Cooling system service and repair
Make sure your keeping your cool with a free cooling system inspection. Your car's cooling system works hard in the summer, and it does not get a vacation in the winter. We can visually inspect your radiator for leaks, perform a pressure test and test the coolant. Flushing the system and installing new coolant can restore your vehicles cooling system effectiveness. Stop by today or schedule an appointment online for a coolant system inspection
What is the cooling system?
The cooling system pumps a coolant and water mix through the engine, usually Propylene glycol, water and rust inhibitor. This mixture varies by manufacturer and often times other additives are included to help stop reactions with different types of metal in the system like aluminum and cast iron. The job of the coolant is to absorb the heat and carry it to the radiator so it can be dissipated. The water pump won’t pump foam, so antifoaming agents are also added to the coolant. The coolant can only do it’s job if it isn’t freezing or boiling so the ethylene glycol changes the boiling point and freezing point of the water. The coolant also travels through the heater core. The heater core’s job is to heat the air inside the car to a comfortable temperature. It does this by running coolant through small tubes and blowing air over the tubes to warm the air. To keep the engine at it’s optimal operating temperature the amount of coolant circulated through the radiator is controlled by the thermostat. A good radiator cap is essential to keep the system functioning properly. For every pound of pressure you put the coolant under it will raise the boiling point by about 2 degrees. A good radiator cap that can hold 15 pounds of pressure will increase the boiling point of water to 242 degrees. Add in a 50 percent coolant ratio and now you have a boiling point over 260 degrees. The water pump cannot pump steam so it is very important that the coolant stays in liquid form. If the coolant turns to steam because of a bad radiator cap or weak coolant solution the car may overheat at 230 degrees. This leaves little room for idling at a stop light or driving in stop and go traffic.
Why flush the cooling system?
Coolant, like all the other fluids used by your vehicle, has a tendency to break down over time. This is why you need to replace your coolant mixture once in a while. When the coolant breaks down, more stress is placed on your radiator and your engine begins to run hotter than normal. Gunk and mineral deposits also build up under your vehicle’s hood, effectively reducing your vehicle’s overall performance. Prolonged use of bad coolant can also result to radiator damage, requiring you to replace the radiator or heater core sooner than expected. By draining the coolant and flushing out the system, we can remove the gunk that builds up in the system. This will increase the system effectiveness and also make sure that the coolant has the right amount of additives
How often should I flush the system?
Each manufacturer has their own maintenance schedule. The best source for this information is your owner’s manual. We can also look up the maintenance interval for you, just ask us and we will. It used to be that it was a good idea to replace the coolant every two years, and more frequently in harsh climates. We recommend that you should have a coolant flush every three years. The coolant level should be inspected frequently. We do that every time you come in for a red service. You should also have the coolant tested for effectiveness every year. This will make sure you don’t face any unexpected repairs.
"We have had nothing but great experiences with Clutch Doctors. They are honest, fair, and genuinely helpful. Clutch Doctors has the best mechanics in Beaverton."
- Sarah Z., Portland, OR