How to Put Coolant in a Car

by Lindsay Maddox
itstillruns article image
Girl repair car on road image by Vasyl Dudenko from

Part of owning a car is maintaining it so it continues to run. Whether you're adding coolant as a proactive measure to avoid engine troubles, or you have found your car overheating due to lack of adequate coolant, putting coolant in a car is a fairly straightforward task. Using safety precautions and the right tools, you'll be able to change the coolant in your car with little effort.

Step 1

Open your car's hood and prop it safely open. If the engine is still hot, leave the hood open for several hours to allow the engine to cool down before attempting to add coolant.

Step 2

Examine the hood's contents, paying close attention to the front of the car where you'll find the radiator. Locate the coolant, also called the antifreeze, reservoir. It is usually a white container with a metal or black screw-on lid, located near the radiator. Put on safety goggles and gloves to avoid injury.

Step 3

Use a rag to turn the lid counter clockwise slowly to unscrew it, allowing air to escape a little at a time. Though you may be tempted to unscrew the lid quickly, resist the urge as the coolant can bubble up and badly burn you.

Step 4

Locate the line near the top of the reservoir that indicates the maximum liquid level. Place a funnel inside the reservoir and slowly add coolant until the liquid reaches the "max" line.

Step 5

Place the cap back on the coolant reservoir and firmly tighten it by turning it clockwise.

Close your hood and restart your engine. You have now successfully put coolant in your car. If you still encounter issues with your car overheating, have it checked by a mechanic. It could be your temperature gauge, head gasket, radiator or another serious problem.

More Articles

article divider