Avondale Radiator Repair – Triangle Radiator – 773-539-5858 – Serving Chicago’s Neighborhood’s Since 1966
The first thing that comes to mind for most motorists when it comes to signs of radiator troubles is probably the image of steam clouds flowing out from under the hood as a vehicle overheats. However, there are quite a few other common problems besides overheating that indicate your vehicle is due for Avondale Radiator Repair. While the radiator is usually the most well-known component of a vehicle’s cooling system, it’s not always the main culprit when something malfunctions. Here are a few of the most common problems that can develop with a vehicle’s cooling system.
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A faulty thermostat. It’s actually the thermostat that is frequently the most common cause of vehicle overheating, and it’s not actually a part of the actual radiator. Instead, a thermostat is a type of valve that regulates the amount of coolant fluid that is permitted to flow in and out of the radiator. This serves to keep the engine at an optimal running temperature. In the event that a thermostat starts to malfunction, it causes the vehicle to overheat quite rapidly.
Leaking radiator hoses. Faulty radiator hoses are the most common source of a leak happening within a vehicle’s cooling system. The hoses connect the radiator to the vehicle’s engine and permit coolant fluid to circulate between the two components. Radiator hoses are categorized as a “wear component,” meaning that it’s expected they will wear out and need to be replaced from time to time.
Air within the cooling system. Air can get trapped inside a vehicle’s cooling system, restricting the flow of coolant and also reducing its efficiency. If your car or truck appears to be “running hot,” you might want to consider an appointment for Avondale Radiator Repair so our service techs can remove possible air bubbles from the cooling system if that is what’s causing the problem.
A faulty water pump. A vehicle’s cooling system utilizes a pump in order to circulate coolant through the engine to regulate temperature. Water flows through the radiator, into the engine and then is directed back inside the radiator. If the pump malfunctions, water stops circulating correctly and the vehicle will overheat. A faulty water pump is among the most common causes of the need for Avondale Radiator Repair.
Cooling system obstructions. Blockages can form within the engine or in the radiator, making it hard for coolant to circulate properly. Obstructions also occur if something is restricting airflow through the radiator. That makes it difficult for the radiator to transfer heat into the air. This can be the result of anything from damaged fins to body damage due to an accident.
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A faulty radiator fan. Contemporary cars use electric fans to draw enough air through the radiator so the car stays cool at idle or low speeds. If your car seems to operate fine on the interstate but them gets too hot when idling or in slower moving traffic, it could stem from a problem with its radiator fan.
Leaking radiator. Leaks occurring within the radiator unit are sometimes more difficult to locate and fix than leaking radiator hoses. Check for bubbles or steam coming out of the radiator to identify the location of a leak. Radiators can in some cases be patched up, but in other cases may call for replacement. Most common types of leaks are fairly easy to assess simply because they’re difficult to miss. A leak of most any size will drip or allow coolant to actually spray out. The resulting – and usually fast – loss of fluid will in most cases lead to the engine overheating. Once that happens it can cause more damages for the engine if the leak isn’t located and resolved promptly. There are some additives that can seal up minor leaks, but they are usually just a temporary solution. Still, some automotive care experts will suggest using a sealant for preventative purposes. Some types of sealants, though, can increase the chance that deposits will collect within the cooling system and eventually cause some radiator clogging. Leaks due to internal corrosion can form just about anywhere in a radiator. The areas where this is most likely to occur are the seams and the points where the tubes join to the headers. The fundamental cause is usually lack of consistent maintenance for the cooling system, or it could be because of insufficient ground connections among the engine, the charging system and the vehicle’s body.
Avondale Radiator Repair – How Your Vehicle’s Radiator Works
The main function of the radiator is to relieve the heat produced by a vehicle’s engine as it consumes fuel. It serves as a key component of the overall cooling system. As coolant circulates through the radiator, it makes its way through a few basic processes:
Intake. The engine’s water pump directs a flow of coolant that moves in and out of the radiator.
The amount of the fluid that’s moving is regulated by the thermostat, which opens and closes depending on the engine’s temperature. After the coolant has moved past the thermostat, it goes into the radiator through a hose. There are two standard kinds of radiators: downflow and crossflow. With a downflow radiator, the coolant goes into an upper tank and then downward across the main body of the radiator. With a crossflow radiator the coolant enters into a side tank – typically located on the driver’s side of the vehicle – and flows toward the radiator’s other side.
Cooling. After coolant goes into the first tank, it moves into very small passages that are connected both tanks. These passages are linked to rows of metal fins, which are what gives radiators their distinctive appearance. The fins are typically manufactured from copper or aluminum. These two kinds of metal are utilized mainly because they’re efficient at heat conduction. As coolant circulates through the tiny tubes, the extra heat is directed into the metal fins. Air is pushed through the spaces between the fins either by the forward motion of the car or by the engine’s fan so the heat gets dispersed from the engine in the form of heated air. It’s this remarkably efficient process that keeps heat from accumulating inside your engine and overheating.
Outlet. After the engine coolant has circulated through the cooling passages it collects in another tank located on the radiator’s other side where the coolant is stored until it’s moved into the outlet hose. The radiator’s outlet hose is what connects the main radiator unit to the water pump, serving to supply the coolant to the engine as it is needed. The outlet hose is subject to a suctioning from the water pump, so it’s usually supported by a spring so it doesn’t collapse and block the coolant flow.
These are the three main functions of your vehicle’s radiator. It’s not difficult to realize just how essential your radiator is to the reliable operation of your vehicle’s engine, and why it’s so important to trust your Avondale Radiator Repair needs to the experts at Triangle Radiator!
If you’re in the Avondale neighborhood and need expert repairs for your car’s radiator, just call Triangle Radiator today at 773-539-5858. We also serve neighborhoods throughout the 60618, 60641 and 60647 zip codes!