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Heated Driveway and Snowmelt Control Unit


Electric Radiant Heated DrivewayWhat could be better than waking up after a heavy winter snowstorm and finding your driveway and sidewalks completely clear of ice and snow? 

Radiant heated driveway systems are being installed in residential and commercial properties at increasing rates as home and business owners discover the affordability and advantages of automated electric snowmelt systems. Energy-efficient, maintenance free and remarkably effective, radiant heated driveway systems and snowmelt solutions offered by Warmzone are nearing performance perfection.

The most effective heated driveway systems utilize radiant heat, a technology first implemented by the ancient Romans. Of course, technology has come a long way since the days of the Roman empire, but the principle of radiant heat remains the same.

Today, the two methods of providing radiant driveway heat are electric and hydronic. While both systems require heating elements to be embedded the within the driveway's concrete or asphalt surface, electric driveway heating systems utilizes durable line-voltage heating cable, while hydronic snow melting systems generate hot water that is pumped through plastic PEX tubing. Hydronic systems require an "operations" or "mechanical" room to house the boiler, pump, manifold, etc., to cycle water through the PEX tubing, which takes up valuable space and results in noisy operation. The embedded heating elements of both electric and hydronic snow melting systems generate resistant heating that radiates to the surrounding surface area, melting snow and ice. 

UL listed snow melting control unit for electric radiant heated drivewayHeated driveway systems typically utilize an automatic sensor that automatically activates the system when precipitation is detected and temperatures are below 39 Fahrenheit. Electric radiant heat systems have an extremely fast response time, operate silently, heat surfaces much quicker than hydronic heating systems, and tend to be more efficient and maintenance free. Though hydronic systems are usually a little more expensive to purchase and install, the operational costs can sometimes be lower, depending on the local fuel rates.

Both radiant heat systems have their advantages; however, the electric systems are gaining popularity because of their price, convenient operation and ease of installation. For some who are considering hydronic heating systems, the uncertain future and ever-increasing costs of non-renewable fossil fuels are obstacles that must be addressed prior to purchasing these snowmelt systems. 

INSTALLING A HEATED DRIVEWAY - A Smart Investment.  Owning a radiant heated driveway presents several obvious benefits: No more back-breaking manual snow removal; increased safety by eliminating driveway ice, and the convenience of accessing your vehicle or driveway during winter's heavy snow storms. Yet, perhaps even more important is the value that you add to your property by installing a radiant heated driveway. The radiant snowmelt system not only raises the value of your home, but also increases the lifespan of your driveway's concrete and eliminates the need to use salt and harsh snow melting chemicals that cause environmental damage to your driveway's bordering landscape.

WHERE, WHEN AND HOW DO YOU INSTALL A RADIANT HEATING SYSTEM?
Heated driveway
systems offered by Warmzone are highly customizable, and can be installed in almost any configuration and medium (including concrete, asphalt, under pavers, etc.). The most popular time to install a radiant heated driveway system is during the new construction phase. However, existing driveways and walkways can also be retrofitted with radiant heat systems. Grooves are cut into concrete or asphalt, using concrete saw-cut technology. Radiant heating cable is then laid into the grooves and sealed into the cement (or asphalt) using an epoxy topcoat. Weather permitting, there are no limitations as to when a snowmelt system can be installed.

While installing electric radiant heating cable in your driveway is surprisingly simple, it is recommended that all electrical connections to the master control box be performed by a qualified electrician.

CONTROL UNITS FOR HEATED DRIVEWAY AND SNOWMELT SYSTEMS
Electric snow melting systems are comprised of three main items: the heating element, the controller, and the snow sensor or activation device.  These radiant heat systems are controlled by either a wall-mounted control box for electric systems or a small mechanical room to house a boiler, pump, manifold, etc., for hydronic systems. Both types of systems use manual and/or automatic activation devices. Available automatic sensors include aerial-mounted or pavement-mounted snow switches. These sensors activate the system when there is moisture present and the temperature is below approximately 38 degrees. Most systems also include a manual timer to preheat an area before a large storm to curb snow and ice accumulation.

WHO SELLS AND INSTALLS RADIANT HEATED DRIVEWAY SYSTEMS? 
There are several vendors of driveway heating systems; however, Warmzone is an established, dedicated source for matching your project to the best valued solution. Warmzone is the consumer and contractor advocate without bias towards any one system. They will point out the obvious benefits and challenges to any project and recommend a system that makes sense. Warmzone has extensive experience with both residential and commercial projects.

Warmzone has a growing network of contacts to contractors across the country who are ready and willing to help, wherever possible. Contact us, or call us toll free at 1-888-488-WARM.


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