How to Tell if Your Radiator Has Sprung a Leak
A healthy radiator is crucial to your car's performance and can help prevent catastrophic engine problems. It can also alleviate the need for a costly radiator repair, or even worse a costlier radiator replacement. There are several common signs that something may be amiss.
The number one sign that you have potential radiator trouble is leaking fluid. Always check your garage floor and driveway. The antifreeze(coolant) used in radiators is sticky, bright-colored, and often sweet smelling. It also pays to keep an eye on your temperature gauge. This will give you an indication if the engine starts to run hot. Check for significant drops in the coolant reservoir. It's normal to have small fluctuations but a large drop in coolant may signify a serious leak.
When radiator trouble is suspected, an inspection of belts, hoses, and the radiator itself is recommended. Rust and discoloration around these items could be an indication of a leak. A temporary radiator repair can be used if a leak is spotted. This provides a short-term fix to patch the problem.
Sludge can also be a potentially serious issue. This occurs when the barrier that separates coolant and transmission fluid fails. The fluids then mix together and produce sludge which affects the radiator's performance.
Prevention has to be discussed to avoid the need for the dreaded radiator replacement. Regular maintenance is essential for keeping your radiator healthy and long-lasting. The primary fix here is the routine replacement of coolant. This prevents the coolant from becoming too acidic which can cause chemical effects to weaken the structure of your radiator. This makes them more susceptible to leaks.
A healthy radiator will keep your engine operating at normal temperatures and will keep you from a costly repair bill. Therefore, regular maintenance is well worth the time and money in the long run.
Looking for quality radiator repair? Contact our ASE Certified technicians at Kestner Automotive today for more information about radiator service and to schedule an appointment. Our auto shop proudly serves residents in Columbia, SC, and the surrounding area.