Our guide to ordering and installing cast iron radiators


Our guide to ordering and installing cast iron radiators

Cast iron radiators are expensive items and as such you will want to make sure that you are choosing a suitable radiator that will work effectively and look beautiful, and that installation of your radiators is as problem-free as possible.

When you order a cast iron radiator from The Victorian Emporium, we send you detailed guides on moving your heavy cast iron radiators once they arrive, joining a long radiator if it is supplied in two parts, installing your radiator and caring for it after installation. Here are some more general points that may be useful to you when you order cast iron radiators from us.

Ordering your cast iron radiator

First of all, browse our radiator styles and decide on the following:

Where will you be placing your radiator? Does this limit the height, width or depth of the radiator? For example in a narrow hallway where radiator depth could be critical, or under a window, or between doorways.

What are your required BTUs for your radiator? Your plumber should be able to help you with this and you can also use our BTU calculator as a general guide.

Do you prefer the more ornate or the simpler styles? And the more ornate or simple painting/finishing?

Do you want the radiator to match your room décor colours or do you wish it to be contrasting? Do you want the radiator to be a central, decorative feature of the room or to be unobtrusive and look functional?

All of the above should help to narrow down your choice and focus your purchase around a few particular styles and finishes.

If you are swamped by the options, then please contact us on 01525 750333 for advice and we would be delighted to help.

Common questions when thinking of ordering a cast iron radiator

Is a cast-iron radiator efficient or are some more efficient than others?

Are cast iron radiators more expensive to run?

What to look for in a traditional Victorian radiator?

Are cast iron radiators easy to keep clean?

Planning the installation of your cast iron radiator

It’s best to not book a plumber to install the radiators until the order arrives and has been checked, even if we have confirmed a delivery date. It’s quite rare but on occasions, a courier may not arrive on the scheduled day due to bad weather, vehicle break down or damage to goods whilst in transit. If this happens we’ll assist however we can to ensure the order arrives as quickly as possible on the next available date.

Guide to inspecting and installing your cast iron radiator

Once your radiator order arrives, it will be unloaded from the vehicle onto the nearest hardstanding to your house. You’ll need to remove the wrapping from the order, check the radiators before the courier leaves and sign the delivery note. Please note, the courier is not insured to move the radiators into your home. Cast iron radiators are very heavy so you’ll probably require some help to lift the radiators. As a guide, you’ll probably require 2-3 strong men to move an average cast iron radiator or half radiator if it’s supplied in two parts. Make sure you follow our guide to avoid damaging these when you move them. Mishandling during delivery, storage and installation can lead to faults and possibly leaks.

how to carry a radiator

Once inside, inspect your radiators and make sure that they match your order. You need to notify us within 24 hours if they don’t.  Also check them for visible faults as after installation, it’s more problematic to resolve any issues not notified to us within 24 hours of delivery.

If you’re happy that everything is ok, book your plumber. Once he arrives this is the order of work he should follow.

Plumbers guide to installing cast iron radiators

If the radiator is supplied in two parts, usually for radiators over 1.2 metres in length, join the parts together. Follow our detailed radiator joining instructions that will have been sent to you with your order confirmation to do so.

Make sure this is done on a clean, firm and flat surface ensuring that the machined faces and internal threads are perfectly clean. Once joined, stand the radiator up and make sure that it stands on all of its feet. If it doesn’t, check your floor levels as it’s rare for the radiator to be misshapen. The straightness of the radiator is one of the checks that is done before it leaves the factory. If you are not installing the radiator immediately, make sure you store it flat (or on its feet on a flat surface), otherwise, this could cause issues later.

Add the valves onto the radiator at both ends. Once the radiator is fully assembled with the valves on, you can work out the pipe centres for the pipes to be installed.

Install your pipework to the pipe centres from the fully assembled and measured radiators and make sure there is a little flexibility to these dimensions. DO NOT install pipework before your radiator has arrived or is fully assembled. Cast iron radiators cannot be altered to fit incorrect pipe work retrospectively as the individual sections are cast and the size of these cannot be changed.

Once your pipework is in place, you can install your radiator following our detailed installation guide, also supplied with your order confirmation.

Don’t forget to add your Fernox inhibitor or similar to prevent corrosion of radiator seals.

Wall stays should be clamped between two adjacent rear columns of the radiator and screwed securely to the wall. The threaded rod should be cut to length to suit the final positioning of the radiator. Once installed your wall stays should be barely visible. Wall stays are not essential but advisable to secure the radiator to the wall.

If you need to finish a floor or decoration behind or underneath the radiator, you can remove your radiator to do this and then put it back in place once the room decor is complete.

At Victorian Emporium, we offer a huge selection of cast iron radiators. Discover our collection online today.

Categories: Radiators   Tags: cast iron radiators, how to install

Posted by Lawrence Campbell - Feb 18, 2023 - 23:11

Hello there, Thank you for providing this very helpful guide, it will save me from further, hours and hours of head stretching and convoluted approaches, that take hours to achieve a connection between pipes, values and cast iron radiator. Is your detailed installation guide, here on your website somewhere pease - if so I would really, really appraise a look?