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Heat Pumps

The Importance of Low-Temperature Distribution Systems - Self Study

John Siegenthaler • Last updated 02/2021

4.7/5 (view ratings)
580 students
1 module
48 minutes
4 assignments

Course description

This lecture explains the importance of low water temperature heat emitters and distribution designs in modern hydronic systems. It covers the relationship between heat source efficiency and water temperature. It shows and describes several types of heat emitters that can operate at low water temperatures. It goes on to describe homerun distribution systems and modern variable speed circulators. It concludes with three examples that put all the sub-assemblies into complete systems.

By the end of the lecture you will understand:

  • The universal relationship between operating water temperature and the efficiency of modern hydronic heat sources.
  • Methods for constructing low temperature radiant ceiling and wall panels
  • How several different sub-assemblies come together to form complete low-temperature systems.

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Full course outline

Module 1 - Video Lecture and Discussion

In this module, you'll watch the video lecture and download an MP3 recording of the 1-hour Q+A call.

  • Low Water Temperature Hydronic Distribution Systems (48 minutes) (48:23 minutes)
  • 1-hour Q+A call recording (MP3)


John Siegenthaler

P.E., Appropriate Designs

John Siegenthaler, P.E., is a mechanical engineering graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a licensed professional engineer, and Professor Emeritus of Engineering Technology at Mohawk Valley Community College. “Siggy” has over 40 years of experience in designing modern hydronic systems. He is a hall-of-fame member of the Radiant Panel Association, and a... Learn more


70 reviews

580 students have taken this course

by Robert B 01/21/2022

by Shaun Jackson 05/29/2020

pay attention & learn as much as possible because these courses are worth their weight in gold

by Saravanan S 04/10/2020

The course is very much useful

by clyde winter 03/04/2020

It's pretty hard to be able to be an HVAC contractor and properly design systems for customers in the 21st century if you didn't take and learn physics in high school. At least the basic science underlying the principles of hydraulics and thermodynamics - and maybe electricity and chemistry. But with or even without that basic education, Siegenthaler's courses, books, articles, and lectures in hydronics can help you become fully and proudly competent and ready for the future as well as the present.

by Brad Wall 12/06/2019

This was an extraordinary free course!! I am a crusty, seasoned mechanical engineer who'd only been occasionally involved in the details of this facet of mechanical engineering since my undergraduate days. John Seigenthaler taught me more in this short, detailed, free course (or reminded me of stuff I'd forgotten) than I thought was possible -- wow!! I've been designing a retrofit of a totally new heating system for our off-grid home with the aim of achieving the holy grail of a net-zero, off grid, 100% solar/wind property. John's short lecture (and the follow-on Q&A recording) have sent me back to square one on my designs, and I now believe I can make it possible. I ordered John's book "Heating with Renewable Energy", and I'm looking forward to learning more. I also hope to be able to squeeze in the time to take his Modern Hydronic Heating course even though I'm not a building and heating pro. John is, by far, the best presenter I have encountered on heatspring; spend two hours of your time listening to what he has to say! If they ever charge for this course--pay the fee! -Brad Wall, Connecticut.

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Frequently asked questions

How does this course work?

This is a free course. Enroll today and get access to all of the materials instantly. The lecture video and other materials are available any time.

How long do I have access to the materials?

For free courses there is no guarantee for how long the course materials will be available.

Is there a certificate of completion?

Certificates of completion are only provided to HeatSpring Membership subscribers. This course has not been approved by any credentialing organizations (NABCEP, AIA, USGBC etc) for Continuing Education Credits (CEUs). This course is for self education purposes only and completion does not indicate a level of professional expertise or credential.

Can I register multiple people?

Yes, this is a free course so you can share this page with other people from your group.

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