A Plumbers Guide To Fitting Radiators With Rotarad

A Plumbers Guide To Fitting Radiators With Rotarad

Installing a new radiator, yourself isn’t impossible, just like installing the Rotarad conversion kits.

It is recommended to hire a professional heating engineer or plumber who is more likely to get the job done to the highest quality and in half the time.

Fitting a radiator can still be time-consuming and can become a messy job if you don’t know what you are doing!

Not only do you have to install the new radiator, but you have to go through the process of draining down the entire heating system in some cases!

It’s not a job everyone’s comfortable with, and there’s no reason why you should have to do it all by yourself if you don’t want to.

To help you decide the best way to fit a radiator and the Rotarad conversion kit we’ve put together a handy installation guide. It outlines both the benefits of hiring a professional and some essential DIY tips on how to fit the radiator with the conversion kits.

Radiator Tools Required – To Fit Radiator

Before you start the task of fitting your radiator you will require the following tools:


  1. Adjustable wrench
  2. Screwdriver
  3. Tape measure
  4. Spirit level
  5. Radiator key
  6. Pipe cutter
  7. Pipe wrench
  8. Spanner
  9. Bucket
  10. Dust sheet
  11. Pipe tape

If you have not got the above items it would be recommended to call out your local plumber. This can work out more cost-effective to carry out the work to replace the radiator and to install Rotarad as most of the tools listed would also apply to install the conversion kits.


How To Remove the Radiator?

If you are going to try to install a radiator without the help of a plumber or heating engineer, you must make sure you know exactly what you’re doing before you get started.

It is recommended that you carry out a thorough risk inspection and take care to follow all the safety procedures that are required, as one mistake could have financial consequences if not adhered to.

Step 1 - Turn off the hot water and leave it to cool down for half-hour or so. This will allow you time to prepare for your radiator installation and removal.


Step 2 – Turn off the radiator you are replacing by turning the control valve clockwise. At the far end of the radiator, there should also be a protective cap, which is also known as the lock-shield valve. Remove the cap, and close this valve using an adjustable spanner and turn it clockwise too.


Make sure you count the number of turns because this then needs to be turned back the same number of times once your new radiator has been fitted, to ensure even distribution and a balanced hot water system.


Step 3 - Bleed the radiator to get out any excess water. Turn the key at the far top corner and have a cloth or tray ready to catch any dirty water that might drain from the radiator.


Place a container under the control valve ready for the excess water. Use a wrench to grip the valve, hold it in place whilst you loosen the nut that connects the valve to the radiator. 


Now vent the radiator of air to break the vacuum inside and allow the water to flow out of the control valve. You will need a radiator key to open the bleed valve to do this.  Make sure you allow the radiator to drain fully!


Step 4 - Once you have drained down the radiator, you will then need to remove it. To do this loosen and undo the nut that connects the lock-shield valve to the adaptor in the radiator. Lift the radiator up to remove it from the wall brackets; you might need some assistance here!  Use your radiator key to close the bleed valve.


Step 5 - The radiator is now ready to be removed!  Grip the valve assembly at the bottom of the model with a steady wrench to prevent it being pulled loose along with the unit itself, then undo the necessary nuts and bolts before hoisting the radiator from the brackets on the wall.  This job may take two of you to do as the radiator may be heavier than you expected!


Step 6 - Now that your radiator is removed you may need to drain any excess water still inside; simply hold the radiator at an angle to release all the remaining water.  Beware the water is very mucky and could stain your carpet etc.

Step 7 – Remove the radiator brackets, as these will not be needed when fitting the Rotarad kits.

Step by Step Guide - How to fit the Radiator with Rotarad


Picture 1 – Ensure the ‘O’ rings are in place as you thread the swivel connectors into each end of the radiator and tighten with a spanner

Picture 2a – Mark a level line across the wall where you require at the bottom of the radiator.

Picture 2b – Place a bottom bracket wall plate on the line where the end of the radiator will be.  Mark centre of slots and fix plate to the wall. Slide-in lower support bracket thoroughly through the channel.

Picture 2c – Take a measurement from groove to groove between the radiator connectors.  Assemble the other wall plate and support bracket fully through the channel.

Picture 2d – Hook a tape measure onto the support bracket you have fitted.  Position the other assembled wall plate and support bracket onto the pencil line.   Measure the same distance bracket to bracket as you did from groove to groove then mark and fix.

Picture 3 - Carefully place the radiator onto the support brackets ensuring the -brackets are located into the grooves of the rotating connectors. Hook top bracket with a marker attached to the centre of the top lugs on the rear of your radiator.  Then push against the wall to mark fixing points.  Remove marker and fix both brackets.

Picture 4 -  Fit both safety wires by threading one end behind the lugs at the rear of the radiator.  Then pass the black eyelet through the loop on the other end of the wire.

Picture 5 – You then hook the black eyelets into the slots provided in the top brackets fixed to the wall, pressing them towards the wall as you rotate the radiator into position.

Picture 6 -  To secure the radiator onto the wall, you lift and push down to engage the top of the brackets onto the Luggs at the rear of the radiator when in position.


See our video - How to install Rotarad kits  

There are 2 types of valves so when you are looking to purchase your rotarad kits, check to see the type valves needed, see pictures below which will help you to identify.





Hiring a Plumber or Heating Engineer

If you are lacking in the necessary experience, then even a simple job fitting a new radiator can seem a daunting task.  That’s why we recommend you should get advice from a professional.

Plumbing contractors are able to fit a new radiator in just a couple of hours, who can provide the appropriate materials to carry out the work.

Plumbers and heating engineers can turn off the boiler and drain down the system safely which can be done in a matter of minutes.

They also have the appropriate skills and the experience to ensure your radiator and Rotarad kits have been fitted correctly.



Once you have installed Rotarad you no longer have to go through this process time and time again when you need to decorate or clean!


See Blog - Draining Down The Radiator -V- Rotarad Removal Kit

See Blog – Why Should You Clean Radiators

See Blog – How To Remove Wallpaper behind Radiators

1 comment

  • Eli Richardson

    It really helped when you talked about hiring a plumber to fit a new radiator in less time. Last week, my parent’s heating system stopped working, and since we live in a very cold area, we need to fix it right now. That’s why I’m grateful for your insight about installing a radiator with the appropriate tools.

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