How to Protect Your Radiator without Spending a Lot of Cash
Posted: Jun 04, 2016
Having to pull over on a steamy hot day because your vehicle is overheating is not among the typical driver’s favorite activities. However, it’s understandable that you might let your car get to that point. Car maintenance is often expensive, and between fill-ups and oil changes, you might feel like you’re doing everything you can to keep your car in working order. But if your radiator fails and your car overheats, you’ll be stuck with a huge bill – either to replace or repair the radiator or to buy a new car entirely. It’s much more affordable to engage in preventative radiator maintenance.
Ask a mechanic or an antifreeze and coolant retailer about the affordable, simple steps you can take to make your radiator last longer. A radiator doesn’t require attention as often as your car needs oil changes, but if you do everything you can to increase the lifespan of this integral vehicle part, you can go even longer between radiator flushes. The right product makes a world of difference when it comes to your radiator’s condition. Whether your vehicle is a number of years old and has many miles on it already or your car is brand new, invest a small amount in preventative radiator care now to save yourself from dealing with a huge hassle later.
Get a Guarantee
The best products come with a guarantee. Look for "longlife" or "global lifetime" on the package of your antifreeze and coolant product. The better quality the product, the more protected your radiator will be. Ask a supplier or mechanic for antifreeze and coolant that performs better, even on vehicles that get a lot of miles on them. To get the guarantee, you often have to go through an official supplier, who can document that you only use the appropriate qualifying product. Invest in a better quality product now and spend less on maintenance later.
Flush the Radiator as Necessary
The general recommendation for a full radiator flush is once every five years or every 30,000 miles, whichever occurs more often. This flush allows the radiator to clear itself of any buildup that could impact its operation or could cause parts such as gaskets to fail. If you notice your car is running hot – and the temperature needle is pushing past the halfway point – take it in to a professional sooner in case there’s something wrong with the radiator.
When you invest in a quality antifreeze and coolant, you can actually go longer than recommended between radiator flushes. However, it’s still a good idea to have a mechanic or a qualified retailer check on your radiator as recommended.
Invest in a Good Screen
Depending on the make and model of your vehicle, it may already have a quality screen to protect the radiator from outside debris. Clean this screen regularly or the backup of bugs, dirt, leaves and other debris will prevent air from flowing in and around the radiator, which could cause it to overheat or to work harder to stay cool. If your screen is getting rusted or isn’t as good a quality as you might hope, invest in a new screen to offer your radiator additional protection.
You don’t have to be a car expert to take good care of your radiator. With the right products, you can rely on a radiator guarantee to make sure your vehicle lasts as long as possible. Whether your car is a pickup or a sedan, make radiator maintenance a priority for your vehicle.
About the Author: Dean McLemore is a mechanic and car blogger. He recommends Peak Auto antifreeze and coolant to all of his customers.
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