All you need to know about radiator valves

All radiators need valves to control the flow of water into the units and these now come in a variety of styles and finishes. Radiator valves are necessary in whatever form as they allow an easy way to stop the flow of the central heating circuit into the radiator. In times past there were double entry rad valves and the really popular micro-bore radiator valve, still used in old stone building and on traditional systems. With the popularity of radiators as a heating emitter came the advent of two pipe systems and a far more efficient central heating circuit. The reason you need two valves generally on all rads is because the system dictates a flow and return. The flow pipework carries the newly heated water from the boiler. The return taking it back at a lower temperature to be reheated by the boiler. The radiator or heat emitter uses the heat and transfers it into the room and it does this by having a large surface area and convector fins. There are two types of valves and they are different because of their operation. Manual valves are as the name suggests open and closed manually. Thermostatic valves use a sensor to open the valve and this is dependent upon heat. Both types of valves are sold in straight and angled styles dependent upon where the pipework is originating from.

The different styles of radiators has actually determined the style of radiators valves and Columnrads will try and explain what valves to use with the different radiators now available.


Straight valves are now a common addition to a job and this is because towel rails have the connections on the bottom of the radiator. As long as the pipework is coming from the floor which is often the case then a good pair of matching valves is essential. These really can be classed a towel rail valves and are generally chrome but can come in lots of finishes now. These are available in manual and thermostatic depending on the customer. Designer radiators also may have the connections on the bottom and this is where the new finishes have become popular like, black nickel, silver nickel and antique brass.

Angled valves are by far the most popular orientation and this is because of the majority of heating circuits that have pipework under the floor and the pipes coming up. They can be purchased in thermostatic and manual types and the finishes are now huge offering an almost bespoke radiator offering.

Corner valves are a new orientation that have been developed in the last few years because of the popularity of the floating radiator or where the pipework is from the wall so you do not see any pipework going to the radiator. It gives a clean appearance and corner valves can be found in thermostatic and manual types.

We have a vast range of radiator valves to suit all types of radiators and are more than happy to diagnose what you require so give Columnrads a call today.