The Common Culprits of Radiator and Grille Damage Explained for Automotive Training Students

automotive training
One of the most noticeable components of a vehicle is its front grille. It is one of the most susceptible parts to damage during driving, as it can easily be struck by a number of oncoming objects. The grille helps to protect the radiator from damage. That function is more than a little important, since without the radiator, the engine can’t cool.
It is important to be aware of the potential factors present on the road that can cause damage to the grille and radiator. Consider these common elements that lead to radiator damage to help boost your knowledge in automotive repair.

Road Debris Is a Common Contributor to Radiator and Grille Damage

No matter which areas on the road a vehicle is being driven, it is always susceptible to the possibility of road debris striking the front grille and possibly getting into the radiator. Debris such as dirt, rocks, ice, and road salt can cause numerous problems to the grille and radiator.
On the outside, the impact of rocks can scrape the paint or dent and pierce through the body. However, mechanics know this is far from the only problem that road debris can cause. Rocks and dirt can also cause damage on the interior by denting the radiator, which may lead to the vehicle’s engine overheating. Even ice from a car that hasn’t been cleared properly has the potential to fly off and damage another car’s grille and radiator.
Furthermore, professionals in automotive training are fully aware of the effects of road salt and moisture on radiators during the winter season. Once it has entered, it can erode and eat through the vehicle’s components and cause leakage due to the damage inflicted on the interior tubing. In instances in which major damage is present on the vehicle, repair work may include removing the whole bumper in order to gain access to the radiator.

Other Damaging Factors as Seen By Professionals With Automotive Training

Although less common, graduates from automotive trade schools have seen insects, birds, and other animals contribute to the damage of front grilles. Animals and birds tend to pose a more severe blow as there is more force behind the collision. Depending on the placement and force of the collision, the radiator might have suffered a puncture and it could affect the way the vehicle runs. This can even be a possibility when no outward damage is easily visible.

Professionals may need to remove the radiator for effective repairs
Professionals may need to remove the radiator for effective repairs

Larger animals such as deer, as well as other vehicles on the road, can also cause major grille and radiator damage and necessitate repairs. Whether head-on or struck in different angles, the damage inflicted can be severe and can require replacing the entire radiator.
Even insects can cause damage to the radiator. Due to their diminutive stature, as insects come into contact with the radiator, they can cause a buildup and clog the radiator fins. This damage can lead to a bigger repair job as the obstruction prevents air from passing through, making it more difficult for the engine to cool down.
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