What does a radiator do? 

Your radiator is essential for regulating the functioning of your engine. In fact, without it, your engine’s temperature would get much too hot. A well-functioning radiator is important for keeping your vehicle in good working order. 

Engines get hot because of all their moving parts. . Radiators help cool down the engine by using coolant. The coolant flows through the radiator and gives the heat an avenue for leaving your vehicle. Sometimes fans are used to speed up this process. 

The radiator is made up of the core, pressure cap, outlet and inlet tanks, and coolant. The core is the largest part of the radiator. It is usually a large metal block with fins on the side to vent the heat. The pressure cap regulates the pressure. Do not remove the pressure cap when your engine is hot. The outlet and inlet tanks keep the coolant moving correctly throughout the engine. And the coolant used in a radiator is usually the same as the coolant used in your transmission.

How long is a radiator’s lifespan?

Most radiators last eight to ten years. This is assuming a normal amount of daily use. If you drive your vehicle a lot, then you may need to replace your radiator sooner. 

It is important to replace your radiator on time. Even if it hasn’t stopped working, normal wear and tear will cause the radiator to work less well. A poorly functioning radiator means you are more likely to experience an overheated engine. Make sure your radiator is replaced on schedule to prevent engine damage.

What are the signs of a bad radiator?

You should not wait until your radiator fails to have it looked at. If you are noticing the following signs, then you may have a bad radiator. Those in the Cache Valley should take their vehicle immediately to Ethan’s Honest Automotive Service & Repair

Some signs that your radiator is failing include

  • An engine that overheats regularly. 
  • Leaking coolant. 
  • Steam coming out of the hood. 
  • A constant “hot” on the temperature gauge. 

What are radiator flushes? 

An important part of radiator upkeep is a radiator flush. This is the process of removing and replacing the antifreeze. The flush involves pushing cleaning, water, and then new antifreeze into your radiator. It is a quick process that can keep your radiator running more efficiently. 

When you need a radiator flush will depend on the model and make of your car. Your owner’s manual will have this information. Most vehicles need a radiator flush every 50,000 to 100,000 miles.

Coolant vs. antifreeze.

You may see the terms coolant and antifreeze used interchangeably. While these are similar things, they are not the same. Antifreeze is usually either ethylene glycol or propylene glycol. It is what you put into your radiator. When the antifreeze is mixed with water in your system, it becomes coolant. 

Which antifreeze you use depends on your vehicle and the season. Make sure to read your owner’s manual for more information about the type of antifreeze you need for your car. The experts at Ethan’s Honest Automotive can also help you pick out the right antifreeze.