Cooling system/flush and fill

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Updated: 3/28/2003 12:53 pm Published: 3/28/2003 12:53 pm

Cars overheat when their cooling systems go awry. This can happen on the hottest summer days or the coldest winter nights. A common reason for overheating is a clogged radiator. Under normal conditions, the cooling system should be drained and the old coolant replaced every year or two as a preventive measure. It's also a good idea to flush out the system with a good chemical cleaner. There are many ways to flush out the system, but the easiest is with a flushing tee kit, used in conjunction with a common garden hose. When replacing the fluid, use the antifreeze specified for your particular car and dilute it with water to the correct proportion. Look to the owner's manual for your car's specific water-to-antifreeze ratios to achieve optimum engine protection. Also, remember to check for worn or leaky hoses to and from the radiator and overflow reservoir tank. And always be aware of coolant consumption. A constant need to replace coolant means there's a problem. Remember to only remove lids, caps, and hoses to your car's cooling system when the engine is cold. This way you'll be sure to prevent serious burns or other injuries.

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