If you've ever accidentally touched a piping hot radiator, you know how dangerous a naked radiator can be. And if you have a small child, the need to cover your apartment's radiators is even more urgent.
Even if your needs aren't safety-related—maybe you just can't stand the sight of your old, paint-covered radiators—you should know that getting radiator covers, even custom ones, is not a big hassle.
There are many places where you can find covers—from very basic to highly-customized. And covering them beats the laborious, time-consuming task of scraping old paint off.
Find Your Next Home
Read on for a round up of places where you can get covers for your NYC radiators. Note: if you're measuring your radiators yourself, be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully.
Based in Brooklyn, this woodworker specializes in custom radiator covers and installation. Think radiator covers with bookshelves or seating areas with detailing that perfectly matches the 1910 decorative molding in your brownstone or prewar apartment. He serves the New York City area and New Jersey, and prices start at $500 per cover. Contact him at 347-683-8068.
This East Rockaway, NY, business offers four handsome styles of radiator covers, made in solid premium pine with no knots. They’ll also make covers in other woods like oak if you want, and source materials from area suppliers. Covers are spray-painted for a furniture finish, and custom work is available. The cost is $500 and up, with a minimum of a three-piece order for Manhattan residents.
For affordable covers in a short time frame, Pine Street Metals is a good option. These covers are heavy-gauge, furniture steel that is electrically welded and topped with a durable powder-coat finish. Prices run $125 and up, depending on style, size, and color. A range of fronts with grills or slats are available. Basic colors are white and almond, but you can also get a faux wood finish or pretty much any crazy color you want. There’s an argument to be made for a metal radiator cover: It doesn’t warp or crack, and any moisture evaporates. And, the folks at Pine Street Metals say it conducts heat better than wood.
Yes, the company that makes affordable wood furniture will also custom design a radiator cover for you. Covers are made from one of two materials. The first, Pluma MDF, has a surface that takes paint well and a plywood inner core for strength. The other option is Medex MDF, which Gothic says is moisture-resistant and suitable for radiator covers. They have over 20 different finishes that range from stains to solid paints, but customers can also provide their own paint if they like. The company will custom design units to any style you like, although its most popular styles are modern and Shaker. They serve the tri-state area and prices start at $325 a foot.
Based in upstate New York, Fichman Furniture produces radiator covers that are both customizable and affordable, thanks to an automated manufacturing process able to handle any specs. (Founder Erran Fichman spent many hours writing his own computer code for this process.) Fichman offers six styles of radiator from sleek to more traditional, a few screen options, and prices start at $170. The covers are made with MDF with low- or no-volatile organic compounds or hazardous air pollutants and are finished in a high-quality furniture lacquer. The standard color is white, but you can get the covers in any hue by providing a color code and brand or even a sample. Turnaround time is two to four weeks; the cover arrives in four pieces and can be assembled in less than 15 minutes. You can also order Fichman Furniture covers through Amazon and Lowe’s although these are popular, standard sizes, not custom.
Another manufacturer of steel radiator covers, Monarch offers nine styles to choose from. Its economy option, the KD collection, has a large front grill for maximum air circulation and has a maximum height of 33 inches and a depth of 12.5 inches. Prices start at $250 and you assemble them yourself. Alternate custom designs start at $295 and have a hinged top, a dustproof steel back. Insulated tops are also available.
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