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Removing hot water radiators

zoomzoom Member Posts: 68
I need to temporarily move all of the old hot water radiators away from the wall so I can work behind them. Each radiator has a union where hot water comes in so that should be relatively straight forward to disconnect. However, the return sides just go down to the basement below and are piped in - no unions, but the pipe is accessible from the basement.

What is the best way to move these radiators? Is it possible to disconnect one end only and then "swing" the radiator 90 degrees away from the wall but still connected at the other end? There must be a way to do this without cutting the pipe and the having to reconnect?


  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Member Posts: 6,797
    Could there be LH/RH nipples on the outlet?
    If you swing them away you could be facing a possible leak in the future as you either tighten or loosen a nipple and then return it back may do the opposite. Provided nothing snaps off.

    A close picture of the return side might help.
  • SteamheadSteamhead Member Posts: 13,775
    Take some pics and post them here- let's have a look.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
  • zoomzoom Member Posts: 68
    I will get some pics when I return to the house in a few days. Any help is much appreciated.
  • zoomzoom Member Posts: 68
    Attached are two pictures of the set up I have on the radiators throughout the house.

  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Member Posts: 6,797
    Could that outlet 90 have a union fitting with a spud into the rad?
    It looks to have ears on it. I would clean it up, spray some PB Blaster or Kroil on it and try to unscrew it.

    The nipple going into the rad might be brass, a magnet would tell you.
    Steve Minnich
  • zoomzoom Member Posts: 68
    OK I'll try that and report back.
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 12,725
    zoom said:

    OK I'll try that and report back.

    I agree that it looks like it might be a union. If so, when you go to unscrew it, remember that it is not always obvious which half of the union the threads are on, and thus which way to go to unscrew it... (though I'd guess on this one that the nut is on the elbow, not on the spud).
    Br. Jamie, osb

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Member Posts: 6,797
    I would guess you put a wrench on it and push down towards the floor.

    On the inlet valve I would try pulling up on the wrench.
    For both I would try to cut the paint with a dental pick.
  • zoomzoom Member Posts: 68
    I was not able to free the radiator, it is not a union I think

  • delta Tdelta T Member Posts: 810
    There has to be a LR nipple or a union in it somewhere or they would never have gotten it together. My bet is that the nipple going the rad is a LR. Whether it moves or not is another story.....

    The ears on the 90 are likely there to mark which side is the left handed thread on the install, nipple and 90 were proabably sold together, doubt the threads on the rad are left handed, so lift your wrench up (ccw as related the rad) and see what happens...
  • zoomzoom Member Posts: 68
    I am working on the radiators now.

    I had a new Viessmann VITOCROSSAL 300 CU3A installed. I am getting a C1 error code. Any one familiar with this code and the fixes? Still trying to locate a tech to come and take a look.
  • delta Tdelta T Member Posts: 810
    That is a communication error with your EA1 extension module. Check the wiring connections first, past that you will probably want a pro who knows Viessmann come out and take a look. Where are you located?
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