- How do you bleed a radiator?
If you are in any way unsure as to how to bleed a radiator, we always advise that you seek professional help in order to avoid any damages down the line.
If your radiator is feeling cold at the top, then it’s probably time to bleed it. Other signs of a radiator needing to be bled may be damp patches surrounding the radiator or creaky noises when it’s heating up. Either way, bleeding a radiator is relatively easy and just needs a bit of equipment. However, if you’re unsure, we always advise that you speak to a professional.
Firstly, make sure that the radiator is turned off so that you don’t risk burning yourself with hot air or water. Next, take your radiator key and turn the valve at the top of the radiator. Attach the key to the square groove in the centre of the valve and gently turn it anticlockwise until you hear a slight hissing noise –this will be the air escaping. Allow the trapped air to escape and use a cloth to catch any water dripping out. It might be a good idea to put an old towel down below your radiator to catch any liquids during this step. Now retighten the valve once the hissing stops and only liquid comes out. Do this quickly to prevent too much water from escaping. Make sure to wipe any excess moisturising or condensation once you’re done to avoid rusting. Lastly, check it’s worked by turning your radiator on and ensuring that the heat is evenly spread across the radiator.
- How to take a radiator off?
Whether you’re removing the radiator to make way for a new one, or just temporarily placing it aside for a decorating job, removing a radiator is a relatively simple task if you have DIY experience. If you in any way unsure, removing a radiator can be a complicated task and requires several steps. As such, we always recommend you acquire help from a professional if you’re unsure.
Firstly, turn your central heating off and allow the system to cool down, this will make sure that you won’t come in contact with scalding water. Next, turn off the radiator by closing the radiator valves, just turn the valves clockwise until tightly shut. It’s advisable to place a few old towels below the radiator, along with a bowl to catch the water as you begin to drain it. Now place a wrench on the body of the valve and use the other to loosen the nut that joins the radiator to the valve. Ensure your bowl is placed below the valve to catch the water during this step. Get the last few drops out of the radiator by opening the bleed valve with a bleed key and turning anti-close to drain the remainder of the water into your bowl.
Next, close the bleed valve and then move to the valve on the other side, repeating the previous steps.
Now you’re ready to disconnect the radiator. Loosen the nuts on the radiator until you’re able to gentle lift the radiator from its brackets to completely remove it. If your radiator is particularly heavy, get an extra pair of hands for removing the radiator.
- How do I change a radiator valve?
You might want to change your radiator valve to update your radiator with a more modern look, or perhaps your current valve is faulty and not performing properly. Changing a radiator valve is a relatively simple job if you have DIY experience but we always advise that you speak to a professional if you’re unsure in order to avoid damages.
Firstly, switch off your heating system and shut off the water supply. If you have a conventional system you’ll require professional help for this step. Once everything electrical is off (just to be on the safe side), all room thermostats are turned down and the heating system turned off, it’s time to drain all the water from your system. To do this, you’ll have to locate the drain off which is usually found at the lowest point in the house. For this step, you’ll need a hose which will plug into the drain off. Place the other side of the hose outside, somewhere that the water can drain easily and safely like an outside drain or soil. Open the drain off and once it’s empty, you’re ready to change the radiator valves. Next open the bleed valves on all the radiators in your home to stop any more water flowing into your radiators and to allow more water to drain out. Now take your radiator bleed key and fit it into the bleed valve, then turn the key and open the valve fully. Your system will take around 15 minutes to completely drain so be patient.
Once your heating system has definitely been drained completely, you can undo the nuts connecting the valve to the radiator. Do this by taking a pair of grips and hold onto the body of the valve, then loosen off the nut closest to the radiator with your wrench. Turn the nut gently and anti-clockwise but don’t remove it completely. Do the same with the nut at the bottom until you can wiggle the valve to remove it. Before replacing it, you might want to give the area a quick clean. Next, apply jointing compound to help create a strong seal and keep the valve firmly in place. Add the jointing compound to the two olives on your radiator.
Now it’s time to install the new valve. Before installing it, check the arrows that will illustrate what way the water should flow. For most modern valves, the arrows will point in both directions which means the water can flow either way. If your valve only has one arrow, the arrow will point in the direction that the water will flow into the radiator. Position the valve over the pipe and tighten each of the nuts by hand before taking your wrench and grips to tighten both nuts up using the same method as when they were removed.
Next check your heating system. Ensure both nuts are tightened on the new valve before turning the heating system back on. Then go around and close all the bleed valves on the radiators that you previously opened so that water won’t leak out when the system is turned back on. You can now close the drain off and disconnect your hose. Now turn the water back on and refill the system, ensuring you watch the new joints for leaks. If you’re certain that the radiator valve isn’t leaking, you can now bleed all your radiators. This will make sure that they’re properly filled and that there’s no trapped air in the system. Your radiator should now be heating up evenly and working perfectly!
- What’s the best towel radiator for my bathroom?
One of life’s great simple joys is leaving a shower to be welcomed by the hug of a warm towel. Heated towel rails add a warm comfort to bathrooms, along with being incredibly practical and space optimising. But what type is best for your bathroom? The first things that should be considered are heat output and size. Think about the room that the radiator will be heating: is it a family bathroom that will be holding multiple towels or are you buying for a small en suite? Luckily, we have a handy BTU Calculator that will help work out the best size of radiator for your specific room. We stock a range of different sizes so there’ll be something to suit the large, spacious bathrooms, the more compact spaces and everything in between.
Next, consider where your radiator will be installed. Ideally, your heated towel rail should be placed on the coldest wall of your bathroom, which will likely be the outside wall with a window. If this isn’t possible, try to place it on one of the external walls of the room. Take measurements of this space so you can get an idea of the size of the radiator that you’ll be looking out for. You should also consider if you want the radiator to be wall mounted or floor standing. Wall mounted is a great option for freeing up floor space. We also stock both horizontal and vertical options, so you have full flexibility in choosing how you want to make the most out of your space.
Lastly, and just as crucial as the previous points, it’s time to consider style. Do you want the polished sleekness of a chrome radiator, or do you want the extra drama and depth of a darker colour like black or anthracite? Or why not go for white to create a beautiful brightening effect? We also stock a range of both curved and straight heated towel rails –regardless of your style or bathroom décor, we’ll have the perfect one for you.
- How to fit underfloor heating?
Underfloor heating is fast becoming a popular addition to the modern home. It essentially eliminates the need for radiators thus saving up a lot of floor room. Installing underfloor heating, particularly a wet underfloor heating system, can be a rather difficult task. As such, we always advise that you seek professional help in order to avoid damages or any complications down the line. The following will outline what the installation process looks like to give you an idea.
The first step is pulling up the flooring and cleaning the subfloor. The way in which you pull up the flooring will depend on the placement system it utilises. If it’s tongue and groove, the nails will have to be pried out using a crowbar or a similar tool. Use the subfloor to lever for your crowbar for the rest of the boards in order to prevent damage. Click flooring (often featured in laminate flooring), is relatively simple to install and pulling it up should be similarly easy. Just pry up an end board before removing the entire floor in one piece. Next, make sure the subfloor is free of any debris that might cause damage to your heating system down the line. File away any sharp edges so there is no risk of damage to the pipes once they’re installed.
Next, it’s time to lay the pipes. Lay your underfloor heating ensuring it doesn’t contain any large gaps otherwise the heat won’t be spread evenly across your floors. When positioning the manifold, fix it as close to the wall as possible so that it can be plumbed in the same way as the radiator. It should be mounted on a wall that is strong enough to support its weight when connected to the water pipes.
Now to lay the pipes or electric heating mats. In a wet system, lay the water pipes after you’ve mounted the manifold and ensure you consult the guidelines supplied by the manufacturer. Also ensure you spread the pipes evenly across the entire area. Leave around 200mm spacing between each section of piping, which should run from the manifold to the furthest point in the room. A professional plumber will complete the connection of the system to the water mains.
If you’re working with an electric system, laying the heating mats should be a fairly simple task. Again, consult the guidelines provides and ensure they are spread evenly across the room. You will also need to install a floor sensor to provide a temperature reading to your thermostat reader which should ideally be placed close to the wall which the thermostat is installed on. A qualified electrician will complete the connection of the system to the electrical mains.
Both wet and electric floor systems need to be covered in a layer of screed that assists with insulation and helps the heat generated to be felt more quickly. First, make sure that the insulation is flat and pipes or mats are securely fastened. Then law sand and cement screed at around 75mm thick on top of the pipes or mats. Allow the screed to dry naturally before turning the heating system on to avoid any damage. This should take at least seven days.