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GMC Sonoma Radiator

Usual Signs of a Bad GMC Sonoma Radiator

Your radiator plays an important role in maintaining the temperature of your engine. Because of the rugged activities of your pickup truck, its engine is very likely to overwork. With this, you should take good care of your engine cooling system. This includes your radiator. It keeps your engine from overheating by cooling down the coolant that circulates around your engine block. Common issues with your GMC Sonoma radiator include rust, leak, and clog. Following are the signs that your pickup's radiator is going bad.

Low coolant levels

When the coolant levels are often low in your pickup truck, there is a leak somewhere in your radiator. Your radiator is composed of fins for effective heat exchange between the coolant and the air that blows against your radiator. Low coolant levels come with a visible leak on the body of your radiator as well as coolant on the ground. To be certain of a radiator leak, you can have your radiator pressure-tested at a motor shop.

Discolored coolant

When the coolant inside your radiator begins to change color into something oil- or rust-like, your radiator has a clogged fin. Some less expensive coolant products leave small particle deposits that clog up the passageways inside your radiator. The blockage can cause your radiator to go bad, so it should be flushed immediately. In a severe case of clog, the radiator should be replaced.

Cool radiator portion

If one portion of your radiator is relatively cooler than the other parts, there may be a clog in its internal tubes. The transferring of heat from the coolant to the radiator should take place in all parts of your radiator. When one portion is cooler, it means that there is little or no coolant flowing through that part. This issue can be remedied through a radiator flush. However, often flushing can damage your radiator. In that case, the radiator should be replaced instead.

Blown head gasket

This is a later and more serious sign of a bad GMC Sonoma radiator. Your bad radiator has already caused your engine to overheat, blowing out one or two of its head gaskets. This is a serious issue because the leaking gasket can introduce contaminants that damage the engine. With this, the damaged head gasket and the radiator should be replaced immediately.

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  • Taking Care of Your GMC Sonoma Radiator 27 February 2013

    Engine overheating is a big problem for your GMC Sonoma. It leads to more serious issues with your engine such as component damage. This is where your radiator comes in. It functions by maintaining the temperature of the coolant that circulates around the engine block. Damage in the radiator may shoot the temperature up your running engine. With this, you need to take good care of your GMC Sonoma radiator. Doing so is not difficult at all. Following are some simple ways you can take care of your radiator.


    Flush your radiator once a year.


    Internal particle deposits are the main enemies of your radiator. These buildups can cause clogging that limits coolant flow. With this, the radiator has to be flushed with the correct radiator flush solution. This gets rid of the particle buildups and keeps them from causing serious problems. However, flushing should only be done once a year. Doing so more often can damage the radiator.


    Regularly check the different parts of your radiator.


    Leak is the most common issue with your GMC Sonoma radiator. This is caused by different parts that go bad or corrode. With this, you should regularly check your radiator for early signs of damage and corrosion. Check your radiator fins for tears, radiator core for breaks, clamps for rusts, and hoses for cracks. These are the common parts where leak develops.


    Clean the surface of your radiator.


    Dirt, dust, and dead bugs can accumulate at the surface of your radiator. These can eventually damage the fins of your radiator. When this happens, the cooling capabilities of your radiator are reduced. You should protect your radiator's fins by cleaning it often. Vacuum cleaner, dust cloth, and long circular brushes are enough to clean the surface of your radiator.


    Replace your radiator cap whenever you change your coolant.


    Regular draining of the coolant is important for the smooth operations of your radiator. You should note that whenever you do so, you should replace your radiator cap as well. The radiator cap is a common source of various radiator problems. More than a lid, the radiator cap is a pressure valve that keeps pressure inside the radiator to maintain coolant flow. When the coolant goes dirty and bad, it is likely that the radiator cap is also bad.