A Guide to Checking Your Auto's Engine Coolant and Flushing Your Radiator
Your radiator fluid keeps your car warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It is important to ensure your car always has enough coolant and that it is clean in order for your it to run efficiently.
Engine coolant, or antifreeze, is an essential auto fluid. IT prevents engine freeze-up in winter, reduces engine temperature in summer, and protects cooling systems from rust and corrosion year round.
Mind the following instructions and safety tips when checking the level and fluid of your engine coolant:
- Be certain your car is off and parked on a level surface. Always check this fluid when your engine is cold - NEVER remove the radiator cap when the engine's hot.
- Check to make sure that there is no pressure in the system by squeezing the radiator hose. If it doesn't give, there is too much pressure in the system to unscrew the radiator cap. Wait and try again later.
- Check the coolant reservoir to ensure there is enough antifreeze in your cooling system. Coolant should be within one inch of the top of the radiator and should be free of debris. If you find you need to add more, AAA suggests adding a 50/50 mixture of the correct antifreeze and water. If your engine coolant appears dirty, take your car to a professional to have its radiator flushed.
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