In an emergency to get one home etc, would electrical ties hold a rad hose on, if one of the hose clamps broke?


  • 1
    Maybe, in an emergency. If it's tight enough, yes, but I wouldn't gaurentee it long term, and wouldn't recommend the solution except in emergency. If it's a slow leak, you can fill it with water, and watch the temperature gauge to make sure it's not out and overheating. If it does get low and the temperature starts to rise, you can stop and add more water. I've driven many miles with a slow leak, adding gallons of water along the way. You can also leave the radiator cap off to keep it from building pressure and blowing up. Water will leak out the top, but it will be less than if it blew up. Nov 25, 2019 at 21:53
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    It may, especially if you left the cap off so the pressure is not increased... but you have to drive gently not using full power... did it once but also had the heater on fully hot to help - made the cabin hot though which was not amusing in summer... but got me home.
    – Solar Mike
    Nov 25, 2019 at 22:14
  • Try copper wire, with or without insulation. and twist it tight ; it must be solid wire not braided. I have used several wraps of black vinyl electrical tape the close a hole in a radiator hose - went 50 miles. Nov 26, 2019 at 1:34
  • I must say I've never had a hose clamp fail in situ - they usually break when removed or replaced. Had a couple of hoses fail though...
    – Nick C
    Nov 26, 2019 at 9:53

2 Answers 2


If you mean will it keep the pressure in the system, I'd think not, though that'd be an educated guess. There's two things which are working against you here. First, you cannot get the cable tie tight enough. They just won't allow you to. Secondly, as everything heats up, the cable tie will get soft and expand. In both cases, the coolant when it gets up to temp and the system is pressurized, will press coolant past where your makeshift hose clamp is at.

With that said, if I was in a bit of a twixt, I'd try it. Start your vehicle from an absolute cold standpoint, put two or three zip ties around the hose, where the ends of the ties are in different places around the hose, then drive to where you need to go. I'd bet it's going to leak, however, it might get you there. I wouldn't put any bets on it, though.

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    +1 for the zip ties ..another thing that might work, assuming OP has at least a screw driver, moving a clamp from a less critical connection. I know on my Blazer I think some of the airbox/breather clamps could be made to hold a rad hose in a pinch.
    – elrobis
    Nov 25, 2019 at 22:07

Well it worked. Two large zip ties on the bottom hose, after one of those Ford spring hose clips broke. Got me to work, where i fitted a proper hose clip.

Slackened off the filler cap abit when driving.

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