A car’s cooling system is essential to keeping the engine running at a safe temperature. The coolant level should be checked on a regular basis to ensure that the car is running smoothly and safely. Checking your coolant level is a simple process that only takes a few minutes.
There are several ways to check your car’s coolant level. The most accurate way is to use a dipstick or gauge specifically designed to check vehicle coolant levels. If you do not have access to these tools, you can also check the coolant level by looking at the overflow reservoir tank. The fluid should be between the tank’s minimum and maximum fill lines.
Keeping your coolant level in check and refilling it is a fairly simple task. It helps prevent damage to your engine and avoids erosion, rust, and build-up of residue. Make it a routine to check your car’s coolant level whenever you get a refuel.
4 Simple Steps To Check Your Cars Coolant Level
- Step 1: Cool down your car before you begin
- Step 2: Open radiator cap
- Step 3: Check coolant reservoir marking
- Step 4: Refill your car’s coolant
Step 1: Cool down your car before you begin
The first thing you always have to make sure of is to cool down your car before you even think about touching the car’s engine. The hot coolant is under very high pressure and if you open the cap while it’s hot, it can spill out and cause burns on your body.
- Park your car on a level surface.
- Wait for a few hours if you’ve come back from a drive and let your car’s engine cool down completely.
Step 2: Open radiator cap
- Look for the radiator cap and open it.
- If you can see the coolant, it means your system is full.
- Don’t see any coolant? Go down to step 4.
Step 3: Check coolant reservoir marking
For newer vehicles, rather than opening the radiator cap, you can just look at the marked line outside the coolant reservoir and check if the liquid inside is at the same level as the “full” line.
If the level doesn’t match the line, go to step 4.
Step 4: Refill your car’s coolant
- If the level of coolant does not reach the line, you have to refill it.
- Open the reservoir/radiator cap.
- Contact your vehicle’s manufacturer to determine which type of coolant and ratio your car needs.
- Make a 50/50 mixture of distilled water and coolant; some coolants are found to be pre-mixed so.
- Pour the mixture into the reservoir/radiator until it’s full; use a funnel if necessary.
- Close the cap tightly to make sure nothing can spill out. Wipe it down to remove any spillage.
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Secret Tips To Keep Checking Your Cars Coolant Level
- If your coolant level is low, there might be an underlying cause.
- After filling it back up, keep an eye on the level for a few days or a week.
- If you notice that the coolant level keeps coming down, it’s time to find out the problem; contact or visit your local repair shop.
- Never use anything other than distilled water when making the mixture of coolant and water.
- Look at your coolant when you open up the coolant system to see if the liquid seems okay. If it looks muddy, cloudy, or grainy, immediately take your car to a repair shop.
- You can add water only if you are in an emergency, e.g., if your car broke down on the road.
- Coolant usually comes in these four colors: red, blue, yellow, or green. If it looks clear, colorless, or tarnished, it would be best to flush out the cooling system and refill it with a new coolant.
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