Every so often a radiator used in your boiler system may start making hissing sounds that can become extremely annoying. You might even start to wonder if the radiator is about to blow apart. Fortunately, the sound is often caused by a faulty steam valve on your radiator. When the steam leaks out of the valve it can cause a hissing sound signaling that the valve has to be replaced. Here is how to replace the steam valve on a radiator.

You Will Need:

  • 24" Pipe Wrench
  • 24" Adjustable Wrench
  • New Steam Valve
  • Teflon Tape
  • Helper

Turn Off Boiler

You will want to make sure the boiler has cooled down before you start working on replacing the steam valve on a radiator. You could get seriously injured if you remove the valve and steam pours out.

Disconnect Radiator from Valve

Take your adjustable wrench and unscrew the nut connecting the valve to the radiator. You may have to move the radiator slightly away from the valve to make room to work to get the valve off of the steam pipe coming up from the floor. Radiators are extremely heavy, so you might want to get help moving it.

Remove Steam Valve

Place the pipe wrench tightly onto the steam pipe between the floor and the valve. The last thing you want to do is disrupt the pipe going down into the floor while you are twisting off the valve connected to the pipe. If you don't hold the steam pipe solidly in place, you can loosen the piping and cause more problems to solve than you had intended. Place your foot firmly on the pipe wrench so it doesn't move.

Connect the adjustable wrench onto the nut located at the bottom of the steam valve and turn slowly counter-clockwise. If the valve isn't coming loose, you can try to add pressure by putting a small pipe onto the end of the adjustable wrench – this will increase torque and help break the valve free from the steam pipe.

Replacement Steam Valve

Take the old valve to the hardware store with you to make sure you are purchasing an identical replacement valve. Make sure you also get some Teflon tape if you don't already have some. Put the Teflon tape onto the threaded part of the steam valve sticking out from the floor. Place the valve onto the steam pipe and tighten. You have to take the same precautions to not move the steam pipe while you are tightening the valve onto the pipe as you did when you took the valve off of the pipe. Move the radiator back into place and connect the new valve to it - you will want to put Teflon tape on the threaded end of the radiator. You are done once everything is screwed back into place and tightened. For further assistance, contact professionals, such as those from Custom Comfort.