All posts by Jordan Ricks

Dealing with Snow Removal

The Joy of Winter

Keeping driveways and walks clear of snow and ice during the winter months is never any fun. While homeowners shovel their driveway and walks for convenience and added safety, snow removal is an absolute necessity for business owners. Keeping the premises safe – and inviting – for prospective customers is vital to their businesses.

While some business owners pay a snow removal service or task employees to shovel and salt the walks and parking areas, many are turning to automated snow melting systems. These radiant snow melting systems are maintenance free, and can keep entire areas clear of snow and ice 24/7.

Heated driveway systems are designed to activate as the first snowflake falls. When precipitation is detected and the temperature is below a designated set point (usually 38 or 39 degrees), the sensor signals the snow melting system’s controller, and power is then sent to the embedded heating cable. The heating element quickly warms the driveway (or sidewalk, steps, ramp, etc.) to prevent snow from accumulating.

As an industry-leading provider and designer of radiant snow melting systems, Warmzone utilizes the trusted ClearZone heating cable. The cable can be embedded in concrete, installed under pavers, and even in hot asphalt applications. The cable is available in custom lengths off the spool or pre-spaced in easy-to-install mats. The mats feature cable in 3- and 4- inch spacing (and custom spacing upon request). The ClearZone heating mats can be quickly rolled out and secured over the area to be heated, and then embedded in concrete, asphalt, or pavers. The mats facilitate the installation and ensure proper cable spacing.

Radiant heated driveway installed

Heated Driveway Retrofit
In addition to installing radiant heat in new construction applications, existing driveways can also be retrofitted with radiant heat. For example, in a concrete driveway, saw-cut technology can be used to create channels in the driveway, whereby heat cable is then inserted. An epoxy topcoat is then applied to seal the cable, allowing consumers to enjoy the benefits of a heated driveway at relatively little cost. For added traction and safety, a sand broadcast can be applied to the surface before the epoxy cures if desired.

Asphalt driveways can also be easily retrofitted with radiant heat. ClearZone heat cable is laid out over the existing driveway, and a fresh layer of asphalt is then applied. This is a popular option for homeowners with asphalt driveways.

Each Warmzone driveway heating system is designed according to ASHRAE standards. This ensures that every system is customized specifically to meet the weather conditions and snow melting demands of the customer. Average snowfall and temperatures, and other factors specific to the locale are taken into consideration. For example, a heated driveway in Tehachapi, California will be different from one designed for Juno, Alaska.

Fully Automated and Efficient
Radiant snow melting systems efficiently operate only when needed. However, after the snowstorm, the system is designed to remain on for a short time to dry the surface area so that no black ice develops. This added safety feature is a Godsend to business owners, keeping parking areas, walkways, and entryways free of thin sheets of slick ice.

In addition to eliminating the costs associated with manual snow removal, automated snow melting systems ensure that when business opens in the morning after an unexpected snowstorm, the sidewalks, loading docks, ramps, etc., will be clear. Customers will have a safe, clear entryway to the business.  

Industry Leading Support Services
What sets Warmzone apart from other radiant heat providers is its preeminent customer services. That’s why professional installers continue to work with Warmzone for their radiant heating needs. In addition to receiving free installation training from Warmzone, installers are also assured of receiving installation support if needed during the install. Warmzone has a designated staff of experts who are tasked with assisting installers in the field.

Warmzone also houses a professional radiant heat system design staff. Our experienced designers carefully evaluate each radiant heating system and create a detailed CAD layout of the ideal system. The drawing includes the proper materials and layout of the heating element and components, as well as the proper load calculations, breaker sizes, and number of breakers. This gives the electrician and installers all the information necessary to proceed with a successful installation prior to one foot of heat cable being installed.

Warmzone representatives are also available to answer any questions you may have. If you’re interested in radiant heat, call and speak with a friendly expert today at 888.488.9276.

Home Heating with Radiant Heat

Radiant Heat – the Most Efficient Heating Technology Today

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), prices for heating homes with fuels from natural gas to heating oil have risen to multiyear highs. With the demand for energy outpacing the growth in supply, homeowners can now expect to see a significant increase in their monthly heating bills this winter. In fact, with nearly half of U.S. households relying on natural gas for heat, those homeowners can expect an average cost increase of 30 percent this year when compared to last year’s cold months.

With rising costs, it’s important for heating systems to be as efficient as possible. Traditional forced-air systems are the most common heating solution, but unfortunately, they are notoriously inefficient. Advances have been made in furnace technology, yet still, the best systems boast an efficiency of only 80 to 90 percent.

Given the impending increase in home heating expenses, today’s homeowners are focusing on more efficient ways to heat the home – as well as ways to supplement their current heating system. If an alternate heating method also produces an increase in comfort, so much the better.

Whether you’re looking for comfort or efficiency, or both, radiant heat fits the bill. As the most efficient technology for heating homes and businesses today, radiant heat is fast becoming the heating system of choice for new homeowners, as well as commercial buildings.

ComfortTile floor heating system installed under tile floor
Ceramic tiled floor heated with ComfortTile floor heating system

Ninety-nine percent of the energy used for heating floors translates directly into heat. No other heating technology comes close to matching this efficiency. And the comfort produced by a radiant floor heating system is rich and luxurious. One must experience radiant heat to fully appreciate its splendor.

Not all floor heating systems are created equal. Some are designed for heating hardwood floors, while others are designed for heating tile, or vinyl tile or laminate flooring. Feel free to call and speak with a floor heating expert at Warmzone. We will gladly go over all the options and suggest the systems that would be best for heating your home – without any pushy sales pressure.

As an industry leader, Warmzone offers one of the largest selections of radiant floor heating solutions on the market. Our heating elements range from thin heat cable and mats to paper-thin panels, flexible low-voltage polymer panels, in-slab heating cable, and even systems that can be installed under existing floors. The thin panels are installed between the floor joists, allowing homeowners to add warmth to rooms without tearing up the current flooring.

Despite the varied electric and hydronic (water based) systems that Warmzone offers, all the electric floor heating systems offer specific benefits. These systems operate silently, are maintenance free, and significantly more energy efficient. Radiant heating systems also offer health benefits that can be important for the elderly and those with allergies. Traditional forced-air heating systems blow warm air through a series of ducts, circulating dust and allergens throughout the house. Because radiant heat operates silently, heating the home from the floor up, there is no need for vents and a blower. Radiant heated homes have significantly less dust and allergens circulating through the house.

With multiple floor heating options for a variety of applications and mediums, finding the right choice can be tough for homeowners. But that’s why we’re here. At Warmzone we are dedicated to providing the absolute best customer service in the industry. Not only does that mean free installation training, technical support, and professional system design services, but our free consulting is available so you can feel comfortable with your decision. Take your time, talk with the pros and discover the best system for meeting your heating needs and budget.

Warmzone offers several payment methods, including financing options ranging from no interest, deferred interest, and reduced interest programs. The payment and financing options are designed to give customers a wide range of choices that best suit their needs while allowing them to purchase the radiant heat system of their dreams now.   If you’re thinking about adding a radiant floor heating system to your home or business, visit our floor heating web pages and call a friendly radiant heat expert today at 888-488-9276.

How to Avoid Common Heated Driveway Installation Mistakes

Automated radiant snow melting systems can keep driveways, sidewalks, steps, ramps, and more free of snow and ice during the cold winter months. The systems are designed to detect temperature and precipitation, so when weather conditions warrant, the system activates. The surface is then warmed to prevent snow from accumulating. After the snowstorm the system remains on for a short time to dry the area so that slick sheets of “black” ice don’t form.

Although the installation of these systems is relatively simple and straightforward, there are still some common mistakes made by installers. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to avoid common blunders and ensure a timely, proper installation so that your radiant heating system meets all your expectations. Most installation mistakes can be avoided simply by taking advantage of Warmzone’s comprehensive installation support services.

Ways to Ensure a Proper Installation

Take advantage of Warmzone’s Industry-Leading Support Services

Perhaps the biggest mistake installers make is not taking Warmzone’s free installation training courses. This valuable training is provided by an experienced instructor who will cover all the aspects of your installation. This is a great way to learn the basics of installing automated snow melting systems, and can help you avoid mistakes that could adversely affect the performance and longevity of the system. The courses are available online via web conference and are typically completed in less than an hour. However, installers can stop and ask the instructor questions at any time during the training.

Mesh-Ups under remesh, to support the heat cable
Snow melting heat cable secured to remesh with Mesh-Ups, which are used to prevent the cable from resting on the ground.

Another way to help ensure a proper installation is to follow the professional system design and layout provided by Warmzone. Unfortunately, it’s all too common for installers to fail to follow the professional system design and layout given to them. Warmzone provides detailed layouts of the system to install, which includes the precise layout of the heating elements, materials and components, and dimensions of the system, as well as the proper load calculations, breaker sizes, number of breakers, and so on. Be sure to refer to the AutoCAD layout frequently as you install the system. These professional system layouts serve as the “road map” to a successful installation, helping to ensure that the system operates at peak efficiency after being installed.

Warmzone products and snow melting system components are second to none; however, even the best components cannot overcome improper installation techniques. So take advantage of the free training, system layout, and other support services offered by Warmzone. Our installation support staff is the best in the business, and we stand ready to assist you at any time during the installation. To learn more about installing radiant driveway heating systems, call Warmzone today at 888-488-9276.

Avoid Making These Common Installation Mistakes

To make turns with the mats, cut the tape backing and arrange the mat accordingly. (See the illustration below. Never cut the cable.)

Making turns with radiant heating mats.
Cut the tape backing and then arrange the heating mat accordingly to make the desired turn. (Avoid damaging the heat cable.)

Periodically Test the Heat Cable. Be sure to conduct OHM tests of the cable before and throughout the installation process. Write the results on the warranty card provided. (Follow the instructions in the Installation Manual to ensure that your warranty remains valid.)

Check Your Components Prior to Beginning the Installation. Prior to applying the concrete, asphalt or pavers, lay your heat cable out in the area to be heated and make sure you have the right amount of cable. Also, in concrete applications, always secure the heat cable to the remesh at regular intervals. Use Mesh-Ups® support chairs to keep the remesh from resting on the ground during the pour.

Refer to the Appropriate Installation Documentation. Always follow the instructions listed in the installation manual.

Make sure the splice and at least 6 inches of the power lead is embedded in the paved surface.

Embedding the cable splice

Install the Snow Sensor in a Proper Location. Surprisingly, this is a common mistake. Never mount the sensor next to a wall or in an area where it is not exposed to the weather. When installing an aerial-mount snow sensor (WS-2C, WS-5C) make sure it is mounted above the roof line. It must have an unobstructed 360-degree view of the sky to properly detect falling snow. Any nearby obstructions can prevent snow from falling onto the sensor, delaying or preventing it from triggering the system.

Never run Heat Cable (or mats) Through an Expansion Joint. All heating cable should be isolated to a single pour area.

Use the Proper Equipment. Do not use sharp metal trowels and shovels when tamping or spreading the concrete over the radiant heating cable. Great care must be taken to avoid damaging the outer jacket of the snow melting cable.

Never cut the Heat Cable. When making turns with the heating mats, only cut the tape backing, and then arrange the mat accordingly for the turn.

Heated tire tracks in driveway

Do not Allow the Heat Cable to rest on the Ground Prior to Applying Concrete. The cable should be elevated so that it is within about 2-inches of the driveway surface. Small plastic Mesh-Ups® support chairs can be fastened to the remesh, providing support and preventing the heat cable from being pushed to the ground.

The ideal time to install radiant heat is during new construction. However, driveways can also be retrofitted with radiant snow melting systems. Saw-cut technology is used for concrete driveways, providing channels for the heat cable, and then special epoxy is used to seal the cable in the driveway. For existing asphalt driveways, the heat cable is placed over the old asphalt and a new layer of asphalt is then applied directly over the cable. (Contact Warmzone to learn more about our special asphalt heating cable.) Talk to a radiant heat professional today to learn more about retrofitting your driveway or other areas with radiant heat. Call 888-488-9276 today.

Warmzone maintains relationships with experienced, positively reviewed installers throughout the country, so regardless of your location, we may be able to recommend a qualified installer in your area. If you have any questions during your installation, please don’t hesitate to call one of our support staff. We are here for you, so take advantage of the training and personal support.

The Premier Roof De-icing Solution

Keeping roofs well maintained and free of ice dams during the winter is crucial for the longevity of both residential and commercial structures. Preventing ice dams and keeping roof edges and gutters clear of heavy snow and ice can also play an important role in enhancing safety for pedestrian traffic. When roof ice is neglected, icicles can break free and tumble onto unsuspecting people below, as well as drip and cause thin sheets of black ice to develop on sidewalks. Needless to say, this can be particularly problematic for business owners as they struggle to keep their commercial properties safe and profitable during the cold winter months.

While many roof de-icing options are available for residential and commercial applications, one in particular has distinguished itself from the others. The low-voltage RoofHeat™ STEP® system features a unique semi-conductive polymer heating element. The thin, flexible panels can be installed discreetly under shingles as well as metal roofs. The system operates on low voltage, and does not require a ground fault switch. The RoofHeat STEP de-icing roof heating system provides remarkable performance and efficiency, and has established itself as one of the most trusted and comprehensive roof de-icing solutions available. The system’s performance and ease of installation have made it a favorite among roofing professionals.

These systems are especially effective in controlling and eliminating ice dams. Ice dams form as a result of warm air escaping from the home into the attic, causing the bottom layer of snow on the roof to melt. The water trickles down to the roof eaves, but because there is no warm attic under the eaves, the water refreezes near the roof’s edge. Over time, more and more water runs down to the eave and freezes, causing a ridge of ice to form. Eventually, the ice dam causes the melted snow to collect behind it, resulting in pools of water on the roof eaves. The water in these pools can seep into tiny cracks and imperfections in the roof, causing more imperfections as it expands during the refreezing process.

About the System

The low-voltage roof de-icing solution utilizes a transformer to power the system. The transformer steps down high voltage to low voltage (60 V or less), and monitors the power and output of the self-regulating heating element to ensure safe, optimal performance.

Low-voltage radiant heating element.

The heating element (just 3/64-inch thick) features an impermeable membrane that is polypropylene fused during fabrication to achieve water proofing and protection from alkaline or salt damage. It is available in widths of 3, 6, 9 or 12-inches, making this system versatile enough to be installed to heat large areas, roof valleys, intricate trouble spots, and even in roof gutters.

RoofHeat STEP lightweight panels are easy to install and can be cut to size on the job site. During installation, the heating element can also be nailed or stapled through, making installation quicker and easier than other traditional roof heating systems. Additionally, the roof heating system is self-regulating, which means that when the ambient temperature rises, the electrical resistance increases and the consumption of electricity decreases, preventing the element from overheating, and ensuring energy-efficient operation.

Some basic features and benefits of the self-regulating, low-voltage roof de-icing system include:

  • Proven performance
  • Low-voltage
  • Self-regulating
  • Thin: 3/64-inch (1.2 mm) thick
  • Lightweight: 0.23 lb per foot (0.34 kg/m)
  • Operates quietly and efficiently
  • Versatile: Works under asphalt, shake, and tile shingles, and metal roofs. The system can be installed to heat roof eaves, valleys, gutters, or even the entire roof.
  • The heating element can be nailed or stapled through (Avoid nailing through the bus braids.)
  • Discreet: The heating element is installed under the roofing.
  • Construction: Rugged positive temperature coefficient (PTC) semi-conductive polymer with an impermeable membrane outer coating that is polypropylene fused
  • 10-year limited warranty against manufacturing defects
  • ETL (NRTL) listed

Low-voltage RoofHeat STEP systems are typically controlled by the STEP Touch Thermostat (activation device). The thermostat is designed for simple two-control functionality for ease of operation and features a 3-digit, auto-dim LED display. The versatile Touch sensor controls are maintenance free and capable of working seamlessly with all Warmzone radiant heat systems, and can interface with smart home systems as well. All settings are stored in permanent memory for instant recovery in the event of a power failure (no batteries are needed).

While the STEP Touch Thermostat is the recommended activation device for the low-voltage de-icing system, it can also utilize Warmzone’s advanced aerial-mount activation device. A variety of options exist, so talk with one of our radiant heat experts and we’ll be happy to help determine the best configuration and controls for your system.

Warmzone custom designs each roof heating system to best meet the needs of each customer. Professional roof heating system designers will work closely with you to ensure that you receive the best roof de-icing solution possible.

In addition to professional system design and layout services, Warmzone also includes free installation training for installers as well as technical support during the installation. We are available to your installer to assist if there are any questions during the installation. Our goal is not only to ensure that you receive the best system, but that your system is installed correctly and performing as advertised.

For more details about Warmzone’s industry-leading roof de-icing solutions, call Warmzone and speak to a customer service professional today at 888-488-9276.

Warmzone Introduces the Wi-Fi Controller

As an industry-leading provider of radiant heat solutions, Warmzone is committed to providing its customers with the most advanced radiant heat system controllers and components. The latest addition to Warmzone’s extensive line of products is the Wi-Fi Snow Melting System Controller.

Warmzone’s new controller offers basic Wi-Fi functionality, and can communicate the status of the controller to the user, relaying information so the user can choose how they would like the system to proceed. This is a feature previously not available. For example, when the control unit is activated it sends a notification to the app on your phone, and you can then decide to ignore it or turn it off if you do not want the system to run. It will also send you a notification if it detects a problem with the system’s activation device. This is currently the only Wi-Fi controller available for radiant snow melting systems.

Driveway with heated pavers.

The Wi-Fi snow melting system control unit works with an aerial-mount or in-ground snow sensor to automatically detect snow or ice and activate the system to prevent any snow from accumulating. The unit is compact, and easily installed on a wall in the garage or utility room.

Wi-Fi Control Unit Features:

  • Automatic snow/ice detection
  • Compatible with both in-slab and retrofit aerial sensors
  • Tandem snow/ice detection
  • Operates hydronic or electric on/off systems
  • Supports multiple zones with priority
  • Warm weather shut down
  • Cold weather cutoff
  • Idling and manual storm for quick response
  • Automatic software updates
  • EconoMelt function

Automated snow melting systems operate only when needed, providing efficient, ‘round-the-clock protection to prevent snow and ice from accumulating. In addition to a controller like Warmzone’s Wi-Fi Snow Melting System Controller, the systems typically feature industry-leading ClearZone heat cable and an advanced in-ground or aerial-mounted snow sensor. (Warmzone also offers hydronic (water-based) snow melting systems.)

The snow sensors are capable of detecting precipitation as well as temperature, so when conditions warrant, the sensor triggers the control unit, which then sends power to the embedded heating cable.

Radiant snow melting systems are commonly used to heat residential driveways and sidewalks, as well as commercial properties. The systems not only eliminate the need to shovel, plow or salt the area, but enhance safety, which is of paramount importance for business owners.

To learn more about Warmzone and the many interior and exterior radiant heat options, call a friendly Warmzone representative today, at 888-488-9276.

Warmzone Introduces the Labor-Saving EcoTrace™ Single-feed Contactor Panels

Salt Lake City, Utah (PR WEB) February 1, 2021 – Warmzone, a leading provider of interior and exterior radiant heat systems, announces the release of its new EcoTrace 100 and 200-amp single-feed snow melting system contactor panels. Lauded by homeowners and industry professionals alike, the single-feed panels offer the potential for significant savings when it comes to the installation of radiant snow melting systems.

The cost-saving benefits of the SF100 and SF200 single-feed panels are realized by dramatically reducing the labor demands during the installation of the system. The industry’s typical contactor panels usually require the electrician to run several circuits from the home’s breaker box to the snow melting system’s contactor panel. This process can take considerable time and materials, adding to the installation cost. However, with the EcoTrace panels electricians need only to route one circuit from the home’s breaker box.

Single-feed contactor panel

The EcoTrace SF100 and SF200 single-feed panels are self-contained with contactors, GFEP protection, and in-line fuses. Instehttp://<a href=”/blog/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/sf-contactor-panel-diag-2846-GF200-callouts.jpg”>ad of running multiple circuits to the contactor panel, the electrician can run a single circuit, thereby saving hours (and possibly days in installation labor for larger systems). The single-feed contactors can also eliminate the need for a sub-panel.

The new EcoTrace panels represent a technological breakthrough to electricians by addressing their age old power-feed concern. The availability of the SF100 and SF200 panels grant homeowners greater flexibility by providing a labor-saving option that was previously unavailable.

“The engineering of these advanced panels is state-of-the-art,” stated Jim Sage, an electrical expert and Warmzone’s senior radiant heat system designer. “The SF100 and SF200 panels were designed to save electricians a lot of time, which can translate into a significant cost savings for homeowners. We’re excited to offer them to our customers.”

To learn more about the EcoTrace single-feed panels, contact a Warmzone representative today at 888.488.9276. Radiant heat professionals are available for free consulting and will be happy to discuss your project.

About WARMZONE

As a leading provider of radiant heat solutions, Warmzone offers one of the largest selections of radiant heat products in the industry. Warmzone also includes professional system design and layout, free installation training and installation support.

Warmzone’s mission is to match each customer’s needs with the finest radiant heating systems available. As an intermediary between project requirements and a variety of system choices, Warmzone offers unbiased, individualized solutions that factor the installation, durability, performance and operational investment as the key criteria of their customers. With a staff of some of the most experienced professionals in the industry Warmzone routinely provides premier radiant heat solutions to customers throughout the United States and Canada. Warmzone is a privately owned and operated business headquartered in Salt Lake City Utah. For more information contact Warmzone at 888.488.9276, or visit us online at www.warmzone.com.

Warmzone EcoTrace™ Single-feed Contactor Panels

Introducing the Labor-Saving Contactor Panel Hailed by Electricians

Since the company’s inception, Warmzone has remained committed to finding and developing the latest technology for its customers. Warmzone snow melting systems, heated floors, and roof de-icing solutions feature the most advanced – and proven – controls and heating elements in the industry. In keeping with its pledge to offer customers the widest selection of the best products available, Warmzone has recently added the industry’s most advanced contactor panels for snow melting system applications to its product lineup.

Warmzone now offers the EcoTrace 100 and 200-amp single-feed snow melting system contactor panels. Hailed as a breakthrough by electricians and system installers, the single-feed panels offer the potential for significant savings when it comes to the installation of radiant snow melting systems.

The potential cost-saving benefits of the SF100 and SF200 single-feed panels can be realized by the panel’s “single-feed” design, which can dramatically reduce the labor demands during the installation of the snow melting system.

Single-feed contactor panel

The industry’s typical contactor panels usually require the electrician to run several circuits from the home’s breaker box to the snow melting system’s contactor panel. This process can take considerable time and materials, adding to the installation cost. However, with the EcoTrace panels electricians need only to route one circuit from the home’s breaker box.

The EcoTrace SF100 and SF200 single-feed panels are self-contained with contactors, GFEP protection, and in-line fuses. Instead of running multiple circuits to the contactor panel, the electrician can run a single circuit, thereby saving hours (and possibly days in installation labor for larger systems). The single-feed contactors can also eliminate the need for a sub-panel.

The new EcoTrace panels represent a technological breakthrough to electricians by addressing their age old power-feed concern. The SF100 and SF200 offer homeowners greater flexibility by providing a labor-saving option that was previously unavailable.

“The engineering of these advanced panels is state-of-the-art,” stated Jim Sage, an electrical expert and Warmzone’s senior radiant heat system designer. “The SF100 and SF200 panels were designed to save electricians a lot of time, which can translate into a significant cost savings for homeowners. We’re excited to offer them to our customers.”

To learn more about the advanced EcoTrace single-feed panels, contact a Warmzone representative today at 888.488.9276. Radiant heat professionals are available for free consulting and will be happy to discuss your project.

About WARMZONE

As a leading provider of radiant heat solutions, Warmzone offers one of the largest selections of radiant heat products in the industry. Warmzone also includes professional system design and layout, free installation training and installation support.

Warmzone’s mission is to match each customer’s needs with the finest radiant heating systems available. As an intermediary between project requirements and a variety of system choices, Warmzone offers unbiased, individualized solutions that factor the installation, durability, performance and operational investment as the key criteria of their customers. With a staff of some of the most experienced professionals in the industry Warmzone routinely provides premier radiant heat solutions to customers throughout the United States and Canada. Warmzone is a privately owned and operated business headquartered in Salt Lake City Utah. For more information contact Warmzone at 888.488.9276, or visit us online at www.warmzone.com.

The Surprising Benefits of a Radiant Heated Driveway

Radiant heated driveways offer a range of benefits for home and business owners. Certainly, the most obvious is the elimination of manual snow removal. Instead of donning the coat and gloves to attack a snow-packed driveway first thing in the morning, homeowners can relax with a steaming cup of coffee in the warmth of their home. For business owners nothing beats the feeling of arriving at the facility and seeing the sidewalks, ramps, and/or parking areas completely clear of snow and ice. When you install a radiant snow melting system there’s no need to hire a plowing service or ask employees to come in early to shovel and salt the sidewalks.

Automated snow melting systems operate only when needed. The systems utilize an advanced snow sensor that detects temperature and precipitation. When moisture is detected and the temperature is below the adjustable set point (usually set at 39°F), the sensor signals the controller and power is then sent to the embedded heat cables, warming the driveway as the first snowflakes fall.

Heated driveway with cut out

A radiant heated driveway with cutout showing the embedded heating cables.

The convenience of automated heated driveways can’t be beat, but in addition to not having to shovel, plow, or salt your driveway during the winter, the systems also provide a tremendous safety feature. While heated driveways operate only when snowstorms hit, the systems include an “after run” function that allows the system to remain on for a short period after the storm. This dries the surface to eliminate any melted snow from turning into thin sheets of dangerous “black” ice.

An Added Benefit

Perhaps a surprising benefit of radiant heat is that a snow melting system can extend the life of your driveway. Concrete driveway surfaces tend to last longer when they’re not exposed to sub-zero temperatures. In cold weather climates with ample snowfall, many concrete driveways fall victim to spalling. Concrete is naturally porous, so water from melted snow can seep into every tiny crevice, and refreeze.  The damage can occur when the ice expands. As this process repeats, it is known as spalling, and it can slowly deteriorate the finished driveway surface. Over time, the spalling can eventually lead to cracking in the cement.

While seal coating your driveway is one method for helping to extend your pavement’s life span, for those living in cold climates with abundant snowfall, adding an embedded radiant heat system is also a smart move. You’ll enjoy the convenience and enhanced safety provided by radiant heat, and perhaps you’ll even add a few years to the life of your driveway.

Installing a radiant snow melting system can also boost the equity of your home. It’s not only a labor-saving, safety-enhancing, driveway-protecting tool, it’s also a smart investment. Many upscale homes nowadays feature interior radiant heat (heated floors) as well as a heated driveway. Adding radiant heat to your home will likely increase the resale value of your property.

Take time today to learn more about the benefits of radiant heat. The systems can be easily customized to meet your specific performance needs, as well as your budget. Instead of heating your entire driveway you can install two heated tire tracks (24-inches wide), or if you’re on a tight budget, you can simply heat the area that’s on an incline, or other troublesome spots. The choice is yours and the options are unlimited.

Warmzone includes free installation training as well as technical support and complete system design and layout services. We’re available to your electrician and installers throughout the installation process. Warmzone takes pride in leading the way when it comes to customer service.

Start the year off by learning a little more about radiant heat. Call a friendly Warmzone representative today to discuss your project and the many options that are available. In addition to offering industry-leading snow melting systems, Warmzone also carries the largest selection of radiant floor heating (and roof de-icing) solutions on the market. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have. Call 888.488.9276 today.

Sergeant Burr and the Snow Brigade

The Snow Brigade Takes on the Heated Driveway Fortress

A thick cloud of white specs began falling from the grey sky. “Alright!” the gruff sergeant bellowed. “Listen up you bunch of snowflakes! We’ve got a job to do and we’re gonna do it!” Sergeant Burr studied the troops as they drifted down in the cold sky.

“Our mission is to harass those two-legged monstrosities down there and bring their travel plans to a halt. Got that? We are to secure the driveway and keep them confined to their house. Make all exit points dangerous and impassible. We will impede all manner of travel, whether it’s by foot or vehicle. Do you understand?”

“Sir, yes sir!” the group yelled in unison.

“Alright then, when you land on that driveway tighten up your ranks and hold your ground. I’ll be taking the high ground on the wintergreen daisies right next to you to supervise the operation. I’ll be there, fighting alongside you.”

Cartoon army snowflake commander

“Um Sergeant Burr, sir?” one timid private stepped forward.

“What’s on your mind, son?” the agitated sergeant replied.

“Uh, yes sir, I uh, I heard that some of these places are installing heated driveways that pretty much vaporize entire battalions of snowflakes like us. How do we know they don’t have any weapons of mass melting down there?”

“Because our intelligence reports didn’t say anything about radiant heat!” the sergeant yelled. “Now enough with those crazy thoughts. Look down there! That driveway and sidewalk look the same as all the others, so stop worrying. We’re going to use the element of surprise and bury ‘em before they can yell ‘Grandma busted her hip’. Got that?”

“Um, yes sir,” the snowflake sheepishly resigned and slipped back into rank.

“Dude,” the soldier next to him muttered. “Ya just gotta think positive man. Like, imagine the driveway down there is totally cold and frozen, man. It’s just a frigid slab of cement waiting for us icy dudes to drift on down and cover up. Positive thinking man, positive thinking. Believe it will be ice cold and it will be ice cold.”

“Uh yeah, sure,” the private said with a raised eyebrow while distancing himself from the soldier.

“The rest of you snowflakes,” Sergeant Burr continued, “stop worrying about some super radiant heat monster and focus on your assignments. The first wave is to cover the surface and link up. Provide a thin sheet of ice so the next waves can pile on top to hide you. You’ll be the tip of the spear; the secret slick surface that will bring down any of those two-legged mammals who dare to step outside.”

“What about the four-legged ones?” a soldier asked.

“We don’t care about them. They don’t have as far to go when they drop. It’s those bipedal ones that are a lot more fun to watch when they slip and go down,” the sergeant said with a devilish grin. “Now let’s go down there and have some fun.”

The group descended closer and closer to the ground. The brown lawns and leafless trees were beginning to be overcome by the white army, but the driveway remained defiant.

“Man, I don’t like the looks of this,” the timid private said to a fellow paratrooper.

“Yeah,” came the reply. “That doesn’t look right.”

“No talking in the ranks!” the sergeant howled. “Okay, first wave, hit the ground! Go, go, go!”

The blanket of snowflakes fell onto the concrete, but shrieks and screams filled the air. The snowflakes were gone. They disappeared. One after another the snowflakes hit the pavement before letting out a yelp and trickling away. The snow was disarmed, turning into little droplets that drained away from the driveway.

The timid private was now nothing more than a small drop of water. He nudged the droplet next to him. “Positive thinking, aye? Just think it will be ice cold and it will be ice cold, aye? Pfft. Positive thinking, my lilly white icicle!”

“Uh yeah man. Total bummer,” came the reply.

But some of the first snowflakes to hit didn’t even make it to the water stage. Like the private said, the snowflakes were vaporized, where they drifted slowly back up to the sky.

“C’mon!” the stubborn sergeant hollered. “Waves two and three. Hit ‘em hard!”

But with each company of snowflakes the results were the same. The icy soldiers were nullified the second they hit the ground.

“Sarge!” a platoon leader yelled. “We can’t break through. It’s too hot down there. The driveway is fortified with radiant heat! We don’t stand a chance.”

The stubborn Sergeant only grew more desperate. “We . . . we gotta. Um,” he stammered. He thought for a moment. Maybe it’s not a Warmzone heated driveway. Maybe we can overwhelm it.

“Everybody! We need a full frontal assault,” he yelled. “We’ll overwhelm the driveway with sheer numbers!”

“But Sarge!”

“That’s an order,” the sergeant screamed. “Everyone to the driveway! It’s our only chance.” He called for reinforcements.

Snowflake after snowflake hit the ground, but no one could establish a foothold. It was impossible. Even when reinforcements that doubled the size of the assault force arrived, they could make no headway. Snow piled up on the ground next to the driveway, but the troops on the lawn could only watch in horror as their comrades fell to their doom.

Heated driveway and sidewalk
The scene of the great ‘Snowflake Massacre,’ also referred to as Burr’s last stand.

“It’s a massacre,” one noted.

Still the sergeant continued to bark his attack orders.

“That dude’s a lunatic,” one snowflake on the edge of the driveway remarked as he watched the sergeant. “There’s nothing you can do against a heated driveway. It’s hopeless.”

“Yeah,” his companion agreed. “I reckon his brain is melting. Poor Sarge has gone bananas.”

“I’m glad we landed here on the grass. Those heated driveways are murder on snow.”

The battle raged for over two hours, but when the final troops descended from the sky the driveway and front sidewalk were completely dry. There was no trace of a battle. A foot of snow buried the surrounding landscape, but the pavement remained clear. Sergeant Burr hugged his knees and rocked back and forth. His eyes stared blankly ahead as he repeatedly muttered, “It’s a heated driveway.  It’s a heated driveway . . . ”

The soldiers tried to console him, but it was hopeless.

“C’mon Sarge,” the medics lifted him onto a stretcher. “It’s all over now.”

Automated, Maintenance Free Snow Melting Systems

Turn Winter into a Wonderland with a Heated Driveway

As the first snowfall of winter’s 2019-2020 campaign begins to fall, it’s not uncommon to dream about owning a radiant heated driveway system. After all, who can blame you for wanting to wake up after a snowstorm and see a beautifully cleared driveway parting a sea of snow? Who wouldn’t prefer holding a hot cup of coffee rather than a cold snow shovel? Who can blame you for wanting to stay in your PJs and slippers instead of dressing up like you’re going to go skiing?

A warm mug of hot chocolate by the fire

A radiant snow melting system can give you new appreciation for winter’s beauty. Sure, a soft blanket of snow draped over a quiet neighborhood is pretty, but it’s downright gorgeous when that landscape includes a clear driveway leading to your garage. Yep, winter can be a beautiful time.

We can’t vouch for the commute, but with a heated driveway you’ll not only create convenient access to and from your home, but you’ll enjoy a safer environment as well. Heated driveways are designed to operate only when needed. After each storm the systems remain on for a short period to dry the driveway. This prevents ice from forming, helping to enhance pedestrian safety.

For nearly two decades Warmzone has been providing homeowners and businesses with state-of-the-art snow melting systems. While the benefit of eliminating the need for manual snow removal is obvious, there are other, less obvious benefits of radiant heated driveways and sidewalks.

Electric snow melting systems are fully automated. The systems utilize an advanced snow sensor, either mounted aerially (usually unobstructed, near the roof line) or in the pavement being heated. The sensor detects the temperature and precipitation, so as the first snow begins to fall it sends a signal to the controller and power is sent to the heating elements embedded in the driveway. The surface is warmed to prevent any snow accumulation.

These electric systems are also maintenance free. There is no need to change filters or monitor a boiler. (Just make sure the snow sensor remains clear so that it can detect snowfall.)

Radiant heat is inherently efficient. The efficiency and automated operation of these systems combine to make heated driveways and snow melting systems effective and affordable.

Heated driveway with heated tire tracks

Electric snow melting systems are also very easy to customize. The systems can be tailored to not only meet your layout and snow melting needs, but also your budget. For example, instead of heating the entire driveway, you can heat an 8-foot path in the middle, or just install two heated tire tracks. Warmzone heat cable is available in mats that can be rolled out for quick, easy installation. Each mat heats an area 24-inches wide. Installing heated tire tracks is an effective and affordable solution for those on a budget. Call a radiant heat expert today to learn more about your many options (888.488.9276).

In addition to providing the most trusted systems and components, Warmzone also includes unparalleled customer services. These industry leading services include professional system design, free installation training and technical support during the installation.

The system design includes all the information necessary for the installer and electrician. Information provided includes proper layout and materials, load calculations, breaker sizes, number of breakers, etc. This is the road map for the installation.

Installers can also take the free installation training course. The instructor will cover every aspect of your installation so you have the confidence to move forward with the install. If you encounter any issue during the installation, Warmzone radiant heat experts are just a phone call away. We’re happy to walk you through any issues during the installation.

When it comes to quality products and superior customer service, you won’t find a better company to work with. Call Warmzone today to learn more about your options, or to receive a free quote. Call us toll free at 888.488.9276.