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View Full Version : can I cap off a hot water radiator?



pronouncedeyen
10-01-2009, 05:01 AM
At the beginning of our bathroom remodel we removed the hot water radiator so we could redo the floor. Well everything under the floor was a disaster so we haven't put it back yet. And now it's getting cold.

Does anyone sell a cap for the iron pipe that's the size of a standard female residential radiator fitting? If I could cap it off I could turn the heat on.

Otherwise it's going to be a mighty cold fall/winter.

SewerRatz
10-01-2009, 07:26 AM
Did your radiator have one or two pipes? If it is a two pipe system, I would think twice about capping it off. It all depends on how it is piped. If they put the radiators in a series loop, you would stop the rest of the system from getting hot water. Now if they plumbed them in a parallel type as pictured in the bottom part of the picture you might be able to get away with it. But there is a chance of causing an unbalanced load.

pronouncedeyen
10-01-2009, 08:16 AM
SewerRatz: It's the second kind. Two pipes to each radiator that go all the way to the big supply & return pipes in the basement. Nothing is connected in series like the first diagram.

The problem I have is that the system is almost 100 hundred years old. I don't want to try and pull off the piece that connects to the radiator to get down to a standard iron thread to cap it off because I'm worried about things breaking apart. Do 100-year-old hot water radiators use a standard thread? Can I get a cap made out of that thread?

If not, is there some way to cap off the pipes without removing pieces to get to a standard iron pipe thread?

hj
10-01-2009, 08:29 AM
Few, if any, "radiator" systems are looped. The valve and elbow threads at each end are "proprietary" and are not even interchangeable between brands, so there are NO caps that will fit them. You have to remove the valve and elbow in order to cap the pipes. Hot water components will unscrew fairly easily. Steam could be almost impossible to remove.

frenchie
10-03-2009, 02:24 PM
I'm used to steam pipes, so this may be overkill... but...

If it's really stubborn...

grab a 3 or 4 foot length of 1-1/4" or 1-1/2" (whichever size best fits over the handle of your pipe wrench) steel pipe - and use it to give yourself a longer handle. The extra leverage makes a huge difference.

nhmaster
10-03-2009, 02:35 PM
I'm used to steam pipes, so this may be overkill... but...

If it's really stubborn...

grab a 3 or 4 foot length of 1-1/4" or 1-1/2" (whichever size best fits over the handle of your pipe wrench) steel pipe - and use it to give yourself a longer handle. The extra leverage makes a huge difference.

You are kidding right? :confused:

nhmaster
10-03-2009, 02:37 PM
I'm used to steam pipes, so this may be overkill... but...

If it's really stubborn...

grab a 3 or 4 foot length of 1-1/4" or 1-1/2" (whichever size best fits over the handle of your pipe wrench) steel pipe - and use it to give yourself a longer handle. The extra leverage makes a huge difference.

You are joking right? Or have you not seen the damage and injury that can result in doing just such a thing? Pipe wrenches are sized the way they are for a reason. Never put a cheater bar on a pipe wrench. Get a bigger wrench.