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Old 26th April 2012, 23:41   #31
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
Should I use a comb for straightening the fins or leave it as it is?
IMO, its best to leave it as it is, as long as you are not noticing any abnormal overheating or coolant loss. Modern cars radiators are very fragile. Especially inter-coolers.

However, a picture here would help us judge the issue much better.
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Old 27th April 2012, 11:13   #32
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by Raccoon View Post
I guess I'll have to take some time to probe into this further, and if there is a safe solution to this problem.
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Originally Posted by dhanushs View Post
However, a picture here would help us judge the issue much better.
There you go guys. Please note the car is only 5 months old. And he is a little dirty because of the rains.

The Radiator
Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?-p1040004.jpg
The Radiator
Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?-p1040005.jpg
The Intercooler
Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?-p1040002.jpg
The Radiator grille.
Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?-p1040006.jpg

I thought of putting a mesh grille to help protect the fins from small stones etc on the highway. But not certain about the impact on cooling, wind noise and drag.

Hate the trucks on state highways without proper mud flaps and those which carry loose sand without proper cover and spilling it all over the place. I try to move out of their trail ASAP but can't help at times.

Last edited by deetjohn : 27th April 2012 at 11:17. Reason: typo.
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Old 27th April 2012, 16:37   #33
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

Thats pretty minimal bending. Loss of efficiency would be very small. But surprising how a 5 month old car managed such damage.

One thing to keep in mind is to check the radiator before and after you give your car to a workshop. That would be especially true if there is work to do around that area, like fixing AC, or in cases where engine has to be removed, etc. I suspect a careless mechanic can do way more damage than stones/pebbles in real life. In any case the bent fins in my car no way seems to have happened due to flying debris. I'm willing to wager that mechanics who did AC work or changed cross member some 3 years ago would have done this wonderful complimentary work on my car.
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Old 27th April 2012, 22:07   #34
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
There you go guys..

... I thought of putting a mesh grille to help protect the fins from small stones etc on the highway.
Hi John,

No need for any action . This damage is quite natural, and is quite common in most cars doing some 80+ speeds on the highway.

Also, IMO, there is no need to put a mesh grille.
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Old 30th April 2012, 16:35   #35
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

Guys, thanks for the feedback.

I understand it is alright as of now. But should I do something to reduce the damage going forward?

It sure looks bad for 9K KM old car, but the broken patches at Avinashi has not helped at all. I guess once the work is completed there, the fins won't have such a hard time.
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Old 30th April 2012, 18:56   #36
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by dhanushs View Post
Hi John,

No need for any action . This damage is quite natural, and is quite common in most cars doing some 80+ speeds on the highway.

Also, IMO, there is no need to put a mesh grille.
Natural? I'm not so sure about that. My car which is much older does not have this kind of damage. The only bending is in the right bottom corner and its definitely not caused by flying debris. Deetjohn's car's grill seems to be too widely spaced. Looks like bad design to me. Which car is it btw?
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Old 30th April 2012, 19:29   #37
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Natural? I'm not so sure about that. My car which is much older does not have this kind of damage. The only bending is in the right bottom corner and its definitely not caused by flying debris. Deetjohn's car's grill seems to be too widely spaced. Looks like bad design to me. Which car is it btw?
It's a Swift Diesel. I am taking it for 3rd service soon. Will check with MASS.
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Old 30th April 2012, 22:48   #38
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by Raccoon View Post
Natural? I'm not so sure about that. Looks like bad design to me. Which car is it btw?
Hi Racoon, what I meant by Natural is that, this damage does not affect cooling practically. Also, this phenomenon is quite natural in cars that do frequent high speed highway runs.

Quote:
My car which is much older does not have this kind of damage.
One high speed run behind a lorry carrying leaking gravel will do this to your car.

If possible, avoid such situations, where even small debris is thrown at your car. When in speed, it makes a lot of difference. But, ultimately, in day-to-day situations, sometimes its hard to avoid.

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Old 3rd May 2012, 17:54   #39
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I bought a special pliers nearly 40 years ago just for these jobs. It has flat tips like tongs and is bent like a hokey stick in front. You gently hold each fin and straighten it one by one, a pretty tedious job. Will post a picture of it later on.

Here are the pictures of the pliers described above.
Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?-radiatorplier1.jpg

Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?-radiatorplier2.jpg

Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?-radiatorplier3.jpg

In good old days the radiator repair person would laboriously straiten, each fin individually. Normally the comb type straighteners would damage the fins as you tend to hurry the job, so they used similar pliers. Recently many radiators are all aluminum and you have to be extremely careful, else the tubes get micro cracks while straightening the fins using comb like devices, which get struck if the bent is very acute and you put extra force to straighten them out.

Last edited by benbsb29 : 4th May 2012 at 11:59. Reason: Merging back-to-back posts.
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Old 3rd May 2012, 18:26   #40
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by Raccoon View Post
Deetjohn's car's grill seems to be too widely spaced. Looks like bad design to me. Which car is it btw?
The widely spaced thing is the intercooler. Look at the radiator next to it. The radiator is much more tightly packed. I was running the same intercooler in Swift petrol turbo setup and it worked just great. Best thing about Swift diesel intercoolers is their price. The MGP part MRP was Rs. 1700 only when I bought it.

My suggestion to all the folks having problems with bent fins. Just leave them as they are. Efficiency will not be affected by more than 5% and these things are designed for much higher effeciency drops than 5%. So just ignore them and enjoy the drive.
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Old 3rd May 2012, 18:32   #41
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
There you go guys. Please note the car is only 5 months old. And he is a little dirty because of the rains.

I thought of putting a mesh grille to help protect the fins from small stones etc on the highway. But not certain about the impact on cooling, wind noise and drag.

Hate the trucks on state highways without proper mud flaps and those which carry loose sand without proper cover and spilling it all over the place. I try to move out of their trail ASAP but can't help at times.
Not much damage and would hardly affect cooling efficiency. You can use the pliers I have shown in the previous post to straighten the fins if you are very concerned about the damage.

A wire mesh can, and is used, to protect the radiators against similar damage in most of the off road vehicles. In fact such mesh are available as accessories for many 4x4 vehicles. The only down side of the mesh is that it gets clogged real fast, so you have to keep cleaning it regularly, else air flow is impaired.

Front grille mesh mod - radiator protection for under $25

Plastic Gutter Guard for Radiator Protective Mesh? - Rennlist Discussion Forums

www.imoc.co.uk :: Mesh radiator guard

Top Quality Stainless Steel Mesh for car grilles, Cut to size.
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Old 3rd May 2012, 23:44   #42
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
I thought of putting a mesh grille to help protect the fins from small stones etc on the highway. But not certain about the impact on cooling, wind noise and drag.
Hey, I really wouldn't worry about such minimal damage. I mean if you're doing high speeds even a tiny speck will do some amount of damage and the kind of damage on your car won't even make a difference of like 5%. Forget about it and enjoy your car.

As a point of reference, have you ever hit an insect at highway speed? The way it smears across your windscreen will give you an idea of the forces involved. So don't let a tiny amount of damage bring you down!

Cheers
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Old 4th May 2012, 10:34   #43
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

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Originally Posted by Aroy View Post
I bought a special pliers nearly 40 years ago just for these jobs.
Aroy, that's a very nifty tool you got there. It will be apt for the job. And I would love to do it myself. But the bumper has to be removed to reach the radiator & intercooler though. And that's tricky. The under body is fully covered till the air deflectors in the Swift.

Thanks for those links.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vikram_d View Post
The widely spaced thing is the intercooler.
I think Raccoon was referring to the grille on the bumper. A mesh behind the grille will help against flying stones. Time to get in touch with josepeter I guess.

Though, the cost that you mentioned for the intercooler is comforting. Any idea how much is the radiator? And will the aftermarket parts from MASS be as good as the factory fitted ones?

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Originally Posted by Viraat13 View Post
Hey, I really wouldn't worry about such minimal damage.
I am not much worried about the damage currently. But just wondering what extent of bending can be tolerated, if I don't install a mesh. I do quite a bit of highway runs.

Last edited by deetjohn : 4th May 2012 at 10:35. Reason: typo.
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Old 4th May 2012, 11:27   #44
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

Quote:
Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
There you go guys. Please note the car is only 5 months old. And he is a little dirty because of the rains.

The Radiator
Attachment 920720
The Radiator
Attachment 920721

I thought of putting a mesh grille to help protect the fins from small stones etc on the highway. But not certain about the impact on cooling, wind noise and drag.
Thats not the radiator, its the AC condenser fins which are bent. The bents are very minimal though, in my car its a bit more bad.

Quote:
Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
Though, the cost that you mentioned for the intercooler is comforting. Any idea how much is the radiator? And will the aftermarket parts from MASS be as good as the factory fitted ones?
Like i said its the AC condenser fins which are bent, the radiator fins would be alright as its behind the AC condenser.
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Old 4th May 2012, 11:44   #45
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Default Re: Radiator Fins Bent - any solution?

I too noticed that some fins (~ 10 - 15%) in the centre of my Alto's radiator were bent, when the car was barely 1 year old. No idea how it happened; perhaps by high-pressure water during water wash. The SA said it is better to leave it alone unless one notices the temp. gauge hovering higher than normal or the fan operating more frequently than usual. Since I noticed neither, I have left it alone.
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