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Radiator and Cooling System Repair

In the heat of San Antonio, Texas, a properly functioning radiator and cooling system are essential for keeping your vehicle running smoothly. Timberwood Lube specializes in expert radiator and cooling system repair services to ensure your engine stays cool, even on the hottest days. Discover why our services are vital for San Antonio drivers and how we can help you avoid overheating issues on the road.

Vehicle Radiator and Cooling System

What Radiator Issues Lead to Engine Repairs?

Your radiator takes a lot of literal heat. The average radiator lasts between five and ten years. Unfortunately, failure is imminent, and letting a broken cooling system go can lead to engine repairs, fast.

Here’s a closer look at some ways an engine can become damaged if the cooling system fails:

Overheating

Without proper cooling, your engine can rapidly overheat. Excessive heat can cause the cylinder heads to warp, pistons to expand, and engine components like valves and bearings to fail.

While this type of damage seems like it would be gradual, permanent engine damage from overheating can occur between 30 and 60 seconds.

Coolant Leakage

A leak in the cooling system will cause coolant to escape. This reduces the amount available to cool the engine, leading to overheating issues. It can also cause corrosion damage over time as coolant contaminates engine oil and components.

Lubrication Issues

Overheating thickens or breaks down engine oil. This reduces vital lubrication for components like piston rings, bearings, and valve trains. Lack of lubrication increases friction and wear, leading to massive engine repairs and premature engine replacement.

Deposits and Sludge

Excessive heat bakes coolant and oil deposits onto engine surfaces. These deposits restrict airflow and act as insulation, reducing the engine’s ability to expel heat.

Signs of a Failing Cooling System

While your coolant system is vital for regulating engine temperature, things can still get a little too hot, leading to failure and needing a mechanic’s attention.

One of the most obvious signs of a failing cooling system is the engine overheating. As coolant levels get low or components like the water pump or radiator deteriorate, the engine will have difficulty maintaining proper operating temperature. The engine temperature gauge reading high is a clear indicator of overheating.

Another sign is the check engine light coming on. Many engines have coolant temperature sensors that will trigger error codes if temperatures exceed expected parameters.

Coolant leaks are also a major indicator of problems. Drips of coolant under the vehicle likely mean a hose, gasket, or other component has cracked or broken.

Low coolant levels lead to overheating, so leaks should never be ignored. Finally, if you notice white exhaust fumes, this signals a head gasket leak, allowing coolant to enter the combustion chambers.

Any of these warning signs mean the coolant system needs diagnostic testing and repairs.

The bottom line is an engine needs efficient cooling to maintain proper operating temperatures. When the cooling system cannot properly regulate engine heat, the results can range from decreased performance to complete breakdown. Regular maintenance and prompt repair of cooling systems are essential to engine health.

If your engine is experiencing any of these cooling system-related issues, the team at Timberwood Lube can help. 

How Does Your Radiator Cool your Car?

A radiator is vital to an internal combustion engine’s cooling system. Its purpose is to dissipate the heat generated by the engine during operation. The radiator is usually made of thin metal fins through which coolant fluid passes.

As hot coolant from the engine enters the radiator, the fins absorb the heat and dissipate it into the air flowing through them. This causes the coolant to lose heat and cool down before circulating back to the engine block.

The radiator is a heat exchanger that transfers thermal energy from hot coolant to the cooler air outside of the engine. This temperature drop in the coolant then allows it to absorb more heat when it flows back through the hot engine.

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