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Old 11-22-2011, 03:38 PM   #1
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Default How to remove internal rust from radiator? Anyone?

So last night I fixed a leaky gasket on my front coolant blockoff plate as it's been a slow leak for quite sometime. When I went to fill the radiator back up, I noticed a decent amount of rut pellets/chunks residing in the fins of my radiator. If the whole core is anything like what I could see from the filler hole, I'd say there is a fair amount of blocked or mostly blocked passages.

I'm not too surprised at the rust as my old engine had a coolant leak or a few that put air in the system at any given time....and I was running pure distilled water with about 1 cup antifreeze.

My question is, is there anything I can use to get this rust out? I was wondering if there was anything I could fill it with and let it sit to dissolve the rus (given that I would remove the radiator and seal it up, obviously).

Also, when i looked into the front water neck, there is a light orange tint to everything (rust). I'm looking at this "Metal Rescue" product that claims to be saf eon everymaterial except rust. I'm almost curious to know if I could fill my entire coolant system up, let it sit overnight or so and drain out to remove ALL the rust buildup in the system. Some pretty impressive tetimony/pics on their website and vids on YT. http://www.metalrescue.com/home.aspx

Last edited by Doppelgänger; 11-22-2011 at 03:54 PM.
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:20 PM   #2
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My first thought is that a new radiator might help.

My second thought is to consider one of the many miracle products specifically advertised to remove rust and scale from radiators. No personal experience with these, but:

http://www.prestone.com/enca/node/379

http://www.barsproducts.com/1211.htm

etc.
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:41 PM   #3
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I am not so sure there is an easy way to do this. tbh, I had a lot of mineral deposits in my radiator and ran coke/vinegar mixed with distilled water to get it out. what I ended up finding out is that a lot of those deposits were chilling inside the engine/heater core.

Although I am doubtful you have rust in the engine, I would consider running a cleaner on the system, then flushing it out with a garden hose, then getting that mineral rich water out by using pure distilled water. replace the radiator, then add in the appropriate amount of coolant that you see fit.
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
My first thought is that a new radiator might help.

My second thought is to consider one of the many miracle products specifically advertised to remove rust and scale from radiators. No personal experience with these, but:

http://www.prestone.com/enca/node/379

http://www.barsproducts.com/1211.htm

etc.
I have done both.
It worked.

Previously when I just flushed the system with the Prestone system flush **** but left the original rad in there it definitely helped, but didn't complete fix it. I'd say about 80% of the gunk was removed.
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:53 PM   #5
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I'd say flush it twice.

rust in your coolant will turn your freezeplugs into swiss cheese and you reeeeally dont want that to happen.
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Old 11-22-2011, 05:46 PM   #6
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table vinegar also works
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Old 11-22-2011, 05:56 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
I have used this on the Jeep a few times now. Every time I did it, loads of rust in the form of chunks came out. The last time it was finally halfway clean. Its nice having a heater core back...
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Old 11-22-2011, 07:00 PM   #8
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Thanks guys. Glad to hear that some of these off the shelf products actually work. I am kinda hesitant on stuff like that sometimes.

Matt- It's not heavy rust, but it's clear that air has been in the system. This probably mostly from the old engine and imagine it would be hard to rust out the freeze plugs in 20k miles (milage of new engine). I've only used distilled water since I've had the car.
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Old 11-22-2011, 08:57 PM   #9
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Pull it and have it hot tanked? I did that a couple years ago and it cost me $50, and the guy found/opened a huge blockage in it.
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Old 11-22-2011, 09:22 PM   #10
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http://www.dieselwarden.net/ford/coolfilter1.html

Once you flush it, hide this somewhere. I'm going to be putting one on each car when time allows. Diesel guys run them all the time.
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Old 11-22-2011, 09:47 PM   #11
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I think I will try the Prestone stuff first...if that doesn't work, I might pick up a couple of gallons of the Metal Rescue and fill my system up and leave it in for a day.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:05 PM   #12
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How to remove internal rust from radiator? Anyone?-osi_sealants_553472_16_oz_bottle_naval_jelly.jpg  
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:08 PM   #13
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@ 16oz a bottle, it would take a lot of that to fill the radiator/cooling system!
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:32 PM   #14
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Naval Jelly is basically phosphoric acid. I'd be a little weary of pouring that into my cooling system.

Doppelgänger, for what it's worth, that stuff has the consistency of jelly, hence the name. Filling the cooling system with it (undiluted) would be impractical.

chpmnsws6, that's very interesting. To be honest, the thought of adding filtration to the cooling system has never occurred to me.

Are these systems typically plumbed inline with the flow of coolant (as with the oil filter) or installed in a bypass configuration?
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Old 11-22-2011, 11:35 PM   #15
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I figure a 16oz bottle would have the intent of cleaning individual parts..I really wasn't serious about filling anything with it
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