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  1. #1

    Default looking for advice about installing new rad

    It seems like every 2 weeks for the last little while Ive had to dump more money into my truck just to keep it on the road. Ive spent over $2500 on it in the last year, and thats just repairs, no real ad ons. if i hadnt spent so much id sell the damn thing... anyway.

    I discovered my rad as a nice leak today. the seam on the drivers side end cap is leaking. looks like another $280 for a new rad. for now i have tried dumping some AC Delco stop leak in it, figured it was worth the $5 to give it a shot. anyone had luck with this before? idk yet if its worked or not.

    If i do have to change my rad, how difficult is it? my mech. says today that i could probably do it myself, but then therell be no warrenty on the new rad. should i do it myself and save the $180+ in labour, or get him to do it to get the lifetime warrenty?

    98 Silverado
    5.7 vortec
    14 bolt posi rear, with 373s
    3"body?1.5"susp.
    33" wild countrys
    tube steps, chrome kit, fenderflares,
    chrome diff plate, window flares,
    2-10"Alpine TypeE, Alpine 450watt V-Power.

  2. #2
    Jr. Engineer sharpshooterusmc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Camp Pendleton, CA & Opelousas, LA
    Posts
    207

    Default

    u can do it yourself, its really simple, all u gotta do is pull the fan shroud off, drain the radiator, disconect all the lines and u have 2 bolts on the top, pull them out and the radiator pulls right out. u might have to pull it a little cuz it has 2 rubber gromets on the bottom that some studs fit in. make sure u put a pan under it to catch the antifreeze and oil thats gunna leak when u disconect the lines
    2001 2500HD 4x4
    6.0 vortec
    spectra COI, poweraid throttle body spacer, true dual 3in straight exhaust, MSD 9.5mm wire, hypertech max energy
    lift keys and add a leafs
    18" eagle alloys wrapped in 33x13.50 baja claws
    8000k HID
    plus quite a few other mods

  3. #3

    Default

    Rads are rather simple. It can be messy and you need to be careful disconnecting the trans cooler lines and, if equipped, engine oil cooler lines. Disconnect them b/4 you loosen the bolts holding the rad in place. You should get a lot of working room after removing the top shroud.
    Still Loyal to GM after all these years...:shocked:
    2006 Impala LT 3.5L
    2005 Silverado WT small cab/longbed 4x4 4.3L V6
    1999 Grand Am 3.4L in TX w/ our youngest
    1993 GMC Jimmy 4.3L 4 door 4x4 'Ole Rusty' - 'SOLD'
    1988 S-10 small cab/longbed HT3.4L Crate Engine
    1970 Nova 250 I-6, factory 3 sp floor shifter.
    1968 Chevelle 'Nomad' Wagon 250 I-6 w/ 3 on da' tree.

  4. #4
    Legend

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    River Ridge Louisiana-4 miles W of New Orleans-didn't flood-water stopped 800 yards away.
    Posts
    1,613

    Default

    I changed the radiator on my 1998 Suburban about 2 years ago.It was a 3-4 hour job for me-I've average work slowly with no pneumatic tools.

    I got a new ebay radiator-$160 delivered-seems ok. The only downside is it came with a different sized female fittings.It had adaptors, but the adaptors mean the old hard lines are a tiny bit too long, so they don't fit "dead on any more-they meet at a slight angle, so screwing them in takes some patience.

    You also have to use some teflon pipe tape with them because they aren't the pure compression fitting like the OEM fittings are.

    All in all worked out ok.

    If the total charge was $500-I would still DIM, but $500 for a new radiator-installed with all three fluids topped up- isn't too bad. Just the 2 gallons of Dexcool is almost $30.

    Charlie
    1998 suburban-
    1/2 ton

    199500 miles
    River
    Ridge,LA

  5. #5

    Default

    Your mechanic is feeding you a load of crap about the warranty. I'd start looking for someone a little more honest.

    You can buy a radiator from Autozone with a lifetime warranty. You bought the radiator, it's warrantied to you.

    Don't use Dex Cool, I mean Death Cool. Give the cooling system a good flushing, and put regular coolant in.
    When you hear hoofbeats, look for horses not zebras.

  6. #6

    Default

    if you dont keep dex flush'd atleast every 50k it will eat everything (starts turning acidic around 32k)

    you can take the radiator and have it repaired for probably less than 50 bucks.
    GM TECH

    05 silverado shortbed

  7. #7
    Master Mechanic Dr_Zero's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Sunny Florida
    Posts
    706

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kawasaki_kid View Post
    It seems like every 2 weeks for the last little while Ive had to dump more money into my truck just to keep it on the road. Ive spent over $2500 on it in the last year, and thats just repairs, no real ad ons. if i hadnt spent so much id sell the damn thing... anyway.

    I discovered my rad as a nice leak today. the seam on the drivers side end cap is leaking. looks like another $280 for a new rad. for now i have tried dumping some AC Delco stop leak in it, figured it was worth the $5 to give it a shot. anyone had luck with this before? idk yet if its worked or not.

    If i do have to change my rad, how difficult is it? my mech. says today that i could probably do it myself, but then therell be no warrenty on the new rad. should i do it myself and save the $180+ in labour, or get him to do it to get the lifetime warrenty?
    Here read this thread
    http://www.gmtruckclub.com/forum/showthread.php?t=18791

    I got both of my new rads from radiator classic for right around $100

    Its pretty straight forward on the install and you can do it yourself with handtools.

    Also when you get to looking at your rad look to see if its a single or dual row radiator mine both came with the single but a dual will drop right in the core in wider not the tanks so all fits the same.

    While you are at it now would be a good time to flush the system and change the hoses and the thermostat, flush the system with the OLD radiator still on no need to dirty up the new rad.
    Also believe it or not Amazon had the hoses for my truck cheaper than the local parts stores.
    Fresh green coolant also no funky orange stuff and a new radiator cap!

    As far as warranty's go check this out

    Limited Lifetime Warranty

    Silla Cooling Systems warrants their radiators and condensers, under normal use and service, for as long as the original purchaser owns the vehicle in which the radiator was originally installed.
    My trucks!

    1996 GMC Suburban SLT
    1997 GMC Yukon SLT

  8. #8
    Legend

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    River Ridge Louisiana-4 miles W of New Orleans-didn't flood-water stopped 800 yards away.
    Posts
    1,613

    Default

    On the Dexcool vs green ethylene glycol controversy. I changed my gaskets-12 moths ago-roughly 208,000 miles, they had last been done at 155,000 miles by PO.

    The newest gasket kit- #58000 by Mr Gasket or one of the other big name gasket makers- I forget exactly who it was-specifically claim they have "fixed" the dexcool problem.Whatever new material they use they claim is resistant to Dexcool.

    Is it,I don't know. I stayed with Dexcool,I won't know for 50,000 more miles(this seems to be how long it takes to eat thru the "old" gaskets.

    I'm just hoping that GM and Mr Gasket know what they are doing.


    Obviously, I don't plan to let that Dexcool stay in for 100,000 miles(I have 213,000 miles now). 2 years or 30,000 miles -like others said- is the smart change interval.

    Luck
    Charlie

  9. #9

    Default

    Try 1-800-Radiator.Lifetime Warranty.
    Ideas are like children: there are none so wonderful as your own.

  10. #10

    Default

    well i tried the stop leak, it worked four about 4 days, now its back to leaking again. looks like i will be changing the rad.

    i believe my mechanic said the rad i have is a dual core.

    i am already running glycol, no dexcol.

    i just had the cooling system flushed about a month ago when i had the water pump changed.
    (might the new water pump have something to do with this?)

    i i will be doing the swap myself, sounds easy. my mech. said the worst part is the trans cooler lines(i have no oil cooler), but i used to work at MrLube doing trans. flushes all the time so im not worried about those.

    i went to "Piston Ring" here in winnipeg, they quoted me $240+ tax for a new one, ill trying shopping araound a little more for a better price, but i usually end up back at them buying my parts.

    I was told the new rads like mine cant be repaired? it is leaking between the core itself and the plastic end caps, the seem i guess you'd call it.

    Of course it had to start leaking again on monday morning, when i wont have time to fix it now untill thursday evening. For now its not leaking too bad, managable, i just keep toping it up, carrying some water with me where ever i go. how bad will putting straight water in is for the next 4 days whenever its low affect it? ohh... now that ive thought of it i guess i will need to do a full flush afterward to get all the water out and balance the mix.

    i guess i have a new question now, how can i do a flush myself? ive only ever seen it done using a rad machine.

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