Where is the radiator drainpipe valve?

Many DIYers desire to flush their car’s coolant themselves and also the first obstacle they conference is recognize the radiator drain valve. The valve, referred to as a petcock, has changed since the old days when it was made native brass v a “T” handle.

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Old format brass radiator drainpipe “petcock”


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Radiator drain valve location


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Plastic radiator drain valve petcock or “drain cock.”


And that’s the point; most automobile makers have eliminated the radiator drainpipe valve from their radiators.

Why no radiator drain valve?

It’s yes, really pretty simple. First, radiator drain valves are never ever used by skilled mechanics. If a shop is going to flush a cooling system, they’d install a flushing tee and attach flushing equipment. If they’re going to carry out a radiator drain and fill, they’ll loosen the water tap clamp ~ above the lower radiator hose and also just remove the hose. Every the coolant native the radiator and lower part of the engine drains out conveniently using that technique. Then the mechanic simply reinstalls the reduced radiator hose and also refills the system. The entire drain procedure takes around 5-mins.

Opening a radiator drain valve can cause big problems

But what if her radiator has actually a drainpipe valve? Well, mine advice is: DON’T open up IT! Plastic drain valves usually have actually a flat portion for twisting and an O-ring washer at the end of the valve. Over time, the O-ring welds itself to the drainpipe valve seat. When you try opening the valve you can encounter number of really negative scenarios:

1): since the O-ring is welded come the seat, the flat portion twists and breaks off. Now the valve can’t be opened.

2): The valve opens up slightly and also the flat either breaks off or the engine stem breaks off, leaving a part of the stem inside the valve. Coolant starts leaking out and there’s no means to stop it. Periodically you deserve to remove the broken section with a needle nose pliers and then to buy a replacement valve stem. However, that means a trip to the auto parts store. Perform you have a second vehicle come make the trip? And, go the auto parts store share that details valve? If you can’t uncover a replacement valve stem, you’ll need to replace the radiator. Cost—at the very least $200 if you change it you yourself or approximately $600 if you have to take it to a shop. Oh, then there’s the towing charge.


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Which radiator drain is in her radiator? wherein will you find a instead of on quick notice?


3) You cracked the tank. Save in mind that the more recent coolants are long life chemistries, therefore you’re probably not an altering coolant because that 5 or 10 years. The plastic tanks on modern radiator can obtain brittle and also crack if you apply twisting stress and anxiety to the drainpipe valve. Why threat damaging a perfectly great radiator.

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Here’s just how to drain your radiator

Loosen the hose clamp top top the reduced radiator hose. If the a worm journey clamp, usage a driver to loosen it. If the a continuous tension feather clamp, use a on slide jaw pump pliers or a special hose clamp removal pliers to open up the clamp and move it away from the radiator neck.