Hot water radiator: How to pick up the best models of 2022

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Do you have a boiler at home? You, therefore, need in each room, or at least in the main ones, a hot water radiator. Once connected to the central heating system, it restores heat production and tempers your living spaces.

The principle is simple, the models are quite similar on the market. We’ve looked at them all to bring you a helpful list of the best hot water heaters, in different sizes and wattages.

What is a hot water radiator and how does it work?

As its name suggests, the hot water radiator makes it possible to heat a dwelling by transmitting heat from the water, which it transports via a hydraulic circuit, to the air. Indeed, this type of radiator works with central heating which is most often an oil, gas or wood boiler but which can also be a heat pump or solar panels.

The water heated by one of these systems is then distributed through a piping circuit, to all the radiators in the house. The principles of radiation and/or convection then allow the propagation of heat in the ambient air. The temperature rises gradually, depending on the setting of the radiator valve. The cooling water continues its cycle leaving the radiator through another pipe to join the boiler and so on.

How to choose the right hot water radiator?

Faced with all these models of hot water radiators, you don’t know how to make the right choice? Do not panic, we will briefly explain to you what criteria to take into account.

The rise in temperature of the hot water radiator

You will find two types of hot water radiators on the market:

  • High temperature radiator : the water inside the circuit can exceed 100°C. This results in faster and more lasting heat gain but also increased consumption and very hot walls.
  • Low temperature radiator : here the liquid does not exceed 50°C, the walls can be touched without problem and consumption is much more economical. In return, the radiator is more imposing to ensure equivalent heating.
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The material of the hot water radiator

Depending on the material of which it is made, the hot water radiator will not have the same performance:

  • Cast iron has the advantage of having good thermal inertia, i.e. that it stores the heat to restore it gradually and for a long time. It is a robust and durable material, however it is heavy and particularly long to heat up.
  • heatsSteel up quickly but its inertia is very limited. The aesthetics of these radiators, on the other hand, are much more pleasant and modern. Much lighter, with a good quality/price ratio, they largely dominate the market.
  • Cast aluminum offers a good compromise between rapid heating, inertia and lifespan. However, care must be taken to avoid corrosion.

The power of the hot water radiator

With this type of radiator the power is proportional to the dimensions, the more hot water it contains the more it is capable of heating a large surface. The ratio is the same as for electric radiators, ie on average 1000 watts for 10 m² in a dwelling with the correct insulation (RT-2005 standard). If your home is perfectly insulated from floor to ceiling, you can lower this threshold to 600 watts for the same surface (RT-2012 standard).

Anyway, you can adjust the heat output and even install thermostatic heads to precisely control your hot water radiator via a connected thermostat. It is important not to underestimate the power of your radiator because it could run at maximum permanently, becoming energy-consuming. Conversely, who can do more can do less, a more efficient radiator is able to operate at a moderate rate, the heat input will then be adequate with optimal consumption.

The style and format of the hot water

radiator A radiator cannot be replaced every minute, even less hot water radiators which are connected to central heating and therefore often require the intervention of a professional. It will necessarily be visible unless it is completely concealed in a piece of furniture or with a cover (which is not the best for the return of heat). Conclusion, it is in your best interest to choose the appropriate model, which fits correctly into your space without cluttering it and which does not stand out too much in your decoration !

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Horizontal, vertical hot water radiator, rather classic, retro or downright designer, white, black or another colour? The catalog of some manufacturers is vast! Once you know which power to choose, take a serious look at thevisual appearance of your radiator. As you will see, prices vary depending on this parameter, so you may have to compromise. However, sometimes it is better to save a few months than to regret seeing a radiator that you don’t like every day.

Radiateur à eau chaudeHot Water Radiator

What Are The Advantages And Disadvantages Of The Hot Water Radiator?

If your home is equipped with a central heating system, it is obvious to choose hot water radiators, you will always be a winner on all counts.

Indeed, the hot water radiator offers even and gentle heat without drying the air or moving dust. It is also a heating system that is always more economical than an electric radiator. Oil, gas, wood being less expensive energies. If you also have solar panels or a heat pump, you will have an ecological, economical and comfortable heating method!

The main disadvantage of this type of heating ismaintenance. A professional must necessarily intervene periodically. You will also need to bleed your radiators to remove air that is preventing water from passing through the entire radiator structure properly. Be careful if you are planning a complete installation in a house that did not have a boiler before. The work will be substantial because a whole system of double piping circuits must run between each room and the heat production unit.

How Much Does a Hot Water Radiator Cost?

Depending on the models, dimensions, power or even the design material, the price of a hot water radiator can vary from 30 to more than 1000 $.

When And How To Drain A Hot Water Radiator?

Bleeding of hot water radiators is recommended at least once a year. If you have a boiler that needs professional maintenance, it should be done at the same time. If this is not the case but you know absolutely nothing about it, it is best to contact a professional for this step anyway because a badly carried out purge can damage the entire heating system.

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For competent and well-equipped do-it-yourselfers, purging will only be a formality. You will always start with the radiator closest to the boiler and then go further and further by following these few steps for each element:

the boiler and let the radiators cool completely.

Identify the bleed plug on the left or on the right of the hot water radiator.

– Prepare a cloth and a deep container.

– Use a bleed wrench to unscrew the bleed screw, you should hear a hiss.

– The air begins to escape, collect the water in the container.

– Once nothing is leaking, replace the screw.

It is sometimes useful to readjust the pressure in the radiators via a filler valve located at the level of the boiler. The required pressure usually varies between 1 and 1.5 bar but this may depend on your system. Unless you know exactly how to do it, we advise you to ask an expert in the field!

How To Maintain A Hot Water Radiator Daily?

In addition to the annual purge, your radiators require a little maintenance, just like the rest of your house! Don’t worry, it’s quick and easy if you get into the habit of doing it periodically, a bit like cleaning the fridge…

The main action consists of a good dusting, on the surface but especially between each slat. You will notice that piles of dust have the unfortunate tendency to get stuck there, resulting in bad smells, overheating and excessive energy consumption.

Occasionally, use a soft, slightly damp cloth to clean the surface of your hot water radiator. If a splash of liquid, whatever it is, should reach your radiator, clean it immediately so as not to risk the lasting stain. Indeed, the heat could “cook” and eventually fix the dirt (depending on its type) in the coating.

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