Car Radiator Buying Guide

Author: superspares  

A car has many moving parts and when each of these parts moves, it causes friction, which in turn generates a lot of heat. Though motor oil is pumped into the engine to give some lubrication to these parts, it is not enough to reduce the heat energy. As a result of this constant friction, enormous amounts of heat are generated in the engine and this causes some of the parts to break down frequently. To protect the car's engine from excess heat,>car radiators are used.

These radiators are a part of the car's cooling system that dissipates the heat by passing a coolant fluid to the car engine. Due to this important role, car radiators are vital for a car's normal functioning, so users should ensure that their radiators are in good working condition always. When users feel their engine is heating up faster than it should, they should check the radiator and replace it if needed.

How a Car Radiator Works

Fuel is constantly burning inside the car and this generates a lot of heat. Though a lot of the heat goes out through the exhaust system, some of it remains in the engine and heats it to dangerous levels. This affects the performance and life of the engine, so it is best to keep the heat around 200 degrees Fahrenheit using car radiators. This makes car radiators an essential part of every car, so presented below are the workings of a radiator to give users a better understanding of the role played by radiators.

The coolant is pumped to the engine by a centrifugal pump, and this coolant goes to the car engine and cylinders through the passageways in the engine. The coolant absorbs the heat from the engine and goes into the radiator. The radiator cools down the coolant by taking the heat from it and transferring it to the air. The hot air is blown out by a fan and the cooled down liquid goes back to the engine again to absorb more heat.

Parts of the Car Radiator

The primary role of the car radiator is to transfer the heat that comes from the fluid to the air and this air is blown away by a large fan present next to radiator. Due to the important functionality of a car radiator, there are many parts to it, such as aluminum fins, a turbulator, and side tanks. Each of these parts is explained below to give users a better idea of how these parts work together to cool the car's engine.

Aluminum Fins

Many modern car radiators are made of aluminum and this aluminum is shaped like fins to allow multiple tubes to pass through these fins. These fins work parallelly to take the heat off the fluid that flows through the pipes.


The turbulator is a kind of fin that is attached to the tubes to increase the flow of liquid through these pipes. Typically, the part of the fluid that touches the tubes is cooled down faster. The liquids that flow in the middle may or may not be cooled down and this depends on the temperature difference between the tubes and the part of the fluids that actually touch the tubes. In general, if the parts of the fluid near the tubes are cooled quickly, then the heat in the middle part of the fluid is cooled at all because heat is not transferred. To avoid this problem, turbulators are used to create a turbulence inside the tubes so that the liquid is mixed and all parts of the liquid are cooled down equally.

Radiator Cap

The radiator cap is used to prevent air from entering the coolant. It does this by increasing the heat of the coolant by 45 degrees Fahrenheit and the excess pressure is released through the cap. This works pretty much like a pressure cooker that is used to boil water. Since the cap acts as a pressure valve, it is set at 15 psi in cars to ensure that only a certain amount of pressure is released so that no air can enter the cooling system.

Choosing a Car Radiator

There is a staggering variety of car radiators available on the market today, so users should know what they should look for before buying a car radiator. Some of the factors that should be kept in mind while choosing a car radiator are construction, tubing, airflow, and cost. Each of these aspects is discussed below to give users an idea of what they should look for in a car radiator.


One of the most reliable materials for car radiators is aluminum because it is tough and does not corrode like other metals. Additionally, aluminum is not prone to corrosion, and for these reasons, users should look for aluminum radiators.


Tubes are important for a car radiator because they bring in the liquid that needs to be cooled. Therefore, it's important that the tubes are wide and strong to ensure that they can carry a larger volume of fluid without breaking down. Users should look for wider tubes in a car radiator because this will maximize the surface area, which means more parts of the fluid will have contact with the tubes. As a result, the liquid will be cooled faster. It is also a good idea to check the tubes to see that they are not too thick, as this can reduce the efficiency of the radiator.

Radiator Fans

Radiator fans can be mechanical or electrical, though the latter is preferred because it consumes less power. Mechanical fans consume as much as 20 horsepower, so electrical fans are a better choice.

Restriction of Coolant

Before buying a car radiator, users should check to see if there are any restrictions to the passage of the coolant. This is important to ensure that the coolant is cooled down quickly and properly.


Lastly, users should look into the cost. You should have a budget in mind before heading out to shop for car radiators and you should look for a model that has the features they want and is also within their estimated budget.


A lot of friction is created between the different parts inside a car's engine when the car is running and this friction generates enormous amounts of heat. Such high levels of heat can damage the car's engine, so it's important that the heat is dissipated and the car's engine is maintained at a steady temperature. To cool down the engine, a car radiator is used. It comes with a fluid, aluminum fins, side tanks, and tubes, and its role is to take the heat from the fluid and transfer it to air, which is then blown away by a fan.

This important function of the car radiator makes it a vital component for every car, which is why manufacturers have come up with many models of radiators to meet the specifications of different engines. Users can find numerous car radiator models on Superspares, all with detailed descriptions and photos.