Jump to content

Side Radiator Cleaning


Dennis H
 Share

Recommended Posts

After reading all the discussions on rear radiator cleaning, I was inspired to check mine out. While I hose the radiator off as much as I can every time I wash the coach, I've never given them a close inspection and thorough cleaning. With 100,000 miles on the coach, I thought I'd pull the sides off and see what they look like. I've not had any overheating issues but this week the weather is cooler, (it's been 110-113) so I thought it would be a good time to tackle this project. You never know what you'll find and everyone knows how those 15 minute jobs turn out, right? Anyway, I got my garden sprayer, my gallon of Simple Green HDPro, my power washer, screw gun, bits,  hoses, goggles and rubber boots out and set out to tackle this project.  I'm not sure if I looked more like SpongeBob or one of the Minions, but I was ready for whatever this radiator looked like.

So, I removed both the upper and lower grates. Lower one came off with four bolts and four screws. Upper one was held in place with four screws and sealed with silicone. After cutting thru the silicone, it came right off. Boy, was I surprised after removing both grates. The radiator looked pretty good considering the miles. There was an ample amount of debris which had collected around the bottom but everything else looked pretty good. See Picture One, below. The lighter colored area on the right is where I hit it with some aerosol AC condenser spray. Then I remembered I'd better take a picture. As you can see, it didn't look too bad. I then mixed up the SG HD Pro, @ 4:1 and liberally sprayed the entire area. After 5 minutes, I rinsed it completely. After five treatments, you see what it looks like in Picture Two. I'm happy with the result. I did crawl around and hit the inside of the radiator with the pressure washer. Keep in mind, to use the pw at it's lowest setting and keep the wand at least 18" or so away from the fins. The simple green did a fantastic job and I would recommend it to anyone thinking about cleaning their radiators. Off tomorrow to get some fresh silicone so I can put everything back together. I'm happy knowing my radiator is clean again...Dennis

 

ONE.jpg

TWO.jpg

 

Two things I forgot to mention, that might be pertinent to anyone with a side radiator; First, this project took about 5 hours to complete. That includes set up, cleaning and close up, not including the upper grate which still has to be installed. The second thing is there are some wires that run thru these compartments as well as a coil of tubing. Inspection of both of these items revealed an area of abrasion on the tubing where it appeared to be rubbing on the metal grate. This will eventually lead to a failure. I used a piece of split loom to protect this tubing from any further damage. If you have a side radiator, this might be something you want to look at sooner rather than later. I don't know if my coach was just 'special' or if it's a Monaco deal. Anyway it might help to check......Dennis

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dennis, it appears you cleaned from the outside inward.  I’ve tried to clean from the rear/inside and flush water to the outside, which is the part that concerns me.  Did you get to the back side too?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I owned a 1998 Diplomat rear radiator coach and a 2004 Windsor side radiator coach.  

On the Dip, there was always the problem with keeping the inside of the rear radiator stack clean. The rear tires would always kick up the road dust and grime that seemed to pass through the rear radiator stack.  The road dust and grime would always build up from the bottom of the fan shroud toward the top.  I found that cleaning the radiator stack once every 6 months made the job easier.  We were full timers back then.  I purchased a Electric Karchner electric pressure washer that made the cleaning easier. The water pressure was low enough to not bend the fins.  

On the 2004 Windsor side radiator stack, the fans would draw the air in from the outside in instead of blowing the air from the inside out.  Therefore you got cleaner air to pass through the radiator stack.  Chuck B

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, David White said:

Dennis, it appears you cleaned from the outside inward.  I’ve tried to clean from the rear/inside and flush water to the outside, which is the part that concerns me.  Did you get to the back side too?

David, I started at the back and worked outward. That was a real pain. Lots of contortionist positions and some choice words. That said, posting the pretty pictures was easier than the grunt work ones....Dennis

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dennis, Thanks for the reply. I need to do mine since it’s been a while but found getting from the back was a messy job and a bad place to get good working positions.  I felt it needed to be done rather than from just the outside.  

Actually the side radiator does not get heavy dirt if I make sure to always water hose clean it when I wash the coach.


 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, David White said:

Dennis, Thanks for the reply. I need to do mine since it’s been a while but found getting from the back was a messy job and a bad place to get good working positions.  I felt it needed to be done rather than from just the outside.  

Actually the side radiator does not get heavy dirt if I make sure to always water hose clean it when I wash the coach.


 

David, I would tend to agree with you. Considering I've got over 100,000 miles on the coach, I was surprised how clean it actually was. Most of that is surface dirt. I looked closely at both sides and there was no buildup of junk on the fins.....Dennis

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...