Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

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bluegill
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Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by bluegill »

Who provides the best/comprehensive automobile radiator flush, clean, and refill service ?? Firestone, Jiffy Lube, Express Oil Change, Midas, Meineke
Last edited by bluegill on Sun Mar 31, 2024 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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tetractys
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by tetractys »

bluegill wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 11:06 pm Who provides the best automobile radiator flush, clean, and refill with antifreeze ?? Firestone, Jiffy Lube, Express Oil Change, Midas, Meineke
You have management, supply chains, locations, and different economies. Overall it has to be a wash. Do your own shopping, DIY, or go to the dealer.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by finite_difference »

Your independent mechanic using OEM fluids.
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bluegill
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by bluegill »

bluegill wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 11:06 pm Who provides the best/comprehensive automobile radiator flush, clean, and refill service ?? Firestone, Jiffy Lube, Express Oil Change, Midas, Meineke
gunny2
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by gunny2 »

They're all about the same. But it's easy to do yourself - IMO save your money and do so
gotoparks
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by gotoparks »

I used to go to an independent Firestone shop for car maintenance and tires for a car and truck. I would use them.
YeahBuddy
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by YeahBuddy »

The best? DIY. Chris Fix did a video on it, see below. I doubt any service center or mechanic will perform all the steps Chris does in this video.
Otherwise, anyone can flush and refill. I'd price shop and look at reviews if I didn't want to DIY. Best service is probably your local, independent mechanic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8YZF5cW7-A
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ClevrChico
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by ClevrChico »

Unless you have an old car, there probably isn't much to flush or clean. Drain and refill is all. I changed the coolant in my Honda at ten years and it was like new. It's not like the old days with the green coolant.

I'd look for a trusted independent shop to do it. A chain shop might not use the correct fluid or charge you without doing the work.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by bob60014 »

What is the make, model, year and mileage of vehicle? Depending on the answer the recommendation may be different. It is one of the most basic of maintenance items.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by Kagord »

I'll say the dealer because they will put the right spec coolant in it.

If you're one who likes to keep cars until they die, I think it's good practice to do this every 3 years (at least a drain and fill), the fluids on new cars these days will come out looking new, but that doesn't mean electrolysis isn't happening.

If keeping the car under 7 years from new, I wouldn't bother.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by snackdog »

Define "best"? Cheapest? Fastest? Mistake-free? It's not rocket science to drain a fluid, flush and pour in a refill.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by lazydavid »

Kagord wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 6:57 am If you're one who likes to keep cars until they die, I think it's good practice to do this every 3 years (at least a drain and fill), the fluids on new cars these days will come out looking new, but that doesn't mean electrolysis isn't happening.
This is WAY too frequent with modern coolant. If you're concerned about electrolysis happening, you can get a lifetime supply of coolant test strips for 10 bucks. Test takes under a minute.

7.5-11 is the acceptable range. The last 8-year-old coolant I tested had a pH between 8 and 9. Most manufacturers who do specify an interval have it at either 8 or 10 years, or 100k miles.
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bluegill
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by bluegill »

gunny2 wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 11:43 pm They're all about the same. But it's easy to do yourself - IMO save your money and do so
I am a DIYer usually. Antifreeze is more messy because I must dispose of deadly antifreeze. For example, if i drain it twice with fresh water, I must dispose of around 6 gallons of antifreeze. How do you dispose of old antifreeze ??
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by smitcat »

bluegill wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 9:18 am
gunny2 wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 11:43 pm They're all about the same. But it's easy to do yourself - IMO save your money and do so
I am a DIYer usually. Antifreeze is more messy because I must dispose of deadly antifreeze. For example, if i drain it twice with fresh water, I must dispose of around 6 gallons of antifreeze. How do you dispose of old antifreeze ??
We have recycling centers in our area that take antifreeze as well as other similar items. Additionally some of the major retailers may also take back used fluids in your area.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by UpperNwGuy »

I use my neighborhood gas station. The mechanics there are good.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by tibbitts »

bluegill wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 9:18 am
gunny2 wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 11:43 pm They're all about the same. But it's easy to do yourself - IMO save your money and do so
I am a DIYer usually. Antifreeze is more messy because I must dispose of deadly antifreeze. For example, if i drain it twice with fresh water, I must dispose of around 6 gallons of antifreeze. How do you dispose of old antifreeze ??
This varies by location. Some sources that accept oil will not accept antifreeze. I took mine to a quick-change oil place but had to call a few others first (auto parts stores for example) that wouldn't accept it (but do accept oil.) It seems it's much more common to accept oil than coolant.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by Chardo »

bob60014 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 6:21 am What is the make, model, year and mileage of vehicle? Depending on the answer the recommendation may be different. It is one of the most basic of maintenance items.
My 2018 Mercedes GLC with 44k miles had been getting an intermittent Add Coolant yellow warning. Should I add a specific coolant, or any major brand, or just some water, or do full flush?
jryan
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by jryan »

I have always serviced the coolant systems for our vehicles, but recently became aware that many new vehicle service procedures specify the use of a coolant refill/air purge tool so that there no air pockets will remain after filling the coolant system.

Know-How Notes: Using a Radiator Vacuum Tool from the NAPA Auto Parts blog describes some of the issues that may be encountered if there is trapped air in the cooling system.

If air is left in the cooling system, perhaps enough drive cycles would cause the air to be purged, but I'd prefer to know that the job was done right the first time without having to worry about topping up the coolant or even engine damage.

Given that there are multiple types of coolant these days, please know the specific coolant that your vehicle requires and verify that it was used.

Fortunately, this Jeep owner discovered that the dealer not only had failed to completely fill the system with coolant, but had used the wrong coolant.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by intendi »

Chardo wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 9:35 am
bob60014 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 6:21 am What is the make, model, year and mileage of vehicle? Depending on the answer the recommendation may be different. It is one of the most basic of maintenance items.
My 2018 Mercedes GLC with 44k miles had been getting an intermittent Add Coolant yellow warning. Should I add a specific coolant, or any major brand, or just some water, or do full flush?
You are low on coolant and need to check the level (see videos below). It's important to check the level only when the engine is cold. Add Mercedes recommended coolant (g40 - pink in color) - probably won't take much. No need to flush at this time (follow the Mercedes recommend service interval for coolant change).

Typically you add 50/50 mixture of coolant and distilled water. Easier to get premixed coolant like this:

https://www.oreillyauto.com/detail/c/ze ... za/g405050

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hrdoQHFQqWw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xn7REstyOUw
intendi
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by intendi »

duplicate (sorry)
Last edited by intendi on Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
intendi
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by intendi »

bluegill wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 11:06 pm Who provides the best/comprehensive automobile radiator flush, clean, and refill service ?? Firestone, Jiffy Lube, Express Oil Change, Midas, Meineke
I've started to drain only the radiator every 2 years and fill with fresh coolant (50/50 mix with distilled water). Though that leaves some old coolant behind in the engine block, it eventually gets replaced over time.

It's difficult to drain out all of the coolant on my car without flushing (coolant drain plug on the engine block is hard to access). If you do flush then there's water left in the engine block that you have to account for when trying to get a 50/50 mix.

Most service places use tap water to flush and most likely mix coolant with tap water (not distilled as is recommended). If that bothers you, then DIY is the only way to go.
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illumination
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by illumination »

Don't go to those places to get your radiator flushed. Find a good independent shop or go to the dealer. There's so many different types of coolants now and a chain type place is very likely to just dump in whatever they have in their barrel. Many cars also have elaborate techniques and tools to properly get all the air out of the system. It's not worth saving $50. I would not even go to those places to have my oil changed.

Also, getting your coolant flushed is usually not some super urgent thing that needs to happen immediately. It's one of the most oversold "wallet flushes" at shops. Look at your owner's manual and just follow that.
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by jryan »

intendi wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:26 am
Chardo wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 9:35 am My 2018 Mercedes GLC with 44k miles had been getting an intermittent Add Coolant yellow warning. Should I add a specific coolant, or any major brand, or just some water, or do full flush?
You are low on coolant and need to check the level (see videos below). [snip...]
If you check the coolant level as intendi suggests and find that it is normal, the issue could be the sensor for the coolant level or even the washer fluid level sensor.

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bluegill
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by bluegill »

bob60014 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 6:21 am What is the make, model, year and mileage of vehicle? Depending on the answer the recommendation may be different. It is one of the most basic of maintenance items.
2015 Toyota Avalon
2001 Mazda B3000 (same as Ford Ranger XLT)
andypanda
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Re: Who provides the best radiator flush, clean, and refill

Post by andypanda »

My wife drives a 2016 Avalon Touring. I tried to get the dealer to do a radiator flush last fall at 75k miles. They wouldn't do it and told me there was no scheduled recommendation for it, but at least wait until 100k or so.

Toyota - the factory - seems to like keeping systems sealed if at all possible. Brakes, cooling.

The service manager knows us and that's what he said, on the phone and in person. I was in the process of buying a 2023 4Runner TRD OR Prem and was in and out of the place six times getting them to do some things prior to delivery as promised - get rid of the cheap Predator running boards and put on the correct ones, take off the ugly port installed bug deflector, etc, etc.

(And then they tossed the cheap running boards and bug shield and original hub caps in the back and told me to take them - they didn't want them either. I put them into my '16 4Runner and made my stepson take them. Just like that old poker game - Pass the Trash.)

I went through the service manual again - there isn't a radiator mileage recommendation.

I know most Toyota dealer sites say do it every 30k, but they are pulling that out of thin air.
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