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Cast Iron Radiator

Posted by gildomilo (My Page) on
Sat, Apr 28, 12 at 9:44

Does anyone know what the best way to get rid of a cast iron radiator is? I've posted it on craigslist, no bites, I don't want to take it to the scrap yard because I feel that's a waste.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Cast Iron Radiator

Unless it's very decorative I doubt if you will find any takers. I'm going to be using my most decorative radiator as a small side table - I will add a glass top. The rest just got hauled away.

RE: Cast Iron Radiator

Dare we ask why you are getting rid of it? Is it just one, or are you removing them all from your house? By the way, if it is in good shape, you can sell it at an antique mall or consignment shop, or perhaps a salvage place.

If I still had a house with radiator heat, I'd do anything including murder to keep it--it is the most comfortable system of heating a house yet devised--and if you have a new efficient boiler, very economical.

If you have replaced radiators with forced air, you will very soon feel your mistake in uneven heating and drafts.

RE: Cast Iron Radiator

I'm with Columbusguy--our retirement home has radiators--and I will do anything, spend any amount of money to keep that system in good order. LOVE the wonderful cosy heat they give off. I find that at our country house (retirement house), I'm perfectly comfortable with the heat at 55 degrees. IN the suburbs, where we have hot air heat? I'm chilly when the house is at 68 (case in point--we were there this morning, upacking boxes, the house was 54 and I was fine; right now, I'm at the other house and I simply cannot get warm even though it's 68 in here).

But we don't know why you're getting rid of them--could be any number of good reasons.

If you've tried to get someone interested by advertising, with no luck, what's so wrong with taking them to a scrap yard? You'll get a couple of bucks for it, and the metal will be repurposed into something someone will need and use. Seems like a win-win to me--unless you're upset that you won't be getting top dollar for them that way.

RE: Cast Iron Radiator

We remodeled our bathroom and replaced the existing radiator with a low profile one. This one doesn't really have a place in our home. I can squirrel it away somewhere, just in a better place than it is now.

Having spent years in apartments with forced hot air, I can genuinely say that I will never own a home with it. I hate forced hot air.

RE: Cast Iron Radiator

Cast iron radiators are custom made to length by joining individual sections. If you take one out and move it generally the physical act of moving will damage the gaskets between sections so in order to use it again we have to remove the stay bolts, remove the old gaskets, then clean the gssket seats and install new gaskets before it can be reused.

That process is very labor intensive and most people simply don't want to pay the cost, so it is nearly impossible to find a market for used radiators, other than taking them to the local metal scrap yard.

RE: Cast Iron Radiator

Hi gildomilo,

Are there any architectural salvage places around where you live?

For example, here in MA, there's New England Demolition and Salvage in New Bedford that purchases and sells cast iron radiators (see

Try a Google search of "architectural salvage" and your zip code to see if there's anything similar where you live.

While I can understand if it's a very decorative radiator, that it might feel like a "waste", I also feel that it's not so terrible to sell to a scrap place if you have no other option. At least, it's a more "recycling" choice compared to having to junk it to landfill.

Here's another thought: if you have the storage to keep it, would it be something that would be good to have as a "replacement part" if one of your other radiators cracks?


RE: Cast Iron Radiator

"If you take one out and move it generally the physical act of moving will damage the gaskets between sections so in order to use it again we have to remove the stay bolts, remove the old gaskets, then clean the gssket seats and install new gaskets before it can be reused. "

If moved correctly and carefully they hold together well enough.

Five foot plus radiators can take some real doing to move without damage the though.

If all you need is to pull them away from a wall temporarily it is not hard.

Loading one on a truck (you need a lift gate) is a little harder.

I usually fasten them down solidly to a section of 2x lumber if they are going to be moved more than a few inches.

The last 6 footer I moved was on a pieces of 6x16 lumber.

RE: Cast Iron Radiator

There is a section to sell stuff on There are a ton of steamheads that are on that site, might want to try listing it there.

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