Does your vehicle often overheat even though you are driving it normally? If yes, then it is a sign that you need to flush the radiator. To be sure about the cause, you can drive it to a professional. You must be thinking, what is the job of the radiator flush or if flushing the radiator really necessary? Here are the answers to your question.
What Is Radiator Fluid?
Radiator fluid is the liquid-filled inside the radiator to keep your car engine cool. You better know it as coolant or antifreeze. It helps the engine to dissipate excess heat while you enjoy your speedy ride, especially on a hot day. Driving your car for long without radiator fluid will boil the engine to fail in no time.
Why Is The Radiator Flush Needed?
Like other fluids in your car, the radiator coolant enjoys a key position. However, unwanted contaminants and debris can build up inside the radiator over time. This can result in radiator corrosion, generating rust, or scaling ending up in car problems. A radiator flush can help you avoid it resolving the problem from its roots. All you need is to force gallons of cleaner, water, and new antifreeze through the system to remove the build-up.
You must be thinking, why can’t you do it simply by draining the radiator. This way, you may get rid of most of the old antifreeze and contaminants, but it leaves the traces of the old fluid behind. Adding new fluid to this old and dirty liquid wouldn’t help you, and soon you will find your car overheating as the antifreeze is contaminated again.
How Can You Flush A Radiator?
Flushing a radiator is simple but can become messy if not carried out with caution. Here is how to flush a radiator the right way.
- First off, open the radiator cap. Look for the coolant reservoir and open its cap.
- Look in the owner manual to find the radiator drain. Place a container under it properly and open the drain. The drain will collect in the container.
- Allow the gravity to do the work until the radiator is empty.
- Follow the instructions on the antifreeze container and fill in the liquid. Add water to fill the rest for about an inch below the top opening. Hy-per Cool Radiator Cleaner & Super Flush could pave the way for you with its proven formula to clean the system within thirty minutes. We recommend you use it for the highest radiator performance.
- Tighten the cap and switch on the engine for heating.
- Turn the engine off in a while and let it cool to drain the radiator once more. Repeat the process with water this time.
- After this, fill it with the antifreeze.
Clean the area where the job is done and wash thoroughly to get rid of spilled antifreeze, if any. If you are getting it done by a mechanic, it would cost you less than $40. Ask the mechanic to perform a full cooling system inspection to find any leaks in the system to avoid overheating again shortly after the flush.
When Do You Need To Flush The Radiator?
Your car will show several signs indicating that your radiator needs flushing. We have compiled a list for you.
- Your car is overheating.
- There is a leak in your coolant system.
- Coolant is contaminated and has build-ups.
- There is an odd smell rising from your hood.
- The coolant levels appear full even though your engine has overheated
- The engine produces grinding or knocking noise.
If you find any of the above signs, then flushing the radiator can easily solve the problem.
What Are The Benefits Of Flushing A Radiator?
Flushing the radiator has a lot of benefits for your engine.
- It removes the rust and scales formed inside the radiator as a result of the old coolant.
- It lubricates and lengthens the life of your water pump
- It prevents future leaks, foaming, corrosion, and debris build-up.
- It extends the life of your car engine.
How Often Can You Flush A Radiator?
You will find a different opinion about flushing a radiator. Some experts recommend it to do it over three years while others say after five years. People often perform it annually, but there is no need to do so. We recommend you to do it when your car has traveled 10,000 miles. If you don’t find a sign till that time, then go for it after completing 30,000 miles. It’s best to follow the owner’s manual schedule or get the coolant checked every time you take your car to the mechanic for tune-ups and maintenance to know when is the time.
What If You Don’t Flush A Radiator?
Coming to the question, why it is necessary to flush the radiator. If the car mechanic has suggested you a radiator flush as the solution of experiencing above mentioned signs then get it done as soon as possible. Wondering what will happen if you avoid it?
Here you go with the sequence of events.
- Contaminants will keep in building inside, causing corrosion.
- This will result in gasket damage.
- The coolant system will start leaking.
- Your car will start overheating even upon minimal work.
- Your engine will fail.
Avoiding to flush the radiator will make your problems worse. Your car performance would suffer and pay for a high repair cost later. So, it is better to do it when needed than after it starts causing damage to your car engine.