Laminar flow and heat transfer in square serpentine channels with right-angle turns, which have applications in heat exchangers, were numerically studied. A finite volume code in FORTRAN was developed to solve this problem. For solving the flow field, a colocated-grid formulation was used, as opposed to the staggered-grid formulation, and the SIMPLE algorithm was used to link the velocity and pressure. The line-by-line method was used to solve the algebraic equations. The temperature field was solved for the uniform-wall-heat-flux boundary condition. The developed numerical code was validated by solving for fully developed flow and heat transfer in a square straight channel. The grid-independent solution was established for a reference case of serpentine channel with the highest Reynolds number. Periodically fully developed flow and heat transfer fields in serpentine channels were solved for different geometry parameters, for different Reynolds numbers, and for two different Prandtl numbers (for air and water, respectively). The enhancement of the heat transfer mechanism was explained by studying the plotted flow-field velocity vectors in different planes. The heat transfer performance of serpentine channels is better than that for straight channels for Pr = 7.0 and is worse than that for straight channels for Pr = 0.7. © 1999, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. All rights reserved.