Heating Solutions

What is Far Infrared Heating and How Does It Work?

Infrared Explained in Simple Terms:

Imagine a boulder on the beach in the sun on a hot summer’s day. After the sun goes down the boulder is still warm having absorbed and stored the sun’s heat. This is how infrared heat works.

Infrared energy is best compared to the warmth of the sun.

Far-infrared is the most efficient and healthiest way to heat people and objects.

With traditional convection heat, the air is used as the medium for heat transport. This particular way of heating is widely used in residential and commercial applications worldwide. This can be a hot air/forced air system, such as used throughout North America, or a water/steam-based system whereby a radiator heats the air – – warm air that rises to the ceiling and cold air pulled through the return ducting or radiator’s base, where it is heated again and creates an airflow which heats the entire space.

Although convection has been used for generations, it is a poor and inefficient way of heating a space; the hot air rises and, especially in tall buildings, as much as 50-70% of the heat can be wasted (the heat rises to the open space above while the lower regions can be cold).

Hot air systems and “radiators” heat the air. Hot air rises and cooler air returns to the floor to be heated again, this process is called “convection”. For humans, the upper body warms up, but with many systems the feet stay cold. Circulating air moves dust, fungi and pollen; the hot air escapes when doors or windows are opened.

As with the sun, thin-film technology heats surfaces which in turn heat floors, walls and the objects contained within a space. It uses only safe and healthy ”invisible light” at wavelengths in the 7,500 to 10,000 nm (7.5 to 10 micrometer); this region in the spectrum is also called “Far or therapeutic infrared”.

In contrast, other infrared appliances, such as infrared heat lamps can reach temperatures up to 4,000 ºF (2,200 °C); these operate in the visible part of the infrared spectrum and will actually cause eye and skin damage during prolonged exposure. Remember, a panel operates only in the very safe and therapeutic “Far-infrared”. Proprietary thin-film technology produces ultra-low temperatures in the 200 ºF (95 °C) range; about the temperature of a cup filled with coffee.

Besides the immediate effect of warming the people in the space, far-infrared operates at a part of the spectrum that allows it to travel through the air virtually unimpeded and heat the floor and other surfaces. One of the primary advantages are that when doors or windows are opened the warmth does not escape, but stays in the floor and objects and within seconds to minutes of closing the door or window the space is warm again. Unlike with traditional heating, there are no transportation or “duct losses”; no conversion losses and no air-flow losses; all stored energy can be used.

Since the heating panel is able to store up heat energy at night (and other times when the rates are lower) and release this energy during the day, this can be used to save even more on energy bills.