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Do I need a new radiator? Really?

On the first hot and humid day of the summer, my 96 malibu started to leak its antifreeze. It was completely empty in a matter of hours. I filled it up and it has been fine ever since. When I brought my car in for its last oil change I asked the mechanics to check out my coolant system. They told me that my car had overheated and I needed to replace my radiator, tubes and thermometer. The car is working just fine and has not leaked since. I called a different dealer and he suggested a coolant system pressure check. Do I really need all this if the car is running just fine? Or will it stop working when it starts to snow…???

Get the pressure check. And if it passes, have the shop attempt to determone why it purged itself of coolant. A cooling system does not drain in a few hours without a cause. Something is wrong and it needs to be fixed, or you’ll inevitably end up buying a replacement engine.

tubes and thermometer

Wonder what these are? Maybe you heard “thermostat”, but I dunno what the tubes thing is.

My guess is hoses and thermostat. No point changing the radiator on a '96 without putting new hoses and T-stat on.