Quiet the Noise: Steam Radiators

Clanging, whistling and banging driving you crazy? Steam radiators are notorious for making a great deal of noise, but you don’t have to live with it any longer! See below to find out how to quiet the noise in your old Twin Cities – St. Paul home:

Problem #1: Banging and Knocking

You hear banging and knocking sounds constantly, but where are they coming from? It’s most-likely due to condensed steam (water) trapped in the pipes. In this type of radiator, steam rushes through pushing water forward at high speeds. The noise you hear, that’s the water hitting up against a valve or elbow.

Solution #1

How can you eliminate this problem? Shim up one end of the radiator so it tips back toward the boiler. This will prevent water from settling inside the system.

Problem #2: Squeaks and Whistling

This issue is a bit more complex. Squeaking and whistling is a result of the air vent attached to the pipe at the bottom of the radiator. These sounds are an indication that it needs to be replaced. If you have $10 or $15 you’re in luck!

Solution #2

If you’re handy, you’ll be able to solve this problem on your own. Make sure the thermostat is all the way down so the heating system is off. Cover the old air vent with a thick cloth and twist it off. Then turn the vent to the left and be careful not to apply any pressure. When the old vent is out, thread the new one into the radiator. Finally, you’ll need to unscrew the handle from the top of the radiator valves and loosen the packing nut that holds the valve stem. Wrap graphite packing around the valve stem and put the packing nut back into place.

Now turn up the thermostat, sit back, and enjoy the silence!

Need help fixing the problem? Give the expert heating specialists at Uptown a call. We’ll gladly stop by to assist.

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