Not Logged In Log In   Sign Up   Points Leaders
Follow Us    11:59 PM

Message Forum - Read Message

Category: Car Talk > Topics Add to favorite topics   Post new topicPost New Topic
Author Topic: Whats up with all the new colors in anti-freeze? Back to Topics
Hemond

Champion Author
Providence

Posts:11,721
Points:170,925
Joined:Oct 2006
Message Posted: Jul 23, 2013 12:39:17 AM

Why is automotive coolant today like a box of M&M's. Every color imaginable. Green, blue, red, orange, yellow, purple, violet, red. In addition to color there is conventional, hybrid organic, organic acid. Plus there is extended life and normal. This one for copper in the cooling system, that one for aluminum in the cooling system....

My own car has blue coolant and it is extended life. Factory spec is for 90,000 miles. I've never gone that many miles without a leak.

It used to be so simple to top up your anti-freeze, not anymore.
REPLIES (newest first) Post a Reply
Profile Pic
CactusBobs
Champion Author Arizona

Posts:4,138
Points:812,360
Joined:Jun 2010
Message Posted: Oct 2, 2013 10:40:45 PM

Hemond : the post below is 100% correct
may i add if you mix collors it turns black , then because you can no longer see through it , it needs to be changed
Profile Pic
Hemond
Champion Author Providence

Posts:11,721
Points:170,925
Joined:Oct 2006
Message Posted: Oct 2, 2013 10:33:51 PM

Color is important in anti freeze today. There are several competing technologies. OAT, IAT, Hybrid OAT and Nitrified OAT. These new types are long life and gentle on aluminum parts. Old style anti-freeze was harsh on aluminum.

These new formulations are sometimes not compatible, you can't just mix them. Thats the reason for the colors.
Profile Pic
TheJediCharles
Veteran Author Fort Worth

Posts:377
Points:66,285
Joined:Jul 2013
Message Posted: Oct 2, 2013 9:54:39 PM

I'm with roadhog. Marketing gimmick. Buyers are mostly so superficial. "Look honey, get this one instead; it matches our car. So cute."
Profile Pic
GrumpyCat
Champion Author Alabama

Posts:5,032
Points:1,171,725
Joined:Jun 2009
Message Posted: Oct 2, 2013 5:20:56 PM

dracer377m has it right. The color means nothing other than to frighten you into continuing to support the manufacturer of whatever is in the engine now. How dare you even THINK to mix orange with green!
Profile Pic
cDagasGo
Champion Author Maryland

Posts:3,364
Points:400,785
Joined:Aug 2013
Message Posted: Oct 2, 2013 3:20:12 PM

cats are not colour blind.
Profile Pic
dracer377m
Veteran Author Indiana

Posts:289
Points:213,530
Joined:Feb 2013
Message Posted: Sep 29, 2013 12:12:30 AM

it needs to look different so you think one brand is better than the other.
Profile Pic
Titanic1985
Champion Author South Carolina

Posts:9,481
Points:724,295
Joined:Dec 2010
Message Posted: Jul 27, 2013 2:06:41 PM

Hello again Hemond,

Once again, you got my curiosity up regarding my own personal vehicle and I found an additional warning. Here is what my 2012 Chevrolet Sonic Owner's Manual says:

"The cooling system in the vehicle is filled with DEX-COOL engine coolant. This coolant is designed to remain in the vehicle for 5 years or 150,000 miles, whichever comes first.

WARNING: Adding only plain water or some other liquid to the cooling system can be dangerous. Plain water and other liquids, could boil before proper mixture will. The coolant warning system is set for the proper coolant mixture."

This vehicle, and I presume other newer vehicles, is designed around the type of coolant and its mixture (50/50 in my case). Combining or using the wrong type of anti-freeze "could overheat and badly damage the engine".

You said, "Sure miss the days of just going into the hardware store and buying a gallon of green Zerex." I too remember buying Prestone at Zayres for $1.58 a gallon on sale. I also remember owning vehicles such as my 1994 Dodge RAM Van with a 4 gallon cooling system (e.g. 2 gallons of anti-freeze).

It seems that most everything about new cars makes you long for the "good old days".

Take care, my friend :-). MGY
Profile Pic
Titanic1985
Champion Author South Carolina

Posts:9,481
Points:724,295
Joined:Dec 2010
Message Posted: Jul 27, 2013 12:49:41 PM

Hi Hemond,

I must say you cracked me up with the comparison to a box of M&Ms. That is great! I did find an answer for you. The article states:

"Since antifreeze is clear when it is manufactured, and water is clear, dye is used to color the antifreeze for identification and marketing purposes.

There are a variety of colors available, including oranges, reds, greens, yellows, blues, clear and pink dye colors. With this variety of dye colors and more to come, the service technician’s ability to properly service and maintain light duty and heavy duty cooling systems properly will be greatly challenged. It is imperative the technician be fully aware of what the vehicle manufacturers' requirements for antifreeze are and those recommendations be carefully followed."

In short, follow the recommendations in your vehicle's Owners's Manual.

Here is the entire article which identifies the meanings of colors:

Anti-Freeze Colors

Hemond, in addition to the various colors, there is also a concern regarding purging the air out of the cooling system. Many engines today are made of aluminum verses the cast iron blocks of yesteryear. There are various purge procedures to eliminate what is called "hot spots". These hot spots can severely damage an engine. If in doubt, have a garage replace the anti-freeze and, if done incorrectly, the liability will be upon them.

If you can get through that linked article, I believe you'd have to be a Chemist.

Thanks for making my day :-). MGY
Profile Pic
Hemond
Champion Author Providence

Posts:11,721
Points:170,925
Joined:Oct 2006
Message Posted: Jul 27, 2013 11:34:15 AM

Took awhile but I was able to order some coolant online. I had to match the manufacturers part number with the factory OEM part number for blue, extended life coolant.

Sure miss the days of just going into the hardware store and buying a gallon of green Zerex.
Profile Pic
2Tall
Champion Author Maryland

Posts:18,283
Points:3,415,905
Joined:Jun 2004
Message Posted: Jul 27, 2013 9:40:15 AM

when all else fails..... check the owner's manual
Profile Pic
BT1288
Champion Author Lincoln

Posts:25,101
Points:1,911,715
Joined:May 2009
Message Posted: Jul 24, 2013 9:04:15 AM

One of life's pressing issues.
Profile Pic
cujo1977
Champion Author Nashville

Posts:1,642
Points:320,550
Joined:Apr 2013
Message Posted: Jul 24, 2013 7:46:03 AM

???
Profile Pic
the1roadhog
Champion Author Atlanta

Posts:11,521
Points:2,524,280
Joined:Jun 2007
Message Posted: Jul 24, 2013 7:36:50 AM

Marketing ploys.
Profile Pic
14smoke
Champion Author Birmingham

Posts:14,589
Points:2,203,380
Joined:May 2005
Message Posted: Jul 24, 2013 7:12:59 AM

There are a lot of options out there and car companies have different requirements, so, double check to make sure you're getting the right one for your car.
Profile Pic
CactusBobs
Champion Author Arizona

Posts:4,138
Points:812,360
Joined:Jun 2010
Message Posted: Jul 24, 2013 1:43:02 AM

you have not seen anything until you have seen a car/truck after a weekend DIYer gets done with it , a little of this and a little of that .......

ever seen BLACK anti-freeze ?

the first time i saw it i thought sure i was looking at oil

but no , it's just what happens when you buy whats ever on sale and have a slow coolant leak
Profile Pic
bluenvoy
Champion Author Nashville

Posts:17,387
Points:2,144,865
Joined:Oct 2005
Message Posted: Jul 23, 2013 9:24:47 AM

Well check your owner's manual to get the right antifreeze for you ride.
Profile Pic
OceanArcher
Champion Author Mississippi

Posts:7,845
Points:1,787,225
Joined:May 2004
Message Posted: Jul 23, 2013 8:28:22 AM

It's easy to make things hard, but it's hard to make things easy .....
Profile Pic
EdPG
Champion Author Boston

Posts:14,540
Points:3,157,335
Joined:Jul 2005
Message Posted: Jul 23, 2013 8:24:35 AM

just order a 2014 Anti-freeze to be changed @ 150,000 miles !!!
Profile Pic
sagnat
Champion Author Riverside

Posts:1,866
Points:735,725
Joined:Jun 2012
Message Posted: Jul 23, 2013 3:46:09 AM

Ahhhh...proprietary coolant.
Post a reply Back to Topics