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Coolant Recovery Reservoir Replacement Cost Estimate

Worried you might overpay for your coolant recovery reservoir replacement? Use Jerry’s GarageGuard to get fair cost estimate for your coolant recovery reservoir replacement.
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John Davis
Expert Automotive Writer
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Reviewed by Kathleen Flear, Director of Content
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Edited by Jessica Barrett, Senior Car & Insurance Editor

How much does a coolant recovery reservoir replacement cost?

Generally, a coolant reservoir replacement costs $249, with replacement parts priced at $130 and labor costs around $119. However, prices may vary depending on your car’s make and model.
How long does it take to replace a coolant recovery reservoir? On average, the time it takes to replace your cooling system is 1.0 hours hour. Your mechanic will perform a routine inspection on your vehicle’s coolant reservoir to identify any additional damage. 
Check out our table comprised of coolant recovery reservoir costs for varying car models: 
Estimate DateCustomerCarFair Cost EstimateParts CostLabor CostLabor Time
June 8, 2024
Saab 45172
$207
$101
$106
1.0 Hours
June 8, 2024
Volvo S60
$231
$101
$130
1.0 Hours
June 2, 2024
Acura RSX
$234
$109
$125
1.0 Hours
June 1, 2024
GMC Suburban
$211
$101
$110
1.0 Hours
May 29, 2024
Jaguar XK8
$224
$109
$115
1.0 Hours
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How did we estimate these prices?

Jerry's experts researched and collected data from 2500+ real repair shops in all 50 states in the US, including everything from the total cost of repair services to the hourly labor cost for mechanic labor in each shop. We combined that data with our expert database of hundreds of real repair jobs, thousands of real cars, millions of real car part prices in order to best estimate the cost of each repair service. Our labor cost estimate is calculated by taking the average hourly labor rate for a certified mechanic in the US, times the number of hours it takes on average to complete a repair. We recommend you compare your local shops with Jerry and contact those shops directly to get final pricing for your vehicle.

What parts do I need for a coolant recovery reservoir replacement and how much do those parts cost?

For a coolant recovery reservoir replacement, you will need to purchase a new coolant recovery system. Prices for a new recovery tank range from $90-$230.
You can buy coolant recovery reservoir parts for your car from auto parts stores like AutoZone, NAPA Auto Parts, and Advance Auto Parts, as well as online retailers such as Amazon and RockAuto. Three brands we recommend for coolant recovery reservoir parts are Dorman, ACDelco, and Spectra Premium. Keep in mind that specific parts and brands may vary in compatibility with your vehicle’s year, make, and model.
When it comes to coolant systems, OEM parts are recommended as they are provided directly from the manufacturer. As a result, you can expect better durability and know that your coolant recovery reservoir tank is the ideal fit for your vehicle. Aftermarket coolant recovery tanks are marked at a lower price point, but increase risk of cracking and corrosion.
Coolant reservoir tanks (or overflow tanks) can be bought at auto repair shops and auto body shops, like AutoZone, NAPA Auto Parts, Advance Auto Parts, and Dorman. Another solution is purchasing your coolant system from online retailers, including Amazon or RockAuto. To determine the best model for your vehicle, review your owner’s manual for additional information.

Where can I get my coolant recovery reservoir replaced?

Coolant reservoir replacement costs can add up—especially when accounting for labor costs. Luckily,
Jerry's GarageGuard™
can manage all your budgeting concerns with the touch of a button. 
Using real hourly rates, Jerry's GarageGuard™ compiles fair price estimates* for coolant reservoir replacements and other car repair options from over 2,500 auto repair shops in the US. Other perks include updates on diagnostic fees, and whether they’re included in your services charges, and real customer reviews.
Review some of our vetted shops below and download the app to compare labor cost quotes in your area.
156 Reviews
Christian Brothers Automotive Westfield
address
14807 Gray Rd, Westfield, IN
Coolant Recovery Reservoir Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$260
(Parts - $140, Labor - $120)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$139.95
123 Reviews
Pep Boys Auto Parts & Service - Everett
address
10113 Evergreen Way, Everett, WA
Coolant Recovery Reservoir Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$277
(Parts - $140, Labor - $137)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$100
127 Reviews
Ingleside Auto & Tire Care
address
34811 N Wilson Rd, Ingleside, IL
Coolant Recovery Reservoir Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$295
(Parts - $140, Labor - $155)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$0
154 Reviews
61 Auto Center
address
1226 Centre Ave, Reading, PA
Coolant Recovery Reservoir Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$190
(Parts - $140, Labor - $50)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$70
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How did we vet these shops?

Jerry experts researched 2500+ real repair shops across the US. We talked to real shop customers, and analyzed both real shop pricing data and thousands of real customer reviews from each shop to verify them individually. We do not partner with the shops listed above, and our analysis is always unbiased.

How will a mechanic replace my coolant reservoir?

If you take your vehicle to a mechanic for a coolant recovery system replacement, they will first turn off your vehicle to engage engine cooling and lower the engine temperature. From there, they will complete the procedure in these steps: 
  1. Inspection: At the start of your appointment, your mechanic will perform a routine inspection of your engine coolant system. Most times, they will be checking the radiator hose (coolant hose) and the expansion tank for any signs of damage.
  2. Remove reservoir cap, relief nozzle and overflow hose: Next, they will remove the reservoir cap and set it aside before disconnecting the relief nozzle and overflow hose from the coolant system.
  3. Remove old coolant recovery reservoir: After the overflow hose is disconnected, your mechanic will remove the coolant recovery tank and install a new one.
  4. Refill coolant and purge air: Since your coolant recovery reservoir absorbs pressure, it’s important to purge any access air before hooking up the wires. Once your mechanic refills your coolant, they will then cleanse the overflow hose of any remaining air. 
  5. Test for operation: Finally, your mechanic will test your new coolant recovery system for functionality, and address any issues if necessary.

What happens if I don’t replace my coolant reservoir?

Since your coolant recovery reservoir helps to cool your vehicle’s engine and is a part of the pressurized system, it’s important to have it replaced right away if you notice any problems. If your coolant reservoir is leaking or has a crack and isn’t replaced quickly, you can cause further internal damage to your engine. 

What is a coolant reservoir?

A coolant recovery reservoir (or overflow tank) collects pressurized coolant from the engine’s cooling system to help determine coolant levels. 
As your vehicle continues to run and burn fuel, it produces high amounts of heat. To manage the heat levels within your vehicle, the coolant recovery reservoir uses a pressurized cap so the excess coolant is able to enter the reservoir only when enough pressure has been applied. 
Once the coolant is expelled through the overflow tank/coolant reservoir, it flows through the pipes around your engine’s cylinders, is converted into gas, and then is transformed back into a liquid to rid your vehicle of excess heat.

When should I replace the coolant recovery reservoir in my car?

Your car’s coolant recovery reservoir should only need to be replaced if there are visible signs of damage. Some symptoms of a broken coolant recovery reservoir are: 
  1. Leaking coolant: If your coolant isn’t holding in your overflow reservoir, it’s more than likely that you are experiencing a coolant leak. A coolant leak can cause your coolant to evaporate slowly and, in more severe cases, can create a mix with your engine oil.
  2. Coolant light is on: A coolant light on your dashboard is a sign that there is something wrong with your vehicle’s cooling system. In this scenario, it’s best to check your coolant system, as there could be an issue with your coolant recovery reservoir or overflow tank.
  3. Engine overheating: The coolant system is designed to bring down your car’s heat levels. When coolant levels drop too low (either from a crack or coolant leak), your engine can quickly overheat, causing steam from under the hood, wheel well or front fender.
  4. Sweet odors: Odors are more often than not a signal that something is wrong internally with your car. If you notice a sweet smell from under your hood, it could be the result of a faulty or defective overflow tank or recovery reservoir, indicating a leak. Left untreated, it can damage your car’s cooling system and engine.

How often should a coolant reservoir be replaced?

A car’s coolant recovery reservoir should be replaced only as required. Oftentimes, your car’s coolant recovery reservoir will last for 8-10 years and will only need to be replaced if it becomes defective. 
Keep in mind: Your car’s coolant, which fills the coolant reservoir, does need to be replaced every 30,000 miles or five years with new coolant. Low coolant levels can become acidic and destroy your engine. 

Can I replace my coolant recovery reservoir myself?

Yes. Each car’s cooling system is located in a different location based on model and make. However, once you locate it, it’s possible to remove and replace it yourself. 
It’s important to note that there is a potential of getting burned when operating on a coolant recovery reservoir, as coolant maintains a high temperature (near boiling). When completing a coolant recovery reservoir replacement, do not touch hot coolant and make sure to work at a cool operating temperature. 

FAQs

No, antifreeze is not the same as coolant. Antifreeze is used in your car’s cooling system to allow your car to start, problem-free, in extreme, sub-zero weather conditions. Engine coolant, on the other hand, is a mixture of antifreeze and water which helps to combat your car’s internal heating temperature.
When an expansion tank (or coolant recovery system) fails in a car, your car’s engine will begin to overheat and break down. Pushed further, this may cause a potential fire to occur, risking your safety and the safety of those around you.
Yes, your car needs an expansion tank. The expansion tank, or coolant recovery reservoir, not only helps with your vehicle’s pressure levels, but also catches overspill of coolant. Without it, your car’s coolant system is unable to operate, resulting in intense heat pressure throughout your vehicle.

Meet Our Experts

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John Davis
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Car Expert
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Certified mechanic with 10+ years of experience
John Davis is an expert automotive writer and former automotive mechanic. John's work spans multiple categories, and he relishes the opportunity to research a new subject and expand his area of expertise and industry knowledge. To date, John has written more than 200 articles covering car maintenance and care, car advice, how-to guides, and more.
Prior to joining Jerry’s editorial team, John worked as a mechanic and freelance writer, creating content for clients including HotCars and SetPower.
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Jessica Barrett
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Car Expert
Jessica Barrett is a senior insurance writer and editor with 10 years of experience in the automotive and travel industries. A specialist in car insurance, car loans, and car ownership, Jessica’s mission is to create comprehensive content that car owners can use to manage their costs and improve their lives. As a managing editor for a team of writers and insurance specialists, Jessica has edited over 2,000 articles for Jerry on topics ranging from local insurance shopping tips to refinancing car loans with bad credit.
Before joining Jerry as a senior content editor in 2021, Jessica created visual content for clients such as Expedia, Vivid Seats, Budget Direct Car Insurance, Angie’s List, and HomeAdvisor. Her content was published in Business Insider, Forbes, Apartment Therapy, and the BBC.
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Kathleen Flear
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Car Expert
Kathleen Flear is an expert insurance writer and editor who heads up Jerry’s editorial team as director of content. Kathleen empowers drivers to make smart car ownership decisions through  best-in-class articles on insurance, loans, and maintenance. Prior to joining Jerry in 2021, Kathleen served as managing editor for a team of SEO content marketing professionals at Article-Writing.co and worked as a freelance writer and editor for a range of digital publications, including Chicago Literati magazine and Golden Words. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English language and literature from Queen’s University, and a master’s degree in creative writing and fiction from Sierra Nevada University.
*The price information provided on our car repair webpages is intended for general informational purposes only. Actual prices for car repair services may vary based on various factors, including but not limited to the make and model of your vehicle, the extent of repair required, and the prevailing market conditions. All prices for real repair shops are estimations based on our research only. Therefore, the prices listed on our webpages should not be considered as final quotes or binding offers.