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A Guide To Installing Your Designer Radiator

Installing a new radiator can often be a tricky process.

In this step-by-step guide, we explain how to dress and install a designer radiator.

Once you’ve cracked this, chances are you’ll never need to call a plumber again – well, unless it’s a plumbing emergency!

Follow the simple steps below for full instructions on how to install your radiator and get your room feeling warm and cosy – and looking great!

Before You Install Your Radiator

Before installing your radiator you will have to drain down the system.

Visit our guide on how to drain down central heating before you begin.

It is always best to dress your radiator before installation, to do this you will need –

Tools required to fit a designer radiator

Dressing Your Radiator

‘Dressing’ a radiator is the process of getting it ready for fitting to the wall.

Step 1 – Wrap Your Valve Tails & Connect To The Radiator

Firstly, you will need to take the radiator tail and wrap it with PTFE tape clockwise around 17 times.

man wrapping ptfe tape around a radiator valve
A wrapped valve tail

Using your rad spanner, wind the tail into the radiator (clockwise) until the thread disappears.

Step 2 – Insert Blanking & Bleed Plugs

Provided with your new radiator will be an air vent (bleed valve) and a blanking plug. These can be inserted into either end at the top of the radiator.

Man winding in a bleed valve to a radiator
A spanner tightening a blanking plug on a radiator

Using your adjustable spanner, tighten them up, being careful not to over-tighten and damage the O-ring.

Your radiator is now ready to be fitted to the wall.

How Do I Fix The Radiator To The Wall?

Depending upon which material you are fixing your radiator to, the tools may vary on each job. (Consult the manufacturing guidelines or a professional if you are unsure) For fixing to a brick wall, you will need –

Image of tools on the floor
  • A Hammer drill with a 7mm masonry bit
  • A cordless screwdriver
  • A tape measure
  • Brown plugs
  • Suitable screws
  • A pencil
  • A spirit level

Step 1 – Mark Your Radiator’s Centre Line

Mark the centre line between both pipes – this is where the middle of the radiator should sit on the wall.

Man using a spirit level and a pencil to mark a line on the wall

Step 2 – Mark The Line For The Bottom Of The Radiator

You will then need to work out how high you would like the bottom of the radiator to be from the floor.

Add the distance between the top of the bracket to the bottom of the radiator to this measurement.

A pencil pointing to a tape measure on a wall above a skirting board

Mark this distance across your centre line.

Step 3 – Check Bracket Distance

After marking your centre line, you will need to work out the distance between the brackets on the back of the radiator.

A tape measure showing the distance between two radiator brackets

Step 4 – Mark This Measurement On The Wall

Divide this measurement by two and mark it on the wall.

15cm being marked on a wall with a tape measure and a pencil

Step 5 – Make Your Final Measurements

The final measurement that you will need is the height distance between the top bracket and the bottom bracket.

Mark a centre line higher up the wall and mark the height and width of your radiator across your top centre line.

Man using a tape measure to calculate the length of a designer radiator
Man marking a line on a grey wall with a pencil and a spirit level

Step 6 – It’s Time To Get Drilling

If you are happy with all the measurements you have made, you are ready to drill and plug the wall.

Man with glasses holding a drill and a set of rawlplugs

How Do I Install The Valves?

Place your nut and olive over the water pipe and place the rad valve over the top…

A spanner being used to tighten a nut at the bottom of a radiator valve

…and then, using your adjustable spanner, tighten up the nut. Place a rag on the body of the valve so you don’t damage it.

Valve being tightened with a spanner and a cloth

And finally, turn the valve anti-clockwise and your system is now ready to be re-filled.

A hand turning a chrome radiator valve on a designer radiator

And there you have it, your radiator should be on the wall!

If You Still Need Advice

If you’ve got any burning questions or need advice from the experts, be sure to send in your questions. You never know, we may feature them in our next blog post, too. Questions can be sent via the comments section below, Facebook or Twitter.

Or, if you are confident about getting the job done, watch the video of how we dress and hang a column radiator, below –

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