Did you know that even a slight build-up of dust can affect the way a radiator works? Even though we only tend to use radiators in the winter, a weekly clean can make all the difference when it comes to functionality, not only that but it could help you save on your energy bills. If your radiators are operating at their best, it can expend less energy to heat up your home and therefore not mean a strain on your wallet.
If you’ve never taken the time to clean your radiators or at least give them a good spruce, then here are some tips for cleaning and to help you make the most of your home.
Switch off the heating. It’s best to clean when they’ve been off for a while. Start cleaning them in spring or summer for the best results, you’ll be able to see more on the inside and heat tends to lift fluff and dust up, which can also happen while you are cleaning. Nobody wants dust up their nose, especially while they are concentrating on cleaning.
You’ll also be able to get in further if the heat isn’t burning your hands and it will make for an altogether more comfortable experience.
Use the power of suction
The first thing to do is to use an attachment on your vacuum cleaner to ensure you catch any spider’s webs, big particulates, dust and other elements that have got stuck deep down in between the radiator fins and channels. Using a cloth or duster just moves dust around and could actually push detritus back down into the grooves that you are trying to get the dust out of.
Time for a deep clean
Once the more loose dust has been cleared, it’s time to thoroughly clean out the grooves and fins with a deeper cleaning method.
Firstly, put down a towel or material that will catch any dirt or grime that you dislodge in the course of your cleaning session. You don’t want to be cleaning the floor as well as the radiators.
Then, either invest in a radiator cleaning brush, or pass a cloth down and through with the use of a rod or similar implement to get all the dust that has attached to the metalwork out. This is more effective that you might think, heat and moisture in the air bind dirt and dust to metal and there will be more down there than you’d expect.
You can also use a hair dryer to blow any dust and dirt that is clinging on despite your efforts or is still trying to stick to the wall.
Once the dust has been dislodged and you feel the last of it has gone, it’s time for a simple wipe down. All you need is a bowl of soapy water and a microfibre cloth. Wring out the cloth, leaving only a moist feel rather than anything sopping wet. This will ensure you pick up enough dust and grime from the surface without leaving too much water left over which will cause rusting.
All that remains to do is wipe down and rinse until all of the radiator has been covered and cleaned.
Remember to also give your skirting boards and surrounding carpet a once-over when this is done too. Wayward dust and fluff that has been disturbed could well cause you some unexpected mess.
Is more work needed?
If your radiators still don’t look quite how you’d like them, consider a repaint or at least a coat of radiator paint. Remember to buy specific paint for heat resistance and application to a metal surface. Using traditional paint can mean the surface cracks, the radiator is damaged and in some cases can cause the heat not to rise properly through thicker layers of paint.
Traditional paint also looks streaky and uneven when applied to traditional radiators, so it could end up looking even worse if you cut corners.
Too much like hard work? Why not consider investing in a radiator cover? You can go for simple wooden models, or patterned, metal versions that cover up dated radiators and still distribute the hear effectively.
These are also great for safety when you have small children to avoid burns and accidents. They also look great, covering up unsightly pipework too.
So what are you waiting for? Get cleaning! While you’re here, check out our range of stylish new radiators too.