Cooling And Heating
Written by Dale Richardson - Updated: June 23, 2023
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Today's topic is, while frustrating, actually relatively easy to fix (depending on the issue). If you have a leaking radiator bleed valve, you'll want to keep reading. You likely went to bleed your radiator and noticed something alarming - there's water leaking out! That can put a damper on your whole day (water puns for the win!) and cause rather serious damage to your home.
Fixing a leaking radiator bleed valve can be done at home without the need for a professional.
Keep reading for a nice little walkthrough on how to replace a bleed valve, fix a leaking valve, and (most importantly) locate the issue.
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Okay, there's a lot of ground to cover, so we're going to hop right into things. Leaks can come from a wide number of places in your radiator, from one of the many valves, to the pipes themselves. While a pipe leak is a major issue that needs a professional's touch, valves are much easier to repair.
You may end up having to replace the valve in question, but that's normally not too big of a deal. The first thing you'll need to do, regardless of where the water is coming from, is to locate the leak. Start by drying off the radiator. Next, I personally recommend taking a bit of toilet tissue and just wiping down the radiator slowly. Be sure to get every inch, and take note of where the paper gets wet. This will help you pinpoint where the leak is coming from, making the next part of the job easier.
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There are (as I mentioned above) a lot of places you can find a leak. Once you've located it, you'll need to fix or replace the part in question. But how do you do that?
This is the most common source of a radiator leak. After all, it's specifically designed to let air (and water) out of the radiator.
Of note is that the bleed valve being in a "mid open" position can cause it to leak. It needs to be either fully open or closed.
The spindle packing in the radiator kit that holds the valve can get damaged or simply worn with age. Regardless of the cause, you'll need to patch or replace it. I personally recommend that you do both - patch it up, then replace it once you have the time. The next step is really only a temporary solution, anyway.
To patch a leaking radiator bleed valve, do the following:
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Now we get onto the permanent fix - replacing your bleed valve. The above should have given you a moment of moisture-free time, but it won't last. Now - to replace a bleed valve:
There are a few other spots that could be the cause of your leak. If you found a leak that's coming from somewhere other than the bleed valve, these are the most common culprits:
If you have a leaking radiator bleed valve, you can both patch and replace it with ease. Before assuming that's the source of the issue, though, it's good to properly pinpoint the leak. I find that tissue paper is great at finding moisture, which will help you locate the leak. Once you've found the leak, you'll want to patch your bleed valve as shown above.
After you've patched the bleed valve, you have a bit of time to find a replacement. Do not pretend that all is well - it isn't . You will still need to replace the valve, as the patch is exactly that - a temporary patch job. Replace your valve, and test for corrosion or a faulty spindle. Once that's all done, you should have a fixed radiator. If not, sit down, make a drink, and call a professional. They'll get it sorted for you.
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