New Unipipe product brings under-floor heating installations upstairs

In a sector where there are many new arrivals, Unipipe’s long-standing experience in renewable energy technology gives peace of mind…

Driven by its Managing Director, Paul O’Donnell, Unipipe helped pioneer the domestic heating technology revolution in Ireland. 

Established in 1997, Unipipe’s experience in under-floor heating and heat pumps goes back to the early 1980’s when Paul started his own plumbing company at the age of 23. 

“We installed our first heat pump in 1985,” said Paul. “Renewable energy heating solutions was a tough sale back then, but we have built our reputation on quality, reliability, innovation and customer satisfaction. That’s what makes us successful. The partnership with NIBE Sweden 21 years ago was hugely beneficial to us, with the largest selection of units to suit any kind of home, we are able to offer more than just air to water solutions.”

Unipipe under-floor heating systems have been around for a long time, but it’s newest product, the Ideal Classic Neo 20 system, is turning common perceptions of what you can do with under-floor heating on its head.

“We’ve long since won the battle of convincing homeowners of the benefits of using under-floor heating over radiators downstairs,” said Paul, “but people have been reticent about installing it upstairs due to thoughts of the weight implications of a heavy load of screed cover. That’s changing now thanks to the Neo 20, which is a dry-fit system that requires no screed and floor finishes including tiles, wood and even carpets may be used.

“When a potential client comes to you and says they’ve been told by another firm that under-floor heating upstairs isn’t possible you can say, well actually, you can…”

Light in weight, Neo 20 is ideal for wooden upper floors over smart or engineered joists or timber frame construction. It has also proved popular for upgrading existing insulated concrete floored buildings to UFH, saving the digging out of existing structures.

The 0.5 mm-thick thermal conductive panels made from aluminium are already attached to the NEOPOR and the pipe ducts have an omega shape in order to optimally fix the 16 mm pipe. Floor coverings can be laid (almost) directly onto the heating elements, which saves installation height and enables rapid heating and cooling.

“This makes it ideal for renovations,” said Paul. “It raises the existing floor height by just 20mm, excluding floor coverings and is very easy to install. We have experienced a huge interest and demand for the product, particularly for apartment refurbishments.”

Thanks to its easy panel layout, the Ideal Classic Neo 20 can also be used to heat and cool walls and ceilings. “When used with our heat pumps, the system can be reversed to cool down properties, something which was a bonus to our clients during the recent heat wave,” said Paul. “It also creates an acoustic break between floors, which is another plus.”

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