Central Heating Radiators – What’s Wrong and How Do You Fix it?

The operation of central heating radiators is fairly simple, which in turn makes them reliable. However, even reliable systems can experience problems. If you find your central heating radiator acting up, here is a list of common problems, their associated symptoms, and how to fix them.

Air Trapped in Radiator
If one radiator in your home is not heating properly, while the others are scolding hot, the problem is probably air trapped in the radiator. The air will not allow the warm water to fill the radiator, thus it doesn’t heat properly. The problem can easily be fixed by loosening the bleed valve at the top of the radiator, allowing the air to fizzle out. You will easily be able to hear the sound when the air is leaving the radiator. When water starts squirting out, it’s time to tighten the valve again.

Loose or Corroded Cap Nuts
If you find out that water is leaking onto the floor near your radiator, it’s likely caused by the cap nuts, meant to be fastening the inlet valves, being corroded or loose. In the latter case, tighten them, after you have turned off the system. If they are corroded, your only option is to replace them.

Wrong Angle on the Water Return Lines
If your radiators are keeping you up at night due to constant banging sounds, as if someone was using them as percussion, the problem could be an unlucky angle on the water return lines. The steam from the radiators can have trouble returning to the boiler, if the radiator is not angled, slightly, towards the inlet pipe. To fix the problem, all you need to do is place a piece of wood underneath the far end of the radiator, thus tilting it a bit.

Always remember that if you experience a problem with your central heating radiators that seem beyond the scope of do-it-yourself home repair, always contact a professional.