Vehicle coolant is an essential element for the proper operation of an engine. Low or low coolant levels can cause the engine to overheat. It is therefore essential to check the level regularly.
Checking the coolant level
It is advisable to check the coolant level whether the engine is cold or at mid-temperature. If the engine is hot when the level is checked, there is a risk of burns due to the hot liquid escaping from the pressurised expansion tank.
It is also important to park the vehicle on a flat and horizontal surface.
If the coolant level is too close to the minimum line, it is important to top up, taking care not to exceed this limit. A funnel can be used for more comfortable and accurate topping up. It is preferable to use a coolant that complies with the manufacturer’s recommendations and it is imperative never to top up with water. This is because water freezes from 0°C, unlike the antifreeze in the coolant, which has a much lower freezing point (on average between -15°C and -30°C depending on the mixture used).
The coolant level should be checked generally every 10,000 km. It is also advisable to drain, purge and replace the coolant completely every 2 to 4 years, depending on the vehicle.
What to do in the event of a coolant leak?
It’s possible that a radiator is leaking. In this case, the coolant level drops below the minimum level. The engine overheats and can cause serious and irreparable damage to the engine
In this case, it is imperative to identify the leak and repair it quickly. The leak is easier to identify because it is characterized by the presence of a whitish deposit at its origin, i.e. near the radiator, the hoses and the water pump. A bad smell in the passenger compartment when the heater is on can also indicate a leak.
If it is on a clamp or hose, it will usually be sufficient to replace the defective part. In case of doubt or if there is a major leak, quickly consult a garage.