THE aluminum radiators they are an innovative choice, very current and increasingly in demand, which revolutionize the concept of home heating.
Lightweight, design and characterized by low thermal inertia, they are the perfect allies to heat the house in winter without increasing the costs in the bill. Let’s find out its features, advantages and disadvantages.
Contents of this Page
1 Aluminum radiators: what they are and how they work
- 1.1 Aluminum
- 2 Aluminum radiators: types
3 Pros and Cons
- 3.1 Advantages
- 3.2 Disadvantages
- 4 Steel or aluminum radiators?
- 5 Cast iron or aluminum radiators?
- 6 Modern aluminum radiators
- 7 Price
- 8 Aluminum radiators: cleaning and maintenance
- 9 How to paint aluminum radiators
- 10 Global aluminum radiators
- 11 Bricoman aluminum radiators
- 12 Tubular aluminum radiators
- 13 Other tips for heating at home
Aluminum radiators: what they are and how they work
Aluminum is increasingly used for the production of radiators that are modern in their aesthetics, as well as being very light and functional.
The operation of aluminum radiators implies the use of aluminum radiators which can be divided into 3 types:
- Plumber: the most classic system in which the water is heated and introduced into the radiators to heat the environment
- Electric: independent from the hydraulic system, it is recommended for very large rooms
- Mixed, which provides a mix of the characteristics of the 2 previous types
Generally, for private homes for domestic use, the operation is hydraulic.
Let’s do a little insight into the material itself.
Aluminum is the third most abundant element on earth, as well as the most abundant metal available.
We summarize below what its properties are:
- it is one of the most common metals in nature
- 100% recyclable
- it oxidizes immediately with air and becomes impermeable to water
- it is extremely ductile, malleable and malleable
- perfect thermal, electrical and sound conductor
- corrosion resistant
Aluminum radiators: types
Aluminum heaters consist of tubular elements, hollow inside, through which hot water from the boiler flows. The number of modular elements is variable and substantially depends on the thermal power that is required.
On an aesthetic level, based on the shape of the aforementioned elements, we can distinguish:
- Aluminum radiators columnar
- Aluminum radiators lamellae
- Aluminum radiators with tubular elements
pros and cons
As also happens with steel radiators or the more classic ones cast iron radiators, even those in aluminum have advantages and disadvantages. The list of pros and cons must be carefully analyzed in order to make the best choice for your needs.
Let’s start by presenting the positives of aluminum radiators:
- excellent heat conductors (they have a heat emission 5 times higher than that of steel)
- modular and easily adaptable to the needs of each home
- light and easy to handle
- easy to install
- low thermal inertia: they heat up very quickly
- they use the “low temperature”: the water temperature is around 50 degrees
- they use little water to function
- allow you to save on the cost of the bill
- corrosion resistant
- relatively low cost
- they are suitable for design solutions thanks to a wide range of finishes and colors
- they are made with widely recycled materials, and at the end of their life, they can be transformed again
And after so many beautiful features, let’s now also review the defects:
- they cool down quickly
- they are easily deformed following more or less violent impacts and blows
- they are quite noisy
- one is not enough: a single aluminum radiator to the heating system can increase the possibility of corrosion. Therefore it is necessary to modify every radiator in the circuit or to buy the right corrosion inhibitor
Steel or aluminum radiators?
The main difference between steel and aluminum radiators lies in the thermal inertia, and not so much on the actual output.
Steel radiators take longer to heat up but also longer to cool down, thus keeping the heat in the room; on the other hand, those in aluminum quickly heat up but cool down just as quickly.
As a result, less energy is spent with a steel radiator. However, aluminum radiators are cheaper.
Another difference lies in the fact that aluminum radiators are light, modular and easy to install, those in steel are not modular by adding or eliminating individual heating elements.
That said, the final choice depends on personal needs. If you live a short time at home, and you want to heat it only for a moment in the evening, aluminum radiators are perfect, if instead you prefer to have a temperature, perhaps low, but constant throughout the day, then it is better to focus on steel radiators.
Cast iron or aluminum radiators?
Also in this case, the main decision factor lies in the thermal inertia: aluminum radiators heat up quickly but cool down just as quickly; those in cast ironon the contrary, they take a long time to heat up but remain warm and give off heat for a long time even after the elements themselves have been switched off.
It should also be remembered that aluminum radiators are quite noisy.
Considering these elements, we could conclude by saying that cast iron radiators are to be preferred in the main house while, for the second home (by the sea or in the mountains) those in aluminum are preferred.
In any case, the choice, as mentioned above, is obviously personal and depends on the specific needs of the individual and vary from case to case.
Modern aluminum radiators
There are many variants of aluminum radiators on the market.
Thanks to the ductility of the material, it is possible to create very original heating solutions able to adapt to the spaces of the house and to any style, modern, classic, rustic or more elegant.
There is also a wide range of colors and finishes to choose from, thanks to which the radiators can be transformed into real, very original and design furnishing accessories.
The final cost is given by the sum of various elements. First of all, since, as we have seen, aluminum radiators are modular, the price of the radiator depends on the number of elements it is made of (generally we are around 20.00 euros).
To this figure must then be added the labor and installation.
In conclusion, if we consider a standard situation consisting of: two radiators of 4 elements each for bedroom and living room and a radiator with only 2 elements for the bathroom, the indicative figure is 200.00 euros.
Aluminum radiators: cleaning and maintenance
The cyclical and regular maintenance of aluminum radiators is of fundamental importance.
It is very important to clean before the arrival of winter.
Here’s how to proceed:
- clean the external part of the structure using a simple antistatic cloth or dust catcher
- reach the deepest and most hidden parts using a vacuum cleaner or a pipe cleaner
- open the vent valve and let all the water flow out and it will fall into the basin that you have previously placed under the radiator
Remember that cleaning must be carried out with the radiators off and cold.
How to paint aluminum radiators
Despite being particularly resistant, aluminum radiators are not immune to some small and large imperfections, especially over time.
Rust, peeling paint, accumulated dirt… in addition to becoming annoying from an aesthetic point of view, they can also compromise the normal functioning of the heater itself.
This is why painting the heater can be a good idea.
As for cleaning, painting must also be carried out with the heater off and cold, preferably before the arrival of the winter season.
It is highly recommended to purchase special paints for aluminum radiators. Specifically, these are heat-resistant paints, on sale for around 15.00-20.00 euros.
Let’s see how to proceed:
- apply a first coat of paint, taking care to avoid the formation of lumps and any dripping
- let it dry well and, after at least 5 hours from the first coat, give it a new coat
- once the second coat is completely dry, finish everything with sandpaper
For a fine job, there are also spray paints that allow you to reach even the most hidden corners.
Global aluminum radiators
For more than thirty years, Global has been a brand that stands for quality and guarantee in the field of radiators. Offers a wide range of die-cast aluminum radiators.
Among the various models in the catalog, we focus on the Klass radiator, a synthesis of line, functionality and performance. With sober and soft lines, it has a slim profile suitable for small spaces. The use of EN AB 46100 certified aluminum alloy guarantees a very long life.
Finally, Klass is characterized by an excellent finish with double anaphoresis bath varnish and subsequently with epoxy-polyester powders, for an impeccable aesthetic.
Bricoman aluminum radiators
Wide choice of aluminum radiators also from Bricoman. Here are some examples from the catalog:
- Nova Florida aluminum radiator, extra thermserir, center distance 800 mm, depth …