DIY How To

DIY Projects - Fit radiator valves

Radiator valves will need replacing at some time or another, this could be due to a leaking valve, corrosion of the old valve or the need to replace a handwheel valve with a thermostatic valve. Check out our related topics for draining an individual radiator

PTFE valve Make sure the threads in the end of the radiator are clean. Wrap PTFE tape at least five times around the adaptor threads, in a clockwise rotation to help prevent any possible leaks. By wrapping the tape in a clockwise direction prevents the tape undoing as the adaptor is screwed in. Screw the adaptor into the end of the radiator and tighten with a spanner.
Cap nut olive

Slide the valve cap-nut and new olive onto the pipe and fit the valve to the end of the pipe. Align the valve with the adaptor on the radiator and tighten the cap-nut that secures the valve to the radiator. Next tighten the cap-nut that secures the valve to the pipe. Refill the system following the procedure for either a sealed central heating system or an open vented central heating system, check for leaks, tightening cap-nuts if necessary.

DIY Projects - Remove radiator valve

If more than one valve is being replaced the system needs to be drained first. If you have a sealed central heating system use the procedure to drain a sealed central heating system, if you have an open vented central heating system use the procedure to drain an open vented central heating system.

TipIf only one radiator valve needs to be replaced, turn off both valves on the radiator and use a pipe freezing kit to freeze the water below the faulty valve. Drain the radiator and replace the valve.

Remove valve Hold the body of the valve with a pipe wrench and use an adjustable spanner to unscrew the cap-nuts that hold the valve to the pipe and adaptor in the end of the radiator. Lift the valve from the end of the pipe and unscrew the adaptor from the radiator. Depending on the type of adaptor a radiator spanner may be necessary.

Sometimes the cap-nut on the pipe may be a different type to the new valve and need replacing, if this is the case the old olive needs removing. To remove the old olive, try turning and pulling the olive off by hand. If the olive is tight then try the following steps.

Remove olive To remove the old olive, place an open ended spanner below the olive and tap the spanner upwards, if you don't have the right size open ended spanner, you can use an adjustable spanner, but take care not to hit the thumbwheel as it will get damaged.
Cut olive If the olive is tight and will not tap off, carefully cut the olive with a junior hacksaw taking care not to damage the pipework. Cut diagonally across the olive as shown.
Saw olive Take care not to cut all the way through the olive, otherwise the pipework will get damaged. Cut until there is a slot about 3/4 of the depth of the olive.
Prise olive apart Insert a flat bladed screwdriver into the slot and twist. This should split the olive, if it doesn't, carefully cut the slot a little deeper but not all the way through and try again.
Split olive Once the olive splits, it can be prised apart with the screwdriver and removed from the pipe. Before fitting a new olive make sure the pipe is cleaned with wire wool.
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