Are Coolant Flushes Really Necessary?

Are Coolant Flushes Really Necessary?

A few weeks ago, a client’s temperature warning light came on while they were running errands. After waiting for their car to cool down, they brought their car in for an inspection. We took a look and found that the water pump was leaking and needed to be replaced. Without a working water pump, the engine can become overheated very easily. 

We also inspected the radiator hoses, serpentine belt, and tensioner–all of which were OK. However, the coolant was long overdue for a flush and replacement. When we told our client what was needed, they were surprised. In fact, they weren’t even aware that coolant changes should be done on a regular schedule. 

Our client isn’t alone–many drivers aren’t aware that coolant changes are a part of regular vehicle maintenance or understand exactly why they’re important. If you fall into this category, read on to learn more about this necessary service. 

Why Are Coolant Flushes Important?

Just as with other automotive fluids, coolant (also called antifreeze) plays a significant role in how well your vehicle runs. 

Coolant is responsible for pulling excess heat away from your engine and other components, which helps maintain a healthy operating temperature and prevent overheating. This also helps preserve the life of your engine and prevent expensive repairs, like a broken head gasket. Coolant also helps prevent the water pump from freezing during cold temperatures, rust and corrosion from developing in the cooling system, and plastic parts from becoming brittle and damaged.

If the coolant level gets too low, it can potentially cause irreparable engine damage. For this reason, it’s very important to monitor your coolant levels and top it off as needed. If you suspect a coolant leak, it should be repaired as soon as possible. However, it’s not enough to just keep your fluid at the right level–it should also be replaced from time to time. 

Coolant, like oil, starts to break down over time. When this happens, the coolant not only becomes less effective at cooling your engine, but it also begins to become corrosive. Coolant that goes too long between fluid changes can damage the radiator, head gasket, intake manifold gaskets, heater core, metal cooling pipes, spark plugs, and more. This is why it should always be changed on a regular schedule–typically every 30,000 miles or three to five years. 

It’s much easier (and cost-effective) to have your coolant flushed and replaced than to deal with repairs. During a coolant flush, we drain out all the old coolant and replace it with fresh coolant. Beyond protecting your engine better from overheating, coolant flushes also provide the following benefits:

  • Removes rust, corrosion, and other buildup that could affect the efficiency of your cooling system
  • Lubricates the water pump and extends its life
  • Prevents rust from forming in the water pump
  • Prevents additional damage from old, corrosive fluid

In addition, we inspect the entire cooling system during a routine coolant flush, so if there are any other issues that might be developing, we can handle them proactively. 

Common Signs Your Vehicle Needs a Coolant Flush

There are several signs that indicate your car is due for a coolant flush, including:

  • Engine overheating
  • A sweet smell coming from under the hood
  • Odd noises coming from under the hood, like gurgling or or hissing 
  • Low coolant levels or dirty-looking coolant
  • Visible coolant leaks under your vehicle
  • Heater malfunctions

Protect Your Engine–Schedule a Coolant Flush Today

If your car, truck, or SUV is due for a coolant flush, or you’ve noticed any of the above issues, contact EuroCar Service today! We offer complete auto care for all European models, including Audi, Fiat, BMW,Land Rover, Mercedes, Mini Cooper, Saab, Jaguar, Volkswagen, Volvo, and Smart Car. Call us today at 206-527-8828 or request an appointment online