Instructions for a Ford Taurus Radiator Flush

by Zyon Silket
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radiator humor image by John Sfondilias from

If the temperature gauge reads higher than normal but your Ford Taurus does not overheat, the issue is not the thermostat--it is sludge buildup inside of the radiator. To remove the sludge, you must drain and flush the radiator. With the sludge and buildup removed, the radiator can cool the fluid by transferring the cooler temperatures from the radiator fins to the fluid. If you don't flush the radiator and you continue to see higher engine temperatures, the eventual result is engine failure. Saving your engine is well worth a small amount of time and money.

Step 1

Drive the front of the Ford Taurus onto a set of car ramps and secure the parking brakes. For added security, place wheel chucks behind the rear tires. Allow the engine at least 20 minutes to cool off after the vehicle is placed on the ramps. Radiator fluid reaches temperatures above 200 degrees and will cause severe burning if it gets on your skin.

Step 2

Open the engine hood of the Taurus and remove the radiator cap. Removing the cap releases the pressure inside of the cooling system and allows the radiator fluid to drain faster.

Step 3

Place a three- to five-gallon drainage pan under the drain spout of the radiator. The drain spout is on the bottom of the radiator on the passenger's side.

Step 4

Open the drain spot with your fingers. If it does not open, use a pair of pliers to turn the valve. Allow all of the fluid to drain into the pan.

Step 5

Remove the lower radiator hose from the radiator outlet by squeezing the two metal tabs on the radiator clamp together. Use pliers if you cannot do it with your fingers. With the metal tabs squeezed together, pull the hose off the inlet and drain the hose into the drain pan.

Step 6

Drain the contents of the drain pan into a larger storage container and place the drain pan back under the radiator outlet.

Step 7

Place the garden hose into the top of the radiator cap and spray the inside walls of the radiator until the water that flows out of the bottom of the radiator becomes clear. Empty the drain pan as needed. It will take several gallons of water to flush the radiator.

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