Monday, 7 October 2019

Why should I buy from Feature Radiators?



Choice can be a gift and a curse, the more we have to choose from the better? Or too much to choose from and how do you differentiate?

The designer radiator market is now full of choice, many different products and many different retailers to choose from. Feature Radiators is a pioneer in this market with 19 years’ experience within the industry. We were ‘The’ original radiator retailer, only focusing on radiators, not bathrooms, not kitchens, we specialise in radiators!

Now in a diluted market we try to stand out by continuing our longstanding ethos of quality products and quality service. All of us here are self-professed radiator geeks with an eye for interior design.

For you the customer how do you possibly select the best company to go with? It would be easy enough for us to write, ‘just use us, simple’, but we think it’s best to justify that somewhat.

If Feature Radiators being the pioneer in the industry isn’t enough then consider the fact that we do evaluate literally every radiator that we sell. A strict process is undertaken when we look at a new radiator, we quite literally feel and touch the product. We obtain a sample in exactly the same way you would receive it, so we can make sure everything from packaging to labelling and how the brackets are sent are as we would expect.

Our range is second to none, just because a radiator exists doesn’t give it the privilege to adorn our website and brochures, we scrutinise quality, style, heat output, size variants, price, to name a few. What you see on our website are the best radiators, selected by people with an extensive overview of the market and in combined years, over 95 years’ experience. The people here have lived through the start of this designer radiator movement when there was literally a handful of models available to the now saturated market with copycat models and inferior models available from one pop up radiator site to the next.

We actually exist! Seems odd we need to let you know that we live and breath and we have an office, 10 humans and the UKs largest radiator showroom, in the online age this is oh so relevant, we champion those points!

Due to the fact we are humans we want to know you, not necessarily down to the knee complaint from tennis but certainly your next room d├ęcor ideas or any mood board ideas, we work with you sending emails back and forth, giving you a quick call to check the finer details, we like to communicate, we don’t disappear into the online abyss at the drop of a hat.

We’re not competitor bashers, as we are confident in what we do. That said, something we do want you to know is that a good amount of the first pagers on Google are what we deem as ‘pop up’ retailers, short life span, set up by larger e commerce companies who in the background sell anything from light bulbs to online payment systems, they are far from specialist, stacked high sold cheap. They imitate and we innovate.

01274 567789
Instagram: @featureradiators

Thursday, 13 June 2019

Vertical radiators – 5 key points to consider



Over the last 20 years, feature radiators have become an increasingly important consideration for those renovating a property. One popular way to maximise wall space and comfort, whilst adding an extra design element is to go for a vertical radiator. Here are 5 key points to consider when looking at a tall, modern heating solution.

Heat output

Heat output is the most important factor when buying a radiator, to ensure a comfort and efficiency. Key to maximising the heat output and efficiency of a tall radiator is down to the amount of surface area so look for ways in which the surface area can be maximised. For example:    
·         Does the radiator include as many tubes as possible? – see our Cirque design, where tubes are tightly packed together;


·         Does the radiator include as many internal fins as possible? – see our Alchemy design, which you can see is full of vertical surfaces; or


·         Does the radiator include as much “radiator” behind a front panel as possible? – for example, it may be difficult to see but, our Outline range has a tightly packed aluminium radiator body behind a sleek front panel.

Feature Radiators’ team can help you with your heat output calculations and make recommendations for the Watts or BTUs you require then make a range of radiator suggestions.

Measuring up

Tall radiators are often chosen for use where width space is restricted. Therefore measuring up the space accurately is essential to ensure you select something that maximises the heat output, whilst fitting comfortably into a tight space. As a retailer, we recommend measuring the full gap, allowing us to consider all radiator options with a range of valve positions when combined with a range of valves.

Alternatively, if your pipes are already in place, then measure the distance from the centre of one pipe to the centre of the other and we can recommend products that will fit neatly onto the existing pipework, minimising your potential plumber’s bill.

Valve connections

When width space is restricted and you need to maximise the heat output in a narrow space then you may want to consider a vertical model with “underside” rather than side connections. This is often the case in kitchens where wall space is limited due to units and appliances. As standard, radiator valve connections go at the bottom of a radiator on either side (BBOE), however an increasing amount of designs come with valve connection positions on the underneath, freeing up space either side and giving a neater finish. Examples of such models are our Classic and Svelte ranges.

Classic tall column radiator in bare metalSvelte vertical radiator in black

Designs

Vertical radiators now nearly outsell horizontal radiators, so consequently manufacturers have been proactive in bringing a huge choice of designs to market. 

The most popular designs consist of vertical columns or tubes with various profile shapes in a range of sizes, such as:
·         Round – see our modern Pentola radiator
·         Oval – see our best-selling Ellipse
·         Square – see our Cube-Tube, high output design
·         C shaped as hollow tubes help to maximise surface area – see our high output Cirque design.

Pentola round tube vertical radiatorCube-tube square tubed vertical radiator

Flat panel radiators such as our Dansk Odin are popular in white for their minimalism, but, alternatively, these flat designs are now available in a huge range of colours and finishes such as our Arteplano in copper and Cliff with a stone veneer face.


Dansk Odin flat panel vertical radiatorArteplano etched copper vertical radiator Cliff stone veneer vertical radiator


Tall “feature radiators” come in a myriad of shapes. For example,
  • Spirals – see our Spiro 2 and Hot Spring designs
  • Twists – see the stainless steel Twister
  • Surfboards – see the iconic Blade
  • X-factor – see our Papillon hand-made design  

Twister vertical feature radiatorBlade surfboard shaped vertical radiator


Materials


The most popular material to make tall radiators is mild steel; this is relatively low cost yet hard-wearing and can be made into a huge range of designs.

However, the radiator market is increasingly moving towards aluminium which offers a practical alternative; aluminium is easy to recycle meaning and aluminium radiators are often made of recycled material. It also heats up quickly and is very light weight making it easier to transport and hang. It can be extruded into long finned pieces, offering good value and a high output. One of the top quality options on the market is our Swell range, which comes in a huge range of sizes and finishes.
Swell aluminium vertical radiator

Many customers request cast iron radiators in vertical versions, but these can only be made to a maximum of 1m high. A suitable alternative would be a steel column radiator such as our Bordo or Classic models to get the period style.

Classic traditional tall radiator

For more information on vertical radiators, contact an expert such as Feature Radiators.

www.featureradiators.co.uk Tel: 01274 567789
The Old Post Office, 134-140 Main Street, Bingley, West Yorkshire, BD16 2HL

Tuesday, 28 May 2019

Top 10 Radiator Trends for 2019


Our radiator experts have put their heads together and have come up with the following guide to what’s hot in radiator-land in 2019.
  1. Back to black – Contrasting with organic finishes or warm metallics, bold black radiators offer a striking yet timeless look. Consequently we now stock a number of radiators and towel rails in black for quick delivery.  See our Estante towel rail for a low priced, high impact bathroom heating solution.
  2. Industrial revolution - Bare metals and raw finishes dominate Instagram interior images in 2019. Our best-selling Core radiator shows off its natural manufacturing marks and comes in a range of sizes to suit any space, be it traditional or contemporary.
  3. Natural selection - Organically inspired radiator designs aim to bring the feeling of outside in and give a traditionally “hard” product a more tactile feel. Our Woody radiator is finished in FSC certified timber and has an aluminium core for optimum sustainability. Upgrade to have hidden valves/electric connections for the most “natural” finish.
  4. Dark and brooding - Dark matt finishes can be seen throughout kitchens and bathrooms in 2019, particularly dark blues, forest greens and burgundys. All our cast iron radiators are available in colour matches to Farrow and Ball so popular colour choices include Hague Blue, Studio Green and Brinjal.
  5. Water conservation - Consumers are increasingly concerned about their impact on the environment and are consequently making conscious decisions to choose products that use less water. Many of our radiators are made of aluminium such as our Alchemy range, which hold less water and offer a rapid reaction time. Aluminium also ticks the eco box as it can be recycled.
  6. Copper look! - Taking inspiration from the popular stripped back look, plumbing parts such as taps and valves are increasingly specified in copper finishes. Our traditional towel radiator range can all be made to order in a range of copper finishes including antiqued and polished or our Colori column radiator is now available in a copper tinted lacquer over bare steel.
  7. Concrete basics - The urban industrial theme continues with the use of concrete greys and raw finishes throughout 2019 interiors. Our Cliff radiator can now be finished in a concrete veneer matching up to the latest worktops and floor coverings.
  8. Soft metallics - Luxurious and tactile metallic finishes are a key trend for 2019, taking inspiration from boutique hotel bedrooms. So thanks to popular demand, we have introduced a range of towel rails in gold and brass with matt, brushed and antiqued finishes. For example, Midas, our highly affordable and exclusive ladder rail in a brushed brass finish is worth its weight when it comes to bathroom design.
  9. Hide and chic - Radiators with hidden valves or cables are increasingly popular as homeowners opt for products that streamline and maximise a space. Examples that work well are our Supermirror radiator that is dual purpose and can be made with hidden valves/electrical connections to ensure the cleanest finish possible.
  10. State-of-the-art finishes – the latest technology can now be applied to the finishing of designer radiators. For example, PVD (Physical Vapour Deposition) gives a sleek metallic finish that is very durable with a corrosion and tarnish resistant finish. PVD is now commonly used for bathroom fixtures that are exposed to frequent moisture and/or salt air and is available on our Ellipse range of designer radiators. 

For more information on radiator trends, contact our expert sales team on 01274 567789 or via our website www.featureradiators.co.uk or meet them and the radiators “in the flesh” at our West Yorkshire showroom.

Feature Radiators, The Old Post Office, 134-140 Main Street, Bingley, West Yorkshire. BD16 2HL
Tel: 01274 567789 / Email: contactus@featureradiators.co.uk

12 Steps for Joining a Cast Iron Radiator



Once cast iron radiators get over a certain length, usually around 1.2m, they are too long to be put on a pallet for transportation and become difficult to move around within a property. Therefore most cast iron radiator suppliers deliver radiators that are longer than this in more than one part for joining on site. This step-by-step guide explains the process of making the final join, which is easy and straightforward to complete. 

1.       Lay the radiator sections down: Place the radiator sections that need to be joined, laying down on a clean flat surface, making sure the machined faces and internal threads are clean.

2.       Check the direction of the threads: Make sure that you are coupling the right threads together; each radiator section has a right-handed thread connection at one end and a left-handed thread connection at the other. Similarly, each connection nipple has a left-hand thread on one end and a right-hand thread on the other end.

3.       Make sure you have the right parts: Each join requires one connection nipple and one gasket and there is a join required at both the top of the radiator and at the bottom of each section.  A “joining tool” comprising of a nipple key and tommy bar are required to rotate and then tighten each join and they are specific to the model of radiator you have. These are only available from the supplier, not from stores or merchants.

4.       Screw the nipples into the first section: You will need to identify which radiator assembly has the right handed thread connection and which has the left handed thread connection, then gently screw in the matching connection nipples.  Do not use force.  Only screw in by one single rotation.  Do not screw in fully. 

5.       Add a gasket at each join: Place a gasket over each connection nipple, approximately at the mid-point of the nipple. There is normally a space cut out for this.

6.       DO NOT use a sealant: Do not apply any jointing paste or tape (e.g. Boss White, PTFE, hemp, etc) to the gasket, threads of the connection nipples, or the radiator. This will not improve the seal, but will instead prevent a seal.

7.       Line up the next section: Gently position the section of radiator to be joined next to the host section, ensuring the connection assembly points of the joining section are lined up with the nipples of the host section, and also take care to ensure the correct thread orientations are in place.  You may need to turn the adjoining sections over or upside down to utilise the right or left threaded connections as appropriate.

8.       Insert the nipple key part of the joining tool: To work out how far to insert the nipple key - lay the nipple key over the top of the radiator so that the head is in line with the relevant section.  Make a mark on the key to indicate the how far it needs to be inserted (ie. where the head of the key engages inside the relevant nipple). Slide the key in from the open end of the top waterway until it engages into the nipple that is to be tightened. Check that the end of the key engages in the internal lugs inside the top nipple.

9.       Turn the nipple key using the tommy bar: Turn the nipple key to rotate the nipple so that it pulls the top 2 matching radiator assembly points together.  At this stage only rotate the nipple by one turn.

10.   Do the same with the bottom join: Repeat this operation with the remaining 2 matching assembly points at the bottom of the sections.

11.   Repeat this process to pull the sections together: Repeat both of these operations in turn, gradually pulling the top assembly points together and then the bottom assembly points together, ensuring they are kept parallel.

12.   Tighten the joins: Finally, tighten the joints to compress the gaskets.  Ideally a tightening torque of 200 Nm (20 kgf-m, 150 lbf-ft) should be applied.

If you need further advice on joining one of our cast iron radiators, then please call our technical team on 01274 567789 or email contact@featureradiators.co.uk

10 key points to consider when choosing a feature radiator


“Buy cheap, buy twice” so the saying goes.  So how to you ensure quality versus price when buying a “designer” radiator?
The feature radiator market has exploded over the past 10 years, with a wealth of products now available in every size, style and finish imaginable.  However, imitation is rife; images of radiators often look the same, but quality varies hugely. 
So what should I be looking out for?
1.      Is this supplier reputable?
Be wary of companies with pages and pages of 5* reviews as these can be easily bought.  Instead look for other indicators of a long-term and conscientious approach. Have they invested in a showroom?  How long have they been selling radiators for?  Do they have independent recognition of the quality of their products and service?  Accreditations such as ISO:9001 evidence a serious approach to quality and a brand they care about.
2.      Consider a radiator specialist
Often kitchen and bathroom retailers sell radiators but will have limited technical knowledge on heating.  Plumbers will usually just approach their merchant and loyalty schemes are common place meaning choice is limited.  So by using a true radiator specialist, you can get any technical and installation questions answered quickly and accurately and you can choose from the whole of the radiator market to find something to meet your specific criteria.  They should also be able to offer expert services such as heat output requirement calculations.
3.      Are you confident in the salesperson’s knowledge?
By choosing a reputable radiator specialist, you should feel reassured that you have ordered the right product and it will arrive as expected.  Any doubts in your mind should be put to rest.  Ask who do you call if there is a problem?  Do they have technical specialists or an after-sales helpline?  Be wary of those that just give ‘yes’ answers without backing them up.  In the end, if you do encounter a problem, they may fob you off with the number of a random warehouse to call.
4.      Is it well made?
Make sure the radiator has a guarantee of at least 5 years. The quality and thickness of steel can vary; a thick grade of steel will help ensure a long life.  Look at the brackets: this sort of detail can give an immediate indication of quality; a poorly designed bracket may well reflect a poor quality radiator.  Modern radiators are "powder coated" and most are sold as a “semi-gloss” finish; cheap radiators may be poorly finished with too little paint leaving an "orange peel" effect. 
5.      Are their images accurate?
Images are often created or doctored using computer software, whether online or in brochures.  These may look great but can often be an inaccurate representation of the finish or shape of the radiator.  So try and visit a showroom; there is no substitute for seeing the products “in the flesh”. 
6.      What sizes are available?
Many retailers limit their range to just a couple of sizes to keep manufacturing costs to a minimum.  This may mean you need to compromise on heat output or aesthetics if you decide to go for a cheap option. 
7.      Has the radiator been independently tested?
Radiators should be tested to a minimum of 10 bar pressure and to the European Standard EN442.  Testing a radiator will guarantee that its meets the minimum standards on various aspects including heat output, product labelling and safety.  You need to know that your desired radiator will heat your space. 
8.      Where are the valve connection positions?
Side connections at the bottom of the radiator (BBOE) are the norm in the UK.  However underside connections (where valves sit underneath the radiator) are an increasingly popular choice, as they allow you to maximise the width of a radiator in a tight space and look much neater.  There are even some models available with “hidden valves” for the ultimate minimalist look. 
9.      Where is the radiator made?
The country of manufacture does not always dictate the quality of the product but you may want to consider it alongside other factors.  Many designer radiators are made in Europe, mostly in Italy, Germany and Turkey but there are increasingly more models being manufactured in Asia that are sold at lower prices.  Some high end, bespoke models are made in Great Britain. 
10.   The devil’s in the detail!
Think about not just the radiator itself but the finishing touches.  Have a chat with your potential supplier about valves and pipes – a radiator specialist will be able to tell you what your options are to ensure you get the best result within your budget.   
It's clear from the above that choosing a feature radiator may not be the most straightforward decision, but by following the guidance provided, you won’t make a false economy. 
For more information on buying good quality radiators with a reasonable price tag, then speak to a specialist such as Feature Radiators.  Their expert team will help you to choose the best radiator for your specific circumstances, so contact them on 01274 567789, visit them at their showroom in Bingley, West Yorkshire or see http://www.featureradiators.co.uk



Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Why do radiators leak?

Why do radiators leak?

Here at Feature Radiators we realise that an article referring to leaks is probably best avoided for a company selling radiators but we are extremely confident about our range of feature radiators, their quality and our track record in dealing with issues. Therefore let’s grab this ‘leaks from radiators’ subject by the horns and discuss.

Three main reasons a radiator would leak:

·         Inadequate maintenance of the central heating system the radiator is on.
·         A manufacturing fault with the radiator.
·         Incorrect or poor installation.

Incorrect or poor installation

Let’s firstly look at possible installation issues. All our feature radiators come with instructions to install, so the process should be as simple as possible for a qualified heating engineer/plumber. Should your installer have any questions we have a dedicated Technical Manager to deal with any queries.

To start if you imagine you are looking at a radiator….
The majority of radiators will have 4 entry points (holes), some have 6.
Starting at the top, all radiators will have a bleed vent to go in one of those entries and usually on the opposite side at the top a blanking plug. Both of these plugs come supplied from Feature Radiators and those parts will have an O-ring, (ring of rubber or silicone) that when screwed into the radiator forms a water tight seal.

We find that these get over tightened, so the rubber o ring that is present gets deformed due to being compressed too much and that leaves gaps for water to escape, although in very small amounts initially over time the issue worsens. Symptomatic of this is ‘veining’ paint around that part of the radiator or rust runs from that part of the radiator.

With bleed valves and blanking plugs, sound advice would be to screw them in hand tight then one quarter turn more with a suitable tool. Also never use any other sealant when an o ring is present. This will ensure the seal is formed correctly and avoid deforming.
Moving onto the remaining 2 entry points at the bottom of the radiator. In 99% of installations in the UK the bottom entries will be for taking the valves (taps).

When installing the majority of valves offered by Feature Radiators an installer would add PTFE tape (plumbers tape) to the threads of the valve tail, this helps to form a water tight seal between the radiator and the valve, there are a few examples of valves that arrive with their own O ring on the valve tail but the majority require a sealant.

Once the installer has filled each of the 4 entry points of a radiator, so air vent, blank plug and a valve at each entry at the bottom, the radiator is ‘dressed’ but may not be filled with water as other works may be ongoing.

At the end of the whole works to the central heating system and after other relevant chemical cleaning and preparation work in accordance with British Standards has taken place the plumber will fill the system with water and fire up the heating. This gives the plumber a chance to inspect all their joins on the radiator with the radiator under the pressure of the central heating system and the radiator also expanding with the heat and then contracting when the system is turned off, that is always a good test for their seals and allows them to notice any seals that need attention.
Based on a sound water tight installation and good seals being formed the next possible reason for a leak would be poor maintenance of the central heating system.

Inadequate maintenance of the central heating system the radiator is on

Much like a car our central heating systems and radiators require regular maintenance to keep them in top condition. We provide this advice on our Feature Radiators delivery information sheet that every customer receives when ordering.

The plumber will chemically clean the entire central heating system on its initial set up or if work is being done on an older system they will use their professional acumen to decide if that is required, always speak to your plumber if in doubt or you have questions it is always best to check. Once the plumber has successfully filled the system with water and everything is water tight they will add – inhibitor, this is the chemical that stops water rusting through radiators and boilers.

Water in its natural state is very corrosive therefore a chemical is required to counter that corrosiveness. Without inhibitor in your central heating system it can suffer an array of issues and leaks can occur from a variety of places. A qualified heating engineer/plumber will appropriately deal with the relevant chemicals for your central heating system. A good point to remember is making sure inhibitor levels are checked annually, usually you can incorporate that on your annual service. If your radiators have been installed for over a year and then they begin to leak, serious consideration needs to be given to the maintenance they have received in their working life.

A manufacturing fault with the radiator itself

Finally and the I am glad to report (from Feature Radiators point of view) the  least common cause of leaks in radiators we supply are due to manufacturing issues.  As an ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management Systems accredited company we ensure all our manufacturers and suppliers work to the highest possible standards. This means our products are all either batch tested in the factory or pressure tested and/or visually inspected before they are dispatched to customers. In doing so the majority of issues are identified before they are even dispatched to the customer. 

In the unlikely event a leaking radiator is supplied this will most likely be down to a pin hole in the radiator body, faulty weld or joint possibly hidden out of view of the naked eye or under the radiators paint coat preventing it being identified on the pressure test. In any of these eventualities the manufacturer’s warranty would cover a replacement or repair of the leaking radiator to ensure you get the radiator working as it should.


I hope the article has been useful, if you have any further questions or queries on this subject matter or Feature Radiators in general, feel free to contact us on 01274 567789 or email – contact@featureradiators.co.uk

Monday, 7 August 2017

En-Vogue for 2017

En-vogue for 2017

It is important to constantly review and adapt when it comes to new fashion, trends and ideas in interior design. This includes on-trend colours or new and innovative materials to fit your homes design and heating needs. We have collated a huge range of designer radiators including central heating and electric models in almost every finish imaginable.  As we are a radiator specialist we take great pride in being at the forefront of radiator design.
Below is a number of products recently added to our ever growing collection. These represent the latest in design and trends for 2017. For any further information or further details please feel free to call our experts on 01274 567789, or find us online @ http://www.featureradiators.co.uk/

Colour is king
On trend for 2017, ElleDecor says, "You can never have too much blue."
Pure quality and classic styling.  The Gainsborough ball jointed towel radiator is a welcome addition to any bathroom bringing warmth and space to hang your towels.   

Central heating, electric and dual fuel versions available.


On trend for 2017, Vogue says, Green is “strong again.” 
From lime green to emerald, the hue works throughout the home—whether it’s as a wall colour, a room-filling rug or even a radiator!Equally at home in Victorian drawing rooms and state-of-the-art kitchens, the Classic design moves easily from period homes to contemporary interiors. A wide range of sizes, shapes and finishes can be interpreted to create your own personal style. Black, aluminium and anthracite look particularly striking in hi-tech surroundings. Timeless and versatile, this radiator is a true design classic.
                           
                                                                  

Materials matter 

When talking about what’s on trend in 2017 we need to look past colours and look at the materials themselves. This extends into the heating world with new and exciting materials popping up all over. From your classic steel column radiator to new stone and marble models the world really is your oyster. When it comes to style there is no set shape. Radiators have moved on form a rectangular corrugated panel on your wall.  
On trend for 2017, Vogue's Young Huh, who was named one of Vogue’s five young interior designers, promises marble will continue to dominate in 2017. “We’re going to see this trend in both kitchens and baths,” Huh explains. “It’s that combination of something very natural and clean, white marble."



Form and function combined

Using a clever design innovation to solve two problems is always a good idea. Using ultra polished stainless steel to get an almost flawless mirror finish whist effectively heating a space in now achievable with the Supermirror. Especially useful for smaller bathrooms the corrugated aluminium radiator will heat the stainless steel panel from behind meaning your mirror won’t fog up and spoil your view.




Industrial Chic
It’s about proudly displaying the building materials that many try to conceal. It’s about adding a raw, unfinished look to the most 
thoughtfully designed homes. It’s about selecting pieces that 
are as much about function as style. It’s industrial interior 
design.
This stunning bare metal radiator goes right to the core of industrial chic design. Bringing effortless cool and stylish warmth, the Core 
looks equally at home in contemporary as well as traditional interiors. 
The natural bare metal surface is protected by a luscious deep lacquer 
ensuring good looks for the long haul.


So whether it’s a new pallet of colours, exciting new materials or a radiator with dual function times are constantly changing in the world of design and designer radiators. We’ll keep you right up to speed and let you know what’s hot as our range continues to grow.




Regards
Josh Wilkinson
Feature Radiators.