Radiator Valves and Balancing

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Two different types of valves are featured on a radiator in a central heating system. Number one is fitted to open up and close down the actual volume of water that can pass through the radiator. Number two is called a radiator lock-shield valve and is designed not to be as easily adjusted as the first as it has a different and important job to do. It is shrouded by a plastic dome shaped cap. West Heath Plumbers can fit radiator valves.

The first valve that opens and closes the radiator, consists of a simple plastic headed on/off control valve. There is another valve called a TRV, which is better known as a thermostatic radiator valve. It used to be the case that whoever installed the system decided whether to use a manual valve or thermostatic radiator valve, however the current building regulations state that TRV’s have to be fitted. A manual valve is only allowed be fitted to radiators in a room where a thermostat has been fitted. The TRV automatically closes off the water supply to the radiator when the programmed temperature in the room is reached, which is good for saving fuel and also ensuring that heat is not wasted

The lock-shield valve:

This is located at the opposite end of the radiator from the TRV, and has a specific job which is controlling the volume of water that flows through the radiator. This is exactly the same as the manual valve, however, it has been pre-set using a spanner at the time of installation during system balancing.

Balancing a Radiator Circuit:

A West Heath Plumber can balance a heating system. Balancing is carried out in order to ensure that the first radiator in the heating circuit will not take all the hot water from the boiler, because it is the closest.
The lockshield valve needs to be partially closed. Having this valve in this state (usually half a turn) the water has to continue along the heating circuit to the next radiator. So all the radiator lockshield valves are adjusted in a similar way to force the water to evenly flow throughout the whole system.

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