Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: The easiest way to empty the radiator

asked by on

I have an old car with vertical plastic radiator tanks. The hose is connected to the right side and it has a radiator cap on the left. Can I siphon the old coolant through the radiator cap? Also, I am about to clean the car and replace the air and gas filter.

A: Yes, you should replace the air and gas fil...

Yes, you should replace the air and gas filter. You don’t want to change every so many years because they get old and dirty and wear out. You can siphon only a little out through the radiator cap.

If you really want to empty out the radiator, the easiest thing is to just go to a bottom of the car when it is cold then unscrew the bottom radiator hose because that is just rubber and you can pull the bottom radiator hose off and drain it that way.

Now, some cars have drain plug on them and some don’t. But the problem is that no one hardly ever uses those drain plugs. So if it has been sitting there for 8 or 10 years, and you are trying to get that drain plug off, most of them are plastic and sometimes they snap off and break, in which you would have to replace the radiator. So it is much safer to take the bottom radiator hose out and then it will drain it perfectly fine that way. If you need help, you can have a professional mechanic perform a radiator flush for you, fuel filter change, and air filter change for you.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Van stalling after sitting for years

Hi, you can test the fuel pump by turning the ignition on without starting the engine. Listen for a small buzzing sound near the fuel tank. This is the fuel pump priming, or readying itself for the vehicle to be...

Q: Car overheating; fans not working

Hi there. Many components make up your cooling system. If any of these components are not functioning properly it will cause your vehicle to overheat. If your vehicle is not leaking any coolant chances are that your radiator fan(s) are...

Q: Car stalls all of a sudden for no reason while driving

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 2003 Ford Taurus. Your fuel pump in the fuel tank is most likely going bad and will seize up when it gets hot. Have the fuel pressure tested to see if you...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.