A Zimbabwe family got quite a shock when the cause of their car engine problems turned out to be a python. While this particular story may make you shudder, there are plenty of other similar stories where this type of event has happened in Australia, and it's enough to make you never want to open your bonnet ever again! At this time of year, snakes are on the move while looking for somewhere warm to hide out while the temperatures start to drop. If it chooses your car engine bay as a safe haven, you'll need an expert snake handler to get rid of it for you. After the snake has been removed from your vehicle, and you have returned your heart rate to a normal level, you need to check your radiator as this is where snakes go as a source of warmth. Use this checklist to check that no damage has been done to your radiator.
The radiator fins are the part at the front of the radiator that looks like wavy metal lines. These fins allow the heat that is generated by the radiator tubes to be dispersed into the open air rather than remaining trapped in the engine bay.
Modern day radiator fins are made of aluminium, and aluminium is a soft metal which could become damaged by the weight of the snake pressing on it. If your fins are bent, trying to straighten them out yourself using a radiator fin comb which can be purchased from your local automotive store. The comb is placed within the radiator fins, and straightens them as you push it along. If you are uncomfortable with doing this task yourself, or there are holes in the fins, a radiator repair shop should be your next stop.
You should not ignore bent or broken radiator fins as it will affect the way your radiator cools itself, and this could lead to your car overheating.
The next thing you want to check is that all of your radiator hoses are still in place and haven't been knocked loose by the snake slithering past the clips. There are two radiator hoses to look for. The top hose connects the radiator to the motor and is the one that is most visible when you open your bonnet. The bottom hose connects the flows from the radiator and through the heat wall at the back of the engine bay. You may need to get underneath your car to locate this one.
These hoses are held in place at each end by clamps. Squeeze each end of the hose up by the clamp to see if there is any loosening around the clamp area. If the hose looks loose, you need to tighten or replace the clamps. Screw clamps wrap around the hose and have a screw that can be adjusted using a screwdriver. Turning the screw will tighten the clamp, and resecure the hose to the engine or radiator.
If you are uncomfortable with attending to this task, or you cannot get your hands to fit into the area to tighten them, a radiator repair shop can take care of this for you. Additionally, they can inspect the condition of the hoses before tightening them as radiator hoses do perish over time because of the hot liquid they are exposed to.
It is important your car's radiator runs efficiently so you are not left stranded on the side of the road with an overheated engine. So, once you've said bye-bye to that reptile who made your car engine a temporary home, it's time to make sure it hasn't left a lasting mark on your car's radiator system.Share
18 March 2016
My name is Donna, and I love my toys! I have an ATV, a caravan, a boat and a range of other "toys". I find that there is a lot of information online about auto service but not that much about servicing fun types of vehicles. Inspired by the phrase "be the change you want to see in the world", I decided to start a blog full of information that is usually hard to find online. I will write about servicing toys, vintage cars, sports cars and a range of other topics. I hope that you like these posts and that you learn from them. Thanks for reading and enjoy your toys.