easy heat floor heating system

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chargedup

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I have an easy heat warmtiles floor heating system which we put in our master bath under a tile floor when we built our home 6 years ago.
It has worked wonderfully, until one day when it just quit. The thermostat shows the floor temp between 2.5 and 3, and shows it trying to warm,
but there is no heat at all in the floor. We removed the thermostat, tested the wires, and it there is nothing - meaning open circuit? So is there any way to fix it w/o tearing up the floor. And is this a common problem? How does a circuit suddenly become open when it's worked for so long?
I never realized how good it was until I stepped onto the cold tile!!!
 

Leejosepho

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How does a circuit suddenly become open when it's worked for so long?
If you cannot get any continuity reading from the heating wire in the floor, something has obviously happened to that wire. Maybe the floor was not actually strong enough to support the weight of the tile and its underlayment without cracking just enough to also break the wire, or maybe the wire got too hot in one spot for some reason and then melted into a break.

If that heating wire in the floor is actually bad and you do not want to re-do the entire floor, you *might* be able to install a new wire on the underneath side of that floor to do the heating in its place.
 

Ballvalve

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How long did your electric heating blanket last? Or your last walmart dog warming pad? I consider these systems very limited in life span.
 

Jadnashua

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Properly installed, the heating cables/mats should last as long as you want (or until the next remodel). But, the controllers and sensors may not. Depending on the system, the resistance could be moderately high. You'd need to have the original instructions or help from the manufacturer to determine the proper valve. But, if on all scales of your ohmmeter it reads open, it's likely toast. Now, there are some signalling devices that could be attached to the wires to help determine where the break(s) is(are), but then, it may not help much.

First thing I'd do, is call the manufacturer's tech support line, but something obviously broke. You're sure you have power to the circuit?
 

Leejosepho

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How long did your electric heating blanket last? Or your last walmart dog warming pad? I consider these systems very limited in life span.
When I installed mine, I used a piece of commercial-grade heating wire and I was shocked at how small and flimsy the stuff at the box stores looked in comparison.

Depending on the system, the resistance could be moderately high. You'd need to have the original instructions or help from the manufacturer to determine the proper value.
The last I knew, 15 watts per square foot is the maximum allowable in any application. So, and for example, a 6' x 12' bathroom could have a heating wire that could draw a maximum of 1080 watts ... and then plugging that number into an Ohms Law formula could tell what the floor wire's minimum resistance should be for a given voltage. However, 12 watts per square foot is more typical in the engineering for heating mats for residential use, and that is likely what will be found here if this wire is still good.
 

Jadnashua

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The resistance of the wire will change with the temperature. But, if it's open, it's open (broken somewhere).
 

LLigetfa

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I put EasyHeat in both bathrooms 12 years ago and they are still going strong. Supposedly they can be repaired but finding the fault may be tricky. The most likely place for a failure is at the splice to the lead wire which should not be that hard to find since it would be nearest to the thermostat.
 

Speedy Petey

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apple apple apple with heavier rubber over it. Get out your knife and look inside. Ever change a water heater element? damn heavy duty stuff.
No way.
You are comparing cheap crap merchandise to relatively high-end permanently installed product.
I don't care how you cut it. It's not he same stuff.
 

DonL

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Regardless if an apple or orange or peach,

You should be able to use a RF circuit sniffer to find the break in the wire.
 

Ballvalve

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You should be able to use a RF circuit sniffer to find the break in the wire.

And then what? Tear up the tile and make a non-doable splice?

No way.
You are comparing cheap crap merchandise to relatively high-end permanently installed product.
I don't care how you cut it. It's not he same stuff.

Thats the manufacturer talking, to justify his dog blanket inside a rubber mat.

6 years, his lasted. Moms electric blanket lasted 26 years. Looks like he should have tiled over that.

Want to heat a bath floor electrically? use 15 strips of gutter or pipe heat cable and make it so you can pull each piece out of its conduit or channel as they reliably and predictably die off.

Its all the same crap inside, resistance wire is made the same way unless you are NASA.

And now the innards are likely imported and made with child labor in some Indonesian back alley.
 
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coldcanuck1

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Chargedup - did you resolve your Warmtiles problem?

I have the exact same problem as you experienced with the same product. Has worked fine for 5+ years, and yesterday quit. Shows a temp of 2.5 - 3.0 and shows that it's heating, but the floors are ice cold. If you have had any success please let me know, it's January and I'm in Canada - need my warm tiles!
 

Geniescience

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.... strips of gutter or pipe heat cable and make it so you can pull each piece out of its conduit or channel as they reliably and predictably die off.

Its all the same crap inside, resistance wire is made the same way unless you are NASA. ...


Toasters have resistance wire that heats. It gets REALLY hot, and almost never breaks, considering the use.
Baseboards have resistance wire that heats. It gets REALLY hot, too. I'm not aware of baseboards failing at any big rate.
Floor heat is resistance heat just like this, and it doesn't even stress the wire as much as these two examples where the metal reaches red hot... So what is this bug about NASA having better resistance wire and the average citizen getting a toy wire?

2nd mistake: Break a tile in order to splice? Normal. Nothing makes it "non-doable". A non-doable splice. Wow!
 

Ballvalve

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1] should have been pex which does not burn out.
2] I have a bolt here that cost the GOV [thats us] 22,000$ The box must have cost $2,000. 10 different inspection tags and a number on the cap of the huge bolt maybe 30 digits long. Maybe from Apollo 1 or a spy satelite. Bought at a Military auction in a "batch box" 4'x4'x4' with another million dollars worth of bolts, and some washers that took 20 minutes to unwrap.

Paid 60$ for the lot.

3] moral of story: NASA has quality control beyond imagination. [and stupidity in procurement] Electric floor cables are made for PROFIT.
 

DonL

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We made titanium and stainless Bolts in the Machine shop here in Houston. All started out as Solid Blocks.

The Nichrome wire that they used at NASA was the highest of quality.
A normal person could not afford that quality in a Home Insulation, but it would last forever.

Imported Nichrome wire is not made to last. You get what you pay for...
 

Jon Heilman

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Howdy

Found this thread trying to find more info on my thermostat question, and joined just to give my point of view. I have three floors with Easy Heat wires and thermostats going back to 2003. When it works, it's great. But, when it doesn't work, the problem is the thermostat. I installed my three floors. I was VERY careful in applying thinset over the wires. No nicks or cuts. My floors worked fine from the beginning. I have installs in kitchen, and two bathrooms. The wires are fine. What fails for me are the thermostats. I have bought 4 replacement thermostats for the 3 floors over the last 11 years. I just replaced one today. Today's lasted about 8 years. I get two kinds of fails. Either the thermostat keeps trying to warm the floor, but it stays at room temp, or the warming circuit fries and the floor temp hits the upper 90's. Rarely, cutting power to the thermostat and reconnecting will reset it, but that's only worked once for me. It bought me an extra year on the thermostat I replaced today.

I'm no electrician, just a homeowner who followed the directions and was very careful installing my systems. I really think the thermostats for Easy Heat are cheap and fail often. Try replacing yours and I'll bet it will fix the problem. Just my opinion and real world experience.
 
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