Definition of radiator in US English:



  • 1A thing that radiates or emits light, heat, or sound.

    • ‘Examples of radar reflectors are solar panels and heat radiators.’
    • ‘In winter, sea water is electrically heated and the steam is compressed as high-pressure vapour circulated through radiators.’
    • ‘An effective space station will need far more solar arrays than are in the picture and probably will also need larger heat radiators.’
    • ‘"Iraqi labourers have installed a new radiator on a generator air intake.’
    • ‘It follows, then, that any radiation emitted by the cavity radiator corresponds to the definition of blackbody radiation.’
    • ‘A different type of laser currently in development is the isotropic radiator.’
    • ‘The term perfect blackbody applies to bodies that act as perfect radiators or absorbers of heat.’
    • ‘Uncoated glass is a good radiator, so heat radiates from the window and is lost.’
    • ‘So ceratopsian frills may also have functioned as heat radiators, or signaling devices, or to attract mates, in addition to whatever protective function they may or may not have had.’
    1. 1.1 A device for heating a room consisting of a metal tank connected by pipes through which hot water is pumped by a central heating system.
      • ‘I was just going to tell you how to turn on the radiator, because these rooms freeze at night.’
      • ‘He informed me that practically all the pipes and radiators throughout the church seemed to have burst.’
      • ‘The only reminder of the heating is a radiator in the bathroom, which the residents did not want to do without.’
      • ‘My property is a one bedroom flat with 5 radiators, gas central heating and a gas cooker.’
      • ‘The Inspectorate's report required rusty radiators, flaking paint, brittle water pipes, damp and floor defects to be fixed within three months.’
      • ‘He made his money by inventing a pipe connector which allows radiators to be swivelled forward without being disconnected, making it easy to wallpaper behind them.’
      • ‘Last week's cold snap will exacerbate problems, making flat batteries, frozen radiators and damp electrical systems all the more likely.’
      • ‘I showed him my leaking radiator and then told him that the central heating wasn't working either.’
      • ‘The rooms themselves are cooled by cold water flowing through radiators, just as they are heated in the winter by hot water or steam flowing through them.’
      • ‘Indoor life is comfortable here, so abundant is the supply of the geo-thermal hot water that pumps through radiators everywhere.’
      • ‘Choose one which appeals to you and add five drops to an oil burner or a saucer of water placed near a radiator.’
      • ‘I have an immersion heater so we'll have hot water, but the radiators are stone cold and it's chilly this evening.’
      • ‘Heating is by solid fuel, with radiators in all rooms.’
      • ‘We were huddled close to the radiator in our dining room after Sunday lunch waiting anxiously for him to relay the story of the game.’
      • ‘Once a year, bleed all radiators to release trapped air, so that they heat up evenly.’
      • ‘This morning I painted the radiator in that room.’
      • ‘I excused myself, and toddled off, book in hand, to my warm spot by the dining room radiator.’
      • ‘An integral back boiler provides domestic hot water and heats the radiators, which then provide central heating.’
      • ‘A wood-fired boiler is an obvious match for a home with radiators or other hydronic systems (hot water moving through pipes).’
      • ‘The steam travels through pipes to radiators or convectors, which give off heat and warm the room.’
    2. 1.2 A portable heater resembling a radiator.
      • ‘Mrs Foster added that ever since the fire was condemned she has had to buy and use portable electric radiators.’
      • ‘Listening keenly and swishing deftly, we pinpointed the noises to be coming from the small portable radiator that sat against the wall of my sisters room.’
      • ‘When you first see the F - 50, it's easy to believe you're looking at a portable radiator.’
      • ‘Yep, from various people's descriptions a small oil radiator sounds like exactly what I'm looking for.’
      • ‘Lennon went upstairs to his room and threw a portable radiator and clothes basket at his father before they returned downstairs.’
      • ‘Also an oil-filled, free-standing electric radiator in good working order is needed.’
      • ‘He went on to say that among the areas which had now become a dumping ground was at the back of Waterford Regional Hospital where someone had left radiators, other heaters and furniture.’
      heater, convector
      View synonyms
  • 2An engine-cooling device in a motor vehicle or aircraft consisting of a bank of thin tubes in which circulating fluid is cooled by the surrounding air.

    • ‘The thin air also reduces the engine's power and decreases the cooling efficiency on the oil and water radiators that cool the engine.’
    • ‘Will stricter emissions rules permit copper to make a comeback in automotive radiators?’
    • ‘If your radiator needs to be replaced, you can find aftermarket radiators that are more affordable but are nonetheless excellent in quality.’
    • ‘Railway lines are buckling in the sun, car radiators are boiling in traffic queues, talk has turned to global warming and the increased threat of flooding.’
    • ‘The itinerant handyman is driving through the Arizona desert when he realizes that his car radiator is in need of water.’
    • ‘During very cold winters, ordinary water would freeze within the engine block and the radiator.’
    • ‘He started 13 th last week and parked 74 laps later after his radiator punctured and the engine overheated.’
    • ‘The radiator has tubes that contain large amount of water and has an area to allow outside air to pass through.’
    • ‘Water cooled engines include radiator, pump, thermostat, fan and connecting hoses and pipes.’
    • ‘From the grille, the air goes directly to the radiator and to the engine.’
    • ‘An early pit stop was made during the first hour to block off the radiators - the car was running too cool.’
    • ‘Eliminating the radiators from the front of the car allowed the hood line to be lowered further.’
    • ‘No less than three radiators sit in the engine bay, one for the air conditioning and one each for the low and high temperature cooling loops.’
    • ‘Later, while filling his car radiator with water at a service station, he offers a lift to a young woman who is also trying to thumb a ride west.’
    • ‘Put the hosepipe back on, refilled the radiator and I drove straight to the repair place.’
    • ‘The car radiator is a technology that has been around almost since automobiles were first invented.’
    • ‘The cooling fluid had to be pumped from the radiator to the engine via tubing and a series of pumps.’
    • ‘Although admittedly not a car expert, I do know pouring cold water into the radiator of an overheating engine is a bad idea.’
    • ‘This eliminates the pipe and clamps beneath the driver's seat used ever since the teams abandoned dual water radiators.’
    • ‘Without the auto radiator, the engine would overheat and become inefficient.’