How Do You Install a Radiator?

Install a new radiator on a steam or hot water system by determining if the boiler has the ability to handle the additional load, determining the location, and fitting the pipes to feed and drain the radiator. Most radiators require a boiler-type central heating system for the production of heat.

Adding an additional radiator to a boiler that is already operating at maximum capacity has the potential of causing it to fail, leading to costly repairs. If the boiler is able to support additional units, installers use a heat calculator to determine the additional British thermal units the room requires for warming the room. The number of BTUs determines the size of the radiator.

Both steam and hot water systems are closed loops. The heat or steam passes through a system of pipes and radiators. Radiators provide the surface area to radiate heat into the room. The new radiator requires extending the loop to supply water and drain it back to the boiler.

Each radiator requires a control valve and a lockshield valve. Control valves are either a thermostat or a wheelhouse valve. Most systems have the control valve on the side of the radiator where the water enters.

After finding the exact location of the radiator, the installer uses brackets to attach it to the wall. He then joins pipes to the valve and connects the unit to the heating system.