Floor Insulation Panels for Radiant Heat

Radiant heat is one of the most economical means of heating a home or workplace. Floor Insulation is critical for keeping heat from being absorbed into the ground. These radiant floor insulation panels direct it into the slab where it’s needed and prevent heat loss to the ground below.

The floor panels have knobs molded into them designed to hold various sizes of Pex Tubing at a uniform-designed distance. This allows even heat distribution and holds the tubing in place during installation and while covering with cement. The raised knobs protect the tube during installation and make planning and layout easy.

Installing the panels is easy and we’ve included an overview and some guidelines below.

Insulating Floor Panels

radiant floor insulation panel with pex tubing installed

Floor Insulation Installation

The first step during installation is planning the layout of the panels. They’re rectangular and measure 23″ x 49″ with an effective insulation area of 23″ x 48″. The edges overlap to lock together and keep the forms from moving when walking on or pouring cement.

Floor Panel Layout

The panels are easily cut for rectangular or square rooms and even in irregular rooms, they’re easy to fit. The boards are mostly Styrofoam with a vapor barrier on the bottom that’s easy to work with. Below is a picture of a room with the floor insulation laid out and the PEX Tubing run where the heat is to be radiated.

floor insulation panels in a large room

Installing the Pex Tubing

Create a floor plan of where the radiant heat should be introduced to the slab and place the PEX. Most installations call for an even distribution of the heat, but a contractor should be consulted if more is desired in a certain area over another. The tubing can easily be set closer together in that area to provide more heat if needed.

Each panel has knobs that hold the tubing securely in place during construction. It will protect it from wheelbarrows and work boots and provide a uniform distance between runs. The knobs are designed to accommodate most tubing sizes from diameters of 3/8″ up to 3/4″. Consult your heating boiler for the best match of tube size.

Installing the Pex Tubing

worker installing pex tubing into a floor insulation panel


Once the floor insulation panels are in place and the PEX is installed, you’re ready to plan for covering it with cement. This process should be done by a qualified contractor familiar with this type of installation. A recommended minimum of 1.5″ of coverage is required through the floor. It can go pretty quickly and once you start, you’ll need to finish!

Below are pictures of the cement being floated on top of the panels. It can be a labor-intensive process and require immediate and constant attention.

concrete covering radiant floor insulation panels  installing cement on top of floor insulation panels  workers covering floor insulation with cement

Once the floor has cured, the majority of the work is done. You’ll be able to test your radiant heat boiler and make any flow adjustments deemed necessary.

Benefits of Radiant Heat Floor Insulation Panels

The quietness and efficiency of radiant heat are undisputed. The uniform heat throughout the floor will provide comfort and utility savings for years to come. The panels themselves have a 10-mil vapor barrier polystyrene film to prevent moisture transfer and their real value is their insulating properties. See the chart below for details

Floor Insulation Ratings

The panels are available in three different R-values. Not all installations require very thick, 3″ panel insulating properties so other alternatives are offered.

Floor Panel R-Ratings

  • R-6     – 1″ floor panel – overall 1 – 7/16″
  • R-10   – 2″ floor panel – overall 2 –   7/8″
  • R-15   – 3″ floor panel – overall 3 –   7/8″

Choose the panel that’s right for your climate and heating needs.
floor insulation specification chart


The insulation is very lightweight and can be shipped all over the United States. They’re packaged on pallets, in UV protective bags as shown below. Each bag is fairly light (30 pounds or so) and a lift-gate service is available to lower an entire pallet full (8 bags) to the ground upon arrival if necessary.floor insulation in shipping bagsIf you’d like a quote with shipping right to your door, please let us know and we’ll be happy to help. Email Sales@BarnWorld.com for a quote with shipping and quantity discounts or call anytime:  (720) 238-2190


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