All cooling hoses should be replaced every two to four years to prevent breakdowns.
  • When replacing a hose, drain the coolant system below the level that is being worked on.
  • A hose clamp is used to fasten a hose to its connection.
  • Hoses are usually easily removed by loosening the clamp and twisting gently.
  • If the clamp is rusted in place, cut it off with side cutters or tinsnips.
Cutting off an old hose.
  • Slide the old hose off the fitting.
  • If the hose is stuck, do not pry it off.
  • You could possibly damage the inlet/outlet nipple or the attachment between the end of the hose and the bead.
  • Carefully cut the stuck hose off its fitting.
  • Most ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM) hoses tend to bond to metals, and during removal they must be cut off.
  • Clean the fitting of corrosion or pieces of old hose. Hose connections on the radiator and engine have a small ridge that helps seal the hose.
  • Install the hose and position the clamp as close to the ridge on the connection as possible to prevent the possibility of corrosion. Positioning the clamp on top of the ridge can cut the hose.
  • Be sure that all hose clamps are in good condition and are tight.
When new hoses are installed, they take a set of following the engine's first heating and cooling cycle. This sometimes leaves the clamps loose and they must be retightened.
  • Because a molecule of air is smaller than a molecule of coolant, air can be drawn in through a loose connection (even if the opening is not large enough to let coolant seep out). This is especially true with the lower radiator hose and heater return hose because they are suction hoses.
Check to make sure that the hose does not contact the fan belts, fuel lines, or the fan.