The radiators on your car ensures that the engine in your car stays cool.

So, Radiators rarely have a catastrophic failure without showing signs first.

If you suspect your radiator is going bad, watch for the following symptoms:

  • Coolant leaks
  • Engine  overheating
  • Sludge in the radiator
  • Low coolant level

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Engines have a system of channels which run throughout the block and cylinder head known as the coolant jacket. Specially-formulated liquid coolant (also known as antifreeze) mixed with water flows through these channels, absorbing engine heat. The water pump keeps the coolant flowing, the rate of which is regulated by the thermostat. Eventually the hot coolant flows from multiple coolant jacket channels into a single outlet before it reaches the radiator.

The radiator’s main function is to provide a high surface area, So that heat can be effectively dissipated.

Once it enters the radiator at one end, the single outlet splits into multiple smaller tubes, known as core tubes. The core tubes run through numerous thin sheets of folded metal called cooling fins, which further increase the surface area. Radiators are usually mounted at the front of the engine behind the grille. That way, as cool outside air passes over the cooling fins, heat dissipates as the car moves forward. A fan works to keep cool air moving over the radiator.

Do the following three things and you’ll give your radiator the best chance for problem-free performance:

Flush the coolant every 20,000 miles

  • This will prevent rust and also minimize mineral deposit buildup.

Check your hoses and clamps on a regular basis

  • A crack, loose clamp, small hole or other problem should be addressed immediately.

Get on a regular coolant check schedule

  • Every week or so, ensure your radiator coolant level is full.

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