Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How Long Does a Radiator Hose Last?

Radiator Hose

Your car’s engine needs coolant in order to operate safely. Automobile engines generate a significant amount of heat while operating, and that heat must be removed and limited to a specific temperature range. If allowed to overheat, the engine could sustain serious damage (up to and included a cracked head).

Coolant flows from the radiator, through and around the engine, and then back to the radiator once more. In the radiator, the coolant releases its heat into the atmosphere, and then starts the journey around the engine once more. It enters and leaves the radiator through two hoses – the upper and lower radiator hoses.

Radiator hoses are subjected to very high temperatures, both from the coolant flowing through them, and from the engine. They’re also subjected to very high pressure. While they’re made to be very durable, they will eventually fail. This is normal, and they’re considered regular maintenance items. In fact, it’s highly recommended that you have your radiator hoses inspected at every oil change to ensure that you can replace them before they fail. If a hose fails while you’re driving, it could be very damaging to the engine (the loss of coolant could very easily overheat the engine).

There is no true set lifespan for a radiator hose. They should last for at least five years, but some will last longer, particularly if you’re vigilant about having your coolant changed and your vehicle maintained properly.

Given the importance of having good radiator hoses, it makes sense to know a few signs to look for that might indicate one of them is about to fail. These include:

  • Cracks or splits in the hose
  • Bulges in the hose
  • A “crunchy” feel when squeezing a hose (do not check this while hot)
  • Bulging or damaged ends (where the hose connects to the radiator)
  • Coolant leaks

If you suspect that one of your radiator hoses is about to fail, don’t wait. A certified mechanic can inspect the radiator, radiator hoses and other coolant system components and make any repairs needed.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

Post a question and get free advice from our certified mechanics.

ASK A QUESTION

More related articles

Insurance Requirements for Car Registration in Kentucky
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet requires that all drivers in Kentucky carry liability automotive insurance, or “financial responsibility” in order to operate a vehicle legally and maintain vehicle...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
How to Get a Louisiana Driver's Permit
s licensing program. The first step in this program is to obtain...


Related questions

Q: Car runs sluggish after fuel pump replaced.

You need to make sure the filter was installed in the right direction of fuel flow. Fuel filters are designed to filter fuel as it flows from the tank to the fuel injectors, the filter can only flow efficiently in...

Q: Truck accelerated past 35 and started sputtering

Hello there, thank you for asking about your car. The first thing that comes to mind is a secondary ignition misfire (spark plugs, wires, etc.). An ignition misfire is most noticeable under load and can be felt as a shudder...

Q: What Does Cold Weather Do to Engine Hoses?

Engine hoses are constructed of rubber compounds (EPDM) that are designed to operate in a wide variety of adverse conditions, including temperature variations. Cold weather (above 0 ℉) has the effect of stiffening the hose material. When combined with the...