Exception in rendering!

Message: window is not defined

ReferenceError: window is not defined
    at new c (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:136:3912)
    at m.mountComponent (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:47:15602)
    at /tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:49:31860
    at a.r.perform (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:47:12503)
    at Object.a [as renderToString] (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:49:31821)
    at r (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:50:21164)
    at Object.S.ReactOnRails.serverRenderReactComponent (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:32:6073)
    at eval (eval at <anonymous> (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:173:8), <anonymous>:10:23)
    at eval (eval at <anonymous> (/tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:173:8), <anonymous>:17:3)
    at /tmp/execjs20161208-55793-19cegrnjs:173:8

How Long Does a Radiator Last?

Radiator

Your car’s coolant system is vital to ensure that the engine stays within operating temperature limits and does not overheat. It’s comprised of several different components. The radiator is the largest, but there are others, including the upper and lower radiator hoses, the coolant reservoir, the water pump, the thermostat and more.

The radiator’s job is to help remove heat from coolant after it has cycled through the engine. Heated coolant flows through the radiator, and moving air wicks away the heat before the coolant is sent back into the engine to complete the cycle again. Without a working radiator, your engine would quickly overheat, possibly causing catastrophic damage.

Your car’s radiator does have a limited lifespan, but there’s no set number of years. A lot will hinge on how well you maintain the coolant system. If you have your coolant drained and filled regularly, and never run straight water in the radiator, it should last for a long time (for at least a decade). Saying that, your radiator can be damaged in a number of ways.

If too many fins are flattened or folded, it won’t be able to properly do its job. It can also be damaged by rust (if you use plain water rather than a coolant/water mixture), and it can be gummed up by sludge from an improperly maintained coolant system.

Your radiator is working any time the engine is running. This is because coolant constantly cycles through to prevent overheating. It’s still technically on the job even when the engine is off, too, as it holds a significant amount of the coolant in the engine (in conjunction with the reservoir).

If your radiator fails, you’re in danger of overheating the engine. Knowing the signs of a failing radiator can help prevent this from being a disaster. These include the following:

  • Coolant leaking on the ground under the radiator (this could also indicate a leak at a hose, the drain cock or other locations)
  • Damaged fins on the radiator
  • Temperature gauge rises quickly past normal operating temperature (this can also indicate low coolant, air in the lines and other problems)
  • Rust in the coolant
  • Cracks in the plastic (many modern radiators are plastic, rather than metal)

If you suspect your radiator is failing, a certified mechanic can help inspect the radiator, and replace it if necessary.

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

P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
How to Buy Fuel Treatments
Adding a fuel additive to your gas tank when you fill up is one way to clean vital engine parts of deposits, improve the performance of your engine,...
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...


Related questions

Q: Radiator replacement on the car

You should have no problem getting an aftermarket radiator for the vehicle. The radiator from the dealer or aftermarket is okay to use. The aftermarket one may save you money. I cannot state the quality for any of them since...

Q: Tube from radiator to engine broke off

The radiator is connected to the engine via a rubber hose. The most common issue is the hose being old and rotted. If this happens it can burst or develop a slit that can look like a break. The repair...

Q: Overheating for no apparent reason suddenly and after a longer drive

Hi there. It sounds like you may have a blown head gasket. This is typically the only thing that will allow the engine to overheat that fast. When the gaskets begin to leak, it will allow combustion pressure to enter...