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Can I Have A Different Style of Radiators Fitted?

There are lots of things that can put us in a bad mood. The seemingly never ending British Autwinring, (where three seasons seem to merge into a single rain storm), your favourite sports team losing an important game, or just showing up for work on a Monday morning. For some people, it’s their surroundings; their home decor, the never-quite-warm feeling which gets them down. If you’re one of these people, you may well be wondering whether having a different style of radiators fitted will help lift your malaise.

Of course, there are other reasons why you may want to have a new style radiator fitted.  You may have redecorated the rest of the room or house and want to bring old radiators up to the same standard, or your existing radiators may not be particularly efficient.

Let me explain the common types of radiators that people may switch to - and what you need to consider beforehand.

A Style of Radiator For Every Situation

The most common reasons for having a different style of radiator are:

●      Aesthetics - just having a different look

●      Efficiency - upgrading to a newer type which heats the house more effectively

●      Functionality - switching to a different type of radiator to suit the use requirements

●      Compatibility - if you’ve replaced your boiler, your existing radiators may not work efficiently or at all in conjunction with it.

Let me explain.


In most cases a white radiator, being a neutral colour, will slot into the colour scheme of your room. For a modern twist however, you may want to consider a shiny chrome or flat black model.

If you have a period property you may like to have a repro column style radiator fitted, which use individual vertical or horizontal bars filled with hot water. These can provide modern efficiency with period character, so are a popular choice for renovators, particularly in “antique” or patina finishes.

Another example may be in a sleek, minimalist room, or one which is tight on space. For these areas a skirting board radiator may be the answer; these look just like a modern skirting board, however, have pipes built-in to hold hot water from your boiler. As such they are unobtrusive and effective too.


If you have a house with large rooms, or it’s just a bit draughty, you may like to consider a larger or more efficient type of radiator (plus investing in some general insulation).

Aluminium radiators, for example, are a great way to increase efficiency as they warm up faster and have reduced water content. These types often have narrow, flat bars which are particularly pleasing on the eye.

A nice side effect of having a warmer room is that increased efficiency means less water, less work done by the boiler and, therefore, less money spent on gas or oil.


A great reason to have a style of radiator fitted is a change in use requirements, or simply optimising. For example, in your bathroom, do you have a conventional radiator, the same as everywhere else in your house?

If you do, you could consider having a heated towel rail type of radiator installed. That way you can have warm, dry towels each time you have a bath or shower, plus, as they normally extend vertically higher than a conventional radiator, you’ll warm the room more effectively.

While on the subject of vertical radiators, another cause for having new radiators fitted is available space. Perhaps you’ve remodelled a room and reduced the available wall space - or just want to install a new radiator into a narrow portion of wall, for example, in a cloakroom or porch. In these instances, a space-saving vertical radiator will be a great modification or addition.


The final reason to have a new style of radiator fitted (on this list, anyway) is down to compatibility.

If you’ve switched from a conventional central heating system, which uses a large hot water storage tank, to a smaller combi boiler, your existing radiators may be too much for the boiler to handle; they may require more hot water than the boiler is able to provide.

In these cases, having new radiators, such as the higher efficiency types mentioned earlier, will be a good decision.

Similarly, if you have made the quantum leap and switched to a ground or air source heat pump, which work by slowly and continually heating the home, you may need different radiators fitted to suit.

What’s Stopping You?

Honestly, not a lot. But there are a few things to consider when you decide to have new radiator styles, but nothing is impossible.

Existing Pipe Fittings

The pipes and valves may either be in the wrong place or be the wrong type and, therefore, a straight swap to a new style of radiator may not be possible. This is hardly the end of the world though, as new pipes are easily installed or adapted to accommodate a larger or smaller radiator - and there are loads of adapters to help connect your radiators to the old plumbing.

Existing Radiator Mounts

Similarly, your new radiator is unlikely to use the same wall mounts as your old one. This isn’t a deal breaker, but it’s worth planning for appropriate brackets or wall mounts when having a new design of radiator.

new radiator installed designer preston

Wall Strength

If you’re upgrading to a larger radiator, it will be heavier than the original. Make sure that your wall can take this additional load, particularly when mounting to lath and plaster or plasterboard. To fix this, a load spreading sheet of timber or ply can be used and hidden behind the radiator, or a radiator which has feet so that it stands on the floor rather than hangs off the wall.

Boiler Compatibility

As I mentioned earlier, your boiler may not be able to cope with the demands of larger radiators. This is a crucial aspect to consider before ploughing headfirst into fitting new radiators. A competent boiler installer will be able to advise you of your boilers’ capacity and ability to heat the radiators you wish to install.

Don’t Let Your Radiators Get In The Way

This is true in the literal sense, (just go for a space saving radiator!) However, you shouldn’t let your radiators get in the way of your current or next home decor project - and you definitely shouldn’t let them affect your mood!

Having a different style of radiator fitted can completely change the feel of a room, how comfortable it is, and how it looks - all things that can stop you feeling down in the dumps. With so few reasons not to make this change, why not give us a call on 01253422343 to see how we can lift your mood?


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Adam Dilger
Managing Director
We offer ground braking reliable heating solutions across the Northwest. With 20 years experience our engineers install, service and maintain your central heating systems. Connect with Adam on LinkedIn >>
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