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J-Mac Radiator Blog

Salt Lake City, Utah Radiator Repair and Service blog by J-Mac Radiators. 3520 South State Street, Salt Lake City, UT 84115.

Top Signs That It Is Time For A New Car Radiator

- Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Over time, car radiators age. As they age, a variety of issues can arise signaling to the car owner that it is time to replace the radiator. Radiators can sustain damage that is irreparable, and this will also result in the need to replace the radiator. It can be necessary to replace the radiator in order to prevent multiple future breakdowns.

Old radiators can develop cracks and pin holes.

Radiators are made of metal. Almost all metal ages and weakens due to oxidation. As the metal in your radiator weakens, it becomes susceptible to decay and failure. The constant heating up and cooling down of the radiator causes the same stress on the metal as bending a piece of wire back and forth in the same area on the wire. It will eventually break. In the care of your care radiator, the break is a crack along a tube that drains the coolant from the top to the bottom of the radiator. Under pressure a great deal of coolant can be lost very quickly.

Pin holes are created by oxidation of the metal in the radiator.

Everyone is familiar with rust that forms on unprotected iron. This is oxidation. Oxidation is a corrosion that erodes the amount of metal available. As time passes, more and more of the metal oxidizes until small openings or pin holes start to appear. The high pressure inside the hot cooling system of the car will spray coolant though these tiny pores as you drive. Stop leak and other home remedies can slow the leaks for a while. The only real permanent fix is to replace the radiator. 


A badly clogged radiator can need replacement. 


Radiators can get clogged or blocked in two or three ways. Debris from inside hoses or the water pump can break loose and lodge in the radiator core. The accumulation of this material over a few years will reduce the cooling efficiency of the car radiator. Likewise, small amounts of oxidation residue can join the party and increase the chances of the car overheating. If stop leak is added to this mix, flushing the radiator and cooling system will probably not product effective results. A radiator replace is the only sure option.


Damage to the front end of a vehicle often results in radiator problems.


If a collision of any type creates significant movement of the car's front end materials, the radiator will be affected. Older radiators can even be damaged by the jolt of the impact. In older cars, the radiator may be forced backward onto the metal blades of the cooling fan. This can create immediate and extensive radiator damage. In newer cars, the radiator is cooled by an electric fan that will have little effect on the metal car radiator. However, pieces of the material from the front of the car can still impact the radiator core. The crash can bend or crack the unit. Any of these types of issues can be enough to force the need for a radiator replacement.

Important Questions To Ask While Looking For Your Radiator Repair Shop

- Sunday, January 04, 2015

Are you in search of a radiator repair shop to service or replace your radiator? It is important to be able to trust the repair shop your car will be serviced at. Here are some of the important questions that you should ask while deciding which repair show is best for you.

How many years of experience does radiator repair shop have? 

Yes, the experience of the radiator repair shop matters a great deal while selecting your service provider. Your car’s radiator is one of the most important parts of your vehicle. Only experienced technicians should be entrusted with the repair or replacement of this important component of your vehicle. Only an experienced technician will be able to identify the problem correctly. Wrong diagnosis of the problem will result in wrong solutions that could lead to expensive and unnecessary repairs. If you do not want to run into unnecessary problems, research each repair shop to ensure they possess adequate experience.


Is your radiator repair shop a licensed and insured service provider?

Secondly, it is vital that you are sending your vehicle to licensed and insured service providers. In case there should be any issues in the future with insurance claims, your insurance company will inquire into the history of the vehicle. If they were to find that your vehicle has been serviced by a repair shop that is not licensed then they may reject your claim. You will need to make sure that you work with licensed repair shops in your area.

Does your car repair shop have a respected reputation?

Often customers complain that car repair shops take advantage of their ignorance. Are you dealing with an honest and trustworthy repair shop? Your car repair shop should be keeping your best interests in mind. A respected reputation in the industry can be earned only by offering consistently good services to the customers. If you do not want to be misguided when you send your vehicle for radiator repair or radiator servicing, then you will need to find a reputed service provider.


Is your radiator repair shop fairly priced?

There are no standard or regulated rates for car repairs. This allows each service provider to set their own rate. Make sure to shop around for the best prices before you settle with any particular service provider. Once you find a reasonably priced car repair shop, establishing a long-term relationship can lead to added benefits and discounts for all your future radiator repair needs.

Rely on J-Mac Radiator of Utah Auto Coolant Service for New Radiators

- Thursday, December 11, 2014

A radiator is a good companion of your car engine for ensuring the smooth running of your vehicle. Most good things come in pairs, and your car engine is no different with finding a suitable companion in the radiator. If there is anything that can offer the engine an efficient cool-down process, then it is radiator that gives a soothing solution to its fiery companion. A radiator is the first part in the engine that right away follows the front grille in the car. It resembles a network of lean pipes with a top opening and a fan placed behind. Being a vital part of your car, it is pertinent to select an automotive provider that is renowned for offering clients the most appropriate salt lake radiators.

It is pertinent that you get new radiators that meet the standards of OEM quality. It is necessary to choose a top-tier service provider that has been widely recognized for stocking varied models of brand new radiators in its warehouse. Your preferred service provider should also be conversant with the fixing and replacing of radiators for at least a period of 20 years. It is necessary that you detect a problem in your car if it overheats. If you track a problem with your car heater or detect an error in the cooling system, then all you can do is to take your automobile to certified technicians who are profound with troubleshooting and repairing tasks. It is necessary that you get your radiators replaced from a professional radiator replacement shop.


A formidable Utah Auto AC cooling service can prevent your car from overheating. With an appropriate coolant system service, you can have your engine operating smoothly through pedigree professionals that are trained with maintenance and repair. Specialized setups go into the details to offer car owners the most appropriate flush and removal of all the rust and sludge that can hamper vehicle’s coolant system. A professional Utah auto coolant service can add life to the hoses, while renewing the lifespan of heater core, thermostat, water pump, and radiator, among other car accessories. Scales can reduce the vehicle’s operating temperature drastically, ultimately causing its cooling system to falter. Professional cooling services can ensure that old solvents in the car are suitably drained off, to be added with new flushing agents and water.


A professional car service provider can also help customers have their car’s heater core and hoses power flushed after the thermostat is changed. Replacing clamps and getting the hoses re-fixed is also an essential functionality that every professional auto cooling service provider has to carry out. Having the leaks thoroughly checked is also an important task that specialty radiator service setups carry out. Hire a Utah AC service that could offer you consistent repair and maintenance tasks done with perfection. It is imperative that you get your hose pipes checked on regular basis and with great articulation. Car has to be serviced timely to avoid unfortunate accidents. Research and find out the best auto repair shop in your town and give your car for service today!

How to Replace Your Car’s Radiator

- Thursday, October 23, 2014

Radiators on older model cars were made of copper and brass alloys. This made them easy to repair by soldering the cracks or holes that caused leakage.


However, a number of later model cars include radiators with aluminum cores, which have plastic top and bottom tanks. These newer radiators can be damaged by forcing off a hose, over tightening a clip or even by improperly removing the pressure cap.

Damage to the new radiators is impossible for a home mechanic to repair, usually resulting in the replacement of the whole radiator. The one good thing about replacing the newer radiators, is that they are lighter than the old ones and usually have simple fittings which make them easier to remove.

Safety first

Before starting, disconnect the battery to remove any radiator that has electrical connections.

Drain the radiator

Make sure the engine is cold, then take off or release the pressure cap on the radiator. Some cars have a tap or drain plug in the bottom of the radiator, open it and the radiator should drain.

If no water comes out, poke the drain-plug hole gently with a piece of wire, or unscrew and remove the tap. However, if there isn’t a plug, or you are unable to clear the blockage with the wire, disconnect the bottom hose where it attaches to the radiator.

Drain the coolant into a clean container, then strain it through muslin to remove the rust or dirt so that you can save it and re-use it in the new radiator if its still good. Check the strength of the solution with an antifreeze hydrometer.

Watch it

While you are disconnecting and removing the radiator from the vehicle, pay close attention to the parts you remove and how you remove them. When installing the new radiator you will be attaching the same parts, in the same way you removed them from the old radiator. You may want to make notes, draw a diagram or even take a picture of the radiator before removing it. This will save you a headache later, if you forget how to attach something or if you forget to attach something.

Remove the hoses

Loosen the hose clips and ease off the hoses by gently twisting them back and forth. Don’t try to pry the them off with a screwdriver: you may wind up damaging the hoses, if you plan to reinstall the current ones. If you plan to replace the rubber hoses, it is much easier to just cut the old ones off.

Oil and transmission fluid cooling lines

Before disconnecting the oil and transmission fluid cooling lines, get another container ready to catch any oil or transmission fluid that will leak out. Next, unscrew both lines from the bottom of the radiator and let the oil, left in the lines, drain into the container. Place plastic sandwich bags over the ends of each line and fasten them with rubber bands. This will keep oil from leaking out onto the ground or garage floor.

Make sure you check, and top off, the oil and transmission fluid when you are finished installing the new radiator.

Clear the way

See if there are any fan-shroud pieces to remove, that will allow you to remove the radiator from the vehicle. However, there is a chance that you will only need to unscrew the radiator mounting clips. After the clips are removed carefully remove the radiator from the vehicle, making sure it doesn’t get hung up on any other parts and that there isn’t anything else attached to it.

Install new radiator

Before starting, set both radiators side by side and check the new one over carefully to make sure it is a match to the old one. Gently guide the new radiator into place, be very careful not to bend any of the cooling fins. Damaged fins will diminish the radiator’s ability to cool the engine properly.

Next install the clips and make sure the radiator is secure. Screw in the oil and transmission fluid cooling lines, being careful to line them up properly so you don’t strip the threads, which cause a leak.

When reattaching the hoses, tighten the clips firmly, but don’t over tighten them, which could cause the clips to cut into the hoses or crush the plastic stubs on the radiator.

Refill the radiator

After you are sure everything is connected properly, fill the radiator with the mixture of coolant/antifreeze recommended by your specific auto company. Also check and refill the oil and transmission fluid as necessary, due to leakage.

Is Your Temperature Gauge Running Hot?

- Saturday, October 18, 2014

It happens to the best of us, we’re driving around and then the little needle on the dash starts to creep a little closer to the “H” then we’d planned. Yep, your car is running hot. You take it to your repair shop and complain that it’s running hot, but you’re not loosing coolant, you’re engine isn’t running rough and the radiator doesn’t feel too hot. Nothing obvious is wrong with it, but the repair guy seems to think you’re fine. What are you supposed to do?


Well, as radiator experts we’re here to help you. When a customer comes in to J-Mac Radiator with a complaint of their car running hot and we do a visual inspection but can’t find anything obviously wrong, the temperature gauge is often the guilty party. At J-Mac, we can run a diagnostic test for a “bad temperature gauge.”


Now what’s that you ask? Well, it’s when the pesky temperature gauge just doesn’t work right. It reads the temperature in your radiator to be higher than it actually is and then reports to you, that the car is running hot.


Here’s how we test for it…

Step 1: Place a diagnostics strip on the radiator top tank or thermostat housing.

Step 2: Take the car on a “test drive” up a steep grade.

Step 3: Read the temperature gauge and compare it with the diagnostic strip that we placed under the hood.


Here’s how the diagnostic strip is read…

  • If the strip reads approximately 200°F or so, then the gauge is “OK” but it is off.
  • If the strip reads 250°F then the car is running hot.

    So, if you think you car is running hot, but can’t seem to find the problem, it could just be your temperature gauge. Bring it to J-Mac Radiator and avoid getting the run around from everyone else!

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