Radiator covers mask the fins while granting for passaging heat. Because most covers have raised tops, the covers’ tops are considerably cooler, and this supports selected components to be placed there. Even heat-susceptible items like plants can be placed on a proper-insulated radiator cover.
How can old-shaped radiators be enclosed, or at least kept out of direct sight, without cutting down on their heat output?
Since any enclosure — even an open-sided top on legs — will retard heat flow, try to stabilize esthetics and energy performance.
For illustration, build a front frame with an open area several inches high near the floor and the entire width of the radiator across, and another near the top.
This will help to create an airflow through the enclosure that will feed into the natural path of rising warm air and falling cool air in the room. Cover the bulk of the front panel with a decorative but porous material such as punched metal screening or lattice.
You can push more heat out of the enclosure and reduce the amount lost into the wall behind the radiator by installing a reflective foil barrier on the back wall and building the top panel with a central grill section.
Besides allowing more heat to escape, that should discourage people from using the enclosure as a seat, which means you can build the frame of lighter materials such as five-quarter (114-inch-thick) stock instead of beefier 2-by-4s and plywood.
The less solid framing and the more open or screened area, the better, and don’t forget to leave access to the radiator pipe valves.
Finally, you may want to strip what may be many layers of old paint — it can retard heat transmission from the radiator.
This is a way to get more heat with or without an enclosure. Before undertaking this project, conduct a test for lead-based paint (there are store-bought testing kits available) and inquire about safe removal at your local health or consumer affairs department.
Other Opinion On Radiator Covers Usability
People who conceal their radiators with specially- constructed wooden-box covers are very keen on having their heating turned up high. `We can afford the bills,’ they boast boldly as soon as they nail their faux-regency or Victorian radiator shields into place and so cut down the heat output by one-third.
Not for them the dual use of the radiator as a drying machine draped with sheets and socks of every hue – their radiators are discreet additions to the furniture range, politely painted a woody shade to correspond with the skirting and dado rail.
Interior magazine readers, ever keen to keep up with the country set, never fail to send off the glossy mail-order brochures that picture radiator covers of every shape and size scattered around sizeable English country houses.
They seem to fail to realize, however, is that people who live in those large country houses have no use for radiator covers, as they can’t afford to install central heating systems.
Meanwhile, people obsessed with renovating their own houses are torn between the choice of tracking down renovated, bulbous cast-iron originals or of going for a Wickes standard special with a Shaker-esque cover.
In the end, they always go for the Shaker- esque covers and then spend the rest of their lives apologizing for them.
Not so the true arriviste among us, who do the radiator cover proud – every radiator in their homes proudly sports a specially commissioned 12inch-square monogrammed initial. `The finishing touch,’ they like to call it.
Radiator Covers For Cars
Can winter fronts/radiator covers help heat the car faster in winter?
If they can assist, would the cardboard placed in the radiator’s front help and cover the grill, or is it creating a danger of overheating?
I’m aware that some people have cut a hole through the center of the cardboard, but will this cause issues due to uneven heating within the radiator’s core?
In icy conditions, winter fronts can aid in warming up the vehicle quicker. Diesel engines and modern fuel-injected gasoline engines can be so efficient in fuel that they produce very little heat generated by the machine when it is idle.
The engine must usually be in operation before fuel is injected to generate heat.
The aluminum cylinder heads and engine blocks found on a lot of modern vehicles quickly disperse heat, making it harder to warm the car’s interior.
Placing cardboard over the radiator can be beneficial. However, it increases the load on the bearings of mechanical cooling fans and can cause the engine to overheat faster when temperatures rise outside.
A few people cut the cardboard. However, this could result in an uneven load on the fan unless it is aligned to the fan’s blades.
A better way to limit the flow of air in your engine’s compartment would be to cover up the grille as well as the area beneath the bumper with a winter-facing. It still lets air flow through the radiator but blocks most cold air.