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  1. #1

    Lets talk coolant hoses on our old cars

    So most of us can agree these GEN II cars are getting to that age where we need to replace some necessary parts. If you haven't fallen victim to a blown OEM lower radiator hose its not an uncommon issue. With age and the heat these engines produce a lot of the coolant lines are prone to drying out, leaking, or bursting.

    I'll start off by saying I've replaced the upper and lower radiator hoses with silicone replacements as most do. I've also had the OEM radiator recored with 3 rows per Dave6666 large contribution and his many posts. Temps are kept in check with a 2003+ OEM mopar thermostat which is a lower temp than stock for a gen II.

    So here comes the fun part. The hose replacement doesn't seem to stop at just the upper and lower radiator hoses. The rest of the coolant lines running from the thermostat housing to the heater core, and to the radiator and coolant bottle all seem to weep just slightly due to the rubber hoses being brittle and no longer wanting to tolerate the expansion/contraction that goes along with the heating and cooling of an engine.

    Many of the OEM rubber hoses are becoming discontinued if they haven't already.

    No problem, there are silicone 'upgrades' right? Not so fast. Many articles have documented silicone hoses as being slightly permeable. What does this mean? Well you get rewarded with the constant aroma of antifreeze from your vehicle. Don't take my word for it, a quick google search will give you many examples. Here is one article on the subject here https://motoiq.com/silicone-radiator...or-the-street/

    So circling back this is the topic of discussion. Do we just settle for the silicone replacements all throughout the engine bay? I'm still undecided if the silicone 'stink' is real but I can't give accurate feedback as I have several weeping heater hoses at the moment that give a slight aroma.

    Lets open this up for discussion
    Check out my YouTube Channel for Viper DIY Videos and other content! - Boosted2k

  2. #2
    I replaced all mine with rubber. I don't recall any of them being hard to find (except the lower radiator hose) but it was more expensive than the silicone ones. I got everything but the lower radiator hose from viperpartsrack of America. I will say the upper hose fit very poorly on my car though. Not sure if I got a bad one but I actually couldn't get it to fit right and wound up using my old silicone hose. That's been my only regret as I rather the rubber but don't feel like spending the money again "if" it doesn't fit as well and it wasn't just a bad hose.

    Upper - https://www.viperpartsrackamerica.co...-hose-04763585

    Lower - https://www.viperpartsrackamerica.co...-hose-04763584 (shows in stock now)

    Heater core to engine - https://www.viperpartsrackamerica.co...ose-04763975ac

    Water Valve - https://www.viperpartsrackamerica.co...-hose-04642555

    Tank to Water pump - https://www.viperpartsrackamerica.co...-hose-04763877

    I may have missed one in the above but hope it at least gets you started. If you get the upper let me know how it fits. Mine just wouldn't go right where the intake box is at.

    Thanks,
    Brad

  3. #3
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    I too have replaced the top and bottom rad hoses, I went with Fast red silicone hoses.
    The top hose was hard to seal and in the end I had to put two clamps around the top radiator port to get it to seal.
    I notice for the other hoses a couple of vendors now stock the silicone hoses for the rest of the engine.

    I will most likely get the silicone pipes.
    But then again my car is not 100% OEM.

  4. #4
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    I am happy to report that we have had no such issues on our Vipers using silicone radiator hoses for many years...specifically, 17 years on 5 Vipers...all of which are in fine working order today and still in our possession.

    While many of us are facing the possible need to consider replacing OEM "heater hoses", I personally will opt for silicone hoses from a reputable, "Viper-involved" supplier. ln my book, a weeping hose beats a ruptured hose...especially on the road.

    It will be interesting to hear from others with a wider experience and/or professional information.

    Boosted makes a fine point...it may be that not all silicone hoses are created equally.

    To me, another CRITICAL point is the type of hose clamps used as some are made for/more suited to use with this type of hose. One must be concerned with sharp edges, type of mechanism, exact alignment (perpendicular to long axis of hose), and the tension applied. Each of these 4 parameters can lead to a cut in the hose if not carefully checked and rechecked. Not all techs are concerned with some of these finer points...same guys use any available bust for the TAP water that they use in the cooling system.
    I don't send or receive "PM's" since I prefer DIRECT communication.

  5. #5
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    There are 8 coolant hoses on The Gen 2 Viper.

    Radiator in and out - (2) - 4763584, 4763585
    Thermostat housing to hard lines - (1) - 5004000AB
    Water pump to reservoir - (1) - 4763877
    Water pump to hard lines - (1) - 5245459
    Hard lines to heater core - (3) - 4763974AC, 4642555AB, 4763975AC

    Some are still available and some are not. I of course have all of them because I was smart enough to buy some before they went NLA.

    But congrats so far on this thread lacking much of the "I'm smarter than engineers" redneck solutions. Anywho, I have dead animal parts to throw on hot coals. I'll check back later but keep up the technical discussion. It's refreshing.
    Red. Because I didn't have to settle for blue.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve-Indy View Post
    not all silicone hoses are created equally
    I'll post up after the dead animal parts are consumed my write up comparing the popular brands of silicone hoses. There is a clear winner.
    Red. Because I didn't have to settle for blue.

  7. #7
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    I've switched over to all silicone hoses. No issues and no stink. Make sure that you buy the clamps that have the extended tang that does not allow the grooves that the screw engages with to contact the hose directly.

    One of the 100's

  8. #8
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    Great, Dave...your comparison info and insights would be greatly appreciated !!
    I don't send or receive "PM's" since I prefer DIRECT communication.

  9. #9
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    I have had the HPS upper and lower silicone hoses and Viper Parts USA heater hose set on my 01 since the beginning of this year and they have been fine. Literally just got back from 2+ hour drive at mixed speeds including stop and go and I had no smells.
    2001 GTS Sapphire Blue w/Stripes

  10. #10
    Enthusiast MH60M's Avatar
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    I went with the cheapo Morimoto Silicone hoses and they have been great, I also switched to smooth t-Bolt clamps and I've had no seeping or smell issues.
    2001 GTS Sap/Stripes
    "Death Waits in the Dark" -160th SOAR

  11. #11
    I've also heard about the issues with silicone but my Samco hoses have no detectable smell and certainly no visible leakage after being on the car for a year and a half. I know GM installed silicone hoses on some Caprice Police Interceptors in the 90s so perhaps there are different grades of hose. We know the ply-count can vary, but I imagine there's far more to it than that.

  12. #12
    I know clamps have been discussed before regarding clamps for rubber hoses and silicone hoses. I've seen it multiple times to use the stock spring style on rubber hoses, but I remember seeing somewhere other clamps should be used on silicone hoses. What would the best solution for silicone hoses?
    99 ACR Black/Silver

  13. #13
    Enthusiast GTS Dean's Avatar
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    Silicone is very soft compared to conventional rubber hose and having the clamps tight enough to seal cold can cause the hose to crush when the metal nipple expands from heat. Silicone hoses are usually secured with constant tension clamps. Belleville washers are a common feature, as is a long tang on the inner side under the screw mechanism.

    https://mpcindustries.com/en-us/cons...xoCx9cQAvD_BwE

    https://www.summitracing.com/search/...on-hose-clamps
    Last edited by GTS Dean; 4 Weeks Ago at 12:22 PM.

  14. #14
    Anyone using the OEM constant tension clamps on their silicone upper/lower hoses with any success?
    Check out my YouTube Channel for Viper DIY Videos and other content! - Boosted2k

  15. #15
    I tried that at first and had leaks. I put them back on when I went back to rubber though.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boosted Motorsports View Post
    Anyone using the OEM constant tension clamps on their silicone upper/lower hoses with any success?
    Those would not be the correct clamps for that hose. The properties of the OEM hose versus the aftermarket silicone hose are too different.
    Red. Because I didn't have to settle for blue.


 

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