Q: What Does Cold Weather Do to Engine Hoses?

asked by on

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 increased range of temperature change between cold and hot (thermal shock), the hoses can leak at the mechanical connections.

Extreme cold (below -25 ℉), however, can have a disastrous effect on hoses. Hoses can experience accelerated wear due to excessive thermal shock.

There is a more important question to consider, however. What does cold weather do to engines? It’s really not the engine you have to worry about, but the coolant that flows through the engine and the hoses that are affected by cold weather.

If a vehicle is left out in extreme, bitter cold, the coolant can freeze inside the engine block and radiator. This will cause the engine block to crack. When the cooling system thaws out and the engine can be started, cooling system leaks appear. This can lead to the engine overheating and eventual engine failure. A cracked block already is an engine failure. Engine replacement is a must at this point. This is why vehicles that are used in extremely cold climates are either stored inside buildings, have engine heaters installed in them, or never have their engines shut off.

If you live in or travel through areas of extreme cold and you have questions about the safety or reliability of your vehicle, we’ll be out to help you keep your vehicle protected. We can help prepare your car for the elements with cooling system flushes, radiator hose replacements, and heater hose replacements.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. What Does Cold Weather Do to Engine Hoses?

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: Is it safe to switch from 5/30 weight formula Shell oil to a synthetic oil to store for the winter?

Hi, thanks for writing in. You should not need to change the oil from the 5/30 you have in order to store the car for the winter. I would recommend filling the car up with fuel and having the tire...

Q: Difference between 4WD, AWD and FWD? Is AWD or 4WD necessary in SUVs? or will FWD do OK with winter tires?

Hello, the difference between four wheel drive, all-wheel drive, and front wheel drive is the difference in how your vehicle transfers energy to power the vehicle. Four wheel drive is a vehicle that uses two wheels to propel the vehicle...

Q: Overheating

Hello, thank you for writing in. You have done everything reasonably possible to resolve the problem. With that being said, if the new radiator did not come with a new radiator cap, you will want to start there. If that...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
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...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.