Radiator noises: causes and solutions

By Izanami Jun18,2024

We’re all used to our household appliances making noise. From the swoosh of the dishwasher to the whoosh of an extractor fan, sounds are everywhere.

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One thing you don’t expect is for your radiators to cause you a headache as they rattle away. No one wants to have their favourite TV show interrupted by a clanking radiator!

However, radiators can and do often make some noise. Here is a look at the main reasons this might happen and, more importantly, what you can do about it.

Noisy piping

Central heating radiators of all types can make noise due to the piping they are connected to. As water travels around the radiator, the hot and cold pipes expand and contract. This can mean noise from the radiator itself as well as from walls where pipes are located.

Filling with water

It is not uncommon to hear dripping and running water sounds as your radiator systems fill up. Due to water pressure, some noise is usually unavoidable, but the good news is it is usually short-lived.

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Clicking devices

As the thermostat – typically located on the side of your radiator – automatically adjusts the temperature of your radiator in line with your settings, it does tend to make a clicking noise. This is not generally loud or oppressive, however.

Central or electric heating?

While electric heaters tend to be quieter due the pipes involved in central heating systems, this doesn’t necessarily mean they are the best option. According to the Energy Savings Trust, electric heating can be less cost-effective than central heating systems. Central heating radiators, such as those from organisations including Apollo, can be more energy-efficient.

Reducing noise

There are a few key ways to make your radiators as quiet as possible. It is always a good idea to check your mounting brackets to make sure they have been installed properly. You can do this by taking the radiator off its mount to see if it still makes noise. Take care with large column radiators here.

Loose screws can also be a source of noise. Once your radiator is off, check all screws to make sure they are tightly fitted. Getting rid of any air pockets by making sure you bleed your radiators on a regular basis is also vital.

By Izanami

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