I have a steam radiator in my apartment that I would like to completely remove, because:

  • I want to use the space for something else
  • my apartment is too warm
  • it makes a loud hissing noise when it's on

Note that I've already turned the valve all the way to the off position, but it seems like some steam still leaks through.

So how would I go about removing the radiator and sealing off the valve?

I imagine the procedure is as simple as using a wrench to disconnect the radiator from the valve, and then sealing the open end of the pipe with something.

The questions I have are:

  1. What is the name of the item I need to seal off the open end of the valve?
  2. How do I determine what size of this item I need?
  3. Is there anything I need to do before disconnecting the radiator from the valve?

High-resolution album available here https://i.stack.imgur.com/Ktyz2.jpg

Medium sized photos:

Radiator and riser pipe valve valve from below air vent

  • 4
    You say you live in an apartment so that indicates you are a renter. Your landlord should do this for you since they own the property. Make sure you have the OK from the landlord if you are going to make these changes yourself.
    – ArchonOSX
    Aug 18, 2017 at 8:13
  • @ArchonOSX it could be a condo or co-op, though the latter is more likely given the central heating and your comment also applies in the case of a co-op.
    – phoog
    May 24, 2018 at 16:03

1 Answer 1


If you have permission to remove the radiator:

1) Make sure the system will not be actively producing steam.

2) Use a large open-ended or adjustable wrench to loosen the union between the brass radiator valve and the radiator. It will likely be difficult and you may need to tap on the union nut with a hammer or use a section of pipe to extend the leverage of your wrench to loosen it. The radiator is disconnected.

3) Use an open ended wrench and a pipe wrench to remove the brass valve. Spin the valve off with the open ended wrench while providing counter-pressureon the elbow with the pipe wrench. Only using one wrench may stress and crack the fittings.

4) Plug the pipe. Depending on which fitting you choose to remove, you may want a square headed pipe plug (if you have exposed female threads) or a pipe cap (if you have exposed male threads. Based on the photo, it looks like either a 1" or 1.25" pipe.

If you do not have permission to remove the radiator, but want to stop the hissing and heat... This is one-pipe steam, and either of the following options will solve two of your problems.

1) Turn your silver Hoffman valve upside down. This prevents the vent from venting.

2) Remove the silver Hoffman vent and replace it with a 1/8" pipe plug with a square head.

  • I also had to add some yellow PTFE tape to the threads before screwing on the 1.25" pipe cap, to ensure a tight fit with no leakage.
    – mark
    Dec 8, 2017 at 3:36

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