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Old 11-27-2012, 05:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How do I drain my coolant...?

2002 Sable GS Vulcan. Okay i've never worked on a car newer than 94, so this is all a bit CRAMMED...The radiator is blocked in from all directions, heck I can't even find the radiator cap. Even if there was a drain screw on the radiator I cannot seem to access it. Do I really need to remove that plastic protector under the bumper? That looks like a real pain.

Any suggestions would be most helpful
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Old 11-27-2012, 05:22 PM   #2 (permalink)
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There is a drain valve on the bottom of the radiator. You have to remove the plastic shield at the bottom front of the car. Something like 10 bolts. Easy to do though. You just gotta get on your back. Yes you have to remove the plastic shield though.
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks your right it's not hard, but it's one of those designs that make you smack your head. I do not plan to put that plastic guard back... I drained the coolant, took out my thermostat and low and behold BROWN RUST all over the thermostat. Looks like i've got some work cut out. Is it because people put in the wrong type of coolant? Why is the vulcan engine so prone to rusting in the coolant system?
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:51 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I would put it back if I were you. It protects those components from water and salt as well as foreign objects.

The rust in a vulcan motor is usually due to poor coolant maintenance. It can be caused by mixing coolant types. You have to flush your coolant every 30k miles. Is there rust and crap in the coolant recovery tank?

To be honest just poor design is why it is so prone to rusting, but you can prevent it by doing a coolant change every 15k miles. Some say do it more, but I'd do it ever year or 15k miles to be extra safe. Not that much money or work. Do a flush every few years and flush the heater core every two years.

If I were you I would also be doing a complete flush of the system if it hasn't been done. Use coolant flush first, then change it out for green coolant after a week and flushing with distilled water.
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:07 PM   #5 (permalink)
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With the h2o pump removed (your other thread), you can flush through the eng. from there with a hose and nozzle.
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Old 11-27-2012, 10:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by runfrombears View Post
Thanks your right it's not hard, but it's one of those designs that make you smack your head. I do not plan to put that plastic guard back... I drained the coolant, took out my thermostat and low and behold BROWN RUST all over the thermostat. Looks like i've got some work cut out. Is it because people put in the wrong type of coolant? Why is the vulcan engine so prone to rusting in the coolant system?
what I do to the bottom plastic piece is cut a hole just big enough so the drain plug is exposed and then anytime you want to drain the coolant you now just reach in with your fingers and unscrew the plug.
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Old 11-27-2012, 11:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
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what I do to the bottom plastic piece is cut a hole just big enough so the drain plug is exposed and then anytime you want to drain the coolant you now just reach in with your fingers and unscrew the plug.
Brilliant, I will do this before put it back on. (If I really get around to it) I never did put my miata's radiator fan back on, that was a year ago lol
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Old 11-27-2012, 11:19 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Ooh yikes. Probably not a good idea to leave the fan out.... A/C won't work correctly, car could overheat when idling, etc..
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Old 11-28-2012, 09:29 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Or, just saying, you could take apart that lower rad hose that connects to the radiator and the block. Coolant drain in 20 seconds...
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Old 11-28-2012, 10:10 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Or, just saying, you could take apart that lower rad hose that connects to the radiator and the block. Coolant drain in 20 seconds...
Actually, I agree with you. That does work best for coolant drain and flush. Some people find it easier to use the drain valve in the radiator.
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