Brooklyn Company Brings the Heat and Restores New York City’s Troubled Cast Iron Radiators

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    Castrads makes custom-built cast iron radiators, the type that have occupied homes since the Victorian era. Founded in the U.K., the company has its North American HQ in Brooklyn. A homeowner in Park Slope hired the firm to update their radiators.

    “The customer’s original radiators were still in full working order,” said Jayson Branch, Castrads’ creative director. “But they were inefficient and covered in decades of built up paint. They were also hidden within covers, which block 15 percent of the radiator’s heat output.”

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    The client determined that it was a good opportunity to replace the floor and woodwork around the radiators. Castrads’ team advised that the pipes be repositioned to connect directly to the valves from the floor, creating a cleaner installation aesthetically.

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    The three radiators were sandblasted, refinished in a gold powder coat and fitted with thermostatic control valves. “Retrofitting thermostatic valves onto steam systems enables you to save energy, reduce your heating bill, and keep each room at a comfortable temperature without any work done to the radiators themselves,” said Branch.

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    Supply of heat into the radiator is automatically controlled with respect to the temperature of the room. When the room reaches the desired temperature, the valve closes and the radiator stops heating. The room then cools, the valve opens and the radiator begins to heat again.

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    In addition to the refurbishment, Castrads’ supplied two new custom radiators, manufactured in their factory in England. They did heat loss calculations using room dimensions, window surface area, and the insulation/wall material of two rooms in order to determine the size of radiators needed.

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    “The biggest problem we find, especially in New York City, is that original radiators are oversized,” said Branch. “We make sure you’re heating your home comfortably and efficiently for another century.”

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    For more information, visit the Castrads website.

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