Leaking rad question......

Messages
158
Location
western Colorado
We have a 2005 dodge caravan, which has just developed a leak in the rad...Very small leak but wondering if one of the sealing products would be a good idea or not..I think Bars Leak is one that come to mind,,,opinions appreciated...
 
Messages
35,999
Location
ME
Good grief no! What's the estimated life of that van, 15 years? Do you want that junk floating around in your system the next 11? Do you want that patch on the back of your mind for that long? Just get a new rad, and make sure something odd like electrolysis isn't eating it up, 4 years is a short time span.
 
Messages
1,714
Location
CA.
Bars stop leak has its place in an older car where replacing a raditaor isn't worth it. Or if you make short trips, and aren't going to get stranded to far from home should the radiator fail. If you care about the car or getting stuck somewhere, replace the raditator, or have a shop fix it. I found it cheaper to replace the radiator vs having it repaired. YMMV AD
 
Messages
39,806
Location
Pottstown, PA
This has to be from either damage or a defect. That is, it can't be from neglect. You're not even over the OEM fluid change/service interval recommendation. Is this in the aluminum core or in the gasket on the plastic tank seam? Stop leak would be my remedy only if I needed time to manage getting to a time when I could install the new rad. That is, make it a planned/scheduled time of my choosing.
 
Messages
2,097
Location
kansastan
Might want to double check and see if Chris142- the Radiator Guru- agrees with me here... but I have serious doubts about some of the cheap aftermarket radiators out there. If it's just a leak between the tank (usually hot side) and core, then having the OEM radiator repaired might be a better (more durable and better cooling) option. Back in 2001, I had the radiator rodded and the hot-side tank re-sealed on my '94 Chevy Corsica (plastic tanks/aluminum core) due to a leak and a nasty case of Dex-sludge. Cost me $70. 8 years later, it still cools fine and doesn't leak. I wonder if an aftermarket (made in China) radiator for twice the $$ would have held up or cooled as well.
 
Messages
21,663
Location
Apple Valley, California
 Originally Posted By: onion
Might want to double check and see if Chris142- the Radiator Guru- agrees with me here... but I have serious doubts about some of the cheap aftermarket radiators out there. If it's just a leak between the tank (usually hot side) and core, then having the OEM radiator repaired might be a better (more durable and better cooling) option. Back in 2001, I had the radiator rodded and the hot-side tank re-sealed on my '94 Chevy Corsica (plastic tanks/aluminum core) due to a leak and a nasty case of Dex-sludge. Cost me $70. 8 years later, it still cools fine and doesn't leak. I wonder if an aftermarket (made in China) radiator for twice the $$ would have held up or cooled as well.
We won't sell Silla or Reach Radiators. CSF seems to be getting better. We won't even bother with rodding a PTR out. When they reach around 100K they are not worth messing with. The plastic tanks are brittle and they break when put into the clamp and the tubes are too thin to try to rod out. My cost on a plastic tank is $65+. So 2 of them are $130.....Pretty close to the new radiator price just for 2 tanks w/o any labor or markup. 2 tanks installed would be about $250 so a new radiator is a better deal. Plus the aftermarket radiators are all slightly different and the new tanks won't usually fit.
 
Messages
22,726
Location
CA
 Originally Posted By: onion
I wonder if an aftermarket (made in China) radiator for twice the $$ would have held up or cooled as well.
A new Chinese radiator (e.g. Proliance from NAPA) will carry a lifetime warranty.
 
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