Checking & Replacing a Leaking Radiator Hose
Written By: Criselle
November 10, 2013
Cars tend to overheat with prolonged use. That’s why there is a device that regulates the temperature of an automobile’s engine called the radiator. It balances the temperature of the engine by injecting coolant through a hose that looks like this:
Over time, the hose can be damaged through continued use. The hose will be prone to leaks, making the radiator less effective in cooling the car. This means that when a car overheats, it will stall completely. In the guise of prevention is better than cure, here are some helpful tips on how to repair a faulty radiator hose.
Tip #1: Under the car
Coolant liquid (colored green, red, blue, orange, or even rust) can drip to the bottom of a vehicle if there is a leak. Under is the best place to look for early signs of a defective radiator hose.
Tip #2: Radiator
Once the fluid on the ground is confirmed as a coolant, immediately check the radiator if there are any drips from the hose. If yes, the next steps you can take will follow the last tip.
Tip #3: An overheated engine
An immobilized vehicle due to an overheated engine is a tragic event for any driver as it is inconvenient. Just in case this happens, a burned out engine is a likely sign that your radiator conked out since it didn’t regulate the temperature. If this happens, open the hood and let the car cool.
Once the car’s temperature is regulated, you can replace the hose with these simple steps. This is assuming you have a screwdriver, pail, and extra hose handy.
- Step 1: Cool the car – Let the car engine return to regular temperatures.
- Step 2: Remove coolant – Take out the plug beneath the radiator and replace the old coolant. Make sure you have a pail to catch the fluid.
- Step 3: Unclamp the hose – Remove the clamps of the old hose using a screwdriver.
- Step 4: Place clamps on new hose – Once you’ve done that, place the new radiator hose in its proper place.
- Step 5: Refill coolant – Mix 50% coolant and 50% water and fill the radiator with it. Then start the engine for about 3-5 minutes.
- Step 6: Test drive – Close the radiator cap, shut the hood, and drive around your neighborhood for about 5 minutes. Afterward, check the radiator and the bottom of the car again for leaks.
Once done, your car’s radiator hose is good to go for another 4-6 years until you need to replace it again. Keep this article in mind for the maintenance and replacement of your car’s radiator hose. It will save you a lot of trouble in the future.