Bleeding radiators – The how’s, why’s and what’s.
Bleeding radiators is something that most of us will need to do at some point or another and let’s be honest it would be much easier if we could do it ourselves. Don’t worry; your JSP Plumbers are here to help.
So why do we need to bleed our radiators?
As the water travels round our heating systems it carries with it pockets of air. This air pocket can become trapped and can prevent the radiators from heating up efficiently. Generally the air has originated from an open tank on a vented central heating system. If you have to bleed your radiator frequently it will usually be due to gravity water pressure and that the tanks are open vented. However, occasionally the excessive need to bleed a radiator can indicate corrosion within the pipework or air being drawn in through the central heating pump.
How do I start bleeding radiators?
- Firstly turn on the heating so that the radiators, in your home, come on. It is important to wait to do anymore until the pressure within your radiators builds up to ensure that the pressure will be able to force the air out.
- When your radiators are hot you will need to check each one individually for cool spots. Pay particular attention to the top of the radiators where gas and oil are likely to be trapped. Radiators that have cool spots will need to be bleed.
- Switch of your heating which will allow you to handle the radiators without burning yourself and will prevent you from drenching your floors.
- Once the radiators have cooled, attach a radiator key to the square part of the valve (the valve will be at the top of the radiator at one end) or insert a screwdriver into the groove.
- Using a cloth to catch any drips, turn the radiator key or screwdriver. While the trapped air is escaping you will hear a hissing sound. Once the air has escaped you need to close the valve quickly. Due to the pressure within the radiator water will more than likely gush out if you don’t.
- Finally, you will need to check the pressure on your boiler. If the gauge shows that the water pressure is too low you will need to ‘top up’. This can be done by using the lever or tap (filling loop) on your boiler.
That’s it. Complete these steps and you will be well on your way to a warm, toasty home