Antifreeze is an important part of your vehicle’s operation. It is vital that you understand which kind of antifreeze will work best for your particular vehicle. This quick guide will provide you with more information on choosing the best type for coolant freezing and boilover protection.
What Is Antifreeze?
Antifreeze is a liquid that is needed inside all liquid cooled vehicle cooling systems. The liquid is mixed with equal parts of water. This creates a solution that will provide freezing and boilover protection as opposed to plain water.
Can I Use Straight Water?
Straight water is sometimes used. For instance, NASCAR and drag racers will sometimes use straight water for cooling systems. But, this is only because during the competition there are strict rules concerning coolant spills. Antifreeze contains a slippery substance called ethylene glycol. This substance is not allowed on the track. Straight water is not recommended for regular vehicles because it does not protect against rust or corrosion. Water also does not lubricate the water pump seal or shaft bearings.
Because water is not an ideal coolant for regular vehicles, antifreeze is used. It is often mixed with equal parts water. This is called a pre-mix. Antifreeze lowers the freezing point to -35 degrees F. It also raises the boiling temp to 223 degrees F. In the mixtures are also corrosion inhibitors that help to protect the engine and cooling system from damage.
The antifreeze premix is recommended for most vehicles. It provides the best general cooling protection as well as additional damage prevention through corrosion inhibitors. When you use a premix you don’t have to worry about whether or not you are getting the right amounts of antifreeze and water.
Premix comes in different ratios. This is why it is very important that you do your research to find out exactly what your vehicle needs. Different proportions of mix will have different effects on your cooling system.
You can also buy straight antifreeze. If you choose to buy straight antifreeze you will need to be sure you are well aware of the standard antifreeze/water mixture needed for your vehicle.
If you feel unsure about completing this chore on your own, you can always reach out to a local auto shop. Coolant changes and checks can be done as part of your vehicle’s regular maintenance. A professional will be able to advise you on which product is best for your car and ensure that you have exactly what you need.
Categorised in: Vehicle Repairs
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