How to bleed a radiator
01 November 2023
What if bleeding the radiators doesn’t fix the problem?
If bleeding your radiators doesn’t fix your heating problems, your radiators may need to be drained and flushed. We recommend getting a professional to flush your system.
How to bleed radiators without a key
If you don’t have a radiator key, it is sometimes still possible to bleed a radiator if the valve has a slot in it. Many modern radiators have this design. You can simply use a flat head screwdriver to open the valve and let any trapped air escape from the radiator. Then close it again as soon as the air stops and water starts to leak out.
Some older radiators can be bled using an Allen key, also known as a hex key, if the bleed valve is hexagonal in shape.
If neither of these solutions will work for your radiators, you can usually pick up a radiator key that will fit quite quickly, cheaply, and easily.
Where to buy radiator keys
Most local DIY or hardware stores will sell radiator keys and they are designed to universally fit most common radiators. You can also buy them online.
If you have a radiator that is very unusual and standard radiator keys don’t fit, you may need to visit a plumbing merchant, where you should be able to pick up a tool that will work. It might be a good idea to take a photo of your radiator bleed valve to take with you to the shop to make sure you get the right solution.
How often should you bleed radiators?
In order to help prevent issues with your radiators and keep them working efficiently, it’s usually a good idea to bleed them at least once a year. Ideally, this should be done when it starts to get a bit colder, before the heating system is regularly in use again.
Even if your radiators seem to be working fine and you don’t have any issues, routinely bleeding them every year can help with efficiency and mean that you’re not spending more money on energy costs than you need to.
Along with bleeding your radiators, there are lots of other things you can do to help get your home ready for autumn and winter.
We hope you found this information useful.
Remember, if you’re still having issues with a managed property, you can contact Places for People.
In the meantime, why not check out some of our other how-to-guides and insightful blogs?