Radiator Blows Its Top!

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Apr 19, 2006
My '94 TLC with 160,000 miles blew its plastic top after driving about 2 miles, i.e., I don't think it was running hot...? The recently installed dual water pump belts were broken, either before or after the blowout...?

I'm replacing the radiator with an all metal CFR radiator, putting in a new water pump, thermostat, belts and water temp sender.

I'm wondering what caused to lid to blow on the original radiator? Obviously the plastic lid didn't help. Did the busted belts (installed about six months ago); presumably, stopping the water pump cause the problem? I don't want it to happen to the new radiator...any thoughts or similar experiences?


Bob :confused:
It is possible that it was just old and brittle. If it was the original radiator its days were numbered. It is also possible you have a blown head gasket and the combustion gasses entering the coolant caused the radiator to blow.
Maybe check your radiator overflow tank for oil and your oil for signs of water?? Is the water pump shaft frozen?
I can see how snapped belts could cause the radiator to blow.
I can't see how a ruptured radiator would cause snapped belts.
This doesn't seem good...
If your belts were busted before everything happened your dash would have been lit up like a Christmas tree.
I have seen a broken belt result in a water pump not being driven (on an older rig), which then caused a boil over in a few miles, which then cracked a radiator. On the other hand, if you lost the belts driving the water pump on your 80 you should have seen an alt. light indicator on the dash of low voltage. Hope that helps.

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