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Gurgling and leaking radiator

I have a one pipe steam radiator in my room that's been gurgling since I moved in. I'm on the third floor of my apartment and do not have control over the boiler pressure or when it's on. The radiator makes a noise frequently that sounds like water is sloshing inside--like someone in my room is repeatedly flushing the toilet. The air valve also hisses, bubbles and sometimes spits water. I tried getting a new vent but mistakenly got a C, current vent is a #4. My room is pretty small--will a C be too large, and more importantly, will installing a new vent even fix the issue?


  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Member Posts: 2,617
    You won’t know exactly what the size change will do until you try it. Send a photo of your two vents.

    Make sure the valve is fully open. You might try to raise the radiator a bit if you can. But keep it pitched slightly toward the pipe side. If something breaks just feign ignorance 😬
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG
  • ColdhandsColdhands Member Posts: 3
    Valve is fully open now, but it was about halfway all winter thus far--hence why I think the current issues might stem from air valve damage. I can't actually tell if it's tilted right bc the coils are slightly different heights so they throw off the level. Is there a good way to check?

    But yeah I might try the new vent and just hope I don't burn alive. If it doesn't work will I be able to switch back to the old one or do these vents tend to be a once it's off it's done type deal?
  • bburdbburd Member Posts: 86
    You can put the old vent back.

  • ColdhandsColdhands Member Posts: 3
    I replaced the valve like you guys suggested, and when I turned the heat back on the new one immediately started squeaking like crazy. The gurgling and banging didn't stop whatsoever. I'm not seeing any water being spit out, but honestly the squeaking is worse. Any ideas what could be causing this?
  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Member Posts: 2,617
    Pressure too high is a strong possibility. Could also be wet steam, valleys in the pipes causing water traps, or any combination.

    it’s very difficult to do anything about it without control over the boiler and piping. You can try rotating your vent periodically  to the upside down position which may stop the venting.

    was steam getting to your vent (as in, did the vent get “steam hot”, too hot to touch for more than a second?)
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG
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