Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.
Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.

Need Help Deciding on Post Bathroom Renovation Heating

I’m planning a gut renovation of my bathroom. It is 66” wide and 94” deep. It’s on the top floor of a 4 story 45 unit apartment building that is currently heated by a one pipe steam system. One of the 66” walls of the bathroom is an exterior wall. The bathroom has one window.

Here is what the original radiator for a bathroom in the building looked like:

Here is what my current one looks like:

I don’t like the original one because it’s ugly and stands out like a sore thumb. I don’t want anything I might accidentally burn myself against (which has happened to me before in other NYC bathrooms). I like the functionality of my current one, but the cover looks very dated to me, and I can’t seem to find a more modern cover. But I wouldn’t mind freeing up that floor space for my hamper or whatever.

I’m trying to figure out what my options are, and the pros and cons of each.

1. Leaving as is would be easiest, but would look dated compared to the rest of the renovation.
2. Replace the cover with something more modern, but how do I find more modern covers/enclosures?
3. I could replace it with something like this: https://www.usboiler.net/product/radiant-baseboard-radiator.html but I’m not sure it’s any less dated looking (maybe if I powder coated it), not sure if the face gets too hot, and not sure if it’s easy to keep clean.
4. I could simply cap the radiator and hope that being on the top floor means the bathroom will stay plenty warm.
5. I could install radiant heating in the floor. The only downside to this is higher utility bills (steam is covered in my common charges).

Also, not sure how to figure out what BTU my current radiator is, or how much I would need for the space.

Would love to get any and all input from you guys.



    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 14,495
    You could have a metal shop fabricate a vertical radiator like @gerry gill did. Maybe someone will post the link.

    Or just replace the convector with a more modern one
  • ChicagoCooperator
    ChicagoCooperator Member Posts: 344
    How about a Steamview (made by Runtal) which could be used like a towel warmer?
  • HeatingHelpNewb
    HeatingHelpNewb Member Posts: 2
    How about a Steamview (made by Runtal) which could be used like a towel warmer?
    If I bumped into it, would it burn me? The bathroom is small, and the radiator location is close to the entrance to the shower/bathtub. I’ve been burned in other NYC bathrooms because of this.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 8,834
    edited July 2021
    I think that convector would look a lot less dated if you cleaned it up, got rid of any paint drips or spatters or globs and painted it the same color as whatever the surrounding wall will be.

    If you do go the route of some sort of new cover, it needs to be similar in function to the old one, it needs to have an intake at the bottom and outlet at the top with a solid section against the element and of similar height to draw air over the element and get the proper output.

    Note that the surface of that cast iron recessed radiator you posted a link to would get as hot as any other steam radiator as would the towel rack radiator so if not accidentally touching the hot surface is your concern the convector is your only option. You could also maybe use a short section of cast iron baseboard if you were careful about keeping it short and pitching it correctly(but that also would get quite hot).