Is It Safe To Drive With A Cracked Radiator?

The answer to the question "Is it safe to drive with a cracked radiator?" is no. Do not drive you car if the radiator has cracked. If you do, the engine will overheat and it will damage other parts of the car. Worse yet, the car may end up on fire. A car is made up of complex systems but the radiator is one of the simple ones. And hence if it is cracked or if it has any other major problems, you can easily tell by looking at some signs.

How Does the Radiator Work?

If you want to know whether your radiator is cracked, it is important to understand how the system works first. The radiator serves one function in a car: cooling the engine. It absorbs heat from the coolant that circulates in the engine and pumps the coolant right back into the engine to cool the engine. The radiator's cooling mechanism is aided by a fan that blows air through the coolant to take away some of the heat.  

What Is The Location Of The Radiator?

If you know the location of your engine, then you shouldn't have a hard time finding the radiator; the two must be close to each other except if the engine is mounted at the back. Open the bonnet of your car and locate the engine. Next to the engine, look for a structure that has thin fins or tubes running inside it. Thin metallic fins are one the integral parts of a radiator. They take away heat from the tubes that circulate the coolant.

How Do You Know The Radiator Is Cracked?

Now that you know how the radiator works, you can easily tell if it is cracked. One sign of cracked radiator is a leaking coolant, which may force you to refill the radiator several times in a week. Of course, the radiator needs to be refilled regularly, but if you are doing it more than usual, then you have a problem. Another sign is an overheating engine. If your engine is too hot, it means the coolant is not doing its work. And if the coolant is not working, it is because it is leaking from the cracked radiator.

Don't drive with an overheating engine because you may end up repairing more than the radiator. A hot engine can damage the bearings, bend the connecting rods, or break the crankshafts. These parts are expensive to repair, so it is better you seek the assistance of a mechanic once you detect that there is a problem with your radiator.