DIY video: How to paint behind radiators

Radiators can be tricky to work around when it comes to DIY. But there are sneaky ways to get around them without dismantling them entirely.

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DIY video: How to paint behind radiators

How to paint behind radiators


  • Paint
  • Paint brush or rollers
  • Old towels and cloths
  • An adjustable spanner
  • Radiator bleeding key

Simply by adjusting the valves you can lower the radiator onto the floor. This will give you easy access to the wall behind without draining the system. Here's a step by step guide on how to paint behind radiators.

  • <b>Step 1: Get someone to help</b>

    Step 1: Get someone to help

    If you want to avoid draining the whole system in order to reposition the radiator, you will need a friend's assistance. Lay a couple of old towels at each end of the radiator and have a cloth to hand to wrap around the pipe.

  • <b>Step 2: Undo the nut</b>

    Step 2: Undo the nut

    Using your adjustable spanner, undo the valve until it starts to weep slightly and you can swivel the radiator.

  • <b>Step 3: Lower to the floor</b>

    Step 3: Lower to the floor

    Lift the radiator up and lower it to the floor, being careful not to disturb the pipes underneath. Only lift the radiator about 10mm off the bracket or you might end up damaging the pipework. Once you have successfully managed this, you will need to quickly tighten up the valve again to stop the water dripping. Now you can start painting or wallpapering as you please.

  • <b>Step 4: Rehang the radiator</b>

    Step 4: Rehang the radiator

    Once your painting is dry, you can put the radiator back in place. To do this, you need to loosen the nuts again, then together with your friend, lift the radiator up and hook it back onto the wall brackets. Once it's back in position, quickly tighten up the valves to retain as much water as possible.

  • <b>Step 5: Bleed the radiator</b>

    Step 5: Bleed the radiator

    After tampering with your radiator, you should bleed it to avoid any air being trapped at the top. To do this, unscrew the top of the radiator and turn it a fraction until a bit of water starts to run out. Then tighten it back up again. Depending on your heating system, you may need to repressurise. Finally, switch on the heating and check the radiator is working.

  • <b>Step 6: Radiator roller</b>

    Step 6: Radiator roller

    If you want to paint the wall without tampering with the radiator, you could just purchase a long-arm radiator roller. This way, you can paint round the side and back of the radiator with minimum fuss.