How to Clean The Outside of a Car Radiator

Written by mark o'brien
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If your car is overheating, it is an indicator that you will need to clean the radiator to allow better airflow. Clean fins on the outside of the radiator allow for air to flow freely around the radiator and keep the antifreeze cool, therefore keeping the engine cooled. Dust, dirt and road oils easily accumulate on the radiator fins, but cleaning the radiator is a safe and easy solution to removing the debris on your radiator.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Goggles
  • Degreaser
  • Pressure washer

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  1. 1

    Put on your safety goggles to prevent eye injury.

  2. 2

    Park your car on a slope so that when you rinse the radiator the water will flow away from the vehicle. Pop the bonnet. Allow the car to cool down for an hour.

  3. 3

    Spray degreaser on the fins of the radiator. Allow the degreaser to soak in for 15 minutes. This will help the mineral and oil build-up on the radiator wash free easily.

  4. 4

    Hook the pressure washer up to a water source and plug it into a standard 110 volt outlet.

  5. 5

    Spray the radiator from every angle with the pressure washer. Try to get under the vehicle at an angle to rinse the under side of the radiator and radiator fins. Allow the radiator to air-dry for an hour before driving the vehicle.

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