Hot water greenhouse heating systems effectively deliver radiant heat close to the plants for uniform heating of the entire crop with increased energy efficiency.
They’re versatile heating solutions with many applications for use in a radiant heat greenhouse, which makes them great value with a quick payback.
How Do Greenhouse Hot Water Heating Systems Work?
Greenhouse hot water heating systems, also known as hydronic heating, use water instead of forced air as a heat transfer medium to distribute radiant heat evenly across the greenhouse space via a network of pipes and tubes (for benches).
Unlike forced air greenhouse heating systems that push heat from the top, as much as 10 to 12 feet in the air, greenhouse hot water heating systems send out radiant heat close to the bottom of the plants.
As the hot air works its way throughout the greenhouse, it replaces pockets of cold air that cause erratic temperature differences.
Another benefit of greenhouse radiant heating systems stems from their ability to heat the growing medium at the root zone and then migrate upward to surround plants. Think of it like 360° heating that permeates through the blooms and foliage, gently warming all parts of the plant.
When greenhouse heating systems supply radiant heat underneath the crop, growers can also get away with maintaining cooler air temperatures.
Rootzone heating promotes healthy root development, which is why many growers use it for germination and propagation. Plant production also moves along at a faster pace.
A grower with a radiant heat greenhouse can use his heating system in various ways depending on his needs:
- On-bench via rubber tubes spaced a couple of inches apart across the bench. Plant containers rest directly on the tubes.
- Under-bench with round or finned pipes attached to the underside.
- Floor/slab heating uses piping buried in the floor. Sometimes tubes are placed on top of the floor or incorporated into a mat for floor heating.
- Multi-zone heating for individual climate control of different crops in separate areas.
- Perimeter heating running along the outside walls of the greenhouse
- Truss heating installed overhead.
Energy Savings for a Radiant Heat Greenhouse
According to GB&D, a website for green building professionals, water can transport energy 3,500 times greater than air.
This is a good reason why radiant heating systems run more efficiently compared to forced-air heating and other traditional methods.
Since the heat delivered by greenhouse radiant heating starts closer to the plants, less heat loss occurs.
Forced-air systems, for example, deliver heat far above the plants. Inevitably, a portion of that heat rises to the top of the greenhouse and escapes out the vents instead of working its way downward to the plants.
Growers looking to further reduce energy costs and increase their sustainability can also pair radiant heating with renewable energy sources, using geothermal energy or solar energy to heat the water.
- Delivers heat directly to the rootzone
- Heats the entire crop evenly
- Dries floors and prevents puddling
- Reduces energy costs
- Provides precise temperature control
- Minimizes risk of fungal diseases
- Protects plants from sudden temperature dips
- Easy to operate and maintain
- Works with a variety of boiler options with different fuel sources, including biofuels
Prospiant offers everything you need for a wide range of greenhouse heating systems that deliver radiant heat. Our designers can tailor greenhouse radiant heating systems according to your specifications and crop needs.
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