What Does the Radiator Do in a Car?

December 4, 2023

Every time you turn on your car engine it creates a lot of heat. That heat if not vented properly will cause damage to the different components in your car. The radiator is the central component of the cooling system and helps vent that excess heat.

The radiator is basically a big metal plate with rows of thin metal fins in it. The liquid coolant (water & antifreeze) comes in through the inlet tank (which is usually on top or along one side of the radiator) and flows through the core. Then it goes out through the outlet tank and back into the engine. While it is circulating through the radiator, cooler outside air blows across the core and lowers the temperature of the coolant before it is sent to the engine again.

If you have ever seen someone pulled over on the side of the road with steam pouring out from their hood, they likely have a problem with their radiator. That’s because the radiator is what keeps a vehicle’s engine from overheating.

The combustion that occurs in a car’s engine creates a lot of heat, so the radiator needs to be there to vent that heat out. Without a radiator, your engine would overheat and be damaged.

Mission

Traffic Dave is on a mission to help traffic engineers, transportation planners, and other transportation professionals improve our world.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram