In this video, This Old House plumbing and heating contractor Richard Trethewey explains how to maintain a steam radiator.
Steps for Maintaining Steam Radiators
- Close the valve at the base of the radiator.
- Turn off the room’s thermostat.
- Carefully unscrew the old air vent from the side of the radiator; if the valve is hot, use a thick cloth to protect your hand.
- Wrap Teflon tape around the threads of the new steam valve.
- Thread a new steam valve into the side of the radiator; be sure the valve points straight up.
- Remove the handle from the valve at the base of the radiator.
- Use an adjustable wrench to unscrew the packing nut from the valve stem.
- Wrap graphite packing gasket around the threaded valve stem.
- Replace the nut and tighten it with an adjustable wrench.
- Open the valve at the base of the radiator.
- Turn on the room’s thermostat.