
Important! Finishing the premises, installation of a collector cabinet can lead to damage to individual elements of the mixing group, so the units and devices of the heating system should be located compactly.
Installation and adjustment of instruments is carried out in accordance with the instructions for installation and operation, usually in the following sequence:
- using a wrench, screw the flow meter into the technological hole of the manifold assembly;
- by rotating the flow meter flask counterclockwise, prepare the device for operation;
- dismantle the factory fuse (usually in the form of a ring);
- set the desired pressure by turning the brass ring in the body clockwise to the desired mark — the location of the float will demonstrate the adjustment;
- to prevent mechanical damage to the device, close the brass ring with a special overlay;
- check the operation of the device as part of the entire heating system.
When operating a water heated floor, the flow meter bulb on the manifold must be accessible to visual inspection and, if necessary, maintenance.
Each water circuit connected to the collector is equipped with an individual flow meter.
The choice of the device model does not particularly affect the quality of heating and the functionality of the water floor system — if you follow the rules for installing and operating floor heating equipment, you can achieve the necessary indicators by installing any high-quality devices.