Tado & Towel Rails, or how to call for heat without turning on the rooms

Hi folks,
I've tried to do some reading on the other threads about this, but I haven't seen an answer that mentions this (maybe for good reason!)

My setup: I have installed tado on all rads in my house (2x rads in lounge plus the wireless thermostat is here, and 1 rad in each bedroom). I have the old wireless bridge with boiler modulation set up, if that makes any difference.

I get the sense from reading other threads that it's good practice to keep one manual radiator in the system, in my case it is the towel rail in the bathroom. But like others have said, I now have no way of turning it on without also running heat to another room, which means I end up with wet and musty towels a lot, especially in this cost of living crisis we've been having.

I'm hesitant to put a TRV on the towel rail and even more hesitant to put a tado on it, because the rail is in a splash zone.

In theory, I can imagine two other solutions:
1. Install a wireless temperature sensor in the bathroom, but I do not know if that will function in a room with no tado thermostats. Will this generate a new room in the app, or does it need to get assigned to an existing radiator/room? The promo materials don't make it very clear.
2. Somehow make the app create a new room, or maybe a bypass 'ON' button that calls for heat without opening any of the valves in the other rooms. This option feels like something the app developers would need to do, and I can absolutely see the safety reasons why they wouldn't.

Does anyone have any idea if option 1 would work? If not, are there any other options beyond a TRV on the towel rail? Or am I doomed to wet towels every autumn and spring?

Thanks for any help you can give!


  • Montage
    Montage ✭✭✭

    A simple timer giving an hour here or there would do. I wouldn’t waste Tado type money on that. Someone competent should be able to connect it to the boiler.

  • wateroakley
    wateroakley ✭✭✭

    The heating system will usually need a 'bypass'' and over-run to dissipate heat in your boiler when the rads turn off. Sounds like your bypass is the towel rail without a TRV.

    Option 1 should be feasible and easy to do. You'll create a new room (zone) in the app and set the room temperature schedule.

  • paul0000
    paul0000 ✭✭✭

    Be interested to see what works with this. We just had a towel radiator installed in our en-suite and no it's getting warmer are also suffering from musty towels.

    Would like a solution to fire up this and maybe other non tado radiators without heating the rest of the house.

    However, I also wonder if it's a massive waste of heat generation to warm up just a one (or maybe a couple of other non-tado rad's....

  • I also have all rads with Tado's apart from bathrooms - I don't have the modulating version of the receiver and I have stored hot water, so my receiver just drives the motorised 2-port valves. In winter I have the wireless thermostat as the temperature sensor and controller for our kitchen / diner.

    What I do during the summer is to create a room called bathroom and reassign the wireless thermostat to that room. My thermostat isn't physically fixed so I put it somewhere that stays coolish and set it to 25C (you could use offset if even 25C isn't high enough) then set a programme for the bathroom to call for heat for 30mins morning and evening. I set the hot water for the same time too, but it often doesn't require heat if we haven't used much hot water since last time it ran.

    The only problem with doing this, as the poster above suggested, is even on its lowest modultion our boiler is far too powerful for this amount of heat demand from the bathroom rads (two of them) so it pretty quickly hits the flow temp and cuts out, with the pump over-run going for 15 mins so it's a bit random where the flow temp will be when the programme ends. I did originally set it for an hour each time but the boiler cycling seemed too much.

  • samd
    samd ✭✭✭

    This will not help the above posters! Given that the kitchen also has a requirement for drying towels (hand and tea) albeit to a lesser extent, we had a secondary but small rad installed which allowed us to choose between bathroom or kitchen second rad as bypass/tado trv. Might help someone at planning stage.

  • davidlyall
    davidlyall ✭✭✭

    I feel the best solution was to move our towel rads onto the HW circuit. We took this opportunity when we replaced both of our bathrooms. That way, we're guaranteed hot towel rads all year round as the HW is on at least once per day

    I would have moved to electric towel rads which would have been easy enough to wire in so they came on with the HW but unfortunately, I couldn't find a suitable one for our main bathroom

    Maybe the electric route is an option?

  • "I feel the best solution was to move our towel rads onto the HW circuit. We took this opportunity when we replaced both of our bathrooms. That way, we're guaranteed hot towel rads all year round as the HW is on at least once per day"

    In the UK, with a typical S plan system (2 x 2 port motorised valves) you could heat the bathroom rads at the same time as the hot water by manually locking the heating motorised valve open.

    I tried this on my system - the problem is that unless a chunky quantity of hot water has been used the boiler doesn't run for long reheating it so the bathroom rads don't get heated for very long. And the system tends to naturally prioritise the hot water reheating, as there's less resistance to flow in that circuit, so the rads got warm, but not much more.

    It does have one other feature, which is that once the boiler stops firing, the pump over-run keeps circulating water to the rads for a few mins so you're not wasting that heat in the boiler's bypass. However if runs for too long - or the hot water being satisfied happen to catch the boiler in an over-run cycle anyway, then it has the effect of making them cool faster.

  • davidlyall
    davidlyall ✭✭✭

    You could do it that way but in my system and I suspect a lot of systems, there is usually one radiator (hall) that's open as a bypass so you'd be wasting energy heating a space that doesn't need heat

    I normally only have the HW on once per day for a couple of hours from 5am so it definitely runs long enough to get the towel rails hot

    For me, the preference would have been to have changed over to electric towel radiators switched on at the same time as the HW circuit but I couldn't find a suitable electric horizontal towel radiator for the bathroom