Gypcrete vs. Warmboard
Last Post 28 Mar 2013 11:46 AM by NRT.Rob. 18 Replies.
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bobmarkerUser is Offline
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03 Oct 2008 12:20 PM
I'm building a new house and can go either way easily with this.  My floors are engineered for gypcrete, but what is a better system?  What are the overall cost differences?  This is for a house in very cold country.

Thanks!
quailrunnerUser is Offline
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03 Oct 2008 05:31 PM
We have gypcrete - w. a good thermostat including in-slab sensors.   We like it a lot; so do the dogs.  It never gets cold.  The system does not respond really fast, but once its warm, it stays that way a long time before the heating system has to fire up again.


fullhouseUser is Offline
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01 May 2009 02:51 PM
I have Therma Floor (Gyp-Crete) in my basement (wall thermostat) and bathrooms (slab sensing). I find the response time to be really good actually! And definately, once it warms up, the consistency in temperature is phenomenal.
jamesmacdonald1User is Offline
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21 May 2009 07:33 AM
I have seen the Warmboard at trade shows and it looks like an interesting product - is there any feedback on this ?
Dana1User is Online
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21 May 2009 09:16 AM
Slabs can provide thermal mass to the building which adds to seasonal efficiency, something to consider beyond BTU/ft^2 output and condensing-boiler return-water-temp issues (which can also favor the gypcrete/concrete solutions). But the cement sub-floors are quite rigid- there's no "give" to it, and some people find that less comfortable.

Systems like WarmBoard with the heat spreaders above the sub-floor have quicker response times, but most people don't really run them with setback thermostats for additional (usually modest) fuel savings. They tend to be higher installed-cost than other methods, but there are many variables.

PanelCraftersUser is Offline
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21 May 2009 09:26 AM
Posted By jamesmacdonald1 on 05/21/2009 7:33 AM
I have seen the Warmboard at trade shows and it looks like an interesting product - is there any feedback on this ?

It's pretty cool stuff(they sent me a sample). But it's pricey. Another thing that I noticed, is that since it's the subfloor, it's likely to get wet. It's 100% aluminum(or light gauge steel) covered, and If it does, it's going to be very slick!
....jc
If you're not building with OSB SIPS(or ICF's), why are you building?
NRT.RobUser is Offline
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21 May 2009 09:30 AM
Warmboard also has lower water temperature requirements in many cases, and removes a sub from the equation as well as all of the load-bearing questions.

Mass can be quite handy, but it's handiest in a buffer tank. Of course there are times that 'crete is a clear winner on cost, and times that it isn't. but if it's not clear, I'd rather have mass decoupled from the emitter, myself.
-=Northeast Radiant Technology=-
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NRT.RobUser is Offline
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21 May 2009 09:37 AM
it is pricey as well for sure as PanelCrafters says.. and it's not exterior grade. with the aluminum top coat though, it's got a painted top that helps keep glare and slipperiness from being a big deal.
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Blueridgecompany.comUser is Offline
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24 May 2009 12:41 PM
Think $6.00 or more plus freight per sq ft for warm board plus pipe/manifolds
Think $.80 sq ft 3/4 sub floor ply wood, $1.50 per sq ft light weight cement, pipe install after framing, stapling to a platform is fast, and fairly straight forward. For 1 1/2 mass you will need to double plate bottom plates, and engineer for additional load 17lbs sq ft, deeper joist or tighter pattern, not big cost.
So right now lumber is cheep making the additional material cost low.
Benefit is mass.
I prefer the light weight option in most applications. Next I would go to a RHT floor panel type system, it is cost effective and does not involve double plates or additional engineering.
Good luck
Dan
Dan
BlueRidgeCompany.com
NRT.RobUser is Offline
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24 May 2009 01:23 PM
well that's a big assumption. light weight cement is pretty hard to find in many places, leaving gyp as the only option, and in any case I've seen prices vary from $1.50 to $4.50/sq ft for various poured overlayments. at $1.50/sq ft, that's pretty good. At $4.50, not so much.

there are a ton of conversation on this site about warmboard an alternatives though, and a use of the "search" feature should drag many of them up.
-=Northeast Radiant Technology=-
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Blueridgecompany.comUser is Offline
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24 May 2009 02:37 PM
Rob,
Were not Bangladesh.
In the construction trades there are 2 inch line pumps all over America that pump concrete with trailer able self contained hoppers, They will travel great distance for a job (especially now). The local cement truck backs up and away you go. Usually the pump crew will have its own flat workers and they understand there equipment an how to place cement professionally. Your right about the vary of cost, I know here in Seattle the shopped market rate is about $1.25- $1.50 per sq. ft placed. When doing small work (2,500 sq ft or less) it usually is less expensive to run concrete, there is a diminishing return on cost next to gype crete when you get in to larger jobs. Minimum cost is usually governed by local cement yardage requirements, so it can be a good time to form up walk ways around the house if you are looking at a 1,200 square foot job, you will pay for the material regardless.
Personally I prefer cement as it lends its self to tile straight away with out the expensive sealer required with gype.
The skill is all in the flat worker.
Dan


Dan
BlueRidgeCompany.com
sgo70User is Offline
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25 May 2009 08:51 AM
This got me thinking.

I had planned gypcrete on all three floors, the basement is the existing concrete floor, is there any problems with gypcrete adhering to the concrete or will I have to build a subfloor down there. We're in Calgary, pretty dry and the basement doesn't have any moisture problems.......but I might fix that.

Thanks,
Sean
jonrUser is Online
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25 May 2009 12:46 PM
If I am going to do 1/2" hardibacker over concrete over subfloor, is there any reason I can't go down to 3/4 thick concrete (just enough to cover the tubes)? Cheaper and less weight. Maybe even screw the hardibacker down while the concrete is still wet (the tubes would support it).





Blueridgecompany.comUser is Offline
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25 May 2009 10:44 PM
If you are looking for a simpler solution you can do your self why not consider a floor panel system. Concrete certainly can be poured 3/4 thick, If you are working with pros they will charge the same as 1 1/2 inch... floating a hardy back board on wet cement is not really a viable idea, might wait until it sets and thin set or screw glue wonder board down.

Problem with the basement is Calgery may be absence of insulation between slab on grade and the hydronic system, Might consider at least 1 inch rigid foam to prevent downward heat loss.
Dan
Dan
BlueRidgeCompany.com
sgo70User is Offline
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25 May 2009 11:45 PM

Thanks Dan, good idea. I hope to be contacting you soon with the plans.

 

Sean

dnanderson10User is Offline
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02 Apr 2012 02:53 PM
a nice option too is a new product that just recently came out...it has the thermal properties of gyp or cement and the flexibility of warmboard....this company makes lightweight modular cement panels that are super easy to install...modular radiant technologies, llc
NRT.RobUser is Offline
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02 Apr 2012 02:57 PM
recent? that product has been out for years. All the weight of 'crete and half the contact area! Not sure why anyone would do that instead of a plate system... low cost?
-=Northeast Radiant Technology=-
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DB INCUser is Offline
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27 Mar 2013 09:24 PM
Well, i can tell who is a warmboard dealer just from the comments . Cost? there's no comparison... I've been building homes in the northeast for 30 years and hands down a 2" pour over compared to a Wramboard application is 5 time less in cost, A more evenly distributed heat given the concrete mass, easier to deal with on site. No need to worry about covering it during construction to keep it from getting damaged. and the big one noone has mentioned is how many of you will get a tile manufacturer to warranty an install over Warmboard? good luck
NRT.RobUser is Offline
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28 Mar 2013 11:46 AM
I don't deal warmboard though we do work with them. I know, however, that subfloor material plus extra wallplates plus pouring two inches of anything over it isn't $1.50/sq ft... and that doesn't count the $0.50-$1.00/sq ft difference in tubing/manifold components... so your "5x less in cost" number is a bit off the mark.
-=Northeast Radiant Technology=-
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