How Do You Change a Radiator?


Quick Answer

To replace a radiator, drain the radiator, disconnect and cap the hoses, remove the fasteners holding the current radiator in place, and remove the radiator. Set the new radiator into place, reattach the fasteners and hoses, and fill the radiator with coolant.

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Full Answer

Drain the coolant from the current radiator into an approved container, and set the used coolant aside to recycle. Do not store the coolant in open containers, as the liquid is toxic to humans and animals. Place a clean drain pan under the radiator, and remove the lines connected to the transmission oil and engine oil coolers by removing the clamps or screws holding the hoses in place. Take note of the position of the lines to ensure they are reattached to the new radiator properly, and cap the lines to prevent leakage.

If necessary, remove the fan shroud. Remove any fasteners holding the radiator in place, and remove the radiator. Use care when removing the radiator to prevent bending the fan blades or damaging other nearby parts. Set the new radiator in place, and replace the fasteners and hoses. Do not bend the fins on the radiator when placing it in the vehicle, as this damage may cause the radiator to malfunction. Fill the radiator with coolant.

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