Radiator Hose Life Expectancy?


Old 10-29-09, 09:09 PM
rshack's Avatar
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: NE OHIO
Posts: 148
Radiator Hose Life Expectancy?

Just looking for a general idea, of expected life of radiator hose, I'm guessing 4 or 5 yrs, is most to look for before you can really press your luck. Any reason to keep inspecting year to year and gamble? Any professional comments or theory's? Thanks in advance. Beer 4U2
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Old 10-29-09, 09:55 PM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: North Central Indiana
Posts: 916
hose life

Any answer to this question would be pure speculation. There are too many factors to consider. Like many other things heat is the big enemy to hoses,that is why normaly the top hose goes first. Just inspect them a couple times a year and if they are hard,mushy,cracked,or buldged replace them.
Old 10-30-09, 07:51 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Northeast Kansas
Posts: 739
I know they used to recommend new hoses every three years (of course, that was from the rubber companies). On my old cars from the '60's, that was about all they seemed to last. That being said, I think the rubber formulations have greatly improved over the past decade or two. On my 1984 model car, I still had the original hoses on it after 15 years and 250,000 miles. On my current 1999 model car, it has all original hoses after 11 years and 300,000 miles. My mechanic regularily inspects my hoses, but has never mentioned replacement.
Old 10-30-09, 07:57 AM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 105
I would look at your hoses on a case by case situation.

If you had any sort of engine malfunction or coolant system loss or damage, I would seriously look at replacing the hoses.

I would also look at the condition of the coolant inside of the hoses. I change my coolant every 3 to 4 years regardless of how many miles is on the vehicle.

I do not pay any attention to what the manufacturers say is a regular change interval. Antifreeze is cheap - in regards to how much a new radiator, heater core, head gasket, water pump costs.

Your coolant does much more then just keep the water in your engine from freezing and boiling over. It is also a corrosion protector, and it also lubricates the water pump.

Chances are if you neglected the coolant too long, the spring inside of some older model hoses will fail and the hose will collapse and will fail also.

So if you are concerned about the car leaving you someplace in the middle of the night in the dead of the winter in a northern state, I would have all the hoses replaced every 5 years.

It is still cheaper in the long run then having to be towed home and having to pay a mechanic to replace it after a failure.

I would also suggest that you replace the coolant and the Timing belt at the same time.
Old 10-30-09, 08:21 AM
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: California
Posts: 214

I have recently had a lower radiator hose on my 4 wheeler bust on the interstate and spent 4 hours walking to find and replace the hose. I was lucky it didn't hurt the engine. After getting it home I went to the parts house and ordered a complete set, maybe 35 bucks. I really don't like being stuck on the road.

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