Your heavy-duty diesel truck’s coolant system has many complex elements, which include a radiator to dissipate heat, fans to ensure adequate airflow for radiator cooling, a thermostat valve that opens when the desired operating temperature is reached, and a water pump (or coolant pump) to circulate coolant through the engine, hoses and other components.
How does a coolant system work?
Coolant is driven by a water pump and picks up heat and transfers it to the radiator. In the most simple words, it absorbs and distributes heat from your truck’s engine. Coolant is also used to protect against freezing and boiling, corrosion and pitting of cylinder liners and the engine block. If a problem occurs in the process of dissipating the engine heat, then this is where you would begin to see equipment failure and engine issues, including diesel engines overheating and possibly complete engine failure.
Why should you seek maintenance on your coolant system?
- It keeps your vehicle running at a proper operating temperature
- It prevents your engine from overheating
Regular coolant maintenance becomes even more important during the summer or in warmer climates when temperatures are high and there is less influence from the outside air to manage engine heat.
Common coolant system concerns:
- The thermostat is not working which prevents coolant from reaching the engine.
- A blown head gasket can cause a leak of coolant, which causes the operating temperature to shoot up quickly. You may be unaware of the smoke coming from your truck.
- You have a worn-out radiator hose and the radiator cap can crack, which causes coolant to leak.
- The water pump of your vehicle is leaking or has a defective impeller.
- Your fan belt is cracked, broken, or loose and will not circulate coolant to the vehicle’s radiator
Having an issue with your coolant system can ruin the engine or the EGR cooler of your vehicle could lead to more serious repairs.
How to tell if your coolant system is failing:
There are some fairly standard signs to watch for which are clear indicators of your coolant system needing service:
- The coolant reservoir is low
- Steam is coming from the radiator cap
- There is a noticeable smell of coolant
- The truck’s temperature gauge is running unusually high
Best practices for coolant system maintenance
There are a number of things that can help maintain the coolant systems and also extend the lifespan of your vehicle.
- Ensure that your cooling system is filled with coolant and that the freeze protection level is adequate
- Use the coolant type that is already in the engine for top-ups
- Check radiator fluid levels and concentration
- Check the integrity of the radiator cap and look for leaks
- Properly clean and flush the system when coolant is changed
The level of maintenance our team has to provide will rely on the type of antifreeze used by your vehicle’s cooling system. Knowing this, our technicians can track the mileage benchmark for regular maintenance. If you want to be proactive, you can check on your coolant at any time. Even if you are visiting us for a different repair, we advise you to check your coolant at the same time in order to be safe.
Here are some services offered for coolant system:
- Replacing gaskets, seals, and radiator caps that are worn down or cracked
- Flushing out old coolant and replacing it with new
- Changing out cracked and damaged hoses
- Putting in new fan belts
- Repairing the reservoir tank for leaks
For any type of coolant system repair, consider Foothills Group. Let our team of experts and advanced technology get you back on the road as soon as possible.