Even though they might seem like simple components, your vehicle's radiator hoses are very important. If your radiator hoses are not working properly, your vehicle's engine can very quickly overheat, which can cause serious engine damage or the need for a new engine completely. Luckily, radiator hoses are very inexpensive to purchase and are relatively easy to change, even if you don't know much about working under the hood of your vehicle. However, you have to know when to change your radiator hoses. These are a few situations in which it's smart to make this replacement.
1. Your Car's Maintenance Schedule Requires It
First of all, take a look at your car's maintenance schedule to find out when you are expected to change your radiator hoses. Since they are made of rubber and do a pretty rough job, radiator hoses can wear out for no reason other than their age. Following your vehicle's maintenance schedule can help you both prevent problems with your radiator and ensure that you keep your car's warranty intact.
2. They Visually Appear Worn Out
Pop open your hood, and take a look at your radiator hoses every now and then. You should at least check them each time that you get an oil change or ask a qualified mechanic to take a look at them. If your radiator hoses appear to have any cracks or just plain look worn out, it's probably smart to change them to prevent serious cooling problems from occurring when you least expect it.
3. You Hear a Crackling Noise
When your vehicle is turned off and is cool, gently squeeze your radiator hoses. If you hear any sort of noise that sounds like a "crackling" noise, it's time to replace your radiator hoses. Even if you can't visually see the wear and tear, this is a sign that your radiator hoses aren't as pliable as they should be, which can result in a leak at the wrong moment.
4. There Has Been an Oil Leak
If your vehicle has had an oil leak, it's smart to go ahead and replace your radiator hoses. This is because oil that leaks onto your hoses can slowly but surely eat the rubber that the hoses are made of, which can compromise them.
Obviously, if your hoses are clearly leaking, it's important to change them. These are a few additional situations in which a radiator hose replacement is also a smart decision.For more information, consult a radiator repair professional (such as Advanced Auto Care).