Friday, November 5, 2010

Awesome Things about Korea #22: Ondol (Warm Stone)

The mornings and evenings are getting ever chillier, and so it's time to turn on the floor heat.  The ondol (온돌), as it's called, is definitely an awesome thing about Korean homes and apartments.  How does it work?  Well, underneath the floor is series of pipes that heated water passes through from the boiler.  The heat from the floor then rises to heat the room, resulting in a nice, toasty abode.

Many Koreans like to sleep on the heated floor in the winter, and find it quite comfortable.  They will roll out their blankets and sleeping mats in the evening, and pack them away come morning.

While I'm not as comfortable with the idea, I still enjoy the warmth of my heated floors in the colder months!

You can check out the history behind underfloor heating here.


  1. Love me some ondol. It's remarkably effective.

    I didn't like it so much in my first year in Korea though. My bed was on the floor and for a long time I had no desk, so I sat on the floor to use the PC. Toasted undercarriage :-(

  2. Yikes! That would be a reason to not enjoy it. Hopefully you won't have to repeat that experience for your next gig in Korea.


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