Every time I visit Europe I am impressed by the hot water radiators you see in homes, offices and hotels. They are attractive, save space and come in many styles. Since they are mounted on the wall they are easier to clean then the baseboard radiators in the U.S. I especially like the ladder-style radiators for bathrooms; they provide more heat to the upper body and can be used to warm towels.
Is it possible to replace baseboard radiators with the European wall radiators? Where would you find such radiators?
Re: European Radiators
Yes, it is rather easy to replace baseboard units with steel panel or designer radiators, it would basically require that the boiler/heating system be drained & the supply/return pipes be unsoldered or disconnected & then connected to the new rad.
Post back if you need help in installing/replacing a section of baseboard with a rad--also let us know if you find any reasonably priced panel rads.
There are 2 sizing/installation stipulations:
1) the heat output of the new rad has to approximate or equal the baseboard in place.
The output of baseboard, radiators, & such convectors is computed in btu's/hour.
For baseboard, the output is calculated in btu's/hr/foot---depending on water temp, this usually equates to 550 btu/ft---thus, a 10 foot length of baseboard equals:
550 X 10 = 5500 btu/hr heat output---the replacement panels usually have their output stamped on the housing, or listed in their literature.
2) Get ready for a price sticker shock---while a 10' section of baseboard may cost ~$50-$60 for the 5500 btu/hr heat output you get out of it, a designer stainless steel panel radiator of similar output may cost over $1k.
The reason for the price difference is that most of the mfgrs. are in Europe or elsewhere overseas & it is still considered an up-scale product that has an "imported, high-brow" connotation.
For all anybody knows, a product from China for under $100 is on its way now to a local HD/Lowe's---panel rads are not rocket science & they're currently way overpriced.
U.S. mfgrs are starting to enter the mkt, so consult in the Yellow Pages under "Heating Supplies" or "Plumbing Supplies" to obtain local dealers of these items in your area.
Make a note of the brand name or mfgr of the panel rad when you're shopping, even if you don't buy it---you may be able to find an on-line dealer that offers it for considerably less.
Also check the U.S. mfgr links below for ****** pricing & where they sell their products at the retail level---I have no business relationship with any of these companies, they are listed for informational purposes.
Also Google "panel radiators" or "designer radiators", "towel warmer radiators", etc.
Also search Thomas.net for a list of mfgrs, distributors, & retailers in the U.S.
Last edited by JacktheShack; 08-02-2008 at 10:13 AM.