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Can You Put Furniture In Front Of A Radiator?


Well, technically speaking, you can. However, it’s not advisable. No. Don’t put furniture in front of your radiator.

Below are the two main reasons why you shouldn’t put furniture in front of a radiator.

Why you shouldn’t put furniture in front of a radiator

It reduces efficiency

Ideally, you don’t want a piece of furniture directly in front of your radiator because it will prevent proper heat distribution. You end up getting less heat. Most of the time, people end up assuming something is wrong with their radiator unit or central heating system. Therefore, they turn to higher settings.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t aid their situation, and they only end up spending more on heating costs than is necessary.

Furniture damage

Most furniture materials are prone to heat damage. No, they won’t catch fire. However, the prolonged amount of heat will have some negative side effects. Below are some of the ways heat affects different furniture types.

Leather: People think genuine leather is the toughest furniture material they can find. Well, that is true. However, it’s still vulnerable to prolonged heat. The effects are even worse for faux leather. The heat from the radiator will cause your furniture’s leather to dry out faster than usual. In no time, you’ll notice cracks and hacks.

Wood: Indeed, wood is less prone to heat than leather. Nevertheless, it’s not heating you should be worried about. It’s moisture. People tend to forget that radiators produce heat from heated steam. Moisture will cause your wooden furniture to swell and warp.

Upholstery: Nowadays, we have flame-retardant fabrics. Unfortunately, even flame-retardant materials won’t be able to withstand the heat and moisture. Prolonged exposure to these conditions will slowly but surely damage your furniture upholstery. We’re talking pattern and design breakdown.

What is the best location for radiators?

Hopefully, we’ve agreed that there shouldn’t be any furniture in front of your radiator. If you have no other choice, the piece of furniture should be at least one foot away from the radiator. The distance should be enough to help dilute the heat before it reaches your sofa.

The space under the window is the best for horizontal radiators. Not only is the space usually “dead” to furniture, but it will also help improve your unit’s efficiency. The cold air currents coming in through the window will help propel and distribute the warm air all over the room.

Alternative to horizontal radiators

Horizontal radiators have a habit of getting in the way of furniture and home decor. It’s even worse if the room is small. Alternatively, you can opt for verticle radiators that are known for occupying less space. On top of that, since they’re wall-mounted, they’re less likely to fall victim to furniture obstruction.


No, you shouldn’t put furniture in front of your radiator. Not only will you reduce the unit’s efficiency, but you’ll damage the furniture. If you must, then ensure there is at least one-foot space between the radiator and furniture. Additionally, you can also opt for verticle radiators that are easier to position away from pieces of furniture.

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