What Material for Car Hoses Is the Strongest and Most Durable?

The heat within your engine bay is deadly – it turns rubber hoses brittle, causing them to crack and wear. Obviously, you want to use the strongest and most durable material for your engine hoses to prolong life, ensure operation, and avoid the possibility that you’ll be stranded on the side of the road. However, what’s the best material? Actually, there’s no single answer here. Hoses must be specially engineered for the task – you can’t use the same material in all parts of the engine.

Pressure

Hoses are generally used to carry fluid (although some are used for air and vacuum). Fluid flowing through hoses is pressurized. However, not all systems have the same amount of pressure in them. For instance, your radiator is pressurized, but nowhere near the level of your power steering system.

Trying to use the same rubber in your power steering system as is used on your radiator would be a huge mistake – it would blow out in a very short amount of time simply because of the pressure in the system (this is why power steering hoses have crimped clamps/fittings). The same applies to your brake system – these hoses must be engineered to withstand up to 5,000 PSI.

Fluid Types

Another consideration here is how well the material holds up to the fluid in question. Antifreeze is probably the least corrosive of your engine fluids, but even it will eat through your radiator hoses given enough time (hose failure is most common from the inside out). However, many systems use a type of mineral oil, which is highly volatile. Power steering fluid is actually flammable. Brake fluid is extremely corrosive. Both will eat through the wrong type of material and must have hoses specially designed and engineered for that specific type of fluid.

In the end, there is no one single material type that is better than another. Rubber might be the main component in your engine hoses, but it’s not the only one. Each system’s hoses are specially designed to withstand the fluid in question, the amount of pressure in the system, and the heat that they’re exposed to during normal operation.


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

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

Related articles

How Does Cold Weather Affect Car Hoses?
Cold winter temperatures can cause damage to car engine hoses. Inspect car hoses during the cold months to make sure they're in good shape.
Can Cracked Hoses Be Repaired or Do They Need to Be Replaced?
Most Most hoses are made of rubber. Some hoses are reinforced, but rubber remains the primary construction material. Rubber offers the right mix of capabilities – it can easily expand and contract with temperature fluctuations, it’s relatively light, and it’s...
How Long Does a Power Steering Input Shaft Seal Last?
To To maneuver your car, the steering wheel connects to a steering shaft, which runs through the dash and then down to the gearbox where it also joins the power steering system. Because the power steering system in most cars...

Related questions

How do you remove the electrical connector from the power steering pressure sensor on a 2007 AWD Nissan Murano.

You first have to remove the rubber boot back and then the release is on the sides and all you do is squeeze the sides and it should come loose for the sensor.

Car starts, but doesn't shift into gear, and power steering not working.

Sometimes with newer vehicles, replacing the battery can cause issues. Some systems may need to be reset, or relearned in order to function properly. It's not that you did anything wrong necessarily, but I would suggest you ask for help...

Steering wheel hard to turn in 2000 Pontiac Bonneville

If your steering wheel is difficult to turn and causing your vehicle to go in a different direction than intended, you may have an issue with your rack and pinion. The rack and pinion is what is acted upon by the...

How can we help?

Our service team is available 7 days a week, Monday - Friday from 6 AM to 5 PM PST, Saturday - Sunday 7 AM - 4 PM PST.

1 (855) 347-2779 · hi@yourmechanic.com