In early July the Bethlehem Farm caretakers, Summer Servants and high school volunteers lifted a female African elephant onto the second floor of the Caretaker Residence.
Wait…that sentence should have said “lifted the equivalent of a female African elephant….” Actually they brought 10,000 pounds of play sand up a ladder to the second floor. You may think this sounds amazing that the second floor is beach themed. I’ll admit, it ran through my mind as well.
Unfortunately, the sand is merely part of a super efficient heating system that runs throughout the floors of the Residence. It was poured into the floors around the PEX tubing that runs throughout the 2×4 sleeper boards. Once covered in sand the PEX and the sleepers were entombed under OSB floorboards. Altogether these comprise the Radiant Heat Flooring system. When in use, hot water (from solar hot water heaters) will run through the PEX and heat up the sand. 5 tons of sand will hold that heat into the house and radiate it from the floor upwards. Imagine stepping barefoot off your bed in the winter and having warm tiles underfoot while only using a fraction of the energy of a conventional heating sentence.