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What Are Pipe Centres and How Are They Measured?

Updated: Jun 17

A white radiator with markings to indicate where to measure the radiator width, and where to measure the pipe centres

The pipe centre measurement is the distance between the inlet and outlet pipes for the radiator. It is found by measuring from the centre of one pipe to the centre of the other. It is essential to accurately measure the pipe centre to ensure the radiator can be fitted easily. However, the dimensions of the radiator valves must also be factored into the calculation to ensure the distance between the pipes can accommodate the radiator and valves with minimal alteration.

For example, our Ideal valves require an additional 80mm (40mm on each side) that must be added to the width. Therefore a 1000mm wide radiator plus 80mm gives a pipe centre measurement of 1080mm.

The information provided with each radiator will state the allowance that must be made within the pipe centre calculation. While quality valves will generally be produced to an accurate size, manufacturing tolerances must also be considered. Therefore, it is always recommended that pipework is not adjusted until the new radiator or towel rail and its valves are fitted.

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British Thermal Units (BTU) is a measure of the output of heat needed to raise the temperature of a room. Determining the correct BTU will help you get the right radiator for your home.

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