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    leaking radiator valve (16 Posts)

  • CapeCod CapeCod @ 7:53 PM
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    leaking radiator valve

    I posted earlier about my new radiant heat install that had a couple unexpected surprises.  Another one that showed up recently is a pool of water under one of the radiator valves.  It wasn't much before but now that the water has heated up more due to the cold weather it seems to be getting worse.  I tried tightening a quarter turn but that didn't do anything.

    There are several other radiators and this is the most noticeable.  I also don't see any putty or teflon tape protruding from this one whereas the non-leaking ones I do.  I've stopped calling the installer because I have had enough of him.  Will try someone new going forward.

    Would you recommend some type of additive like "stop leak" or take the whole thing off coat the threads with something and try again?
  • Smith19 Smith19 @ 8:24 PM
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    Teflon tape

    Hi CapeCod...I'm from Cape Cod. Falmouth actually.

    Any way, is this is steam or hydronic? (hot water). You say radiant. Is it steam or hydronic? If it's hydronic, it's safer and easier to use teflon. If it's steam, it can get kind of murky. I've seen teflon used on steam, but not often.


    Cheers
    This post was edited by an admin on December 5, 2012 8:26 PM.
  • CapeCod CapeCod @ 8:31 PM
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    Hydronic

    Hi, I have a hydronic system...thanks for the input.  CapeCod refers to my house style so unfortunately your trip charge would involve an airline ticket to get here :)
  • Smith19 Smith19 @ 8:46 PM
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    Teflon Tape

    Ha..okay...
    If you've got hydronic your set to go with teflon tape. Also check the solder joints.

    Hope that helps some

    Cheers
  • SWEI SWEI @ 10:08 PM
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    Is this a BSP radiator thread that's leaking?

    Teflon tape is not recommended for these - use an anaerobic thread sealant.

    Myson supplies Loctite 565 with their radiators.

    Just started using http://www.fppi.com/products/list/139/pipefit-as-thread-sealant-paste.aspx which is thicker.

    Both need ~24 hours before you put pressure on them.
  • Smith19 Smith19 @ 10:11 PM
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    teflon tape

    I take it teflon tape is actually not safe for hydronic? I've used it before for my own home and for other installs and have had no issues at all.
    This post was edited by an admin on December 5, 2012 10:14 PM.
  • SWEI SWEI @ 10:14 PM
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    Teflon tape

    Is perfectly safe for hydronics, but it's designed for sealing tapered threads.  Most radiators use a British Straight Pipe thread, which needs a different scheme.  Straight pipe threads are not something the average plumber encounters here.
  • Smith19 Smith19 @ 10:19 PM
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    Teflon Tape

    Huh. Okay. That's interesting. You learn something new every day! :)
  • SWEI SWEI @ 10:30 PM
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    I learned the hard way

    23 leaking radiators on the fifth floor of a hotel (fourth floor in operation at the time.)  Plumbing sub assumed that Teflon gas tape with Teflon paste was good enough for everything.
  • CapeCod CapeCod @ 2:39 AM
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    BSP Thread

    SWEI - yes, good catch these are BSP thread and I did see something about loctite on the installations sheets I downloaded.  thank you.  there were several workers installing radiators the same day at my place.  There is definitely one leaking and another is suspect and happens to be located in the adjacent room.  It's possible they were both installed by the same person and he either didn't add any thread sealant or applied an inadequate amount.
  • CapeCod CapeCod @ 2:41 AM
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    preferred fix

    so I take it you would vote for backing it out, re-applying thread sealant and re-attaching rather than just putting an additive in the system?  that was the direction I was leaning...
  • SWEI SWEI @ 10:07 AM
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    backing it out

    Yes -- remove the spud, then clean both sides of the threaded joint well (a used 1/2" fitting brush works well on the radiator threads.)  Apply a band of Loctite to the male threads beginning one or two threads back from the end of the spud.  A tad over 360 degrees with an 1/8" bead, or two times around if it's tiny.  Thread the spud all the way in.  If you use a wrench, use only 2-3 fingers on it.  Come back the next day and hook up the other half of the unions.  If there's a rubber O-ring on the spud, make sure it's properly seated before you screw them together.
  • CapeCod CapeCod @ 7:43 PM
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    thanks

    Thanks a lot, all...this really is a great forum.
  • Chris Chris @ 6:42 AM
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    Additive

    Do not put any additives in the system. Use the loctite as suggested.
    "The bitter taste of a poor installation remains much longer than the sweet taste of the lowest price."
  • Chris Chris @ 6:42 AM
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    Additive

    Do not put any additives in the system. Use the loctite as suggested.
    "The bitter taste of a poor installation remains much longer than the sweet taste of the lowest price."
  • Chris Chris @ 6:42 AM
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    Additive

    Do not put any additives in the system. Use the loctite as suggested.
    "The bitter taste of a poor installation remains much longer than the sweet taste of the lowest price."
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