- I suspect a leak in my Hummer radiator but can’t seem to find where even after inspecting the cooling system twice. What can I do to determine if there’s really a leak in the radiator?
If you didn’t discover leak during visual inspection, you can pressure test the cooling system using a pressure tester. One way to do this is to install the tester in place of the radiator cap while the engine is completely cold. Once the gauge is installed, pump it up to 10 pounds. If the result shows pressure loss, then better start looking around the heads, heater core, hoses, and water pump for leaks.
- While driving, I noticed that the temperature gauge of my vehicle starts to climb rapidly to the red zone and stayed there. Is it something I should be worried about? Does my Hummer radiator have something to do with this?
Yes, this is a sign of a broken radiator fan. It can be observed on vehicles equipped with an electric or electronically activated radiator fan module because a bad radiator fan on such vehicles does not produce any sound. The fan may just remain off and the only way you’ll know that it is defective is when the gauge reaches the red zone, which isn’t good for a vehicle’s engine. When this happens, make sure you deal with it immediately.
- What’s the easiest way to fix those small leaks that I’ve found in my Hummer radiator?
You can address that issue using a radiator sealer. This product comes in liquid or powder form, stored in small tubes and bottles. The sealer is added to the cold coolant in the radiator while the engine is running. Since it is with the coolant, the sealer will then find its way into every nook and cranny of the radiator and therefore on the leaks. Small leaks are treated as the sealer clogs the hole. As the vehicle cools down, the sealer will then form a semi-permanent seal. This remedy, however, is just temporary; the leak usually comes back over time.
- Is it true that the smaller the radiator tubes are, the better they are in dissipating heat from the coolant?
That’s actually what the manufacturers of this type of radiators claim—with smaller and thinner tubes, the coolant is broken down into smaller quantities to further improve engine cooling. That may be true; but if you do not follow the recommended intervals and frequency of cooling system flushing, the small tubes will get plugged up easily. The thinner walls of the tubes can also affect the product’s longevity.
- I am currently looking for a replacement Hummer radiator and torn between the two common types. Which is better—aluminum or copper radiator?
Copper is an ideal material for radiators as it is nontoxic, highly resistant to corrosion, remarkably malleable, and can easily be mended using solder. If you’re lucky enough to avoid any frontal crash and you maintain your cooling system well, a good-quality copper radiator can even last the life of the vehicle. Aluminum radiators, on the other hand, don’t suffer from dissimilar metals and solder bloom issues affecting copper units. They also utilize wider tubes for better heat dissipation. But the downside is, aluminum tends to react to various chemicals and elements. So even if aluminum radiators are properly installed, their lifespan is usually shorter than standard copper or copper-brass radiators.
- How can the method of elevating my Hummer bleed the radiator?
Since the radiator is elevated until it is higher than the rest of the cooling system components, air pockets are forced closed, therefore dissipating air bubbles into the atmosphere. When raising the vehicle, see to it that the radiator cap or reservoir tank cap is loose, as this helps speed up the process.
- What type of Hummer radiator is ideal for speed lovers like me who won’t accommodate additional weight into my ride?
You can go for an aluminum radiator as it offers the advantage of about 30% to 40% less weight. That seems to be a big advantage over copper radiators, especially for racers. For vehicle owners who are concerned with the vehicle’s appearance, aluminum radiators can also be polished to achieve a mirror-like finish.