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How to Flush the Radiator in a Chevy Silverado

by Contributor

In order to keep a Chevy Silverado truck in top working condition, an owner must perform routine maintenance. Flushing the radiator is an excellent example of this type of servicing. If an owner flushes the radiator every other year, the coolant system will experience a longer life and much better efficiency. The mechanical requirements to perform this maintenance are relatively simple and most anyone can do it.

Step 1

Move the Chevy Silverado to a flat surface with as little incline as possible. If available, you can drive the truck onto risers to allow better access to the underneath of the vehicle. Be sure to set the parking brake before you start any work.

Step 2

Open the hood of the truck and touch the radiator. If the radiator is not cool to the touch wait until it is. The contents of radiators can be under pressure and can explode, causing severe injury.

Step 3

Twist the radiator cap one turn to allow any pressure inside to release. Wear gloves and a long-sleeved shirt to prevent injury to your skin. After the pressure releases, remove the radiator cap entirely.

Step 4

Position a tray or bucket underneath the radiator plug on the underside of the Chevy Silverado's radiator. This container should have a volume of at least two gallons.

Step 5

Use a wrench to remove the radiator plug and allow the contents of the radiator to drain into the container. After the draining completes, place the coolant in a sealable container for proper disposal. Because this coolant is toxic to pets and children, you don't want to dispose of it public areas.

Step 6

Pour distilled water into the radiator to flush any remaining debris out of the radiator. Be sure that there is a bucket or tray to catch the flush water and continue flushing until the water is completely clear of debris. Avoid using tap water because any sediments from it can remain behind and damage your coolant system.

Step 7

Place the radiator drain plug back into place underneath the radiator and fill the radiator with fresh coolant. Fill it all the way up to the neck of the radiator with an inch to spare.

Step 8

Turn the ignition on and allow the car to run until the cooling fan turns on two separate times. Do this with the radiator cap still off the top of the radiator.

Step 9

Check the coolant level and add additional coolant if the level retreated during the time the Chevy Silverado engine was active.

Put the radiator cap back on the radiator and close the hood. Perform any necessary clean up and proper disposal of any toxic coolant.

Items you will need

  • Wrench
  • Work gloves
  • Bucket or tray for drainage
  • Distilled water (Approx. 2 gallons)
  • Coolant

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