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Radiator Not Enough to Heat Room

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Ps44
Ps44 Member Posts: 30
About a year ago we changed our old radiator for a new one but it is still
not enough to heat the room as it remains the coldest room in the house. As you can see in the picture it is an in the wall radiator. Space size is 20 inch height, 59 inch length and 4 1/2 inch width. I was wondering if I should get a larger radiator with more heating surface or if I should add another radiator in the room. Any other options I should consider? Thanks in advance.

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  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,660
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    We need a lot more information. Is that radiator on its own supply and return form the boiler or from some mains? Is it at the end of a loop of other radiators? What is the heat loss of the room? Is the other radiation in the house the same type? Is it a conventional boiler? What is the supply water temp?
  • Ps44
    Ps44 Member Posts: 30
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    This is a one pipe steam system with a conventional gas boiler. The radiator is at the end of the loop and is just off a riser on its own from the main. The heat loss in the room is significant and we've tried and even hired a heating expert but short of insulating the walls of he house there is not much else we could do at this point. All of our other radiators are original except for one that was too small for another room, but was not in the wall so we got a larger one and that fixed our issue. The radiator gets plenty hot so getting heat is not the problem. It is just that with so much heat loss we need to make up for it. Thanks again.
  • jumper
    jumper Member Posts: 2,258
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    How much heat deficit? Perhaps a cheap plug in heater is all you need?
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,660
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    Oh, ok, it is steam. It looked like there was a pipe coming off the upper left side and going somewhere else. You could put slower vents on the rooms that are hot enough and a faster vent on this radiator to try to balance it. Are the other emitters cast iron baseboard element?
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,478
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    You could try putting a 3 or 4" fan in there with a thermostat to sense the convector temperature. The fan would run only when the element was hot. That should easily double the heat output.

    Bob
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Ps44
    Ps44 Member Posts: 30
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    It is a pretty significant heat deficit and an annoying one at that. Every other room is warm so no issues anywhere else. I see the suggestion to put a faster vent on the radiator but that is what we have now. As a matter of fact we have a Gorton #1 on it. And yes, all the other emitters are cast iron. I don't know what you mean by baseboard element but if you mean they are all in the wall, no. A plug in heater might do it but I was trying to avoid that, if possible. That fan idea sounds interesting and have never heard of it. If it would double the heat output that would be amazing and surely enough. Any suggestion on a specific fan?
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,660
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    I didn't say put a faster vent on this emitter, i said put a slower vent on the emitters that heat first so they heat more slowly, however if they are standing cast iron radiators vs this tiny cast iron baseboard element, the edr of those is much more than this and you likely will have to replace it with a standing cast iron radiator or something else with edr and mas similar to the other emitters. Not only is the edr of the standing ci radiators much more, but the mass is much more so they continue to emit heat much longer after the heat call end than this emitter does.
    Intplm.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,062
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    Is the cover design such that the air can enter thru the bottom, go thru the element and out the top?
    There should be no air able to bypass around the element.
    Was the top cover of the cabinet modified to prevent good air flow out the top of the convector?
  • JimP
    JimP Member Posts: 87
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    That's a nice "wood carpet" floor! You probably have a historic home. Perhaps you should consider finding an old radiator that was like the original that was replaced. Wht's ithere in your photo isn't a lot of radiation. The existing ones elsewhere might give you some clues as to the style and size of what was there.
  • ChicagoCooperator
    ChicagoCooperator Member Posts: 355
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    My gut reaction is telling me that there isn't enough height with the convector to get enough heat - I think it might be effectively working as baseboard. A radiator might be the best option.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,660
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    are those curtains normally blocking the radiator?
  • Ps44
    Ps44 Member Posts: 30
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    The cover is designed with plenty of holes all around. It is the original and we have several of them and they work great. Yes, it is a historic home and now I am feeling like replacing the radiator was a mistake because it turned out not to be the problem. It was done at the suggestion of my plumber to get more heat but obviously not getting enough. I was thinking that what I really need is more mass as you suggest (a regular radiator versus baseboard) so that it continues to emit more heat after the temperature setting is reached. The curtains only block the radiator at night so that is not an issue. I do think that getting more mass will provide as suggested more height with the convector to get more heat. You are all so great and helpful, and I must thanks again as I try to find the right solution.
    ethicalpaul
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,062
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    Is the new element thinner than the old?
    Air flow must be thru the fins, if some bypass air then less effective.
  • ChicagoCooperator
    ChicagoCooperator Member Posts: 355
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    The cover needs to be open at the top and bottom with a solid section in the middle to create the chimney effect. Is your just a grill or something else? And fit tight to the convector itself.

    I wonder if it should also be slightly lower within the enclosure - I have a slightly similar setup, except that I have two-pipe with very tall hidden chases and the convector sits at the bottom with a 6'+/- chase to create the flow up to the register.
  • Ps44
    Ps44 Member Posts: 30
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    As you said the cover is indeed with a solid section in the middle. Picture here.
    And yes, the new element is thinner than the old.
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,478
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    Fans will help a lot if that element gets hot all the way across. if it does not get fully hot they will not do much.

    You try this out by just placing the fans (on spacers to keep them clear of the floor, and just resting the cover in place to see if works well enough.

    How deep is the space you have to work with? You can get 3" fans that run on 12v DC, depending on the fan CFM rating you will need 2 or 3 of them spread out along it's length. Wire them all up in parallel and run them off a 12v adapter with a thermostat between the fans and that DC adapter, the thermostat should be wedged between the fins near the end of the element . The thermostat should make when it gets above 125 F so it will only run when the element is hot.
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,062
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    By thinner, I meant the distance from the back of the cabinet to the front (would be the width actually).
    If there are gaps at the back and the front then the air will not be forced thru the fins to extract the most heat.
    The air flow is what delivers the heat to the room.
  • Ps44
    Ps44 Member Posts: 30
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    The element does get hot all the way across so the fan idea may work but I have a lot of space in there so I was hoping to get a larger radiator to get more surface heat . And yes it is a bit thinner than what I had before. the width of the space is 4 1/2 inches. The radiator is 2 inches wide. From top to bottom the space I have is 19 inches and the radiator is only 5 inches. As you can see lots of useful space if I can figure out what the right thing to do is.
  • mikespipe
    mikespipe Member Posts: 36
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    You could replace the radiator with a recessed sunrad that filled the space you would get much more heat you could also add a convector element by putting in a tee where the riser enters the cabinet. a fan would be a big help. if the cabinet is not flush with the wall opening the top and adding a grill to let the heat go strait up would increase the output. building out the box and putting in a wider cast iron element would also work.