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Thread: Coolant type

  1. #1
    Member Christian's Avatar
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    Default Coolant type

    After changing a hose, I had to refill the cooling system on my 71 toy. I noticed that the coolant that was left in the system was kind of yellow-green (it was very clean, I did not flush the system). I could not recall using any particular type of coolant. The only coolant I had in my garage was orange. I filled up the system with a 20% mix of my orange coolant (I live in Florida). I recall reading something about coolant colors but I could not remember the details neither the original document. Does anyone has opinion about it? Is there a color code for different coolant types? Is there any problem mixing both colors or types?
    Christian

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    Culprit's Avatar
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    DO NOT DRIVE YOUR VETTE! Flush the system with a detergent and plenty of water.

    Do not mix the old yellow/green and the new orange. If you mix them they turn into a viscous gel - some even describe it as a glue. This will blow your water pump and gum up the coolant passages in the block.

    I saw this happen to a friend's 2000 VW. She took the car to a Zippy Lube and they topped it off with the wrong color stuff. In the land of pharfenugen, the water pump is driven by the timing belt so when the water pump blew, it broke the belt and she bent valves and almost destroyed the heads themselves. Not pretty.

    Of course in the Chevy world you wouldn't have that many problems, but you still don't want the headaches.

    Semper Fidelis,
    Culprit

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    I'll yield to those with better knowledge, but on first pass, I'd say that the difference in color is as simple as different manufacturers . . and there's no problem in mixing brands them although ideally, the system should be flushed.

    In addition, I believe you want to run a 50 / 50 mix of coolant and water.
    Regards
    CQRT in AZ
    Scottsdale

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    I can understand mixing differing chemical types . . like water wetter with Prestone, etc... but didn't know the mix could be so catastrophic! I'll defer to the Marines on the subject - - I never liked orange and green anyway . . . ..

    CQRT in AZ
    CQRT in AZ
    Scottsdale

  5. #5
    Member Christian's Avatar
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    OK. Clear enough. Looks like I screwed up.
    I am going to flush it, rinse it, flush it again and refill.
    What coolant would you recommend to go with ?
    Christian

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    Member Tom73's Avatar
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    You are in Flordia, what do you need antifreeze for anyway? Just flush it real good then add a bottle of the Prestone Rust Inhibitor and then fill with water. The only purpose for the "coolant" is for rust protection and to keep the system from freezing. The Rust Inhibitor will take care of the rust issue and if the temps never get to freezing there is not need for coolant, straight water works better anyway.

    This from the Stewart Waterpump site:
    If freezing is not a concern we recommend water with a corrosion inhibitor. If freezing is a concern, use the proper amount of antifreeze required for your climate.
    http://www.stewartcomponents.com/Stewart_faq.htm

    tom...
    Need info on the '73 Vette? Click below.

    www.73spot.com

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    Tom:
    Interesting suggestion . . but water boils at 212 degrees . . .and I guess I've always thought (perhaps eroneously) that "anti-freeze" both lowered to freezing temp of water as well as raised it's boiling point.
    Do you have any experience with products like "water-wetter" ?
    Thanks for putting up with my questions in the middle of Christian's thread . . .
    Regards-

    CQRT in AZ
    CQRT in AZ
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  8. #8
    Member KOPBET's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CQRT
    Tom:
    Interesting suggestion . . but water boils at 212 degrees . . .and I guess I've always thought (perhaps eroneously) that "anti-freeze" both lowered to freezing temp of water as well as raised it's boiling point.
    CQRT in AZ
    It does raise the boiling point. Anything dissolved in water will raise its boiling point. A simple check of the label on the anti-freeze bottle will show you that it provides boil-over protection as well as depression of the freezing point. However rust inhibitors may likely raise it somewhat also.

    Never mix "colors" of anti-freeze. Manufacurers dye the solution for a reason. Green doesn't mix with orange. Orange should only be used in aluminum radiators and NOT copper and brass. Color is not a difinitive identification of mixability, i.e. Japanese green is not the same as U.S. green.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CQRT
    Interesting suggestion . . but water boils at 212 degrees . . .and I guess I've always thought (perhaps eroneously) that "anti-freeze" both lowered to freezing temp of water as well as raised it's boiling point.
    Do you have any experience with products like "water-wetter" ?
    That 212 applies to only non-pressurized systems. Yours is pressurized, which would raise the boiling point. My guess would be that it would move it up above the 250 mark.

    I have used Water-Wetter but cannot tell if it did any good or not. On my 90 C4 I replaced the pump with a Stewart high flow pump, changed over from anti-freeze to water, and added Water-Wetter. Droped the temp by almost 30 degrees. What part of that was Water-Wetter, I don't know. I have read some stories here about it doing lots of good and others about it doing nothing. Appears to me that it will not hurt anything, so if using it give peace of mind, then use it.

    tom...

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    KOPBET and Tom73-
    Thanks for the education . . that's one of the things I really enjoy about this forum.

    Regards-

    CQRT in AZ
    CQRT in AZ
    Scottsdale

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    I agree "do not mix the two". My wife has a 98 blazer with the orange stuff (dexcool) I wanted to change to the green stuff. Do a google search on dexcool, they tell you do not mix them. If you want to change, they say to do some kind of acid flush when you do. Needless to say, I stayed with the orange stuff in my wifes car, even though theres alot of people having problems with the orange stuff in their cars in the late 90's(noticed some class action lawsuits on the goolge search-you will see many,many people with problems with the dexcool)

  12. #12
    Culprit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian
    OK. Clear enough. Looks like I ****ed up.
    I am going to flush it, rinse it, flush it again and refill.
    What coolant would you recommend to go with ?
    I would go with the old school yellow/green stuff for two reasons. 1) That's what the system was designed for. 2) Nobody has shown me any reason that the orange stuff is any better.

    Good luck with it - and that LS-5 looks like a sweet Vette!

  13. #13
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    I didn't think you could put straight water into the radiator from the tap. It has minerals, in it that could lead to deposits doesn't it. I cant remember but I think I was told to put distilled water in. I dont know, I do that with the green stuff.

    Craig

  14. #14
    Member Christian's Avatar
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    OK. I flushed it this morning, rinsed it 3 times and filled it up again with Dex-Cool (Orange) at 33%.

    Thanks for the advice.

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    Glad to hear you're back in business!

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