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Radiance isn't just a word people use to describe my personality (thanks, Mom!) – it's also the extremely popular MTI tub option technology for Designer acrylic tubs that warms the backs and/or bottoms of the tub user. By eliminating the icy chill the user feels just as they lean back to relax and replacing it with a warm surface, the comfort of a bather increases significantly. Ahhh!

Don't you want to know more about Radiance? Of course you do.

In brief, the Radiance system includes two 18" x 18" heating pads, a control box, and a control panel. When preinstalled on a tub, the control box is pre-mounted near the pumps or blower (and can share the same access panel). The two pads are factory installed on the tub shell in a location chosen by the customer: one on either side of the tub where a userÕs back will rest, one in the back position and one in the "seat" (butt) position, or they can choose two systems, with a pad in both back and seat positions for both sides, for a total of four pads.

Not too shabby. In fact, Sue from MTI told me that some people even use the Radiance system in the tub without water as a convenient heating pad for reducing back and neck tension.

You might be surprised to learn that Radiance can also be installed in acrylic shower bases. That's almost like – in fact, it's exactly like – having a radiant-floor heating for your shower. And I don't have to tell you that radiant-floor heating is bathroom design trend. On a shower pan, the only thing you need to know about the control box is that it need to be installed within 5 feet of the pads. It can be hidden in a vanity, closet, or behind an access panel, but it needs to be accessible.

Finally, Radiance can be turned on/off with the control panel, but there is no harm in leaving it on 24/7. The heat won't tarnish the acrylic and it only uses about 2.5 amps, or about a nickel an hour. Small price to pay for so much comfort.

Apply what you learned: Depending on the ambient room temperature and area surrounding the bath, what is the temperature range of the tub surface? (Hint: check out the Radiance Tub Option technical bulletin to find the answer.)

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