How To Flush A Radiator [Easy way]

The easy way to flush a radiator is described in detail in this post.

Flushing the radiator of the stove is required after about 100 thousand kilometers. If the heater began to warm poorly.

You can flush the radiator, both when dismantling it from the seat, or without dismantling it. For self-washing, citric acid, whey, caustic soda, boric, or phosphoric acid are usually used, and special tools are used at service stations.

How to understand that the radiator of the stove is clogged

There can be many reasons why the stove heats poorly … In particular, this is due to its clogged radiator from the inside by decomposition products of the coolant. To check its cleanliness, it is necessary to check the temperature of the inlet and outlet pipes going to the radiator of the stove on a warm engine. So, if one of them is hot and the other cold. Then the radiator of the stove is clogged. The fact that they are both hot but the stove still blows cold air will also indicate a blockage in the heater radiator.

Why stove radiators clog

The reason for the clogged radiator of the stove lies in the coolant. Firstly, in any antifreeze over time, the spent additives precipitate, and secondly. When the liquid is heated, scale gradually appears, and it can also cause corrosion of the surfaces of all elements of the engine cooling system.

As a result, all that garbage accumulates in the thin tubes of the honeycomb of the stove radiator. And if the antifreeze or antifreeze is of good quality, then these processes occur very slowly, the liquid is of poor quality, then it’s not like a radiator, you can kill an engine in a couple of years.

How to rinse the radiator of the stove of the machine

The radiator of the stove can be washed both with the dismantling and without removing it.

In the latter case, usually cleaning agents are simply poured into the radiator.

Or they are driven away by an additional pump by connecting to the nozzles, and then washed with water.

Flushing the radiator of the stove without removing

It is easier to rinse the radiator of the stove without removing it. To do this, use one of three methods – using two plastic bottles, using a suspended large plastic bottle, or using an external water pump. The described methods allow you to create pressure in the radiator, under which the cleaning fluid will circulate inside it.

Rinsing with plastic bottles

The method of washing with plastic bottles allows you to rinse the radiator of the stove, in two ways – in the removed state and directly in place from the sub-hood.

For work, the following means are necessary: ​​two one and a half liter plastic bottles, a cleaning agent for the radiator, and four clamps. The essence of the method is the washing liquid.

Poured half into the radiator and one bottle, is alternately driven from one bottle to another by pressing on the bottles with your hands or feet.

Thus, the cleaning of its inner cavity is performed. The method is very simple and effective. When the liquid is very dirty – it must be replaced with a clean one.

Another method is to cut off the bottom of a large plastic bottle (five to six liters), thus creating a watering can from it. And hang it higher, thus creating pressure for the fluid flowing from it. Connect one hose to the neck and the first radiator pipe, and the second hose to the other radiator pipe and into a bucket on the floor. For tightness, it is advisable to secure the hose to the radiator pipes with clamps.

When flowing from a height, a cleaning fluid under pressure will clean the internal cavity of the radiator. Continue to work until the new fluid is clean enough.

Flushing the radiator with a car pump

One of the most effective methods is to manufacture a device based on an external liquid pump, which ensures a constant circulation of detergent inside the radiator of the stove under pressure.

To make the device you will need an automobile pump with an electric drive, three hoses that correspond in diameter to the radiator and pump leads, a battery charger, an immersion boiler (which needs to be heated up with liquid), a solution container, a filter element (synthetic sock or stocking), cleaning composition, stand for a container with a solution at the pump level.

Connect hoses to the pump (inlet/outlet), radiator (inlet/outlet nozzles), and the basin in which the warm cleaning solution is located. Attach a filter sock to the end of the outlet hose. Start the pump, from the battery terminals, so that it “chases” the fluid in a circle. And do not forget to connect the charger to the battery, because it is under a lot of loads.

Thus, a loopback system will be obtained, through which the cleaner will circulate through the radiator.

It is recommended to “drive” the liquid an hour in one direction and an hour in the other direction. Then replace the fluid with a clean one and repeat the procedure again. In the end, rinse the radiator with boiled or distilled water for half an hour in each direction.

All the described methods can be used if the radiator of the stove is removed from the seat. This will not only clean it under pressure but simply by pouring special cleaning agents into it. In addition, an additional advantage of dismantling is that the car owner will have the opportunity to remove debris, as well as inspect it for damage and foci of corrosion.

car radiator, car engine

How to rinse the radiator of the car stove

On modern cars, stove radiators are made of two main materials – copper and aluminum.

For aluminum radiators, acidic agents must be used, and for copper radiators – alkaline compositions. You can not use alkaline solutions to clean aluminum radiators, because its surface will immediately begin to oxidize, and the clogging situation will only worsen, or even spoil the part!

A list of tools that can be used to wash aluminum and copper radiators of the stove.

Flushing the stove radiator with citric acid

Using citric acid can clean radiators from any metal, both aluminum and copper. Proportions and recipes for its use can also be several. One of them is to take 20 … 40 grams of dry acid and dissolve them in one liter of water. If the radiator is heavily clogged, the amount can be increased to 80 … 100 grams per liter (increase the volume of the flushing mixture proportionally).

Ideally, the acid solution should be checked using a litmus test – the pH should be 3. This is the optimal composition for cleaning the radiator of the stove.

The acid solution can be used according to the methods described above, pouring it inside. As an option – pour it into the car instead of antifreeze, and start the engine for 30 … 40 minutes, letting it run at idle or take a ride, and then leave it overnight.

Then drain the liquid, if it is very dirty (with a large amount of sediment), the procedure should be repeated one or two more times. After that, flush the cooling system with ordinary distilled water and add new antifreeze.

Vinegar Rinse

Acetic acid is another affordable and effective tool for cleaning both the cooling system in general and the radiator in particular. To prepare the wash solution, you will need 500 ml of table vinegar, which must be diluted in 10 liters of boiled or distilled water. The rest can be done by analogy with washing with citric acid. This composition is suitable for radiators made of both copper and aluminum.

Serum Wash

The lactic acid that is in the serum perfectly cleans plaque, rust, and debris from the walls of both aluminum and copper radiators. However, in its pure form, lactic acid is difficult to find, so it is easiest to use natural (this is very important !!!) milk whey.

To clean the radiator of the stove, it needs 5 … 10 liters. Before use, the serum needs to be filtered through a filter a couple of times in order to remove pieces of fat from it!

Most often, it is poured into the system and rolled for about half an hour, and then drained and washed with hot distilled water several times. Since the serum contains fat.

Washing the radiator of the stove with electrolyte

The battery electrolyte also cleans various deposits and deposits well. You can use almost any electrolyte in sufficient volume. With it, you can clean both copper and aluminum radiators (but not very long!). When working with electrolytes, be sure to wear work clothes, rubber gloves, a respirator, and safety glasses.

Having removed the radiator, it is poured into the eyeballs, the electrolyte is poured and left for a couple of hours so that a chemical reaction occurs. In which the dirt and plaque dissolve. Then it is drained and washed. Only for the first time, the water used should be with a small amount of baking soda (1 tbsp. Per liter). And then it is advisable to use a cyclic “run” of water along the inside of the radiator.

Caustic Soda Flush

Caustic soda – caustic alkali, may have several names, caustic soda, sodium hydroxide, caustic. With it, you can not clean aluminum radiators, only copper ones and moreover, having removed them from the machine, because it adversely affects the aluminum parts of the cooling system.

And to clean the radiator using a 10% solution of caustic soda. In its manufacture, personal protective equipment is needed. Because if it comes into contact with the skin. The caustic can cause a chemical burn.

The resulting solution must be heated before use, and then poured and left for several hours, then drained. If necessary, repeat the procedure two to three times until the poured liquid is relatively clean. At the end, be sure to rinse the radiator with clean boiled or distilled water.

How to rinse with phosphoric acid

Orthophosphoric acid, or rather its 85% solution sold in specialized stores, is also well suited for cleaning aluminum and copper radiators of a heater. It is used on filmed with auto radiators. You need to work with personal protective equipment, gloves, and a respirator.

The acid just needs to be poured into the radiator and left there for a couple of hours. Then rinse thoroughly with boiled or distilled water. It does not corrode metal but instead dissolves plaque and rust formed inside.

Water rinse

The simplest, but the most ineffective remedy is ordinary boiled (this is important !!!) or distilled water. However, if you just want to rinse the radiator with water, then you need to do this under pressure. In its pure form, it is usually not used, but only as a wash after some of the means.

A special tool for washing the radiator of the stove

For those who do not trust the popular “grandfather’s methods,” car chemical manufacturers have made ready-made products that are specifically designed to clean the car’s cooling system.

LAVR Radiator Flush Classic. It can be used to flush a radiator made of both aluminum and copper. It is sold in banks of 430 ml and 980 ml. A small can is designed for the volume of the cooling system 8 … 10 liters. Therefore, its quantity must be calculated in accordance with the volume of the radiator. Instructions are on the packaging.

It is noted that the tool perfectly removes rust, limescale, dirt, and other debris. The price of one small can as of the summer of 2020 is about $6 dollars.

LIQUI MOLY Kuhler-Reiniger. The product is also intended for cleaning the cooling system. It can be used to clean radiators from any metal.

It removes rust, plaque, debris well. sold in a metal can with a volume of 300 ml, which is designed for a cooling system of 10 liters. It costs about $8 dollars.

Hi-Gear Radiator Flush. A distinctive feature of flushing – performs cleaning within seven minutes. It can be used to clean any radiators made of aluminum or copper. One 325 ml can is designed for 17 liters. The price is about $4 dollars.

Please note that after flushing, old radiators may leak, as the accumulated debris inside could simply seal the case. Therefore, after flushing with special tools, it is necessary to rinse the radiator with water from the inside and carefully examine it for leaks in the joints.

Frequently asked Questions

Q1: What is the best way to rinse the copper radiator of the stove?

The easiest method for washing the copper radiator of a car heater is to use a 10 percent solution of caustic soda (caustic soda, mole for washing plumbing pipes). The hot solution is poured inward for 30 minutes, after which it is drained. If necessary, repeat the procedure two to three times.

Washing with a mixture of citric acid and vinegar also shows a good result. However, for an old copper radiator, it will be best to remove, solder it and mechanically clean it manually.

Q2: What is the best way to rinse the aluminum radiator of the stove?

For flushing aluminum stove radiators, acid-based products are recommended. The best options are whey, citric acid (such mixtures should only be very hot – 90 ° C) or phosphoric acid solution (heat to 40-50 degrees). And for a copper-brass heat exchanger, only professional products intended for flushing the auto cooling system will be safe.

Q3: How to wash and what proportions for washing the radiator of the stove with citric acid?

The proportion for washing the radiator of a car stove with citric acid is 50 grams of acid per five liters of water. If the radiator is very clogged, then the amount of acid can be increased to 80 grams.

The acid is poured into 0.5 liters of boiled water, stirring until dissolved and then the main volume of distilled water is added.

The liquid is poured into the cooling system instead of antifreeze, the engine is warmed up to operating temperature and then left idle for 15 minutes.

Then, the system is drained and washed 3-4 times with distilled water.

Q4: How can I wash the radiator of the stove without removing it?

Alkaline, acid, and special cleaners are used to rinse the radiators of the heater in the vehicle interior. Alkaline compounds remove scale (lime), and acid – rust.

Q5: How much does washing the radiator of a stove cost in a service?

It must be understood that different services, including in different cities. May charge a different price for the service of cleaning the radiator of the stove without dismantling it. However, as of the summer of 2020, on average, the price of this procedure starts from $25 dollars.

As for the time to complete the procedure, it is about two hours. If the radiator is very clogged. It may take more time, and the payment will increase since more cleaning products and time will be spent on workers.

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