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We are in the middle of the design stage with the pole barn company in building a 40x40x14.4 with a 16x48x16 gable end RV garage attached. I am planning to insulate the slab in the 40x40 section so that I could do a radiant heat floor at some point. I plan to have a lined ceiling and going to get double bubble walls and roof right now, will finish the walls with OSB and batt insulation later on my own when I can save up some more pennies.

I'm in NJ

What are peoples opinions on doing the 2" rigid foamboard and pex tubing before pouring the 5" slab versus just doing gas fired heating blower. I plan to pull natural gas into the pole barn in a separate trench when I do the electric at the same time. I am not looking to be 70 degrees, but more like 40-50 degrees. Melt the snow off vehicles and not freeze things during the winter.
 

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There's nothing like walking on a warm concrete slab in the dead of winter. Install the radiant floor heat, you'll thank me later. Do you pay for natural gas or do you have a natural gas well?

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We are in the middle of the design stage with the pole barn company in building a 40x40x14.4 with a 16x48x16 gable end RV garage attached. I am planning to insulate the slab in the 40x40 section so that I could do a radiant heat floor at some point. I plan to have a lined ceiling and going to get double bubble walls and roof right now, will finish the walls with OSB and batt insulation later on my own when I can save up some more pennies.

I'm in NJ

What are peoples opinions on doing the 2" rigid foamboard and pex tubing before pouring the 5" slab versus just doing gas fired heating blower. I plan to pull natural gas into the pole barn in a separate trench when I do the electric at the same time. I am not looking to be 70 degrees, but more like 40-50 degrees. Melt the snow off vehicles and not freeze things during the winter.
yes-do the 2inch rigid foam board on top of ur gravel. people around here and salesmen at Lowe's and Home depot back in the winter of 02 talked me into the bubble wrap that was selling like hotcakes-according to them at the time.
man what a let down, i can heat my floor-at 76*-but i also can then melt the snow off the ground 4 ft away from my foundation outside.
contractors later on told me that the bubble wrap allowed the pex line's to lay to low in the concrete slab. now i see they have little towers like for ur lines to lay on-thus keeps them more to the top of the slab. i fell in love with walking on a warm floor, from a coal furnace, so i wanted to mi-nick that on our new floor. some day i'm gonna shut off the lines in the floor, and install regular old cast iron radiators along my walls. but after i have new walls built on the inside of my poured walls, then have 2 inches of foam sprayed insulation up against the cement wall-and then whatever it takes to fill the rest of the 2/4 wall.

i've trucked in about all of Jersy yr's ago-and in the wintertime it can be as cold as up in here in the mountains, so i would spend every penny u can on that spray foam, my cousin's husband did it to his house, back when he built after us--and well sitting in house visiting him the last couple winters--before he passed on--his house was way better-than mine..

so go with the best 2 inch board u can get for ur pipes to lay on, and don't forget to cut the wire ends off that tie ur pex lines to the rebar. they claimed they would rust in yrs to come. my wife and boy spent hrs., while i was working-picking them up back then. kinda a waste, that our floor is screwed-oh. it does work-just a waste of fuel to heat it up-to then lose it out out one wall into the ground.
 

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Is this totally an equipment barn/shop, or will you be using part for livestock?
 

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My nephew has been building shops for his own use for 40 years,,
each one getting better and more comfortable.

He gave up on "pole" construction a couple shops ago,,

To heat the building, there has to be almost zero drafts,,
structural gaps with pole construction make it difficult to seal a pole building.

So, if you want warmth in the winter,, start with a well sealed structure.
JMHO,,,
 

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When we built my shop we were going to go a pole barn route. Our township required engineered drawing for one of over 1000 square feet. Mine is 1200 sq ft. 40X30X10.

We decided to do a poured wall foundation. It was about 1000.00 more but when you subtract the cost of the engineered drawings it turned out to be roughy 300 more than a pole barn.

So I have a building with a poured foundation and studded out with 2X6s. Will be much easier to finish off then a pole barn and I also don’t have to worry with the posts rotting away over time.

I’m over in central PA. I think total cost was right around 30,000. That included and struck truss for an upstairs. Otherwise it would have been down around 21000.


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I did the same (insulating the floor, preparring for radiant heat) in my recent shed/shop build, here's the thread with pictures, maybe there's something that may help.
It may be overkill, but I like putting 6mil plastic under the insulation, I don't want the slab to sweat and this step is really hard to do after the pour!!!:laugh:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I will answer the a few of the questions here.

We have natural gas from PSE&G. Not a well system. Wouldn't that be a windfall to have my own gas well.

I plan to stone the floor then put the 6 mil plastic vapor barrier down and run it up 1'-0" up the sidewall as well then put down the 2" pink R-10 4x8 sheets of foamboard. then staple the pex tubing to the board 300' foot runs thinking 3 zones.

The double bubble wrap is form the walls and roof for condensation control. The ceiling will be lined and the attic space will have 1'-0" vented soffits all around.

With the 40x40 and the 16x48 and cement and utilities pulled in (electric 80amp 2 pole with two other conduits for future solar return and CAT6 cable lines, water, and gas.and installed I am close to 70k
 

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Some things to look into:

1: I've been led to understand that you want your PEX near the top of the slab, not the bottom, so rather than staple it to your bottom insulation board, you'll
want to tie it to your rebar or mesh, which should be up on supports to put it slightly above the center of the slab, with the PEX above that. (my plan is wire ties)

2: I'm planning something similar in the next couple of years, and my plan includes a heat zone under the RV bay(which I'll have walled off from the rest of the shop)
so I don't have to winterize the RV. Keep it at 40 and stop worrying about freezing pipes in the RV, and have the ability to turn it up when I have to do
maintenance/repair work on the RV instead of doing it when it's either below freezing or above 90. Something to think about.
 

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I will never pour an indoor slab of concrete without putting tubing in to add floor heat, even if I have no immediate plans to heat the structure.
Radiant floor heat is just SOOOO much better than any other type when working inside.

And agree with above, you don't want the pipe right on the insulation, you want it up in the slab more.
 

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I like many other installs, generally staple the radiant pipe to the insulation because it's one of the easiest methods. This article goes into great detail about installing PEX radiant pipe into slabs and the prep before installation.

Here's an excerpt regarding the depth of the tubes:
Optimal depth of PEX tubing in the thick slab is considered to be in the 1-2” range and, whenever possible, should not be deeper than 4” for the following reasons:
1. Placing tubing too deep in the slab will increase response time, which means it will take longer for the floor to reach the desired temperature, will result in increased BTU load, require more energy and possibly will require larger tubing diameter.
2. Concrete height above PEX adds additional R value, and while it’s minimal in most instances, more energy would be required to heat the topmost surface.
I'm confident the system will work, the pipe will be about 3.5" from the surface and it's a garage/shop not a house.

For me, the garage will most likely see anything more than 45*, and the shop side probably in the 60* range. I will have a split heat pump system installed to add additional air warming and air conditioning for summer use in both the shop and upstairs.
 

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I will answer the a few of the questions here.

We have natural gas from PSE&G. Not a well system. Wouldn't that be a windfall to have my own gas well.

I plan to stone the floor then put the 6 mil plastic vapor barrier down and run it up 1'-0" up the sidewall as well then put down the 2" pink R-10 4x8 sheets of foamboard. then staple the pex tubing to the board 300' foot runs thinking 3 zones.

The double bubble wrap is form the walls and roof for condensation control. The ceiling will be lined and the attic space will have 1'-0" vented soffits all around.

With the 40x40 and the 16x48 and cement and utilities pulled in (electric 80amp 2 pole with two other conduits for future solar return and CAT6 cable lines, water, and gas.and installed I am close to 70k
have u looked at the sheets that have the lines cut out of them, for the lines to run or lay in the foam board. since it's gonna be a garage--i suppose i would want the lines in at least to 3 inches.

I will never pour an indoor slab of concrete without putting tubing in to add floor heat, even if I have no immediate plans to heat the structure.
Radiant floor heat is just SOOOO much better than any other type when working inside.

And agree with above, you don't want the pipe right on the insulation, you want it up in the slab more.
yeah-especially if ur doing it in the basement. mine was too low-we burnt a lot of oil when the one son was living in the basement. i was really disappointed with mine-after waiting all them yrs for it.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I finally have sealed plans in hand and my permit jacket filled out, going tomorrow over to the Township office to file for the construction permit. I will start the grading process hopefully in the next week and a half if all goes well with issuing the permit. I don't want to jinx myself by putting a shovel in the ground and have them say it needs to move over there. Then the pole barn company said if all goes well they could start the week before or after Thanksgiving weather permitting from now till then with their other jobs in progress. Yahoo. I may be able to unwrap the biggest Christmas present ever and drive into it by the 25th of December.
 

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:bigthumb: fingers on both hands crossed for ya!:good2:
 

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In my concrete floored shop, I have several machines and tables bolted into the slab. My one concern about radiant heat would be accidentally drilling into the tubing when placing anchors.. Is there a good way to mark the tubing locations as you install to prevent this problem for you?
 

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I'm following this thread. I hope to have one built after the first of the New Year. Always looking for ideas.

Randy

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I'm in the same boat as you!
 

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I finally have sealed plans in hand and my permit jacket filled out, going tomorrow over to the Township office to file for the construction permit. I will start the grading process hopefully in the next week and a half if all goes well with issuing the permit. I don't want to jinx myself by putting a shovel in the ground and have them say it needs to move over there. Then the pole barn company said if all goes well they could start the week before or after Thanksgiving weather permitting from now till then with their other jobs in progress. Yahoo. I may be able to unwrap the biggest Christmas present ever and drive into it by the 25th of December.
Which PB builder did you wind up going with?
I just had Shirk build me a nice big pavilion. I'm only about 20 minutes south of you if i recall.
They did a great job.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
R&R Pole Barns out of Ehprata, PA is the company I went with. They had just finished a PB for our friend's winery business.

I am going to do 3 zones. I was think of putting a tracer wire in next to the pex line so I could ring out the lines if I ever needed to do any drilling. Also, going to space it out 24" wide through out the main part of the 40x40 building I know the ends and sides will be a little wild because of loop arounds. And photographic the heck out of it.
 
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