If you are driving down the road and suddenly smoke starts coming from the radiator area under your hood, you need to pull over and check your radiator hose. This is very likely the culprit. If so, you will need to follow these instructions to fix the hose.
Let the Car Cool Off
Once you have pulled your car over after seeing smoke coming out from under your hood, wait until the car has cooled off. You shouldn't even open the hood until you have been parked with the engine turned off for several minutes. This allows it to cool off enough so that you reduce the risk of injury. When the radiator is involved, there is a risk of it busting, so be extremely careful when dealing with the radiator hose. Touch the hood of the car to be sure it has cooled before you open it.
Locate the Hole
After the car has cooled off, open the hood and latch it so it stays open. You need to figure which of the two radiator hoses is having the problem. There is an upper radiator hose that goes from the radiator to the motor, and a lower radiator hose located beneath the radiator. It is most likely the top hose, but you need to check both. When inspecting the hoses, you are looking for a crack or hole. You might still see some smoke coming from one of them, which lets you know where the fix needs to be done.
If the hole is on the lower radiator hose and it is difficult to reach, you might not be able to perform a quick fix. In this case, call up a tow company like Connolly's Towing Inc to bring you to a mechanic.
Repair the Hose
Once you have found the radiator hose that is causing the problems, make sure the hose and hole is completely dry. If fluid is leaking out, wipe it away so the area is dry. The tape will not stick if it's still wet from radiator fluid. Take a couple inches of duct tape and place it over the hole in the radiator hose. Press it firmly in place starting with the center of the tape right where the hole is located. Take a longer piece of tape and wrap it around the hose, making sure it goes around multiple times. Press it firmly in place. You may also need to add some more radiator fluid or just water to get you safely home.
Keep in mind this is a temporary fix in order to get you home or to the mechanic. You still need to get a new radiator hose installed in your car.