Symptoms of a Bad Radiator Cap

Signs of a Bad Radiator Cap

You know about your engine, transmission, and brakes and how important they are to ensuring a smooth and safe drive for your vehicle. However, did you know the radiator cap plays a pivotal role in your drives around Panama City, Springfield, and Callaway, FL, too?

The radiator cap—which sits on top of the car’s radiator—keeps the cooling system sealed and properly pressurized. However, like all parts, the radiator cap will need to be replaced with time.

Here are the most common symptoms of a bad radiator cap you should watch out for.

  • Leaking coolant
  • Engine overheating
  • Collapsed radiator hose
  • Coolant reservoir tank overflowing

Learn more about each of these signs below, and schedule a service appointment today.

Leaking Coolant

Leaking Coolant
In addition to moving pressure and heat away from the coolant and engine, the radiator cap makes sure the coolant stays where it needs to be: inside the engine. So, if the coolant is leaking, there could be something wrong with the cap.

As pressure builds within the radiator, the coolant will start to push its way through the areas around the radiator cap, as well as the engine gaskets and hoses. In older vehicles, you may even see coolant leaking from the water pump.

Overheating Engine

As soon as you notice signs of a coolant leak, you’ll want to head to a service center for repairs and maintenance. Waiting a little longer to schedule your service appointment can turn that leak into an overheating engine.

When it’s working properly, the radiator cap helps normalize the pressure within the cooling system and keeps the engine cool. If the cap can’t maintain the correct pressure for your vehicle, the engine will start to overheat.

An overheating engine could also be a symptom of air pockets within the cooling system. If the radiator cap doesn’t have a good seal, air can make its way into the system, creating little pockets. Air pockets prevent efficient coolant circulation, resulting in an overheating engine.

Collapsed Radiator Hose

Radiator Hose Repair
The hoses connected to the radiator and expansion tank work like a vacuum. They push the coolant through the system to help the engine maintain a safe temperature. However, if there’s a problem with your radiator cap, the hoses may collapse.

A collapsed radiator hose looks a bit like a flat tire and is caused by excessive internal suction. If you pop open the hood and see a collapsed radiator hose leading to the expansion tank, chances are the cap isn’t letting the coolant from the expansion tank back into the cooling system.

How to Replace a Bad Radiator Cap

Replacing a bad radiator cap is a simple process, but the best and safest way to replace or repair it is to head to a professional service center like the one at Honda of Bay County.

Proudly serving drivers all over Panama City, Springfield, and Callaway, Florida, our team of trained technicians can make sure your car gets the replacements and services needed to keep your vehicle running safely and smoothly.

So, if you’re starting to see signs that indicate you have a bad radiator cap, contact us to < href="/service/schedule-service/">schedule your service appointment.