How to Drain the Antifreeze on Vehicles

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

The engine in your Vehicles Chevy Vehicles can become quite hot during operation. That's where your Vehicles radiator comes in. The water pump on your car's engine circulates coolant (or antifreeze, during the winter) throughout the chambers in the engine. The fluid absorbs the heat from the engine as it passes through the system. The heated fluid then flows to the radiator, where the heat is released into the atmosphere. You can drain the antifreeze from your Vehicles if you need to change out the fluid.

Under The Hood:

 How to Drain the Antifreeze on a 2005 Grand Am

Park the 2005 Grand Am on a level spot where you will have room to work safely on your car. Your driveway or garage is an ideal location for this chore. Set the parking brake and pop the hood latch. Allow the engine to cool for about 30 minutes.

Look under the hood and locate the radiator cap. It is on top of the radiator at the front of the engine. Place a rag over the cap and turn the cap counterclockwise. After about one-quarter of a turn, press down on the cap to remove.

Slide the drain pan under the car and position yourself underneath the radiator at the front of the 2005 Grand Am. Look for the plastic or brass radiator drain plug; it is on the bottom of the radiator on the driver's side. Place the drain pan directly under the plug.

Use the pliers to turn the drain plug counterclockwise. Pull the drain plug out of the radiator and allow the fluid inside to drain into the pan. Replace the drain plug when the fluid has stopped dripping from the radiator.

Items you will need

  • Rag

  • Drain pan

  • Pliers

 How to Drain Antifreeze From a 2006 Hyundai Sonata

Place the ramps in front of the car so that you can drive the car straight up on the ramps. Slowly drive the car up on the ramps and set the emergency brake. Turn the car off and pop the hood. Then get out and make sure the car is securely on the ramps.

Put the wheel chocks behind each rear wheel to keep the car from rolling off the ramps.

Remove the negative battery cable from the battery to ensure the radiator fan will not automatically come on while you are working.

Let the engine completely cool down, then slowly remove the radiator cap and set it to the side. Removing the radiator cap will allow the antifreeze to drain out of the radiator faster.

Slide under the front passenger side of the engine bay and start removing the plastic radiator shield. You can use a ratchet and a 10mm socket to remove most of the fasteners. Use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the last fastener from the shield. Set the plastic shield aside.

Locate the radiator drain plug on the lower left-hand side of the radiator. The radiator plug is a white plug with a turn handle on it. Loosen the white radiator plug with a pair of pliers by turning the plug counterclockwise.

Put a catch pan underneath the radiator drain plug and finish removing the plug. Let the antifreeze drain into the pan until the radiator is empty.

Replace the plug in the bottom of the radiator and tighten it securely.

Drain the antifreeze from the plastic antifreeze overflow reservoir that is mounted on the left hand side of the top of the engine bay. Remove the three fasteners that are holding the reservoir onto the frame, using a ratchet and a 10mm socket.

Remove the plastic reservoir from the frame of the car and pour the antifreeze into the catch pan. Reinstall the reservoir back on the side of the frame.

Back the car off of the ramps so that the car is back on a level surface.

Fill the radiator with antifreeze. Put the negative battery cable back on the battery and tighten. Drive the car long enough that the engine becomes hot enough to open the thermostat, then fill the radiator again while the thermostat is open to ensure it is completely filled.

Items you will need

  • Jack Ramps

  • Rear wheel chocks

  • Ratchet

  • Socket set

  • Phillips screwdriver

  • Pliers

  • Catch pan

 How to Drain Antifreeze From a 2001 Malibu

Park the 2001 Malibu in a spot that is out of the way and will give you room to work underneath the engine compartment at the front of the vehicle. A driveway or garage makes an ideal location for this.

Shift the 2001 Malibu into park. Turn off the engine and remove the keys from the ignition. Pop the hood. Allow the engine to cool off for about 45 minutes before starting to drain the antifreeze to prevent burns.

Turn the radiator cap on top of the radiator counterclockwise. After about 1/3 of a turn, begin pressing down and continue turning. Pull the cap straight up and off the radiator.

Place the drain pan underneath the petcock. On the 2001 Malibu, this is located on the driver's side of the radiator.

Use a pair of pliers to unscrew the petcock. Pull the petcock out of the opening.

Allow the antifreeze inside the radiator to drain out into the drain pan. Replace the petcock when finished.

Items you will need

  • Drain pan

  • Pliers

  • Protective goggles and gloves