Basic car maintenance? help

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by The Grid, Aug 6, 2008.

  1. The Grid

    The Grid OT Supporter

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    My engine nearly overheated the other day b/c I didn't have enough water in my radiator. This got me thinking, what do I need to do and how often do i need to do it to make sure my car doesn't breakdown.

    So far I'm going to do these 1x per month:
    tire pressure
    coolant levels
    oil

    anything else?

    sidenote- how is it a few gallons of water in the radiator can cool off the car like that? my engine got so hot it was evaporating the water i was adding to it so i had to wait like 30 mins for it to cool down before it would take in the water. I'm wondering when the car is actually driving, how can just that water keep it cool? seems like it would boil over and burn up the engine
     
  2. you know me

    you know me OT where the douchbags play

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    using straight water is a bad idea. you should be using a 50/50 mix of water and coolant, try adding water wetter made by red line to it. when was the last time the plugs were changed
     
  3. CJPA

    CJPA New Member

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    Regarding the function of the cooling system: The water/coolant mix is forced through the system under pressure by the water pump. This creates a "circuit" of coolant/water. In this circuit, the main heat sink is the radiator--as you drive, air is forced over the thousands of fins in the radiator and cools the coolant/water mix passing through it.

    There is also a thermostat that can open and close depending on what temperature the coolant mix is to make sure the coolant stays in a specified range.
     
  4. Kenny Powers

    Kenny Powers OT Supporter

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    Using just water is ok for the summer time if you keep up on it but make sure to flush it and get some anti freeze in there before it starts to get cold.

    The reason the water doesn't "boil" is because the water is always being pumped through the radiator. Air blowing through the radiator removes the heat from the water. There's also a fan to help the process if your temps get too high.
     
  5. you know me

    you know me OT where the douchbags play

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    see also, pressure
     
  6. Smelly-Kitten

    Smelly-Kitten Dept. of Redundancy Department *Side Pipes

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    Werd, which is why when you open the rad cap when it's overheated - much of that water will instantly boil...into your face
     
  7. matrix243

    matrix243 Earn this. Earn it.

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    thermostat selection also has to be in a certain range. opens too soon and it doesn't give it enough time to cool down through the rad, opens too late and the volume in the block will keep it on the hot side.
     
  8. matrix243

    matrix243 Earn this. Earn it.

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    and don't forget to check your halogen fluid.
     
  9. I wouldnt advise using just water. Your coolant also lubricates the water pump. Normal water doestn lubricate enough. It can shorten the life of the water pump.

    I've also heard that anti-freeze can also increase the boiling point of water.
     
  10. 396Hawk

    396Hawk Active Member

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    To be on the safe side, also check all hoses, belt(s), fluids (brake, clutch or trans, etc.) and look for leaks. around the motor, tranny and rear.
     
  11. vudoodoodoo

    vudoodoodoo New Member

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    75water/25 coolant is the lowest you should go if you live in a hot climate. You NEED to have some coolant in the system.
     
  12. Alamo_Jake

    Alamo_Jake Sorry I'm not sorry.

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    :eek3:
     
  13. Snafu

    Snafu more than meets the eye

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    Use distilled water when you mix it with coolant. Regular tap water contain minerals which gunk up the cooling system.
     
  14. spiffitz

    spiffitz New Member

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    Stay away from "chrome" parts for your cooling system. I installed a chrome thermostat housing because it was the only one that had an O-ring to seal against my manifold. After a little over a year the bottom of it burst open. Apparently the pot metal under that chrome is a great sacrificial anode that will deteriorate before anything in your engine does.
     
  15. yeah, that can be a big problem in vehicles with aluminum heads/manifold and iron block. It causes alot of corrosion on soft metal parts. Not sure how much it helps but I was told to run a dex-cool style coolant anytime you have aluminum components on an engine
     
  16. Fordgasm

    Fordgasm Mike Trout > All

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    I used water with a bottle of waterwetter in my mustang, never had a problem.
     
  17. 0wn3d_productivity

    0wn3d_productivity OT Supporter

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    You can use water in a pinch, but not in the winter cuz it freezes, lol.
     

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