February 9, 2012

How Thermostatic Radiator Valves Work

dgerrard

What is a Thermostatic Radiator Valve?

A thermostatic radiator valve (TRV) controls the temperature of a room by determining the flow of hot water to a radiator. Fitted to radiators on an individual basis, the valves allow you to vary temperature according to room, so if you have a south-facing room which receives a lot of sunlight, a TRV would limit the flow to that particular radiator when the rest of the house needs heating.

How Does it Work?

When a room drops below a specified temperature, a wax plug expands or contracts, controlling a pin connected to a valve. When the valve is triggered, it will open to allow warm water to flow into the radiator. When the room has reached the desired temperature, the valve will gradually close.

Valves gauge the temperature of a room using the air directly around them so it’s imperative to ensure that they are not covered by curtains or any other material. They need an uninhibited passage of air flow to allow them to effectively read the temperature of the room.

Advantages of TRVs

Due to their ability to regulate temperature for individual rooms, TRVs are often considered an environmental choice and it has been estimated that, in an average household, they can save up to 90kg² of CO₂ a year. Additionally, they allow homeowners to save over £10 a year on energy bills, which means that if you install them yourself, you could see a return on your investment in only a couple of years.

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