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Radiator clean ?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by HOTFR8, Apr 10, 2011.

  1. HOTFR8
    Joined: Nov 30, 2010
    Posts: 2,022

    HOTFR8
    Member

    I am looking for some suggestions as to how I clean out a radiator. At some point in time it had oil in the water and I have been told to use and run in the radiator some Liquid laundry detergent before I flush it again. Has any one tried this or for that matter have any suggestions as to how you clean a radiator and block before you put in fresh clean coolant ?
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
  2. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 25,546

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Boy Howdy I have never heard that one before. It would probably work but I would probably use a bit of Dawn dish liquid rather than laundry soap. You would have to flush it out several times after you did it though.
    There are a lot of commercial radiator flushes out there too that probably will work and clean out some of the rust and crud at the same time.
     
  3. Prestone makes a flush for the coolant system but I'm not sure if that will take all the oil out of your system. Also I have used Water Wetter in my radiator and that seems to clear a lot of gunk out of the system too. If you've never heard of it, Water Wetter is basically a bubbleless soap that cleans the system, protects it from corrosion, or rust, and is used as a coolant too by keeping the system 20 degrees cooler than regular coolant will.
    Oh yeah Water Wetter can be found Speedway, or Jegs, and maybe local auto parts stores where you are. I've never been to your part of Australia so its hard to say for sure.
     
  4. HOTFR8
    Joined: Nov 30, 2010
    Posts: 2,022

    HOTFR8
    Member

    Sorry I should have said Liquid detergent. I posted the same thing on the Garage Journal and have been told about the prestone product but I have not seen that here. I have also been told a US equipment dealership uses cascade dishwasher detegent. ( Here Cascade is a Beer LOL).

    I am going to flush it and add a liquid detegent and fresh water then flush again and see what happens.

    Thanks for the help and suggestions.

    I have heard of the water wetter product and have some 40 Below product here but I doubt it is needed as the engine always runs about 90c on the guage.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
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  5. George T G
    Joined: Dec 3, 2008
    Posts: 205

    George T G
    Member

    I have been a fan of LYE but I know guys that swear by some of those heavy duty degreasers like that Orange stuff you see. I would think you need to do the whole system as it should be in the block and heads unless you had them out and cooked.
     
  6. HOTFR8
    Joined: Nov 30, 2010
    Posts: 2,022

    HOTFR8
    Member

    Yes the block needs a clean out as well. It should not be to bad as it has been flushed a few times but I would like to get it clean(er) before I put in new coolant.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
  7. HOTFR8
    Joined: Nov 30, 2010
    Posts: 2,022

    HOTFR8
    Member

    Thanks for all the hints on this. Today I removed the bottom hose and drained out the radiator. As I have Cool-Flex fitted I do not like removing hoses and as the radiator does not have a drain plug I made a fitting that fits in line with a decent drain bung. I have added a very small amount of liquid detergent and will run the vehicle soon then flush a few times with a hose. It did not look as bad as I expected so will see what happens after a flush.
     
  8. HOTFR8
    Joined: Nov 30, 2010
    Posts: 2,022

    HOTFR8
    Member

    So far it has worked and is much cleaner. Some one on the Garage Journal forum suggested an inline water cleaner / filter system so now I have to ask has any one seen or fitted anything like this ?
     
  9. Petejoe
    Joined: Nov 27, 2002
    Posts: 10,124

    Petejoe
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Zoar, Ohio

    Vinegar clean. Do a search here.
     
  10. A screen in the upper hose seems like a good idea anytime there's a possibility of any crap being loosened up.
     
  11. porknbeaner
    Joined: Sep 12, 2003
    Posts: 41,065

    porknbeaner
    Member

    Although I have never been a fan of the screen in the upper radiator hose I am with Unclee on this one. At least temporarily. They say that panty hose work real well.
     
  12. unkledaddy
    Joined: Jul 21, 2006
    Posts: 2,859

    unkledaddy
    Member

    You mean as an additive to your engine coolant, not full strength, right?

    From Redline;
    Use one bottle for most passenger cars and light trucks, treats 3 to 5 gallons or 13.2 to 15.9 liters. Vehicles with larger cooling systems should use two bottles. Small cooling systems should use 1oz (3 to 4 capfuls) per quart
     
  13. Nortin
    Joined: Oct 27, 2005
    Posts: 77

    Nortin
    Member
    from Canada

    TSP , tri sodium phosphate is a cleaner you mix with water. I'm not sure how it would act in a rad and cooling system but wonder if anyones used it and/or what the opinions might be of using it. Available at hardware stores everywhere BTW
     
  14. Baking Soda....its clean, non-toxic and works great!!
     
  15. gas pumper
    Joined: Aug 13, 2007
    Posts: 2,947

    gas pumper
    Member


    I did the TSP this winter in a radiator with solder bloom to try and break that stuff up. It must have worked cause now the radiator leaks a little.

    But for cleaning oil out of the system, TSP is it. This is what you need to do when installing a new hot water or steam heat system in your house. Fill it with water and tsp solution, get it up to temp and circulating, then dump and flush. This removes all the flux, oil and other contamiments in a new system to help keep the systems water nice.

    Some say TSP isn't available anymore and the new stuff is PC. Here we have both kinds, the orig and the new. The labels tell you which is what.

    Frank
     
  16. boutlaw
    Joined: Apr 30, 2010
    Posts: 1,190

    boutlaw
    Member

    Just dropped my aluminum radiator at the ole guy radiator shop for some aluminum welding and we talked about oil in radiators, because 1966 FE 390 T-bird was in the shop with tranny fluid in the radiator. He has used dishwasher soap, bout 1/2 cup mixed with straight water to clean oil from radiators for years. Laundry soap and regular dish soap makes to much suds according to him. Also, lye, should not be used in aluminum radiators, but was used in the older brass radiators. He stated that you run the dishwasher soap until the engine is good and warm, and them drain and flush again. Says it works wonders. Makes sense to me but I have never done it. The radiator guy has been running the raidator shop for over 35 years. I called him "ole guy", hell he is my age, but he has been repairing radiators a long time.
     
  17. 36DodgeRam
    Joined: Dec 16, 2008
    Posts: 497

    36DodgeRam
    Member

    Just been thru this. Dropped my stock '36 rad off at the shop Monday. It cooled the hemi for awhile, but slowly the engine got hotter. He put 50/50 solution of water and Muriatic acid in it, left overnite. Says this will clean them, or show you it's rotted junk. Then rinsed it in the acid neutralizer. Put 10psi in it in the pressure tank and it held! Checked flow rate thru the rad, it is doubled! He thinks it might do the job. I'll put it in this weekend and see if it cools, otherwise I'm going custom made aluminum.
     
  18. HOTFR8
    Joined: Nov 30, 2010
    Posts: 2,022

    HOTFR8
    Member

    Thanks Guys. Baking Soda ! I can understand that should work as it works to clean many things.
    This is the system I was told about on the GJ forum >
    [​IMG]
     

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