Radiator coolant fluid is essential in protecting the vehicle engine, the coolant protects the engine from overheating, the heat is emitted out of the engine and cooling the external air flowing through the radiator. Besides, it acts as a rust inhibitor in the car engine, piping, and radiator, as a significant under-hood fluid, the coolant needs to be checked regularly particularly on older vehicles.
4 Causes of a coolant leak in the engine bay
- A blown head gasket causes coolant and engine oil to mix, leading to an engine major catastrophic failure. Even though it does not cause a breakdown straight away, the fuel economy will drop, the engine performance will decline and the emission rates will rise.
- A blown head gasket leads to a coolant leak from the radiator to the ground. This reduces the coolant level hence reducing the cooling ability of the engine. Continued driving with very low coolant or no coolant leads to engine blow.
- A crack in the radiator tubes resulting from tiny debris particles in the radiator tubes causes leakage both in the tank and radiator body over as the sealing gasket wears out.
- Hoses overtime harden and turn brittle causing leaks at joints at water pump, heater core, radiator.
Engine coolant is branded both as antifreeze and engine coolant. The antifreeze consists of properties to prevent the coolant from solidifying during very extreme cold weather conditions, either way, the antifreeze coolant is applied both in winter and summer conditions.
Regardless of the causes of engine coolant leakage in the radiator, driving without/low coolant causes damage to the engine as a result of excessive heat. However, immediate solutions of clamping leaking joints, an expensive option of replacing radiators and repair of the head gasket is done to resolve the fault.