How to paint behind a radiator

17 August 2021
How to paint behind a radiator
A bucket of paint on top of a radiator

The area behind a radiator is usually very hard to reach and, as a result, people often end up with a bit of undecorated wall that's a completely different colour from the rest of your interior design plan. It's annoying and gives you a nagging sense of a job unfinished. In this article, we'll look at the main ways you can paint that hard-to-reach area behind your rad!

  • Use a mini roller
  • Remove the radiator
  • Install an easy radiator removal/reattachment kit

Paint behind a radiator using a mini roller

A mini paint roller for decorating behind a radiator

Using a regular paintbrush simply won't allow you to reach all the way down behind a radiator or heated towel rail and fully paint the wall. Equally, a normal-sized paint roller will be too chunky to fit into the narrow space and will more than likely cause a mess and splatter paint on the back of your radiator. Instead, you'll be delighted to know that a special little tool has been invented for precisely this issue and it's called a 'mini roller'.

Mini rollers designed to tackle that area or wall space behind a radiator look like a miniature version of a roller you would use on your walls or ceiling. They come with a plastic handle and long metal stem to allow you to comfortably reach further than you normally would. Crucially however, the roller on which you put the paint is very small and thin, meaning you can easily load up on paint and reach down behind the rad to paint the wall. It's a simply tool but virtually eradicates the problem of painting the wall behind most radiators.

Paint behind the radiator by removing it

Some radiators have a very small projection from the wall which makes reaching behind them with even the smallest of paint rollers impossible. In this case, you'd be better off removing the radiator from the wall so that you can have completely unrestricted access to paint the wall.

Even with this solution, you don't have to go to through the hassle of draining the radiator, disconnecting the valves and completely removing it from the wall, unless you really want to. It's actually possible to remove a radiator from the wall without having to drain it down, which saves a lot of time.

In the video below, James the plumber goes through this process step by step, allowing you to follow along with your own radiator.

Paint behind a radiator by installing an easy removal/reattachment kit

If you are going to be redecorating on a regular basis or you want easy access behind your radiators to clean, then it could be worth installing a conversion kit that makes it easy to remove and reattach your radiators to the wall.

A conversion kit allows your radiator to swing away from the wall using some simple brackets and harnesses, making it easy for you to get behind the radiator whenever you need to. These kits are easy for a professional or experienced DIYer to install and are available in a range of sizes to accommodate a wide variety of radiator types.

There is obviously an extra cost involved in having these conversion kits installed, but if you know you are going to want to access the back of a radiator on a regular basis then this is definitely an option worth considering. The video below shows one of these easy-access radiator conversion kits in action.


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How to replace a broken radiator valve

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