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How to Replace the Coolant Recovery Tank in a Honda Accord

by Contributor

The cooling system in your Honda Accord is essential to its proper operation. If any part of this system begins to malfunction or leak, it can damage the engine, sometimes permanently. Replacing a defective coolant recovery tank can help keep the cooling system working correctly and doesn't take much time or auto mechanic knowledge.

Step 1

Position a bucket underneath the radiator and directly below the drain plug. This bucket needs to have a capacity of lest two gallons. The plug on a Honda Accord is usually on the driver's side bottom of the radiator.

Step 2

Loosen the drain plug to allow the coolant to empty out into the bucket. You can replace the coolant recovery tank without emptying the radiator, but it's much more messy and difficult. Once complete, pour the old coolant into a sealable container for proper disposal.

Step 3

Remove the nuts that secure the coolant recovery tank to the Honda Accord. You'll need a socket wrench and an extension to get to those hard to reach nuts. Make sure you put the nuts in a safe place, so you won't lose them.

Step 4

Use a pair of hose clamp pliers to detach the hoses from the recovery tank. Be careful with the hoses, as they can still contain coolant. Also, plug the coolant hoses with clean rags to keep them free of dirt and debris.

Step 5

Take out the old coolant recovery tank and replace with the new one. Slide the tank connection over the bolts and use the socket wrench to put the nuts back into place. Make sure the new tank doesn't move and is completely secure. If there's any tank movement when you apply pressure, tighten the nuts a little more.

Step 6

Connect the coolant hoses to the new tank. Use the hose clamp pliers and tighten all of the hose clamp connections. Then, pull on the attached hoses to make certain they're securely in place.

Shut the radiator drain plug, fill the radiator with fresh coolant and start the engine of the Honda Accord. Allow it to run for about 15 minutes. Next, shut off the engine and verify there aren't any leaks around the tank. Finally, shut the hood, dispose of the old recovery tank and clean up any mess.


  • You should wear a long-sleeved shirt and gloves when working with coolant to protect your skin.


  • Never open a hot or even warm radiator, as the internal pressure can cause an eruption and burn anyone in the area.
  • Be careful when working with coolant as it's extremely toxic to people and pets.

Items you will need

  • Bucket
  • Sealable container
  • Socket wrench
  • Socket extension
  • Hose clamp pliers
  • Clean rags
  • Coolant recovery tank
  • Coolant
  • Long-sleeved shirt
  • Gloves

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