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Taking the Heat (Heater Hose Maintenance/Repair)

Posted May 29, 2022 10:14 AM

If you have an internal combustion vehicle, you know it has a lot of hoses that carry various fluids.  And if you have a heater in your vehicle, you'll have heater hoses.

A heater hose connects to and from the engine so some coolant can be circulated through a little radiator called a heater core.  In cold weather, that heater core acts as a heat exchanger to heat up your cabin.

Even in the hot weather, the heater hoses can prove problematic.  That's because they may remain pressurized even though you're not running your heater.  Heater hoses are made out of tough materials since they must handle heat and pressure.  But even the durable rubber, plastic and metal they are made out of can crack or leak from years of use.  That means coolant can be sprayed out into the engine compartment or leak onto a driveway or garage floor. 

You may be able to see a puddle of coolant under your vehicle or perhaps smell the odor of the coolant under the hood.  Some say it has a sweet smell.  Another sign coolant may be leaking out of the heater hoses is your engine may be running hotter.   You'll be able to tell by watching the heat gauge on your dash.  Let's say your heat gauge usually points just slightly below halfway between the C and H (Cold and Hot) of the heat gauge.  But now it is just slightly above.  That's enough to tell you that the coolant temperature has gone up a little, a possible sign of trouble.

This is a good time to swing by your service facility and have them take a look. If they catch the leak when it's small, it's a relatively simple matter of draining the coolant, replacing the hoses and replacing the coolant.  Sometimes, though, a heater hose can suddenly burst and a lot of coolant can leak out quickly.  That can, in turn, cause your engine to start to overheat.  In that case, you may see your vehicle's temperature gauge shoot up pretty quickly.  Then it's best to pull over and have your car towed to a repair facility since driving with no coolant can cause severe engine damage.

Preventative maintenance is your best insurance against heater hose problems.  A technician will periodically check for any signs of cracks or leaks.  You should expect to replace a heater hose at least once during the time you own your vehicle.

Protrans Automotive & Transmission Specialists
3420 Gato Ct.
Riverside, CA 92507
(951) 367-7400
https://www.protransauto.com/



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My family and I love this place! Our car had a leak and started smoking the day we had to leave Riverside and we found this place through amazing reviews. They were super fast and were understanding that we had to leave town urgently. The service was amazing and everyone we met were super friendly. They are also super attentive considering they remembered us and our situation even though we only spoke on the phone about it! They were also transparent about prices and fees so you don't have to worry about hidden charges and they made sure to get our approval before proceeding. This has to be a go to place if you are within range!
D
, 06/20/2022

My alternator went out on my car while I was driving to Arizona with my 3 dogs and a cat, to say I was stressed is an understatement and they had my car up and running before lunch time!! I can't tell you how much I appreciated the service and their kindness.. Thanks Jeff!!
L
, 06/20/2022

Great business, very friendly, professional, and up-front about anything related to your vehicle. Have been going to them for multiple different vehicles because of the quality.
J
, 06/09/2022

We were very impressed with their professionalism. They kept us informed at every step of the process. We will definitely be coming back.
C
, 06/08/2022

They did a diagnostic on my car and found that my transmission wasnt working anymore. They also found that my transmission was still under warranty and they sent it to a nissan dealership to get it replaced for free. I didnt even know it was atill under warranty so that was nice what they did.
S
, 05/25/2022

The folks at Protrans did a great job on my 2008 Ram trans rebuild!!! The service went way above and beyond!!! Jeff was great to work with and kept me well informed on all my options and progress!! Will be taking all my vehicles there for all work!!!
C
, 05/23/2022

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