Frequently Asked Questions

Stock & Deliveries

Are all products kept in stock?


All of our Designer Radiators and Towel Rails are held in stock in our UK warehouse ready for delivery.




How long will I have to wait for my radiators?


Our fully stocked range of Designer Radiators and Towel Rails can be despatched immediately from our UK warehouse.

Typically, delivery is 48-72 hours from the time your order has been input on to our system, however we will be in contact to arrange a delivery day convenient to you.

Painted RAL’s or Special finishes require some additional manufacturing and will be delivered in up to 15 working days from the time your order has been input on to our system.

Please note that deliveries to Scotland and offshore islands may take a little longer.

All deliveries are pre-handled and coordinated with you prior to the dispatch of your order, with our dedicated customer services team.

Important notice; Our delivery times are being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, please see our COVID-19 statement for more details.




How will my radiators be delivered?


We use a variety of carefully selected pallet delivery networks and courier services to ensure the prompt and safe delivery of your order. Please note that all deliveries are delivered to the nearest hard standing area. Unfortunately, however, our couriers are not able to bring the radiators into the house directly.





Choosing the right Radiator

How much heat do I need?


To establish how much heat your room needs, consult your Gas Safe registered installer or heating engineer. If you want to calculate it out yourself, visit our Heat Output Calculator.

All our radiators are shown with their heat outputs, so you can choose a radiator or several radiators whose outputs add up to the heat you require.

All our Designer Radiators and Towel Rails comply with EN442 legislation. And outputs listed are calculated in line with the European Testing Standards at Δt50°C (the latest standards for modern boiler systems).

To convert Δt50°C to Δt60°C simply multiply x 1.264

Compliant independent test certificates are available upon request.




How do I convert between BTUs and Watts?


To convert BTUs to Watts, divide your Btu by 3.412
To convert Watts to BTUs, multiply your Watts by 3.412




Do different Radiator designs affect output?


By altering the size, shape, number of tubes or columns in a radiator you can adjust the output achieved. For example, we have a huge variety of size and column options in our Cornel range that allow flexibility so that the right output can be achieved in your designated or limited space.




The radiator I want has not got enough output for my room, what can I do?


Depending on the range, you can select an alternative model or size, in addition with certain ranges you can select models with additional columns or radiators which are supplied in double rows of elements to increase output for the same space. You may need to consider adding another radiator to the room to make up any shortfall in required output.




What is the difference between Cast Iron, Steel and Aluminium radiators?


Traditional cast iron radiators have been the staple material in period homes and schools since the Victorian age. Their dense heavy structure takes time to reach optimal temperature but remains hot long after the central heating is turned off - perfect for cold or large period homes.

For more control and a range of traditional and modern designs, steel radiators may be the better choice. Comprised from a lighter less dense material, steel radiators will heat up and cool down quickly providing manageable control.

Aluminium is a highly efficient conductive material that will heat up instantly after the central heating is turned on, giving you total control over your central heating system.




What is the difference between single and double designer radiators?


Using models with additional rows of tubes or multiple columns maximises heat output within the same wall space.

For example, our Beaufort designer radiator comes in both single or double versions, here is an example of the comparable heat outputs for the same width and height:

  • Beaufort single: 2010mm x 305mm = 2228 BTUs

Vs

  • Beaufort double: 2010mm x 305mm = 3323 BTUs




What are Electric/Dual Fuel radiators?


Most of our towel rails can be converted to work as dual fuel models. An element and T piece is needed to adapt the towel rail; your installer will need to be aware if you wish to do this in order to adjust pipe centres accordingly.

Duel Fuel allows you to connect your towel rail to both your central heating system and mains electricity, this flexibly allows any dual fuel towel rail or radiator to operate both when the central heating is on, heating the whole house, or independently when you want to heat only the room the towel rail is in . This flexibility allows use during those summer months when you want to warm your towels even when the heating system is off. Duel fuel requires a compatible radiator or towel rail, with a corresponding heating element and T-piece.

If a towel rail is suitable for dual fuel, it will be noted in the overview found on each product page.





Radiator Positioning

Where should I position my radiators?


In new modern homes, radiator positioning is less important due to insulation and modern building regulations however please be sure to consult your plumber or heating engineer prior to purchase and installation of your radiator. In traditional homes, most radiators are best placed in the coldest part of the room - usually found under a window, as this allows for airflow and radiant air convection.

Large spaces are more effectively heated with 2 or more, smaller radiators rather than one large one.

A rule of the thumb often used in the trade is to have one radiator every four metres (about 15 feet) or so in the room. An alternative could be two tall thin radiators either side of the window or a long low radiator along the wall.




Should I choose horizontal or vertical?


Many of our designs are available in horizontal or vertical options, which one you choose depends on your available space and how you can maximize the use of the space without compromising or losing the required heat output.




What clearances do I need above and below my radiator to ensure maximum efficiency?


We recommend that clearances of 50mm above and 100mm below should be left clear so heat from the radiator can be effectively distributed.




Can I curve or bend radiators to fit into an existing bay window?


Some radiators can be curved or bent to fit a bay window, unfortunatly we do not supply these. if you require a curved radiator plese visit The Radiator Company who provides this type of radiator from their Ancona range, where they can curve the radiator to your specifications.





Colours & Painting

What systems are our radiators compatible with?


All radiators and towel rails featured on this website are suitable for indirect/closed systems that comply with 'BS5449, section 1 forced circulation hot water systems'.

Certain Towel Rails like our Lanark towel rail can also be fitted on a direct hot water system.




What is the difference between an indirect and direct system?


An indirect system is filled with water that remains in the system and is circulated through the boiler and radiators.

A direct system uses mains water that is continually replaced within the system – this causes an influx of oxygen and bacteria in the water, meaning Stainless Steel or Brass radiators should be used to avoid rusting of the radiators or contamination of the water supply.




I want to install aluminium radiators, is there anything I need to know?


Aluminium radiators are installed in exactly the same way as steel or cast iron, as with all central heating systems a suitable quality and quantity of inhibitor must be used to avoid corrosion. Mixed metal inhibitors are now easily available from most plumbers’ merchants. Be sure to ask your plumber about mixed metal inhibitor.




Are the cast iron radiators from Radiators Direct compatible with my system?


Our Cast Iron radiators are compatible with normal central heating systems and have British Standard fittings. On an existing system you can replace all the radiators or just the ones you want. Confirm with your installer that your pipe work and system set up is suitable for additional radiators.




Do cast iron radiators take longer to warm up than standard radiators?


Yes, however, because there is a lot of mass with cast iron, the radiators have the advantage of staying warm long after the central heating has been turned off. This means that the changes in temperature in a room heated with radiators made of cast iron are gentler than those in a room heated with steel radiators.

Most people tend to run their central heating twice per day, once in the morning and then again at night, if a third short period is added into the middle of these two times then the warm up time is greatly reduced and the house will remain warm all day and night. When mixing standard radiators with cast iron we find that if the central heating thermostat is sited near a standard radiator the heating may close down before the cast iron radiators sited elsewhere have reached full temperature. The solution is to slow down the standard radiator, influencing the thermostat by part closing the lockshield valve on that radiator (the usually covered end valve opposite the temperature control valve on the radiator used to balance the central heating system).

Heating a home is partly about heating the fabric of the building. Cast iron radiators are again becoming popular amongst heating engineers and architects (particularly for older buildings) as they tend to retain the warmth in the fabric of the building which in turn counteracts damp and condensation.




Are our radiators suitable for a single pipe system?


All our radiators are compatible with a single pipe system. However, depending on the setup of your one pipe system, you may need specialist valves. If you are unsure about the compatibility of our valves with your single pipe system, please feel free to contact us or discuss this with your installer.




Do my radiators need venting, and how do I do it?


Pockets of oxygen naturally build up in central heating systems due to the amount of fresh water running through it - this in turn causes radiators to become less efficient. Radiators require venting to alleviate the build-up of air, which in most cases is a manual process.

If you already own a radiator that is cold at the top and hot at the bottom, it is likely that your radiator needs venting (bleeding).

How to Vent/Bleed your radiator:

-Take care to protect decorated surfaces with a cloth or small bowl to catch the water prior to opening the air vent.

- Venting is best carried out when the system is cold, to do so, simply turn off the heating system and slightly open the air vent (some radiators will require a radiator vent key, others may need a small screwdriver) until water is noted at the air vent (this means all air has been purged from the radiator).

- Gently close the vent and then switch the system back on.

If the radiators need venting frequently, there may be a fault with the system and a heating engineer should be contacted.




Why are my radiators hot at the top and cold at the bottom?


This indicates that the radiator may be receiving an insufficient flow of water; typically, large radiators need a higher water flow than small radiators. There may be several reasons for this, such as incorrect balancing, incorrect pipe size or an under-performing or under-sized pump, there may also simply be a blockage in the radiator or there could be pockets of oxygen that need venting.

A heating engineer should be called to carry out further investigations.





Technical Information

What systems are our radiators compatible with?


All radiators and towel rails featured on this website are suitable for indirect/closed systems that comply with 'BS5449, section 1 forced circulation hot water systems'.

Certain Towel Rails like our Lanark towel rail can also be fitted on a direct hot water system.




What is the difference between an indirect and direct system?


An indirect system is filled with water that remains in the system and is circulated through the boiler and radiators.

A direct system uses mains water that is continually replaced within the system – this causes an influx of oxygen and bacteria in the water, meaning Stainless Steel or Brass radiators should be used to avoid rusting of the radiators or contamination of the water supply.




I want to install aluminium radiators, is there anything I need to know?


Aluminium radiators are installed in exactly the same way as steel or cast iron, as with all central heating systems a suitable quality and quantity of inhibitor must be used to avoid corrosion. Mixed metal inhibitors are now easily available from most plumbers’ merchants. Be sure to ask your plumber about mixed metal inhibitor.




Are the cast iron radiators from Radiators Direct compatible with my system?


Our Cast Iron radiators are compatible with normal central heating systems and have British Standard fittings. On an existing system you can replace all the radiators or just the ones you want. Confirm with your installer that your pipe work and system set up is suitable for additional radiators.




Do cast iron radiators take longer to warm up than standard radiators?


Yes, however, because there is a lot of mass with cast iron, the radiators have the advantage of staying warm long after the central heating has been turned off. This means that the changes in temperature in a room heated with radiators made of cast iron are gentler than those in a room heated with steel radiators.

Most people tend to run their central heating twice per day, once in the morning and then again at night, if a third short period is added into the middle of these two times then the warm up time is greatly reduced and the house will remain warm all day and night. When mixing standard radiators with cast iron we find that if the central heating thermostat is sited near a standard radiator the heating may close down before the cast iron radiators sited elsewhere have reached full temperature. The solution is to slow down the standard radiator, influencing the thermostat by part closing the lockshield valve on that radiator (the usually covered end valve opposite the temperature control valve on the radiator used to balance the central heating system).

Heating a home is partly about heating the fabric of the building. Cast iron radiators are again becoming popular amongst heating engineers and architects (particularly for older buildings) as they tend to retain the warmth in the fabric of the building which in turn counteracts damp and condensation.




Are our radiators suitable for a single pipe system?


All our radiators are compatible with a single pipe system. However, depending on the setup of your one pipe system, you may need specialist valves. If you are unsure about the compatibility of our valves with your single pipe system, please feel free to contact us or discuss this with your installer.




Do my radiators need venting, and how do I do it?


Pockets of oxygen naturally build up in central heating systems due to the amount of fresh water running through it - this in turn causes radiators to become less efficient. Radiators require venting to alleviate the build-up of air, which in most cases is a manual process.

If you already own a radiator that is cold at the top and hot at the bottom, it is likely that your radiator needs venting (bleeding).

How to Vent/Bleed your radiator:

-Take care to protect decorated surfaces with a cloth or small bowl to catch the water prior to opening the air vent.

- Venting is best carried out when the system is cold, to do so, simply turn off the heating system and slightly open the air vent (some radiators will require a radiator vent key, others may need a small screwdriver) until water is noted at the air vent (this means all air has been purged from the radiator).

- Gently close the vent and then switch the system back on.

If the radiators need venting frequently, there may be a fault with the system and a heating engineer should be contacted.




Why are my radiators hot at the top and cold at the bottom?


This indicates that the radiator may be receiving an insufficient flow of water; typically, large radiators need a higher water flow than small radiators. There may be several reasons for this, such as incorrect balancing, incorrect pipe size or an under-performing or under-sized pump, there may also simply be a blockage in the radiator or there could be pockets of oxygen that need venting.

A heating engineer should be called to carry out further investigations.





Installation

Who will install my radiators?


Radiators Direct radiators can be installed by any competent plumber / installer (electrician for electric models) who is preferably Gas Safe registered.




What should I use to secure the radiator to the wall?


Radiators are heavy items and should be securely fastened to the wall. Specific care should be taken to identify the construction of the wall and use the appropriate fasteners to secure the radiator brackets. All Radiators Direct radiators are supplied with the correct brackets and detailed instructions, which are also available on the relevant product pages for download.




How do I fit valves?


Firstly, the heating system needs to be switched off, and the radiator needs to be drained.

- Remove the current valve (if applicable) by loosening the connecting and securing nuts.
- Wrap at least five turns of PTFE tape around the threaded tails of the new valves and screw them into the radiator and pipework.

Make sure the PTFE tape stays on the thread rather than just running along it as you tighten. If it does run, undo the valve and roughen the thread slightly with a hacksaw blade then re-tape the thread. (Some of our valves have parallel threads which means that they never tighten against a stop like traditional valves, so more PTFE tape than usual is required. We recommend the use of gas type PTFE which is much thicker than the standard).

- Tighten the connecting and securing nuts to secure the valve.

If you are also replacing the lock shield repeat above steps.




Should I prepare my pipe work before my radiators arrive?


We endeavour to ensure all pipe centres are correct on our website, however manufacturing tolerances must be considered; therefore we strongly recommend that pipe work is not installed or altered until your new radiator or towel rail is delivered.

The Radiators Direct will not accept any responsibility for claims resulting from incorrect pipe centres.




Can I use microbore pipework?


Yes, but on large cast iron radiators (over 3500 watts) it can prove problematic on balancing the central heating system. If in doubt, ask your plumber / installer.

Microbore pipework can also prove challenging for tall (vertical) radiators. We recommend asking your heating engineer for guidance if you have microbore pipework and are considering vertical radiators.





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