Cooling System Checks Critical in Summer Months
Inspecting the complete cooling system when servicing vehicles is vital coming into the warmer months as these systems are under added stress and worn components are more likely to fail.
Coming into the summer months it’s critical that workshops pay particular attention to the overall health of the cooling system and each component within it for their clients. The modern cooling system consists of multiple parts to deal with the tremendous heat generated by today’s engines. The primary job of the cooling system is to prevent the engine from overheating and thus avoid catastrophic engine damage.
Anything that decreases the system’s ability to absorb, transport and dissipate heat can cause the engine to operate at reduced efficiency or even overheat. This can include things like kinked hoses, a corroded water pump or even a worn pressure cap. Therefore it’s vital that each component of the system is maintained at the highest level of performance and efficiency.
These components include the cooling system hoses, heater core, radiator, expansion tank, fan, thermal switch, thermostat, water pump, radiator cap and expansion tank cap.
As one of the essential components of the system, the cooling system hoses carry the coolant through the entire circuit. The coolant acts as either an engine-cooling or interior-heating source, depending on the part of the circuit it is in. Possible sources of damage to hoses can include electrochemical degradation (internal damage), leakage, heat, ozone, abrasion and oil contamination, and any damage can inhibit the flow of coolant, causing the cooling system to fail.
Today’s smaller engines are increasingly more powerful, creating more heat and leaving less space under the bonnet. With the reduction in engine compartment size, coolant hoses must fight ever-higher temperatures and come in ever-more shapes and sizes to fit specific applications and tight engine spaces. This demonstrates the importance of choosing coolant hoses that are electrochemical resistant.
Car manufacturers are designing the majority of new coolant and heater hose parts as branched/modular assemblies. This is particularly by European vehicle manufacturers, as European makes have the highest percentage of branched/modular hose. The use of modular hose in just about every passenger car/light trucks make continues to expand.
The modular hoses manufactured by Gates now have quick-connects, sensors, restrictors, valves, and other components built into the hose, and this trend is going to continue. This design uses quick connects and brackets for ease of assembly and orientation and T’s are used to route additional hoses to new vehicle systems which require heating/cooling.
Modular hoses represent great sales opportunities for workshops since these new modular hoses are not as reliable as a traditional single piece hose as quick connects and seals can become brittle from heat and crack or break from vibration or general maintenance when the hose is jolted or repositioned.
This is particularly so as modern cooling systems now have 50 psi constant pressure with spikes of 70-80 psi. Standard clamps over a barb cannot hold this pressure and quick connects with an over-mold clamp are required. Check valves and flow restrictors are needed to control the coolant flow. Hoses must use the latest reinforcement technology to be able to handle these pressures.
Gates has a comprehensive range for popular makes and models and comes with features such as:
- Factory quality connections that are durable and eliminate coolant leaks
- Engineered to resist electrochemical degradation – the leading cause of hose failure
- • Heat and ozone resistant cover
- • Meets SAE 20R4 and 20R3 Type EC Class D-1 and D-2 specifications
- • Temperature rating: -40°C to +135°C in coolant hose applications
- • Backed with a 5 year / 100,000 km warranty.
Gates offers OE-quality solutions to all of these potential issues, ensuring that when fitted with Gates products, vehicles always run to or exceed manufacturer’s specifications. Gates is one of Australia and New Zealand’s leading suppliers of cooling system components and a true cooling system expert. Gates customers appreciate the wide variety of choices our OE-quality coolant hose range offers. It includes modular, curved, flexible, straight and small ID (inside diameter) hoses covering upper, lower, by-pass, heater and other coolant transfer applications.
Gates recommends that preventive maintenance is carried out at each service. All components of the cooling system should be checked for wear and damage, as outlined above, and any damaged parts replaced immediately to avoid worst case scenarios. As well as saving your customer time and money, this is also good news for you as it improves customer satisfaction levels with your workshop and keeps your customers coming back.
For more information on any of these issues and for a complete trouble shooting guide, including replacement guidelines, go to CLICK HERE.