A functional radiator cools your engine by circulating coolant via its pipes. It is vital to keep it free of rust or blockages and it is even suggested that you flush and refill it every six months. It is easy to learn how to flush a rusted radiator but you will discover that it is a bit messy so be sure to wear old clothing, keep children and pets away from the work area, and stay away from storm drains in the situation of any spills. Whenever working on your radiator, it is vital that the engine is cold. Below you will see step-by-step instructions on how to flush your rusted radiator.
Step 1 – Drain Coolant from System
Park your vehicle on a flat surface, turn on your heater, and then turn off your vehicle. Be sure to set your emergency brake and place your vehicle in park or in gear if it is a manual transmission. Let the engine cool.
Set your bucket under the radiator plug and open it. Let all the coolant to drain into the bucket. If your engine equally has plugs in the engine block, you can remove those too so that you can drain any remaining coolant. Once the flow has stopped, change all the plugs.
Step 2 – Fill the Radiator with Cleaner
To take out the rust and sediment left in your system, you will now have to fill the radiator with radiator cleaner. You will use the mix of radiator cleaner and water as indicated by the product’s manufacturer.
Step 3 – Run the Vehicle with the Heater on
Turn your vehicle on and turn on the heater to a high setting, following the instructions from the product’s manufacturer for the proper length of time to allow it run.
Step 4 – Drain the Cleaner
After you have run the heater for the prescribed amount of time, you once again need to let the engine cool. Once it has cooled, put your empty bucket under the plug again, remove them, and as before, let all of the cleaner to drain out of the system.
Step 5 – Fill the Radiator with Water and Repeat The Process
You have to flush the cleaner fully out of the system again, this time using only water in the radiator. Again, run the vehicle with the heater on, let the car to cool, and drain all the water out of the system once again by the plug.
Step 6 – Refill the Radiator with Coolant/Antifreeze
Always check with the owner’s manual of your vehicle for the proper coolant to water ratio. Being sure all the plugs are in, fill the radiator with the mix, and then fill the reservoir tank to the marked level (usually seen on the side of the tank) with a 50/50 mix of coolant to water.
Step 7 – Run the Engine and the Heater
Start the vehicle and run the engine to what is roughly a normal operating temperature. Run the heater on high again. This will circulate the coolant throughout the system. Ensure to check for leaks. You can now drive your vehicle as normal.
Step 8 – Test the System
After several days of normal use, test the concentration of the coolant with either a hydrometer or test strips and adjust as required.