Can anyone tell me if typical radiators get too hot for toddlers to be around & touch? It's an older house, oil heat & huge radiators all over the place.
Buying covers isn't an option financially. My Dad took the measurements of all of various sized radiators & is saying the wood he would need to make covers is pretty significant. It's only a rental for a year, possibly less, so I would hate to invest all that $. Our financial situation isn't great, so it would really set us back to do it. The landlords are refusing to pay anything toward covers or buy the covers from us once we leave. We are considering not signing the lease for this (& a couple other issues), but we are struggling finding anything else suitable that allows cats & we have to be out of our home in 3 weeks when the sale closes.
We live in a house with radiator heat and no covers on them. Have since we had both girls. No problems at all. We do caution that they stay away and not touch but a brief touch isn't enough to burn them but does draw attention to the fact that they are hot. Our girls haven't found much interest in them. So I wouldn't worry about it at all. Just pay attention and caution your child that they are hot. If your son/daughter happens to grab a hold one time - they shouldn't get harmed other than shocked that they are indeed warm.
Hope this helps!
I grew up with radiators and never got burned. There is a difference whether they're hot water radiators (what we had), and steam radiators (which get hotter, since steam is above 212 F). If they're steam radiators, can you block them off somehow so your toddler can't get near them? It wouldn't have to be fancy - maybe just a gate or a few boxes. Would it be a fire hazard to keep damp towels on them? (We always dried our winter gear over the radiators.)
Thx Mamas. I don't know if they are steam or water. Darn. I don't think the owners know either-they recently purchased the home & aren't familiar with all the ins & outs yet. Is there an easy way to figure that out?
Blocking some of them might be easy-not all of them though. They are all over the darn place! lol My almost 4 year old isn't a problem, but the 19 mos old is a real risk taker, wild & into everything so I just know she would get to them somehow. And not sure what it would take for her to learn a lesson. She is quite persistent.
We have other unrelated concerns about the rental, including the price, but it is a great location and we are having a really hard time finding anything else at all suitable that will allow our cats. I never thought it would be this hard to find a decent rental. Apparently it is a buyer's market AND a landlords market.
Hmmm. In the Bronx we have apartment radiators which are...I THOUGHT water....But they do release steam from a little thing on the side every once in a while. I suppose that makes them steam? At any rate, they get HOT. My son has touched them when he was younger and didn't get burned, but I can't keep my finger on one for more that a second when it's on. We didn't have covers either, however, but DS always took our warnings about burning himself very seriously. So he never tried to get close once we explained to him it could hurt. Not even when he was just a little over a year.
Writer/Designer/Hip Hippie Russian Mama to T (3yo) and K(4mo)
OP - The little thing on the side (don't know the name) is some sort of pressure relief valve. If you see one of these things, it is very likely you have a steam system. Regular hot water radiators don't have this valve. (regular hot water radiators do have a little nozzle that require a special key to "bleed" air out of the system but it shouldn't be confused with a relief valve.)
We have hot water radiators, the big ones that seem to dominate every room. They do get warm, like warm enough you don't want to rest bare skin on them for any length of time, but not enough to burn.
We have very hot steam radiators--one in the living room, one in the bedroom, and one in the bathroom. The bathroom one is not a problem--we keep the door closed.
The living room one is blocked off by a table. The bedroom one is not blocked off at all. Last winter my son was only just mobile (started walking around last November), and he learned *very* quickly that he didn't want to touch hot things. He didn't have to touch (or get burned!!) to learn--there is enough radiant heat that you can feel it by putting your hand close to it without touching.
Could you check craigslist for used radiator covers? New ones are spendy, I know--we looked into buying new ones, and they aren't cheap.
Steam radiator, note the release valve:
Hot water radiator, note the lack of release valve:
I think this is a one trial learning thing for most children. It's hot, ouch, I won't do that again. Kind of like the experience my ds had crawling in shorts on concrete. He learned to walk VERY soon after that.
we just bought a really old house that is FULL of radiators as well. The way the hot water radiators have been described to us is that YES they get hot, not hot enough that if a child falls against them they will get burned, or randomly touch them. But hot enough that you don't want to leave parts of you touch it for long! also we were told the exterior of the radiators (The sides) are not generally as hot as the interiors...