Do Radiator Covers Reduce Heat?

If you cover the radiator, there is no doubt that you will reduce the convection current flow. Similarly, the energy emitted by the radiator and the radiant heat may also be reduced by the radiator cover.

In this post, we'll cover

In the recent past, radiator covers were back in UK homes, but do they have control over the heat output? This article will explain the importance of investing in radiator covers, along with significant insights on installing them.

Do radiator cover block heat?

People may wonder whether fitting radiator covers may reduce the heating system's efficiency and block heat from circulating the room. Radiators heat a room primarily through convection, i.e., warm air moves above from the radiator to the ceiling and around the room, which heats it throughout.

If you cover the radiator, there is no doubt that you will reduce the convection current flow. Similarly, the energy emitted by the radiator and the radiant heat may also be reduced by the radiator cover.

Types of radiator cover

You can choose from the below two styles of radiator covers: 

  • A topper that goes above the radiator

  • A cabinet covering the top and three sides

Radiator covers should have openings on all sides and the top for heat circulation. If you plan to use the top as a shelf, both styles should be sturdy. 

Toppers are generally made of wood. Some of the materials used to make cabinets include: 

  1. Metal or steel: They block the least amount of heat. Screens or metal grilles can allow air circulation. They are cheaper than wood but can dent. Be aware that if the radiator is too hot to touch, a metal radiator cover may get hot. 

  2. Wood: Hardwoods are a preferred choice if you want the radiator cover to blend with natural wood trim in a room. They will transfer only less heat than metal and are more expensive. 

  3. Engineered wood: Medium Density Fibreboards (MDF) are good for painted radiator covers. This material is well-built like hardwoods but cheaper. 

  4. Combination materials: MDF or wood can make up the structure, along with metal for the grilles. Lining the cover with a reflective foil, no matter the material, will put maximum heat out into the room.

Benefits of radiator cover

Many homeowners are looking to save space, by fitting a radiator cover with a shelf that can be used for storage and placing household things. Selecting a good radiator cover with that feature is the best way to do so. With an added barrier of protection, one can place your furniture and radiator closer to each other without the risk of any injuries or issues. There are various reasons why owners wish to buy radiator covers. Let's have a glance at the top benefits:

  • Child Proofing – This is done with safety gates to prevent the risk of burns in children.

  • Appearance and Decor – Wooden covers are a quick choice, with specific design paints and printed wraps.

  • Additional Shelving – Radiator covers can be used as a shelf space or a window seat.

  • Noise Reduction – Radiator covers can help reduce the noise of central heating systems.

  • Protection - Some radiators will be prone to physical damages from getting hit by external objects. So, a radiator cover will undoubtedly guarantee the owner that it has all the protection requirements to withstand any physical damages.

In addition, radiator covers reduce the likelihood of physical burns and fires because they act as a protection layer between the radiator and other touching objects. Radiator covers are useful in preventing the moisture and heat of the appliance from damaging the walls in your home and furniture.

Are radiator covers safe?

Radiators can cause burn wounds when touched, especially in children with sensitive skin. Therefore, a radiator cover will prevent such accidents and give you peace of mind for your children's safety. In addition, radiator covers will help protect the piping and valves and help reduce noise.

You can use a well-designed radiator cover with built-in reflector panels and plenty of space to reduce your energy bills and protect stray toddlers with accidental burns.

How to fit a radiator cover?

For radiators to be efficient with covers, you should ensure enough space between the cover and the radiator. It should be wider than the radiator by at least

  • 5cm in width

  • 3cm in height and

  • 3cm in depth

This allows the even distribution of heat emission from the radiator around the room despite the cover. In most cases, radiator covers are flat-packed and will require assembling. This will be like screwing the top shelf and sides together.

The front grill can be attached by magnets or screwed in place that allows access to the radiator. Some radiator covers come with fixing brackets that can be attached to the wall. However, many radiator covers are free-standing and are not fitted that allows access to the controls.  

If you are going to purchase a ready-made radiator cover, follow the instructions and measurements given by the manufacturer. Otherwise, you can use these guidelines to determine a finished size of the cover: 

  1. Measure the depth, height, and width of the radiator that includes the pipes going to it.

  2. Add four inches to the width and two inches to the height and depth. This will allow air space between the cover and the radiator. 

  3. Add the cover material thickness to the depth and height. Double the thickness of the cover material to the width. 

Also, ensure that the finished size fits without any obstructions to the nearby walls.


Radiator covers provide a more attractive aesthetic while ensuring safety. Having boiler breakdown insurance will help you get peace of mind to cover the repair cost in case of breakdown. Regular maintenance of the boiler is also essential to avoid boiler breakdowns.

Smart Cover aims to provide its customers peace of mind through an efficient boiler insurance plan with a dedicated customer support team, which is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We are committed to serving our customers and ensuring higher customer satisfaction levels.


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