Most modern vehicles have aluminum radiators that are fused into thermos plastic supports. There are very few cars left with the older style copper radiators on the Gold Cost, but whichever type is in your vehicle, you can usually make a repair using epoxy or a high temperature heat melt adhesive that’s specially made for radiator repair. Some simple tips to help you make radiator repairs or install a new one:

Repairing a Radiator

  • The first thing you need to do is find the leak or leaks
  • Make sure the radiator has cooled down before you open it to relieve the pressure and to drain it
  • If you can easily get to the area where the leak is you may be able to work on it while it’s in the vehicle. Otherwise, you will need to remove it so you can repair the leak
  • The area around the leak must be cleaned completely to allow the epoxy or high-melt glue to stick and seal the damaged area. You must remove all traces of dirt, oil and grease
  • Sand the area to allow better bonding and ensure it’s completely dry
  • Mix the epoxy according to the maker’s instructions
  • If using high heat-melt adhesive, follow the included instructions
  • Apply the epoxy to the damaged area making sure you completely cover the whole leak and overlap the surrounding area for added strength
  • It is best to allow overnight curing for lasting results
  • Reinstall the radiator, fill with water and check for leaks by running the engine until it reaches operating temperature, then drain and fill with a quality coolant

To install a New Radiator

It’s important your replacement radiator is the same as the old one and has the same or a larger cooling capacity; you can get replacement radiators on the Gold Coast.

  • Ensure the radiator is cool, then drain the system and correctly dispose of the coolant
  • Remove the fan shroud and any air ducting
  • Disconnect the rubber radiator hoses and any oil cooler lines
  • If it’s connected to the A/C condenser this will need to be removed as well
  • Retain all the connecting nuts and bolts
  • Check and replace any defective rubber hoses, clamps and drive belts
  • Check the radiator cap and thermostat

Replace the new radiator and make sure the anchor points are correctly aligned and all the rubber cushions are in good condition.

  • Connect all the rubber hoses and tighten all clamps
  • Fit the fan shrouds and any ducting properly for correct air flow
  • Fill the radiator with a high quality coolant to protect all the internal surfaces and prevent corrosion
  • Check for leaks
  • Start the engine without the radiator cap and run it until it reaches its normal working temperature to remove any trapped air
  • Turn off the engine and fill the radiator to the top and fit the cap. Fill the reserve tank to the level indicated

Having a properly working and well maintained cooling system in your vehicle is very important to prevent damage to your engine and give you trouble free motoring. Your local mechanic who repairs radiators on the Gold Coast will be able to advise you about whether you can repair your radiator or if you should consider replacing it.