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Questions on replacing bleeder valves on hot water cast iron radiators

I bought three used iron hot water heat radiators. Two have the bleeder valves located up high but flush with the radiators and are just a slotted head screw that is painted over. I never saw those before. Are they just bolts plugging up the holes? What is with those and how would they work or be replaced?

The other sticks out like normal but looks different, seems to be hollow with no screw in the middle, and I thought I would replace it before I plumb it in. I tried to get a wrench on it then vice grips but I cannot get it to rotate. I tried PB Blaster. Maybe I should have left well enough alone and put a bleeder valve on the top elbow. If I have to remove this any ideas? Saw it off then use a cold chisel? Use an EZ Out?
Home owner near Minneapolis with cast iron radiators, one non working slant fin now ripped out, and hot water heat.

Comments

  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 7,600
    Heat from a torch then PB Blaster, You may need to drill them out and thread the hole to accept a 1/4" bushing to 1/8". A paint job would be in order after you torch the bleed valve. I have also seen what appears to be a slotted bolt head on the end of a radiator. I believe that is not a real bolt or bleeder, just a decorative part of the casting at the top fitting. Pictures would be helpful.

    Did you pressure test the radiators? Is there any guarantee from the place you purchased? Sometimes scrap yards will allow you to return a cracked radiator and take a different one. The just want the darn thing for the scrap value. Getting a little extra from someone that wants to use it as a radiator is a bonus!
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
  • eclecticmn
    eclecticmn Member Posts: 121
    Thank you for the reply. I will post photos.
    Radiator 1 with hard to remove bleeder valve. Untested. From thrift reuse store plumbed with one pipe at bottom and one at opposite side top. Therefore hot water heat.
    https://imgur.com/gallery/fZMKYLR
    https://imgur.com/gallery/BDCLsxv

    Radiator 2 with weird bleeder valve. Untested. From thrift reuse store plumbed with one pipe at bottom and one at opposite side top.Therefore hot water heat.
    https://imgur.com/gallery/Wcc7e0T

    Radiator 3 with weird bleeder valve. Said to be pressure tested. All 4 1 1/4 in openings plugged for now.
    https://imgur.com/gallery/XJBJuzy
    Home owner near Minneapolis with cast iron radiators, one non working slant fin now ripped out, and hot water heat.
  • Jersey2
    Jersey2 Member Posts: 166
    Your picture files won't open. You can use the 'Attach Picture' icon in the chat and drop the pictures right in.
    I'm not a plumber or hvac man and my thoughts in comments are purely for conversation.
  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 2,710
    Replace with simple peanut bleeders . assume what is already installed
    I have enough experience to know , that I dont know it all
  • eclecticmn
    eclecticmn Member Posts: 121
    Maybe you have to have an imgur account to view the links?
    Here is second attempt. 3 radiators.
    White with stuck bleeder valve.
    White with flat head screw plug.
    Gold with flat head screw plug.




    Home owner near Minneapolis with cast iron radiators, one non working slant fin now ripped out, and hot water heat.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,469
    You can try a hand impact driver on the flat head plugs. The stripped bleeder might end up getting drilled out and tapped to 1/4" and new bleeder with a bushing. You can try finding a drill or rod or bot that fits tightly inside the stripped bleeder so it doesn't collapse and try a small pipe wrench on it or vice grips. Try heat and hitting it with a hammer a few times first.
    eclecticmn
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 4,697
    edited December 2021
    Reverse drill bit extractor set.
    90% of the time just the drill bit pulls it free.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,469
    BTW, the no bleeder and one connection at top one at bottom were probably 2 pipe steam.
  • eclecticmn
    eclecticmn Member Posts: 121
    Two pipe steam???? Am I in trouble? Can I use these for hot water heat?
    I have 3 radiators.
    1. White with 1 high pipe 1 low pipe on opposite end and stuck bleeder up high.
    2. White with 1 high pipe one low pipe on opposite end and flat head plug up high.
    3. Gold with 4 threaded 1 1/4 inch openings and flat head plug up high.



    Home owner near Minneapolis with cast iron radiators, one non working slant fin now ripped out, and hot water heat.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,469
    As long as the sections are connected at the top you can use them for hot water. Some steam radiators don't have the top sections connected. You should be able to tell by looking or probing in to the top connection.
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 21,875
    Sometimes drilling and tapping a new vent is easiest.
    Here is a handy valve from Oventrop for converting all radiators. Pex or copper connections available. Puts both connections at the same end.
    Somewhere I have some IR video of radiators I did with this conversion valve.

    And a handy bleeder my company makes. It's both a manual and automatic bleeder.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    mattmia2
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,469
    Danfoss makes one too. Great if you find yourself with a non-salvageable Honewell unique valve.