What does a manifold do? Your questions answered

We're often contacted by plumbing installers working on underfloor heating projects asking us to clarify points around manifolds and how they should be used, so we sat down with our Technical Team to answer some of your more common questions. Still have a query? Leave a comment and we'll get back to you.

What does a manifold do?

The manifold provides flow and return circulation of warm water at the correct temperature and flow rate to ensure an even, comfortable temperature across the whole floor surface.

Where is the best place to install a manifold?

The manifold is best positioned as centrally within the building as possible. This will keep the pipe circuit lengths to a minimum, thus helping to balance the system and control the temperatures within the rooms.

The manifold is normally fitted at least 300mm above the floor and ideally typically situated within either utility rooms, airing cupboards, cloak rooms or an understairs cupboard, and should be accessible for maintenance and servicing.

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Can I extend a manifold if I add extra rooms/zones?

Yes, the manifold can easily be extended. Additional circuits can be added at any time up to a maximum of 15 circuits. The maximum number of circuits on one manifold is governed by the circuit lengths. Normally if the majority of each circuit is around 80m to 100m, then the number of ports on the manifold should ideally not exceed 12.

Do I need a manifold for a single room?

A cost effective way to control a single room or smaller project is to use a single circuit control. This incorporates a standard circulator with an advanced mixer valve, to ensure the water flows at the correct temperature round the system. A single control is suitable for a circuit smaller than 100m with a heated floor area of 20m² or less.

Simply use an adaptor and spigot elbow to connect to the pipe circuit to the unit. For rooms of up to 24m², you can split the coil and use a tee fitting to create 2 circuits.

Still have a question?

Click here to check out the FAQs area of our NEW underfloor heating site.

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About the author

Karen Stables

Karen is the Marketing Communications Manager for the Hep2O Plumbing and Heating and Hepworth Clay brands. She has over 15 years’ experience working with in the plumbing, drainage and construction industry.

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