How not to remove a radiator!

So as I said in yesterdays post, last night my plan was to begin the removal of the radiators with my dads help. As radiator removal is a two persons job my plan was that dad and I would take them all off in one go (or two if it took us a while) and then I could go to the house alone and remove all the old wallpaper, dirt, dust and general ming from behind them, clean them, decorate behind them and then when dad was next free put them all back on. I had had some workmen remove on when they came in to do some work, and as it had been an easy job for them, and my wall has been happily standing radiator free for a few days I thought it would be a simple job. Plus it made more sense to do it now, before I have a plumber come in to sort and re-pressure the central heating.

I was super organised. I watched and made notes, with diagrams, from a YouTube video I watched in my lunch break and I emailed the video to my dad so when we got there we would both no exactly what need to be done and it would be a quick easy job. You know what they day about best laid plans….

I knew things weren’t going to go smoothly when I arrived at my house and realised that my radiators are different from the ones shown in the video. They do not have a top valve and I had to remove a whole load of other crap and a whole load of wooden paneling, before I could find the first valve I needed to turn off. When I finally turned off the value, twizzling the next screw cock thing (shouldn’t I just have my own DIY show??) was pretty easy, and I got the water trickling out. I felt a little pleased with myself. I undid the other screw cock thing and again I had a small trickle of water, as expected, only this trickle of water didn’t stop. In fact this trickle of water filled the lovely new bucket I have just bought myself with black manky water.

As the water started to brim the bucket I suggested to my dad that, as it appeared to become from within the radiator, we should risk it put our thumb over the wholes and carry the radiator to the bath tub where we could empty out all the water. Aren’t opposable thumbs amazing? Turns out the thumb over the whole thing work and having moped up the water spilt I celebrated and was about to move onto the next one.

However before moving on I went to check on Mity who was having fun running around the lounge. On walking into the lounge I noticed a huge wet mark next to where the radiator had been removed by the workman, which until last night has been completely dry and un-leaking for the best part of a week. I’ll be honest neither of us could figure out why it had started to leak and assumed we had dislodged a little water in the removal of the second radiator. So we pressed on, this time moving into the bathroom.

I have had a workman remove the light in the bathroom, and as it was a really squeeze to get to my dad took control with this removal, which in hindsight annoyed me slightly. Suddenly a man had arrived and I was again relegated to passer and fetcher – this was not done on purpose, just whatever seems to happen when men and woman do DIY together, at least with the men I know. Anyway, I digress.

The bathroom radiator seemed to go ok, with only a small amount of water being leaked from the two removed radiator pipes and so we headed upstairs to the bedroom and I announced that this one I was doing all the turning, screwing bits (after all I was the one who had bothered to watch the YouTube video!) It started well and I managed to close the valve, I then moved onto the screw cock thing and as I unscrewed no water came out at all. I could hear water running, but it was not running out of my radiator.

My dad shot downstairs.

The water was not pouring out of the radiator, upstairs as expected…….it was gushing out of all 6 of the pipes that had had radiators removed from them downstairs. Needless to say that called time on the radiator removal, and I have now decided I will remove them one at a time, clean, decorate and put them back before moving on to the next one!