Can you paint radiators?

12 replies to this topic
  • Hurricane

Posted August 19, 2002 - 02:40 PM


If so, what kind of paint do you use?

  • PumpkinHumper

Posted August 19, 2002 - 03:40 PM


Why the heck would you want to do that.

I want to get the paint off my painted radiators.

Ive been told that unpainted radiators dissapate heat better than painted ones.

My yz400 has a slight overheating problem in tight trails. Im trying to do everything I can do to keep it cool.

My only problem is, as far as I can tell, There is no way to safely strip the paint off mine without damaging them.

  • Hurricane

Posted August 19, 2002 - 05:16 PM


I smashed one and the replacement one(used) that I got is a different color. My original ones are black and my new one is silver. No big deal either way as long as it runs I'm happy. Just thought they would look better if they matched.
I've only had my bike overheat on me one time. It was on 95 degree hot humid Missouri day when I got stuck at the top of hill in the tight woods and was trying to turn it around.

  • Thumpin'_Canuck

Posted August 19, 2002 - 06:18 PM


I wouldn't bother Hurricane. Added weight you know, plus you can't see when your tryin' to hang on. :D :)

  • sabin

Posted August 19, 2002 - 09:22 PM


There are special paint removing chemicals in a car paint shops...

  • John_Lorenz

Posted August 20, 2002 - 05:20 AM


I would agree yzman, but I may be wrong that painting the rads would hinder the heat disipitation. Also I would think that this would reduce and possible clog the venting fins with paint if you goober it.

It would probably be easier to just have take both in to be cleaned and stripped at a decent rad shop.

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • PumpkinHumper

Posted August 20, 2002 - 06:35 AM


You know, Ive called every radiator shop in the yellow pages and they all told me the same thing. That the chemicles that they use to strip radiators are so nasty that it will eat the aluminum radiators.

Anyone know of were I can get this done. Cause no one in my area knows how.

  • John_Lorenz

Posted August 20, 2002 - 06:40 AM


have you tried any of the race shops in the hood,

You may want to try some of the preformance shops / racing shops.

  • PumpkinHumper

Posted August 20, 2002 - 06:48 AM


I doubt that any of the bike shops in my area would have a clue.

And most of the "auto" race shops in my area tend to taylor there busines around the "circle jerk" croud. Ya know the roundy round racers.

But it wouldn't hurt to try a few of them. They may have a lead.

I havent tried any of the radiator shops listed in the back on the mx mags yet. Maybe that should be my next step.

  • AZWR426

Posted August 20, 2002 - 06:21 PM


I ran into this once with a 327 chevy in a willy's jeep project. Don't try to strip it and remove the black, Youwill eat up the radiator trying and once the fins come unattached from the tubes all it is good for is the next generation of coke cans. You can, however, paint the silver one black. The radiator shop sprayed it for me. As to heat shedding actually the black color is superior to the silver as it is a darker color. However, you got to use the right paint that transfers heat well. So, I would go to the radiator shop, BUT,be sure they put the paint on thin ,if it is too thick it can act as an insulator and impede heat transfer.

  • imported_Scott_H

Posted August 20, 2002 - 07:54 PM


I had excellent results using Jasco paint remover to strip the paint off my 98 WR radiators. You can pick a can up from Home Depot. Get some heavy-duty rubber gloves and a couple of cheap brushes while you’re there too. Be sure to follow the directions for the paint stripper. The stuff worked great. There was no damage to the aluminum and it was able to shed all the paint very quickly. I opted to do this mod to improve heat dissipation due to a chronic boil over (into the reservoir) following several rides at high altitudes (~9000 ft) on hot days, riding technical, low speed trails. My jetting (fuel screw, pilot jet and needle selection) were right on the money (not too lean) yet I’d be “making coffee” every time under these conditions. This problem has been eliminated since stripping the radiators and using Honda’s HP coolant and Red Line WaterWetter. I have since switched to Engine Ice with equally good results. On really hot days, I’ll run a 1.6 atmosphere rated radiator cap. Additionally, I also run exhaust header insulation wrap (Thermo-Tec) and have applied some adhesive backed heat shield material up under my IMS tank to help keep the fuel a bit cooler. I managed to boil the gas a couple of times before doing this all this stuff to control the heat. I now have zero heat related problems. Hope this helps.

  • AZWR426

Posted August 21, 2002 - 12:45 AM


Glad that worked. When I tried to strip it I had the radiator shop do it and they let it sit in their tank for at least a day, maybe two, and ruined my radiator. So if that worked go for it as this is an exact application of what we are doing and you certainly did your homework. Mark

  • tk421

Posted September 13, 2002 - 02:10 PM


Posted Image

I ran across this stuff in an Eastwood catalog. Thought it may interest you.
1 800-345-1178


Join Our Community!

Even if you don't want to post, registered members get access to tools that make finding & following the good stuff easier.

If you enjoyed reading about "" here in the ThumperTalk archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join ThumperTalk today!

The views and opinions expressed on this page are strictly those of the author, and have not been reviewed or approved by ThumperTalk.