Why Radiant Heat Rocks: Part I of V

Posted on 2013-11-13 15:09:15 PST

In my 25+ years of providing radiant heating solutions to every imaginable type of building, there’s always several that stand out. In this series of articles I’m going to highlight some of the odder requests and challenges I’ve had over the years. Some are definitely not your average type project and some have nothing to do with space heating at all (my primary focus). I hope you enjoy them as much as I did in developing the solution and making it work for the client.

Wild Cat House
No, not that kind of cat house. I’m talking about kittens and the critters that go purr in the night.

A customer contacted me with a problem: She wanted to build a shelter for a number of wild cats on her property but she also wanted to provide them with some heat so they had a refuge from the cold.

A standard convection heating system was considered by the customer, but it became clear that they all had issues. Many were too expensive or impractical. Electric baseboards were considered as a cheap solution but it wouldn’t be a safe one. The cats could burn themselves on the unit or the fur could collect in them and be a fire hazard. The electric baseboard would also take up important floor space and it would be subject to rusting out or shorting when the cats came in with snow on them.
This wasn’t acceptable to the client. So she called us.

I discussed the project with her and it was clear that the SmartRooms Radiant Ceiling Panels fit her requirements exactly. The panels themselves operate at low temperature – a little above body temperature, in fact. So there was no concern for the cats burning or injuring themselves should they come in close contact with the heating panels.

Since the panels come in a variety of sizes, we were able to select the most appropriate panels to work within the design of the house itself. The panels are designed to be hidden behind drywall (but most finish materials will work too), they wouldn’t take up any floor space and there was virtually no chance that the cats or the snow they might drag in could become a hazard.
The result is a simple and elegant solution to a problem that most other heating systems could not solve… and we have a comfortable Cat House that is the envy of the feline world.