What To Do With A Leaky Radiator And Other Plumbing Problems

Question and answer session with The Italian Plumber (Ad)

This month, I thought I’d have a dig through the Ask Samuele archives and see if there’s anything that would interest you. Here’s the selection I came up with. Enjoy!

Dear Samuele,

I’d like to earn a little extra income renting out the spare bedroom in my house. Is there anything I need to consider regarding gas safety legislation?

Kind regards,

Samuele says:

Ciao, Anastasia! And grazie mille for your question.

Well done for carefully considering this important issue. Even though you are just renting out one room, you will still need a Landlord Gas Safety

This often comes as a surprise to people in your situation, as it’s a common belief that this
only applies to landlords who let entire homes or properties.

Good luck with it.

All the best,


Dear Samuele,

I’ve noticed that my radiator leaks occasionally. It doesn’t seem to affect the heat it gives out, so I was wondering if it will just stop leaking all by itself?

Best wishes,

Samuele says:

Ciao, Philip! And grazie mille for your question.

You’re right.

Very often a small leak in a radiator does little to affect the temperature it puts out.
You could find that it won’t get any worse for some time. On the other hand, small leaks and rusty drips are never a good thing and, left unchecked, can go on to cause all manner of problems, not to mention complete loss of heat.

Also, if a radiator is beginning to play up, it could be that other rads of a similar age are close to causing problems too.

My advice, is to get it checked out by a professional.

Whilst there, they can also give every other radiator and heating vessel a full inspection.

You’ll have peace of mind that you’re good for another winter.

All the best,


Dear Samuele,

I have a hot water cylinder installed in my home, but the water that comes from my taps is so hot, I’m terrified my little one could accidentally scald himself.

Why is it so hot, and how can I lower the temperature and still keep the hot water cylinder and its benefits?

Yours sincerely,

Samuele says:

Ciao, Janette! And grazie for your question.

I’m often asked this.

The water in the cylinder needs to be kept at a minimum 60ºc in order to kill any bacteria (including legionella) that could otherwise grow at lower temperatures.

Installing a thing called a thermostatic mixing valve will solve this problem.

This will mix hot and cold water at the outlet, reducing the temperature to 45ºc – 55ºc after it has left the cylinder.

No risk of scalding, whilst keeping your water bacteria-free.

All the best,


Dear Samuele,

This isn’t actually a question about a plumbing problem. I just need some general advice.
This year, my wife’s mother will be joining us for Christmas. She’s a lovely lady, and any man
would be lucky to have her as a mother-in-law.

The trouble is, she loves Brussels sprouts, but they don’t love her. They play havoc with her
digestive system, and to say that the resulting smell is akin to rotten eggs, is a complete
understatement. I really don’t think I can put up with it for another year.

Please don’t tell me to open the window… she just complains that it’s too cold.
Also, she lost her sense of smell when she was a young child. Please help! I’m at my wits’

Yours hopefully,

Samuele says:

Ciao, John! And grazie mille for your question.

Sorry, can’t help you. I have the same problem with my mother-in-law.

Buon Natale.


Dear Samuele,

I’m at work during the day, so over the winter months I only need to use the heating in the evenings and at weekends.

During these hours, if I set the boiler’s mechanical timer to turn the heating on and off every hour, will this save me money and still generate the same amount of heat?

Yours sincerely,

Samuele says:

Ciao, Ricky! And grazie mille for your question.

I like your thinking. But let’s be clear about what you mean.
You come home at 6pm and want the heating on until 2am the following morning – 8 hours.
In order to save money and energy, you want the timer to switch it on and off, every hour.

You get 8 hours of heat, but only actually use and pay for four. You’re basically relying on the radiators to retain much of the heat during the off hours.

Yes, this will save you money and still provide you with adequate heat.

In fact, I’m surprised more people don’t do it.

Go for it.

Ciao for now,


Samuele The Italian Plumber

Other blog posts by Samuele can be read at theitalianplumber.co.uk/blog.

Until next time, if you have any plumbing or heating issues around the home, give us a call on 020 8945 7457.


July 29, 2022

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