1995 Subaru Legacy radiator

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  #1  
Old 06-24-09, 08:22 AM
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1995 Subaru Legacy radiator

A friend was going to help install a new radiator in my Subaru, but he's been having health problems, so I'm trying to see if I can do this myself.

Hi, by the way. I'm not new to these forums, I've lurked a lot , but this is my first post.

Anyway, I have a few questions. If anyone could advise me on the following, there'd be a thanks in it for ya

First of all, I saw two kinds of radiators I can buy online. One's plastic, for about $110, the other's metal for about $170. Is there any reason not to buy the plastic one? I already removed the old radiator, and it seemed mostly made of plastic, so I'd like to save the money if the plastic one will do OK.

Also, I was wondering if anyone could link to any kind of instructions online for how to install the thing. I can see how all the brackets and hoses go in fine. I'm worried there's going to be some issue I'm ignorant of, such as pressure once it's installed, or ensuring the fluid has no air pockets. I don't know exactly what I'm concerned with, I just want to make certain I don't screw things up worse by doing this myself. So any advice, or a link to instructions for this procedure, would be much appreciated.

Thanks
 
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  #2  
Old 06-24-09, 11:42 AM
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not really any pitfalls to worry about... just make sure the new radiator is all the fitting and tabs and stuff in the right spots. plastic is usually just fine.. i don't know that there is any real practical difference. maybe someone else has an informed opinion on that?

make sure the new radiator does not rub against anything.. "adjust" as necessary. new mounting pads may be in order to help with that... i don't believe subaru's have "bleed" screws. those are for air pockets in the system. though it's always good to look for them. usually they are located on the housing at the "other end" of the raditor hoses. in the housing there.. just a "bolt" looking thing... with a little hole in the top. there are some that look like they have a lock nut too. anyways... fill it up.. start the motor. cap off... an keep filling as the water goes down inside. after it is warmed up all the way. put the cap on an fill he reservoir up.. check it again later after it has cooled down too. btw. make sure the fans work also. an of course no leaks. i'm sure i missed a couple things.. or perhaps there are other ways to do all this.. but it works for me that way...

be safe. don't look into the radiator to closely.. an if it starts bubbling a lot. (like boiling) shut the car off... don't get burned or scalded. the car is not worth getting hurt over. hope that helps.
 
  #3  
Old 06-24-09, 11:47 AM
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Thanks man, that helped a lot. I found a cheap one in town, so ordering the plastic one is no longer an option anyway. Now it's just time to put it on.
 
  #4  
Old 06-24-09, 12:25 PM
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your welcome. a little common sense an you'll be fine i think..
 
  #5  
Old 06-24-09, 01:36 PM
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OK- got the radiator installed (was not a big deal, I'm feeling good that I didn't spend the $500 that the mechanic it broke near quoted me).

A couple more things and I'll stop worrying.

#1 I've filled radiators before. I knew what you meant that the fluid level would go down after turning on the car, but it didn't. I watched the engine for about 10-15 minutes, and it stayed full the whole time. The engine didn't overheat, so I think it's installed right. Is this a sign of any problem?

#2 Noob mistake. I put in too much antifreeze, thinking it would hold a full gallon. I added some water, but the ratio is far from 50/50. Is this a big enough deal that I should drain it and do it again?

Thanks again.
 
  #6  
Old 06-25-09, 11:25 AM
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i've run across a few cars that didn't use up water when they first start... hot water did circulate through the radiator? if it didn't overheat.. most likely it's ok... antifreeze... test it with an antifreeze tester after a day (or hour) of driving it.. (parts store - 10 bucks maybe? haven't bought one in years... ) if it's to low for your area temperature wise you may need to add more.. it's doubtful you have too much antifreeze though. not usually any trouble unless it is in an extremely cold or hot environment. it's a little late now.. but i like to mix the antifreeze ahead of time. my apologies.

glad your project came out alright for you!
 
  #7  
Old 06-25-09, 11:29 AM
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You definitely want to test it. Straight antifreeze has a lower boiling point than a 50-50 mix.
 
  #8  
Old 06-25-09, 01:29 PM
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I think you'll find the mix will be fine; once the new stuff in the radiator mixes with the old stuff trapped in the block and heater core it should be in the good range.
 
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