What is a radiator hose replacement?
In this process, a mechanic will look over your entire coolant system for any leaks. The leaking hose will then be removed, the radiator filled with the appropriate amount of coolant, and the system bled (to help remove any contaminants or old coolant). The mechanic will then add a new hose and coolant and check the system for any leaks.
Repairing or replacing a leaking radiator hose is incredibly important because it prevents your engine from overheating. The cooling system has multiple hoses; one connects the engine and the radiator and the other connects the radiator and the water pump. Both of these are vital components to circulating coolant to your car’s engine.
If a hose leaks, it won’t circulate coolant to your engine, which will cause your engine to overheat. An overheating engine can sustain serious damage quickly. Because of the high temperatures and the fact the hoses are made of rubber, it is common they deteriorate over time and need to be replaced frequently.
How to replace a radiator hose
When you take your car to a mechanic, they will typically complete the following steps to replace your radiator hose:
- Use pressure to check for leaks in the coolant system
- Remove and replace the leaking hose
- Use an appropriate mix of 50/50 coolant in the radiator
- Bleed the coolant system
- Check again for any leaks
It is important to replace a blown or leaking hose, but you can use duct tape as a temporary quick-fix solution while you’re driving to the mechanic.
When do I need to replace my radiator hose?
You should have your radiator hose replaced every five years or 40,000 miles as part of your car’s regular maintenance schedule. That said, there are a couple of symptoms to look out for in your:
- If you see red, yellow, or green liquid leaking beneath your car (this is coolant)
- Your car’s AC or heater fail to work properly
- If you see steam coming out of your car’s engine (you should always pull over if you see steam from the hood of your car)
- If you see cracks or bulges in the radiator hoses
You should take your car to a mechanic ASAP if you notice any of the identifiers of a leaky coolant system above. If you don’t, you risk significant engine damage.
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