Why Do You Need a Coolant Flush?

A stock photo of someone doing a coolant flush.

How Do You Know If You Need a Coolant Flush?

The internal combustion engine used by the current (and previous) generation of automobiles create power by burning a mixture of fuel (gasoline or diesel) and air. One need not be a master mechanic to understand this will create a lot of heat. In order for an engine to run properly, that heat needs to be dissipated. Motor oil does some of this, but the bulk of the heat is handled by a vehicle’s coolant system. Like any other automotive system, the coolant system needs to be serviced from time to time. So, how do you know if you need a coolant flush? Let’s take a closer look at some helpful information.

READ MORE: How Often Do Diesel Trucks Need Service?

Cooling System Basic Information

Most coolant systems work by circulating fluid (coolant/antifreeze) through a closed circuit. As the fluid makes its way around its run, it picks up heat before passing through the radiator, which uses fans to cool it off before starting again. If the system develops a leak, there could not be enough fluid for the system to do its job properly. A vehicle’s coolant system is most important during the hottest months of the year, but vehicle owners should always be on the lookout for signs of cooling problems.

3 Common Signs a Coolant Flush is Needed

Only a Budds’ Chev service technician will be able to tell you if a coolant flush is needed. But, you will want to bring the following situations to their attention as soon as possible:

  • When the engine’s temperature gauge shows that it’s running hotter than normal or the engine starts to overheat regularly.
  • You start to smell something sweet with a hint of burning. Coolant or antifreeze uses ethylene glycol that naturally smells sweet. When coolant starts to burn, indicating a problem, you may notice a smell that has been described as maple syrup or butterscotch. 
  • Coolant is often very brightly coloured. If you notice a neon fluid on the ground under the front half of your vehicle, this could indicate a coolant leak.

What Does a Coolant Flush Do?

Coolant loses effectiveness over time, and various deposits can build up as the fluid breaks down. Flushing out the old coolant and replacing it with fresh product will break down those deposits, getting them out of the cooling system. Coolant can become more acidic as it ages, damaging the water pump and degrading the rubber hoses. Also, coolant provides a certain level of lubricant to the water pump, preventing it from burning out and incurring additional repair costs. When the coolant is fresh it will work more efficiently, keeping the engine as cool as required.

Make an appointment with the Budds’ Chev Service Department, today, if you need some help getting your vehicle back into peak condition.