J&B Auto Tool News
The cooling system is arguably one of the most important systems in a car. Consisting of liquid coolant (typically a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze), a radiator, expansion tank, fan and connecting hoses, it's responsible for taking heat away from the engine. If the system runs out of coolant or becomes low on coolant, however, it won't be able to perform this job. So, why does cooling systems leak exactly?
One common cause of coolant leaks is a cracked radiator. Typically found in the front of the engine bay, the radiator holds the coolant while releasing its heat through metal fins. If there's a crack in your radiator, coolant will escape. This is especially true when the engine reaches operational temperature, as the increased pressure can exploit otherwise small hairline cracks.
Faulty Radiator Cap
Another common cause of coolant leaks is a faulty radiator cap. Radiator caps are designed to hold a certain amount of pressure, with the excess pressure being released to the expansion reservoir. If the cap fails to hold pressure, coolant may escape through the top of the radiator or boil over when it reaches high temperatures.
Loose or Damaged Hose
Of course, a loose or damaged coolant hose may also cause coolant to leak. In most cars, there's a top hose running from the radiator to the engine as well as a bottom hose running from the engine to the radiator. If either of these hoses break or are otherwise compromised, coolant may leak.
Blown Head Gasket
Let's hope this isn't the case for your car, but a blown head gasket can cause coolant to leak. When the coolant passage is broken, the head gasket may either push exhaust gases into the cooling system or suck coolant into the cylinder and out the exhaust. In either of these cases, coolant will be lost; thus, increasing the chance of an overheated engine.
Radiator to Overflow Reservoir Line
Finally, if the line running from your car's radiator to overflow reservoir is compromised, coolant may "get stuck" in the reservoir. As your engine warms, coolant expands -- and this expanded coolant is pushed into the reservoir. When your engine cools, however, the coolant contracts, which should create a vacuum effect in your radiator to pull the coolant from the reservoir. If the line connecting these two components is compromised -- or the radiator cap's vacuum valve is broken -- your radiator may not fill after the engine has cooled.
Cars, trucks and other automobiles powered by combustion engines typically contain a fuel filter. Consisting of a cartridge with a paper material, it's designed to catch dust, dirt, rust and other debris, preventing impurities such as these from reaching the engine.It's not uncommon for steel gas tanks to develop rust. When the gas tank is [...]
The cooling system is one of the most important systems in modern-day automobiles. Vehicle engines are designed to work best at a temperature range of 185 degrees to 205 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature exceeds this limit, it can cause the engine block to swell, gaskets to break and electrical components to fail. Therefore, automobiles [...]
It's difficult -- and unsafe -- to drive when your car windows are fogged up. This generally happens when the temperature of your windows is cooler than the dew point within your car's cabin. As a result, moisture vapor in the air (humidity) settles on the windows, causing them to fog up. Basically, there's too [...]
Ensuring you have the right tire size is important, both for your own safety as well as the safety of your vehicle. If you the two tires on your vehicle's drive axle are different sizes, it will increase tread wear, lower handling and even increase the risk of skidding when braking. So, how do you [...]
The average age of cars on U.S. roads is 11 years, according to Consumer Reports. If you want to keep your car running for more than a decade, though, you'll need to maintain it. With that said, there's a lot of myths and misconceptions surrounding the topic of automotive maintenance, some of which we're going [...]
Did the check engine light (CEL) recent turn on in your car? Modern-day automobiles are designed with a central computer known as an electronic control unit (ECU). When the ECU detects a problem -- failing catalytic converter, loose gap cap, overheating engine, failing sensor, etc. -- it may trigger the CEL, indicating that you need [...]
Rust poses a serious threat to the structural integrity of automobiles. When a car begins to rust, it will eat away at the frame and other metal parts. This has led many drivers to invest in rustproofing solutions. So, should you rustproof your car, or is it just a waste of money?How Rust OccursGoing back [...]
Unless you've experienced it first hand, perhaps you're unfamiliar with automotive "limp mode." In fact, most drivers have never even heard of this before. It's not until it happens to your car when you begin to research it. So, what exactly is limp mode?Limp Mode: The BasicsLimp mode is an unofficial term used to describe [...]
Petrol-powered combustion engines are typically classified as either interference or non-interference. While there are dozens of different types of engines, nearly call can be broken down into one of these two categories. As a driver, it's important to understand the difference between interference and non-interference engines, as this could increase the need for certain maintenance.Opening [...]