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Cooling System and Radiator

Cooling System and Radiator


About Cooling System and Radiator

When your engine is running, it is injecting gasoline into its cylinders, compressing it with a cylinder, igniting it with your spark plugs, and a tiny explosion propels your cylinder in the opposite direction. Your engine is basically a factory creating thousands of tiny explosions in each cylinder every minute. These explosions produce a lot of heat- so much heat that your engine would be destroyed rather quickly if it was not cooled off to maintain an optimal temperature. This is the job of the cooling system!

Your coolant system is made up of a number of components that all play a critical role in maintaining the vehicle's optimal temperature, which includes:

  • The coolant, which is a water/antifreeze mix. This bright mix is what circulates in pipes through your engine to cool it off.
  • The pipes and hoses inside the engine block and throughout the areas under your hood in which the coolant travels
  • A water pump that circulates the coolant
  • A radiator and rad cap to cool off the coolant and control the pressure of the system, respectively
  • A thermostat to read and regulate the temperate of the coolant

A coolant flush should be performed every couple of years, depending on your vehicle.

When you need expert advice, you can count on the team at Integra Tire to get your vehicle up and running in tip-top shape.

Troubling Signs

The most likely signs of a cooling system problem include:

  • Engine overheating consistently - When your engine overheats, you will likely see a symbol on your dash. A vehicle may overheat in its normal operation; however, if it happens more than once, you likely have a problem in your cooling system.
  • Coolant leaks are an obvious sign that trouble is to come, if it hasn't already. These can be identified as bright coloured liquid or stains on the ground where you park or even on other components under your hood.
  • Burnt or dirty coolant¬†is a sign of problems. Your coolant should be bright coloured and translucent. Dark coolant indicates that one or more components in your cooling system is/are failing. You will need a coolant flush as well as an inspection to determine what is causing the change in your coolant appearance.

Watch Out For A Damaged Accessory Belt

One of the most important components powered by your serpentine belt is your water pump. Your water pump is what circulates coolant through the system. If your accessory belt is beginning to make squealing noises, it is possible that it can completely snap off. You will know when this happens as a multitude of warning lights will illuminate on your dashboard and you will lose all power to your steering. Your water pump is unique in that if you operate your vehicle without it, your engine can be irreversibly damaged. This can lead to one of the most costly repairs you will ever make to your vehicle.

Your Coolant Overflow Reservoir

Under the hood of your vehicle, you may recognize a reservoir; this is your coolant overflow reservoir. There are several indicators on its side that show what level your coolant should be. As long as you can visibly see the level of coolant when you remove the cap, your level is okay. You can also use this to view the colour of the liquid and detect burnt/dirty coolant.

How Do we Diagnose?

Similar to many other components in your vehicle, issues with your cooling system will be diagnosed analytically, by scanning your vehicle's on-board diagnostics and physically checking for leaks or damaged components. These diagnostics should be performed by one of the experienced technicians at Integra Tire Cooling System and Radiator.

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