Leaking/rusty towel radiator

Discussion in 'Plumbers' Talk' started by optimystery, Jul 14, 2021.

  1. optimystery

    optimystery New Member

    Hi, I have a recent bathroom fit from 2 years ago. I noticed one of the nuts started leaking and over time the paint has started bubbling around it. After tightening the nut the leak stopped but the rust seems to have spread.

    I've just emptied the radiator and chipped off the loose paint to have a better look and see if it can be repaired.

    The nuts seems to have a kind of integrated washer, but maybe they need another washer or just PTFE tape?
    What's the best way to prevent the rust spreading?
     

    Attached Files:

  2. just pumps

    just pumps Screwfix Select

    PTFE tape on the threads will not work as the rubber washer/ O-ring is the seal. A smear of LSX around the rubber might work if you cant source new rubbers.
    Best way to stop rust spreading is to keep water in the radiator.
     
  3. optimystery

    optimystery New Member

    Isnt that stuff supposed to be used as a temporary measure?
    The nuts have integrated washers, so I'm wondering if adding another one on top would work?
    Here's a better picture
     

    Attached Files:

  4. just pumps

    just pumps Screwfix Select

  5. Jimbo

    Jimbo Screwfix Select

    The reason for the leak is probably that the mating surface isn't flat. Often there are globs of powder coat in them. I tend to smoothing them round with wet-and-dry before fitting but obviously it's a bit late now. You could strip it all back and use some radiator enamel but you will see it.
     
    just pumps likes this.
  6. pppmacca43

    pppmacca43 Super Member

    Might be worth taking the washers off and just using ptfe on the threads, no reason at all that wouldn’t work, I’m sure every plumber has at some point had to make in a radiator vent with ptfe. If u put lsx on the rubber washers they will probably squish out when u tighten the fittings. You could also leave the washers in and wrap some ptfe around the threads too and try that. Normally don’t need to do it but in your case there is no reason it wouldn’t work.
     
  7. optimystery

    optimystery New Member

    The washers don't seem like they would come off, so maybe I will try both lsx and ptfe as you suggest. What about treating the existing rust / flaking paint?
    Sand it down and repaint with water-based paint?
     
  8. dcox

    dcox Screwfix Select

    It looks like they are alternative flow and return connections so perhaps came with the caps in place but not fully tightened or checked on installation. Might just have needed nipping up but by now the damage has been done. I doubt any more paint will lift if it’s water tight now. If the metal under is rusty, treat with a rust converter then overpaint with radiator paint.
     
    pppmacca43 likes this.
  9. pppmacca43

    pppmacca43 Super Member

    You would have to cut them off, no need tho just put some ptfe round the threads as well and should be fine. I love lsx but probably wouldn’t bother in this case.
    As for painting I’ve only ever used radiator touch up paint for small marks so can’t advise.
     
  10. optimystery

    optimystery New Member

    Right. Will try just the ptfe and tighten them first. Just wondered as the initial drip was stopped by tightening but the rust seemed to spread a bit
     
  11. pppmacca43

    pppmacca43 Super Member

    Like DCox said they may have just needed nipping up, that quite often stops any weeps
     
  12. optimystery

    optimystery New Member

    I contacted the manufacturer (Zehnder) and they offered to send me 2 new nuts and seals (blanking plugs) and some touch up paint, no questions asked.
    They also said to sand all the rust spots thoroughly before painting
     
  13. just pumps

    just pumps Screwfix Select

    Remember Jimbo`s post to rub down the sealing surface in post #5
     
  14. optimystery

    optimystery New Member

    Yes, will be sanding it flat as a pancake before repainting!
     

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