one of the salvaged radiators installed in this victorian and craftsman style cottage
Photo: Susan Seubert
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Cast Iron Radiators

Even though restoring the home's hot-water radiators has been one of our biggest headaches, we love the heat they put out. We had to replace two that were broken and install two others. Since they're not the heating method of choice in this area, we drove all around Oregon's salvage yards to find replacements and hauled the 500-pound cast-iron monsters back home; you'd be amazed at what can fit in a little Saturn. Finding a contractor who didn't run away at the sight of them was even harder, which is why I really do appreciate the HVAC folks who accidently flooded our home. We had to live with noisy blowers for a month to ensure that mold didn't take hold, but the company took care of the $15,000 repair bill, and, almost more important, they finally gave us a reliable heating system. Remember, it was already our second December living in the house.

Pictured: One of six radiators in the house; each is powder-coated to prevent rusting.

Hardware and plumbing fixtures: Historic House Parts
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