If the radiator hose in your vehicle fails and you don’t replace it immediatly, you can wind up with serious car and engine issues in the future. Your radiator hose efficiently carries the coolant to your radiator to be cooled and then back to your engine to keep it from overheating. Driving at the perfect temperature is a must, so even if you suspect your radiator hose may become faulty in the future it is imperative to change it right away.
Before you replace or repair your radiator hose, you need to remove the radiator hose clamps. These clamps are what keep your hose properly attached to the radiator. How you remove these clamps is based on the type of radiator hose clamp you have.
- Band Clamp – These clamps will have a screw along the side and simply need to be loosened (if the hose hasn’t swelled) to remove the radiator hose.
- Crimp Clamp – Radiator crimp clamps are attached to the hose itself and will be removed after the hose.
- Custom Clamp – A multi-hinged 3 part aluminum band, created exclusively by TKO Clamping Systems.
Once you have assessed the type of clamps you have, it’s time to get to work. Before you do anything you must first remove the radiator of antifreeze or coolant. To do this you will need to:
- Shut off the vehicle and make sure the engine is not running.
- Raise the front end of your vehicle using a jack or jack stands.
- Place a bucket or drain pan below the radiator
- Remove the radiator cap. If your car or truck does not have a radiator cap remove the pressure cap located on the coolant tank. You will then need to open the petcock drain valve to drain the coolant.
- Before removing the hose, the tank needs to be completely empty.
- Tighten up the petcock drain valve once you are finished.
Removing The Radiator Hose Clamps
Now that your radiator is free of coolant you can begin to remove the hoses by loosening or removing the radiator hose clamps. For custom clamps created by TKO Clamping Systems, our multi hinged band makes it a breeze to simply remove and loosen the clamp by hand, no special tools required. Band and crimp clamps require a little extra elbow grease as you’ll see below:
Band Clamps – To remove a band clamp on your radiator hose you will need a screwdriver to loosen the clamp. Using the tip of your screwdriver inserted into the screw, begin to twist slowly. Depending on your position this may be clockwise or counter clockwise.
Crimp Clamps – Using a pair of pliers, hold the vertical bars of the clamp closed. Once you have found the correct position, use a screwdriver to loosen any screws in the clamp and lift the clamp away. You may also need to have a prybar on hand to lift the clamp away in the opposite direction of the hose.
Replacing your radiator hose is recommended every 4 years or 60,000 miles. If you are replacing your hose yourself make sure to find the specific radiator hose for the year, make and model of your vehicle.