The Anatomy of Healthy Cars: A Service and Repair Blog

Is It Definitely Time For A Car Radiator Repair?

by Brittany Marshall

Your vehicle's radiator has the primary function of keeping your engine safe from damage due to the high degrees of heat produced when you are driving. As the engine utilises coolant to stay cool, the radiator kicks in to eliminate the heat that has been absorbed by said coolant. Once this is done, the cooled fluid is then redirected back to the engine and this the process repeats itself as long as the engine needs cooling. Nonetheless, like all other systems in your car, the radiator is not immune to issues cropping up from time to time. The difference between needing a complete replacement of this part and prolonging its lifespan is attending to the issues as soon as they manifest or the radiator is at the threat of irreparable damage. So how do you know if it is definitely time for car radiator repair?

Visibly leaking coolant

The older your vehicle, the higher the likelihood of the radiator acquiring physical damage. The degradation can be caused by using inferior coolant for your vehicle or perhaps incorrectly flushing the radiator. Hence, over time, the housing of the radiator becomes corroded. If the rust is left unchecked, the radiator will develop cracks that eventually become bigger and allow coolant to leak from your car. To establish if this is happening, you should inspect your parking spot or your driveway in general for any suspicious droplets. A mistake some people make is underrating what they think is a minor leak since perhaps they will only notice a droplet or two under their vehicle. However, as long as the coolant is leaking, you should know that the problem will only worsen progressively and you could end up having to replace the radiator.

Physically damaged fins

Yoru car's radiator is comprised of fins that have the main function of enhancing the conduction of the heat that is directed to this component via the coolant. These fins are quite thin, which makes them a fragile part of the radiator. If radiator maintenance is neglected, you could end up with damaged fins that are not functioning well or at all. In some cases, debris makes its way to the fins and causes them to bend or break. Thus, the surface area of the radiator is minimised. Alternatively, you could end up damaging the fins by mistake if flushing is done with excessive pressure. Overall, if you notice that your car is overheating yet you have not noticed any coolant droplets, then you should have your mechanic investigate the condition of the fins.

For more information on car radiator repairs, contact a mechanic.