Few things can get you down faster than a radiator leak. Aside from being a fairly pricey fix, a leaky radiator can quickly lead to overheating the engine. More often than not, you don’t discover the leak until you are on the road and can’t get a replacement. Unlike the “life hack” temporary fixes, there is a better way to repair small leaks in your radiator, one that is actually semi-permanent repair that can last a very long time. That’s where knowing how to use AlumAseal ® properly can come in handy.
For over 75 years, AlumAseal® has been used to seal up pinhole radiator and heater core leaks. It works with all types of metal, plastics, and rubber, as well as all types of anti-freeze. AlumAseal® comes in two forms- powder and pre-mixed liquid.
Powder – The powder version is just the leak-stopper powder. A proprietary formula, the powder is designed to plug the hole and form a permanent seal. It will not clog up the rest of cooling system, making it safe to use long term. One tube of AlumAseal® powder will treat up to five gallons of coolant.
Liquid – The pre-mixed version contains one tube of powder, mixed with a liquid conditioner that lubricates the moving parts and contains a rust-preventative. Corrosion is the most common culprit of radiator damage, so the conditioning liquid is a good idea to help prevent future leaks.
Learning how to use AlumAseal ® is easy, just a few simple steps to get back on the road. Start by allowing the engine to cool. NEVER open the radiator cap on a hot engine, that is a good way to get scalded.
Once the engine is cool, pop the radiator cap open. Some vehicles do not have standard radiator cap, instead the cap is on the overflow tank. It works the same.
Empty the contents of either one powder tube OR one liquid bottle into the radiator or reservoir. Add coolant to the proper level if necessary, then reinstall the radiator cap.
Start the engine and bring it up to operating temperature. It is a good idea to turn on the heater to allow the coolant to flow through the heater core as well. Keep an eye out for leaks to ensure that the repair worked.
A system that has been treated with AlumAseal® can last for years, but once you have one leak, others are likely to appear later on. Replacing the radiator is a permanent solution, but AlumAseal® can certainly get you back on the road in a pinch. Keep a tube in your glovebox for emergencies, you never know when you will need it.
Check out all the chemical products available on NAPA Online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on how to use AlumAseal, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.
A life-long gearhead, Jefferson Bryant spends more time in the shop than anywhere else. His career began in the car audio industry as a shop manager, eventually working his way into a position at Rockford Fosgate as a product designer. In 2003, he began writing tech articles for magazines, and has been working as an automotive journalist ever since. His work has been featured in Car Craft, Hot Rod, Rod & Custom, Truckin’, Mopar Muscle, and many more. Jefferson has also written 4 books and produced countless videos. Jefferson operates Red Dirt Rodz, his personal garage studio, where all of his magazine articles and tech videos are produced.