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Possible clogged radiator


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I have a fresh engine with a completely cleaned block and i am using a 160 high performance thermostat. Timing is fully advanced and I am having overheating problems. Radiator has been flushed with Prestone flush.

I took a short ran and got up to a temperature of 195 degrees.  Using temperature sensing gun I recorded the values shown in the attached pic.

The far right temperature is too low. The values near the top should be closer to 190 and the bottom values should be around 150. Would this indicate clogging on right side.

The radiator shown is one that is in my bone pile and is for illustration only. The tanks are good but core is not good.

 

IMG_1558.jpg.229e6fae00fe8f7ef94c3301907e241d.jpg

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What was the outside temp during your drive. On my std six with a 160 degree thermostat driving about 40-45 if the ambient temp is 70 or below it will run 160. If ambient is in the 80s I’ll run about 180 at the same speed and in the 90s it will run in the 190s. Mine is a round tube radiator though. 

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My car had a honey comb radiator when I got it.  It would overheat after a few minutes of driving and I tried all kinds of things to unclog it.  You just can't 'rod' a clogged HC, unfortunately.  I finally had to break down and spend the $$ on re-core (flat tube).  Now I use a 160 F in-line thermostat to keep temperature up...

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On 6/23/2021 at 12:34 PM, Alan Cutler said:

Have you tested on a known good radiator to ensure your handheld infrared sensor is calibrated well.

 

 

The high temperatures on my dash gauge agreed with the sensor reading. 

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  • 2 months later...

Using my heat sensor I have determined that about a 85% efficiency for my honeycomb  radiator. Not to bad for an original 90 yr old radiator. 

It appears only a 1 1/2” of the total with of the radiator Is clogged. The effect on my running temperature is 190 at air temperature of 80. I am using a 160 thermostat.

It would be great to get it unclogged but will be hard to do. I can’t rod it out and cleaning does not seem to clear clogged potion. The cleaning solutions just follow path of less resistance.

Runs great for a cool weather truck.

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Stakeside, have you tried lie. It can be bought at a hardware store, it's used for septic tanks and pipes. that is what a radiator shop uses in their hot tank. It a crystal that you mix with water. If you would fill the radiator and let it sit in the sun to warm it up?

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Stakeside, I thought you are on my side of the Coast, NorCal perhaps, be careful, as the Lie/Lye we get is monitored closely by the tree huggers...(nothing against tree huggers 🤗)

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SH is the same as Lye, I use Caustic Soda, similar to Lye and SH, but food grade, just because we use in the the pickling of our olives, much easier to get out here and half the price.

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13 hours ago, trini said:

How about rigging up a steamer in the back yard and direct the steam into the rad for a couple of hours ? Can also use this method to clean out gas tanks.

While a steamer might clean out loose rust and greasy gunk, not so much with hard water deposits. Ask the guys around you in the old car community, if they know a radiator shop that works with old radiators in your area. Reach out to the Ford (Model T, A or other), Chevrolet, etc guys. Unless it is a honeycomb, more than likely it needs to be rodded out along with a good cleaning.

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Home owners use a type of pills in the home humidifier attached to the home furnace to  soften the lime in the water. I used it and it worked fine. There was a liquid sold in hardware stores . Never worked good  enough for me .Honey comb rads are hard to repair and clean out. I was told by old timers these rad when working correctly are very efficient . My 1928 Chevrolet had one as original equipment. The owner had filled it with transmission oil, was sitting out in the field for many years. Inside the core was clean as a whistle. 

Apart from that I think enough steam, like the ones furniture manufacturers use to bend wood will do a good  job but may take several hours and patience. 

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I remember a radiator guy showing me a few leaves from a honeycomb rad. Looking at them through a light they were like sieves mainly because the incorrect coolant were used. That is the reason you are getting different readings all over the place. All in all you may spend time and money to resuscitate that rad which would turn out to nothing .Get a rad guy to make a tube type one The Top and lower tanks and outlet/inlets can be reused. Check with Don edj.rad56@yahoo.ca.

Cheers.

Harry 

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Radiator takes hot coolant from the engine at the intake at the top and lower cooler output going to lower engine filler. Readings are more consistent than I noted. Readings are 195 at top and 150 at bottom, except for clogged 2” portion on the right side that I believe to be clogged. I calculate I have 85% cooling efficiency with 2” wide portion clogged.

Since cooler weather is coming I will run as is. I agree that a replacement  radiator is best solution.

Forum members thanks for all your  suggestions.

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