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Radiator flush

5306 Views 15 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Yves M.
I'm getting ready to flush and refill the radiator of our 2000 Insight. I've got the rubber gasket for the radiator drain plug but am unsure about the engine block drain. I believe I know where it is (if any of you have done this, please let me know for sure where the drain is) but don't know what size washer goes on the drain bolt. The Honda dealer in our area had no clue on it's whereabouts or size so I'm asking the knowledgable Insight owners here.
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Unless the engine has been run with straight H2o there is no reason to pull the engine block plug and drain the coolant. It was mandatory with cast iron blocks but not required on aluminum blocks. Just draining the radiator and refilling with a 50-50 mix of collant will be sufficent. After removing the drain plug, let it set for a while and most of the fluid in the block will drain out. (IMPORTANT) Don't forget to "burp" the cooling system after filling. (There is an actual "burp" fitting.)

If you must:
The block plug is located on the reward side of the engine, behind the cat. converter and just above the oil pan fitting junction.

A 1/2 inch ratchet will remove the plug.
Thanks. We are actually planning on flushing with straight H2O for a few minutes so the block drain will have to come off. Now if I could ever find a weekend to do it...first Charley, then Francis!!!!
hi, I am getting ready to change my oil (for the first time, I do it myself) and replace the engine coolant.

Where is this "burp" fitting for the coolant?

I remember people saying that after the coolant replacement, they had overheating engines until they burped the coolant.
Look in the owners manual. Everything you need to see is in there. The hardest part is getting the engine block coolant drain off because space is so tight. It's the huge (27mm I believe) bolt on the back left side of the engine. The bleed valve can be seen in the owners manual and can easily be gotten to by removing the engine cover.
Thanks for the info. I'll get on it tomorrow morning.
Kapps; I believe you are incorrect on that. When I flushed my system, the block coolant drain was a bronze colored, FEMALE cavity, square hole looking bolt. My 3/4 inch socket drive (male) fit into the hole perfectly, and yes, it was installed quite snug. billy...
Did you really mean 3/4 inch drive. Not a standard 1/2 inch (which I have but not a 3/4)
Yea, it is a female socket. What I meant by 27mm is the size of the aluminum gasket that I had to special order from Honda. Yves, make sure you have one.
Just as a further FYI,

The standard and sufficient change interval for the 02 model is the first 120K miles, then every 60K miles. By the book Canadian's should replace it sooner. _IF_ your using a non silicate based anti-corrosion type antifreeze. Honda Type II is Honda's recommended, duh <VBG>.

Using silicate type antifreeze will require a future more frequent change interval of 30,000 miles _and_ the silicate "grit" will take its toll on the water pump seal in the long term. Once its installed you'll never get it all out.

AFAIK Honda has recently extended the replacement interval and should include all Insights.

You may have noticed my position of more frequent oil changes. So you may be of the opinion that I am one to "over maintain" my car. This new extended change interval for Honda Type II coolant is sufficient. It's that good. So are _some_ of the other silicate free formulas. YMMV by brand.

But why the first 120K then every 60K? They say that it takes that long on a "new" engine for the original antifreeze to need replacement. I'll probably "over maintain" mine with a first 60K then every 60K interval <VBG>

The block drain crush washer usually doesn't need replacing 'til the 2nd or 3rd removal.

HTH! :)
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Thanks again for the infos. I checked the drain and it is 1/2 inch so I am ok with this. I did not do the replacemnt yet as I figured that I need some type of 'liquid gasket' to seal the drain after being removed. So I bought it this afternoon.

But I now read that there is a crush washer so I might be too well prepared for tomorrow .

I always use to say, never do mechanics on Sunday. If something breaks, you can not get the parts. But I won't listen this time.
I learned a new English word today: "quite snug" from Billy

I do not know how much torque I needed to use to unscrew the drain bolt (200+ pound feet?) but I had a blood vessel burst in my hand to get it done with a 10 inch ratchet.

So now I know, that "quite snug" means more torque than a truck wheel holding bolt (an Insight wheel bolt is too easy, maybe 75 to 100 pounds of torque)
Hi Yves; doing aircraft work without a torque wrench, we used to joke, that each grunt equalled 10 foot pounds!! Billy.....
The breakover torque required to free bolts and nuts can exceed their applied torque by a factor of several times. Even with bolts or nuts that don't appear to be rusted.

Sorry to hear you injured your hand Yves. But at least it dosen't appear to have hindered your typing ability. <g>
Or your sense of humour. :D Yes, there are a few other English phases for jambed bolts and jambed nuts that may not be printable. :wink: Some are especially appropriate if the wrench slips or the bolt shears. :lol:

I did apply the same torque while screwing it back. Then that means that the next time, I'll go to a shop. Not only the torque but I applied some kind of 'liquid gasket' which will surely not help at removal time (it is an adhesive and the drain bolt has a lot of contact area).

I "know" that the thing will not accidently uncrew by itself. Do not do like I did.
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