Does My Car Need a Coolant Flush?

We all know that our vehicles require regular maintenance to keep it running safely and reliably for a long time.  Most people change their oil at some regular interval, which is one of the most important and cost-effective things you can do to make sure your car doesn’t take an early trip to the scrap yard.  Also high on that list is to change the transmission fluid at the factory recommended intervals, but many of us don’t think about replacing our vehicle’s coolant if the car isn’t leaking or overheating.

What Is a Cooling System Flush?

Is it really necessary to change your vehicle’s coolant?  It’s always best to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintenance, so why do most automobile manufacturers recommend replacing your vehicle’s coolant periodically?  Can antifreeze really go bad or wear out?

What is Coolant and What Does it Do?

Coolant Flush, need a coolant flush
Overdue for a Coolant Flush

To know if you need a coolant flush it’s important to understand what antifreeze, or engine coolant is, as well as what it does. The internal combustion engine could also be called a heat engine because it uses heat to cause gases to expand and uses the engine’s pistons to gather mechanical work from these expanding gases.  Due to the temperatures present in an internal combustion engine, there will always be left over heat after each cycle.  This excess heat needs to be removed to keep your engine at a constant temperature where it is able to continue working.  The more quickly this excess heat can be removed, the more efficient the engine will be.  The original internal combustion engines were air cooled, but water cooled engines were designed to take advantage of this principle.

Coolant Functions:

  • Heat transfer
  • Lubricant
  • Corrosion inhibitor

What Does Coolant Do?

The main purpose of the coolant in your engine is to remove the excess heat through the radiator.  Engine coolant is also called antifreeze because chemicals are added to keep it from freezing in cold climates so you can continue to operate your vehicle.  The engine coolant is circulated through your engine block, radiator and heater core by the water pump.  The water pump spins near the same RPM as your engine, so its bearings need to be cooled and lubricated.  The antifreeze in your vehicle therefore is also a lubricant for the water pump.  Lastly, it’s important for your cooling system to remain clean, even on the inside to promote good heat transfer so your coolant also is a corrosion inhibitor for the various types of materials it comes in contact with.

Coolant Flush
Corrosion in a Cooling System

Why is it important to flush coolant?

The main reason to regularly change your antifreeze is to protect your engine from internal corrosion.  Antifreeze contains different chemicals to maintain the pH levels and to keep the various materials from corroding.  Over time, these chemicals are depleted or precipitate and will no longer protect your engine and cooling system from corrosion.  Over time, this can lead to costly leaks and component failures.


Replacing your vehicle’s coolant is the best way to prevent future cooling system problems.  Every time you replace the coolant, it is best to perform a cooling system flush as well.  This will ensure that any depleted antifreeze, precipitants or corrosion products are completely removed from your vehicle’s cooling system.  With the old antifreeze removed the new antifreeze will be able to better resist corrosion and with the precipitants and corrosion products removed, heat transfer will be restored to its maximum.

How do you flush a coolant system?

To flush your vehicles cooling system completely and easily, use BlueDevil Radiator Flush.  Its concentrated formula has advanced cleaning agents that will remove all of the build up from your vehicle’s cooling system due to regular use, or many miles of neglect.  BlueDevil Radiator flush is a small price to pay to know your vehicle’s cooling system is operating at its maximum efficiency and replacing your vehicle’s coolant after the flush will make sure your engine is protected from internal corrosion.


You can find BlueDevil Radiator Flush at your favorite auto parts store:

  • Advance Auto Parts
  • Pep Boys
  • Car Quest Auto Parts
  • Bennett Auto Supply
  • Autozone
  • Prime Automotive

Or you can purchase BlueDevil Radiator Flush online here.

Pictures provided by and


6 responses to “Does My Car Need a Coolant Flush?

  1. How do I perform a coolant flush on a 1994 Chevrolet caprice classic 5.7 engine. What kind of Antifreeze should I use?.

    How to mix properly distilled water and Antifreeze to make 50/50???.

    Is 50/50 best for my vehicle?.

    Does dex cool Antifreeze kill your radiator?. Difference between the Green Antifreeze & the Orange & red dex cool???. What size pan should I put Underneath The flush Radiator Plug??. Thanks

    1. Prime,

      Thanks for your question about your Chevy Caprice. In your vehicle, you can use regular multivehicle green antifreeze available at most auto parts stores. Your vehicle holds a little more than 4 gallons of coolant so we would recommend draining it slowly into the largest pan you can find, and empty the drain pan a few times while you are draining the system. If you’re worried about diluting the antifreeze you purchase, you can purchase premixed antifreeze to ensure you get the correct mixture. If you decide to mix it yourself, you can try finding a large container with measure marks. The antifreeze you purchase should give you a list of temperatures a 50/50 mix will give you freeze protection to so as long as it doesn’t get colder than that temperature where you live, you should be fine.

      Thanks again for your question!
      -BD Auto Pro

  2. I purchased a 2007 Saturn Ion on 12/27/17. Two days later my COOLANT light came on and started dinging. I took it in to get looked at on 01/11/18 and my mechanic said I needed a new coolant reservoir which he went ahead and did. Another few days pass and the light and dinging noise start up again! Since I needed newer tires, I asked the tire shop to also look into this coolant situation. When I picked up my Ion, they stated that they unplugged the sensor and put it back in, assuming that would correct the issue. Here I am today and the COOLANT light and dinging noise are STILL happening. It’s not overheating and I don’t see any leaks, so what does anybody think could possibly be wrong? I’m at a loss as what to do.

    1. Mike-

      Thank you for asking about your Saturn Ion. Does the water/coolant appear to be low? When you purchased the vehicle, did it come with any kind of a service history or maintenance records? Please contact our technical support line at 888-863-0426 so that we can get a little better understanding of the vehicle’s condition and be able to make any appropriate recommendations.

      Thank you!


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