I have a radiator sitting on a concrete floor in my bathroom. I'm connecting it up to the central heating with chrome pipes and chrome compression fittings - the piping is all visible above floor due to concrete so I wanted it chrome.

I'm having problems with the compression fittings, they tend to leak. I've been tightening them up gradually over the weeks and despite being really careful just managed to crimp a pipe.

I've not had problems with compression joints before this, both copper and plastic work fine. I think it's the chrome plating. Are there any tips for improving the fittings?

Looking on the web, I see that if you are soldering chrome fittings you have to sand off the chrome at the ends - do you think this would help with compression fitting too?

  • Thanks for the help, I am going to try sanding off the chrome at the ends. I'll update with whether it worked or not.
    – MachineElf
    Jul 5, 2012 at 9:00

1 Answer 1


When I was installing radiators we used brass olives that had a one sided chamfer instead of a chamfer on both sides as per normal olives.

Also using nylon olives with a boiler is usually a bad idea as they might not be able to take the heat.

  • Thanks, I was using standard copper and brass olives as supplied with the compression fittings, I'll check if they have a one-sided chamfer.
    – MachineElf
    Apr 19, 2012 at 12:38
  • Is the leak at the radiator connection or on a join in the pipe?
    – UNECS
    Apr 19, 2012 at 12:51
  • It's on the pipe elbows, I'm using chrome finish compression elbows. The radiator joins seem to be ok although potentially they could have the same problem as they are compression too.
    – MachineElf
    Apr 20, 2012 at 13:25
  • It may be useful to upload a photo of the pipe you crimped and the fitting.
    – UNECS
    Apr 20, 2012 at 21:32
  • I just overtightened it or put too much weight on it while tightening - the end of the pipe gave way right next to fitting. I can take a photo but not sure if it will add much to my Q though.
    – MachineElf
    Jul 5, 2012 at 8:58

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