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Flushing The Cooling System:


Rob
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Tonight I decided to get with the program on my 73 RL and clean the cooling system before yanking the radiator to send in for evaluation. The upper and lower bolt on tanks both leak at the gaskets so I'm gonna let the radiator shop take care of it. If it needs recored I'll have that done at the same time. I rebuilt the water pump a few months ago and there was a pile of rust in the housing that I cleaned out at that time. The cooling system has obviously been uncared for.

I drained and refilled this thing six times tonight with clean water, let the engine get warm enough to open the thermostats then drained it again. Each time the discharge water is filthy red with rust. As the discharge from the petcock slows due to water level falling, the petcock clogs with solid particulate matter and requires a small screwdriver to get it flowing again. This has happened four of the six times. The last couple of times the water is getting a little clearer.

I'm sure the core is partially clogged on the insides due to this buildup. I'll continue to flush it a couple more times before pulling the radiator to get as much out as possible. I think I'm going to build an air powered water cannon like some of the radiator shops use to have to backflush the block when the radiator is out.

Don't want to plug a freshly rodded or recored radiator; That just may ruin my whole day.

Rob

Dog.jpg.487f03da076af0150d2376dbd16843ed.jpgPlodding along with no job nor practical application for my existence, but still trying to fix what's broke.

 

 

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Tonight I decided to get with the program on my 73 RL and clean the cooling system before yanking the radiator to send in for evaluation. The upper and lower bolt on tanks both leak at the gaskets so I'm gonna let the radiator shop take care of it. If it needs recored I'll have that done at the same time. I rebuilt the water pump a few months ago and there was a pile of rust in the housing that I cleaned out at that time. The cooling system has obviously been uncared for.

I drained and refilled this thing six times tonight with clean water, let the engine get warm enough to open the thermostats then drained it again. Each time the discharge water is filthy red with rust. As the discharge from the petcock slows due to water level falling, the petcock clogs with solid particulate matter and requires a small screwdriver to get it flowing again. This has happened four of the six times. The last couple of times the water is getting a little clearer.

I'm sure the core is partially clogged on the insides due to this buildup. I'll continue to flush it a couple more times before pulling the radiator to get as much out as possible. I think I'm going to build an air powered water cannon like some of the radiator shops use to have to backflush the block when the radiator is out.

Don't want to plug a freshly rodded or recored radiator; That just may ruin my whole day.

Rob

I was looking at a "Four Wheeler" magazine while I was waiting to unload at N.B. Handy Wednesday and saw an ad for something i'd never heard of - a synthetic coolant, no mixing, that they said cooled better than water and antifreeze, absolutely would not freeze, and would not rust or corrode anything. Probably expensive too, eh?

my father in law used to put just a little bit of kerosine in the radiator when he fushed them out-not with a pressure flusher, but the same way you're doing-fill with garden hose, run 'til hot, drain, repeat.

Producer of poorly photo-chopped pictures since 1999.

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  • 2 weeks later...

We always flushed out the rad & cooling system with Cascade dishwashing detergent. Put a box in the system filled with water and get the engine up to operating temps, till the thermostat opens up and starts to circulate the mixture thru out the cooling system. Run it for about 1/2 hr or 45 min and then drain refill and flush out with clean water.

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We always flushed out the rad & cooling system with Cascade dishwashing detergent. Put a box in the system filled with water and get the engine up to operating temps, till the thermostat opens up and starts to circulate the mixture thru out the cooling system. Run it for about 1/2 hr or 45 min and then drain refill and flush out with clean water.

Yes, that works very well for removing scale and varnish that forms in a cooling system. This stuff I'm getting out is "chunks" that clog the draincock. I have flushed it several times now and it is much better than it was. I've got the stuff rounded up for my water cannon, but haven't used it yet.

Thanks for the tip.

Rob

Dog.jpg.487f03da076af0150d2376dbd16843ed.jpgPlodding along with no job nor practical application for my existence, but still trying to fix what's broke.

 

 

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The cascade works great for blown oil coolers, it will bring the oil right to the top of the cooling system. For the most nasty cooling system problems I use muratic acid, It has not caused any problems in any systems I used it in. Make sure to use lots of water to flush with afterwords. I use about 1 gallon to a normal semi cooling system. It will really clean the scale out of the radiator, becareful to not leave in there to long I don't know what would happen about 1 hour is what I do with the engine warm, cap off to make sure no pressure build up.

b61fred

15 gears...no waiting!
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The cascade works great for blown oil coolers, it will bring the oil right to the top of the cooling system. For the most nasty cooling system problems I use muratic acid, It has not caused any problems in any systems I used it in. Make sure to use lots of water to flush with afterwords. I use about 1 gallon to a normal semi cooling system. It will really clean the scale out of the radiator, becareful to not leave in there to long I don't know what would happen about 1 hour is what I do with the engine warm, cap off to make sure no pressure build up.

b61fred

Hi Fred, I've been through seven gallons so far....... That is a good trick that I've used for years. If something leaks afterward it is because the corrosion was holding it together, (sorta like a 3 year old Volvo truck).

Rob

Dog.jpg.487f03da076af0150d2376dbd16843ed.jpgPlodding along with no job nor practical application for my existence, but still trying to fix what's broke.

 

 

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I have used a can of draino but i have not seen any thing like that in a while. I saw a bottle of draino in the house some time ago and wife said that was all she could find in draino. I remenber the drano that was power and it was a acid. Like been said use a lot of clean water to flush with.And dont let it set in alummin too long.

glenn akers

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I have used a can of draino but i have not seen any thing like that in a while. I saw a bottle of draino in the house some time ago and wife said that was all she could find in draino. I remenber the drano that was power and it was a acid. Like been said use a lot of clean water to flush with.And dont let it set in alummin too long.

Muratic acid does not like aluminum much at all. I'm thinking in the disolving process flourene gas is produced but I may be mistaken but it does destroy aluminum.

Rob

Dog.jpg.487f03da076af0150d2376dbd16843ed.jpgPlodding along with no job nor practical application for my existence, but still trying to fix what's broke.

 

 

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