Mechanic Tips

How to Spot and Fix a Coolant Leak

As a vehicle owner, you should take good care of what you drive. While maintaining your car, you must deal with numerous fluid leaks. Coolant leaks hold a prominent place out of them. Let’s learn more about how you can figure out a coolant leak and how to proceed with fixing it.

The Important Role Played by Coolant 

Coolant plays an important role in the overall functionality of your car. When the engine is running, the overall temperature of it can be around 200 to 220 degrees Fahrenheit. Such extreme temperatures can bring damage to the components of your engine with time. That’s where coolant comes into play. 

Your vehicle has a cooling system, which pumps coolant through the engine. Coolant is capable of picking up heat and cooling down your engine. But when there is a coolant leak, you will not have enough liquid within the engine to cool it off. As a result, you will be subjecting your vehicle engine and its components to damage. This is where you need to go ahead with radiator repair. It is one of the most common car repairs that vehicle owners face. 

When you face engine overheating or any other similar issue, make sure to take a look at the coolant levels. You should also confirm if there is a coolant leak in your vehicle. 

How Does a Coolant Leak Happen? 

There are many different reasons why a coolant leak would happen. Let’s deep dive and explore those reasons in detail.

The head gasket is blown 

The head gasket of your vehicle is responsible for sealing the space between the engine block and the cylinder head. When there is a failure in the head gasket, engine oil will mix along with coolant. On top of that, you will notice a coolant leak at the bottom of your engine. This is where coolant will drip onto your group. A head gasket leakage can be hazardous for your vehicle. You need to fix it immediately and go for a coolant system flush.

There is damage in the heater core 

The heater core of your vehicle is responsible for dispersing heat into the passenger cabin of your vehicle. You will not be able to see it with your eyes. However, it can also lead to coolant leaks. That’s where coolant fluid will accumulate within the plastic housing of your heater core. You can detect heater core leaks through a cooling system pressure test. You may conduct similar tests for antifreeze leak detection and water pump failure as well.

There is damage to the hose 

When your engine is running, coolant moves across multiple hose tubes. When there is a hole or a crack in any of these hose tubes, you will have to deal with a coolant leak. This will eventually lead you to a thermostat failure. Hence, you should immediately go ahead with a coolant hose replacement. 

These hoses are connected to multiple components of your engine as well. Few of them would come with hose clamps. All these connecting points are susceptible to leaks as well. This is where you should start using a leak sealant for radiators. 

Your radiator is broken 

If you drive a modern car, it will have an anti-corrosive agent in the coolant. It is responsible for protecting the radiator against damage. However, some of the radiators can still get holes. When there is a hole in the radiator, you will notice a drop in engine coolant levels. You should also inspect the radiator cap seal as it can also result in coolant leaks.

How to find a coolant leak? 

If you notice the temperature gauge rising, focus on cooling system maintenance immediately. Upon verifying coolant leak symptoms, you should go ahead with diagnosing coolant leak. 

In most instances, it is quite easy to notice a coolant leak. That’s because you will be able to see coloured coolant fluid dripping under the hood of your vehicle. On top of that, you can also discover bubbles near the hose connections or within the coolant reservoir. It is important to be careful when you are checking coolant levels. That’s because a hot engine can blow heated air to your face when you open the radiator. Make sure that you allow the engine to fully cool down before going for a DIY coolant leak repair.

There are a few other symptoms to detect a coolant leak. For example, you will notice an overheating engine. On the other hand, you will be able to notice steam that comes out of the vehicle cool. In a worst-case scenario, your vehicle would stall due to a coolant leak. 

How to fix a coolant leak? 

Before you fix a coolant leak, you need to figure out the exact underlying cause behind the leak. It would determine the overall fix coolant leak cost as well. You may be able to look at the hoses and see if there is a crack. Then you can go ahead and replace the hose. Likewise, you should see if the radiator cap is properly sealed. Make sure that you also keep your eyes on the hose clamps. They can become loose with regular engine movements. 

However, you may not be able to detect the exact cause behind the coolant leak on your own. This is where you should get in touch with an expert mechanic. They are aware of the signs of a radiator leak. With knowledge and the right tools, they can proceed with engine cooling system troubleshooting. They also know how to seal coolant leaks. 

For example, you can’t tell if you are dealing with a damaged head gasket or not. Even if you do the diagnosis, you cannot proceed with fixing it on your own. Instead of repairing the head gasket, you are supposed to replace it. Then you can get the maximum returns out of it in the long run. To address such problems, you must work with a mechanic that you can trust. 

How to avoid coolant leak problems in the future? 

As you can see, dealing with a coolant leak can be a real headache for vehicle owners. If you don’t want to compromise your safety or be stranded in the middle of the road, you should go ahead with preventive coolant system care. 

One of the key benefits of coolant system service is the ability to overcome coolant leaks. That’s because you can spot the possibility of a coolant leak happening ahead of time. Then you can go ahead and address the issue. In other words, there is no need to worry about fixing a coolant leak.

If you are in search of a reliable mechanic in North Brisbane for coolant system care, you may contact SNC Automotive. Make sure to keep these experts as your trusted partner for maintenance and car repairs. Then you will be able to spot coolant leaks ahead of time and proceed with fixing them. They are also aware of the common causes of antifreeze leaks. 

By promptly addressing these issues ahead of time, you can get rid of the stress of fixing a coolant leak. Go ahead and contact SNC Automotive today for your coolant system inspection. 

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