How to Remove and Replace Broken Radiator Valves

A radiator valve.
What You'll Need
A screwdriver
A steel wool
A drain hose
Teflon plumber's table
A hose clamp
A large bucket
A pipe wrench

Removing and replacing your home's radiator valves plays an essential role in keeping your house's structure intact and protecting your furnace from overexertion. While removing and replacing your radiator valves requires a certain degree of finesse, it is a job that virtually any household handyman can complete with the proper set of tools and a helpful instructional guide. So if you've recently found yourself plagued by leaky radiator valves, simply read on to learn everything you'll need to know about the removal and replacement process.

Step 1 - Attach Your Drain Hose

Begin the radiator valve replacement process by turning off your radiator's supply valve. This valve is generally located near the bottom half of the radiator's back end. Once the supply valve has been safely shut off, use your hose clamp and screwdriver to firmly attach your drain hose to the radiator's drain valve. The drain valve can usually be found on the side opposite the supply valve. Having securely attached your drain hose, place the opposite end of the hose into a large, empty bucket in order to prevent water from spilling onto the floor. Now, with the aid of your pipe wrench, carefully loosen your drain valve, thus allowing water to be drained into your bucket. Once the valve has been fully drained, remove the drain hose and securely close the valve.

Step 2 - Remove Your Old Valves

Now that you've successfully emptied your drain valve, it is time to remove the radiator valves you wish to replace. With the aid of your pipe wrench, carefully remove the valves that are in need of replacement, taking care to remove the opposite ends of the valves from your drain pipe or feeder. Having successfully removed your old valves, use your steel wool to clean the threads found inside your valve seats before proceeding any further.

Step 3 - Apply Your Plumber's Tape

Now that your old valves have been removed and your valve seats' threads are nice and clean, it is time to apply your Teflon plumber's tape. Carefully but firmly wrap the tape about the threads of your new valves. Once the tape has been properly applied, use your screwdriver to secure your new valves into their respective valve seats and feeder pipes, then tighten them with the aid of your pipe wrench.

Step 4 - Refill Your Radiator

Now that your new valves are securely in place, you will need to replenish your radiator's water supply. This can be accomplished by pouring the water into your radiator through its feeder valve, although in some cases, you may be required to open your boiler's water supply valve. So when refilling your radiators, it's imperative that you consult the owner's manual for your radiators and/or boiler in order to determine the proper method of replenishment.