Coolant leaks, obvious cracks, and overheating engines are all signs of a radiator that may be ready for replacement. While many people opt to have a mechanic perform this operation, it is simple enough that others elect to undertake it themselves. If you would like to improve your home mechanic skills, read on. This article will teach you how to replace the radiator in your car.
Your radiator is located beneath the hood toward the front of your car. If you're not sure where it is, simply look for a component whose sides are composed of horizontal metal slats. Once you've identified the radiator, it's time for the removal process to get underway. Before you can remove the radiator itself, however, you will first need to remove the fan shroud connected to it.
You should find that the fan shroud is connected to the radiator by a series of bolts on the top and/or back of the shroud. Carefully remove these and then gently lift away the shroud. If you find that it doesn't want to come loose, chances are you've overlooked one of the bolts.
Now that you've got the fan shroud out of the way, the next step is to flush the coolant from the radiator. To do this, you will need to access the petcock located beneath the car on the underside of the radiator. The petcock is a simple type of valve; when pulled downward, it will open the drainage line, thus allowing the radiator fluid to flow out into a drainage pan.
Before attempting to drain your radiator, it's important to be aware of a couple of key things. First of all, you'll want to have a drainage pan capable of holding roughly two gallons of liquid. It's best if this pan has a lid, since you'll have to take it to your local mechanic in order to have it disposed of properly. Second, be sure to wear gloves when opening up the petcock, as you don't want to get the toxic coolant all over your hands.
Disconnect Hoses And Remove Wiring
Finally you're ready to get the radiator out of there. First, unbolt it at its mounting points. These will be located either on the side of the radiator, the bottom, or both. A ratchet extension will likely make this task much easier for you. With the bolts removed, now you can move on the disconnecting the hoses.
A radiator has two main hoses, the upper and the lower. These are attached by means of clamps. To disconnect the hoses, you will simply need to undo and remove the clamp. Do the same for the smaller overflow hose coming out of the top of the radiator, as well as any other hoses.
Now, all that's left is to remove the wiring harnesses attached to the radiator. These harnesses are used to connect a variety of different sensors to your radiator. Be gentle when pulling them out of their sockets, as the plastic harnesses may have become brittle from time and heat. Congratulations, you did it! Now all that's left is to reverse the process with your new radiator.
For more information, contact Hardys Auto Parts LLC or a similar company.