Waterless Coolants?
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Thread: Waterless Coolants?

  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger! geodon's Avatar
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    Default Waterless Coolants?

    I've had problems with cooling systems on cars that don't get driven much.

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    The main problem is that radiators get clogged with sediment. e.g. my MGA has needed a radiator flush 3 times in the last 20 or so years.

    I could drain the system if I know I won't drive it for a while but TBH that leaves a wet radiator core that will go on rusting anyway.

    Will waterless coolants avoid this?
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    COL
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    I personally think if you have only flushed it out 3 times in the last 20 years that is pretty good.

    The modern coolants have pretty long life and high Km.

    Since you don't drive your cars much you should be servicing your cooling system on time and not distance travelled, the same goes for oil changes.

    I'm not sure that waterless coolants will fix your issue.

    All I would do is buy a fresh lot of coolant every 5 years and drain, flush and fill with new coolant.
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    Waterless Coolant Easy
    Time to get an old air-cooled VW Beetle or even better Porsche 356 or 911
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    COL
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    Quote Originally Posted by driven View Post
    Waterless Coolant Easy
    Time to get an old air-cooled VW Beetle or even better Porsche 356 or 911
    And another set of problems
    Regards Col

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    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Have a look what jay leno says. there wouldn't be many that have as many cars to upkeep as him .... that would do very few kms. apparently they do run hotter in the reading i've done, but you just ignore this as the waterless coolants don't boil. so you don't need to run pressurised systems etc.

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    Coolant lasts much longer than 98 unleaded if the car sits unused, current fuel only lasts about 3 months before it starts to go off. It is a big part of the workload with 10 in the fleet. I have needed to do quite a few carby rebuilds to remove nasty weird gel and other contaminants from jets and float bowls. I am not a fuel chemist but I have noticed there seems to be more of a reaction with the brass bits in carbs then there used to be with leaded fuel.

    I find that coolants easily last a couple of years.

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    I've looked into waterless coolants quite carefully and it seems to me that if you want to spend the money they do the job. I think it's a propylene glycol base (unlike ethylene glycol in watery coolants) and it has a rather lower specific heat than water. So, as Shane says, it'll run hotter but it won't boil inside the cylinder head. I know a couple of careful and thoughtful enthusiasts using them and they are quite satisfied. Expensive fluid, so get a big drip tray to catch everything when the inevitable hose change is needed!!

    I decided against using them myself as I've not had problems with conventional water-based fluids.

    My 55 year Renault R8 radiator and heater core are original and fine and have never needed a flush/professional clean. It normally runs around 80 degrees but rises above 90 at cruising revs (4000 or a bit less) on 40-degree days, so I guess it is still OK. I'm very careful to change coolants and not to mix coolants. I'm not sure why you'd need the MGA flushing if the coolant changes were done on schedule - I've been surprised at how clean mine has remained over the years. Having said all this, I'll no doubt (and deservedly) have cooling trouble this summer....
    JohnW

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    I've decided to stay with the water based coolants.

    The key factor for me is that water will transfer heat at double the rate of glycols. That's why glycols make your engines operate at higher temps. At higher temps, the difference in temps compared to atmospheric then increases the heat transfer of glycols.

    The problem with water arises from it's low boiling point causing a loss of coolant & rapid overheating especially with an atmospheric system (the Big 6). Another problem is corrosion if your engine has a lot of aluminium.

    The waterless stuff is damn expensive and to change over you have to use a purge (more expense) to be sure there is less than 3% water in your system

    So! I'll keep a close eye on my temp gauges.

    *memo to self: put a water temp gauge in the Pug because by the time the "you're stuffed, mon ami" light comes on it's probably too late*

    The clogging I will tackle via a sock filter inside the top hose and more frequent changes,

    My "fleet" doesn't have a heap of aluminium in the engines so corrosion isn't a big deal.
    Last edited by geodon; 21st December 2019 at 01:46 PM. Reason: more info
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    1000+ Posts alan moore's Avatar
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    I am still happy to use the standard 5 or 7 year Penrite coolant changed every 3 years or so. My BMW only gets used maybe 8 times a year, but has had no problems with corrosion or overheating in the 28 years I have owned it. When I rebuilt the engine 10 years ago the head was excellent, although I have seen many badly corroded BMW heads over the years, obviously run without coolant.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geodon View Post
    I've decided to stay with the water based coolants.

    The key factor for me is that water will transfer heat at double the rate of glycols. That's why glycols make your engines operate at higher temps. At higher temps, the difference in temps compared to atmospheric then increases the heat transfer of glycols.
    The problem with water arises from it's low boiling point causing a loss of coolant & rapid overheating especially with an atmospheric system (the Big 6). Another problem is corrosion if your engine has a lot of aluminium.
    The waterless stuff is damn expensive and to change over you have to use a purge (more expense) to be sure there is less than 3% water in your system
    So! I'll keep a close eye on my temp gauges.
    *memo to self: put a water temp gauge in the Pug because by the time the "you're stuffed, mon ami" light comes on it's probably too late*
    The clogging I will tackle via a sock filter inside the top hose and more frequent changes,
    My "fleet" doesn't have a heap of aluminium in the engines so corrosion isn't a big deal.
    Hi
    My. That waterless stuff is just a ripoff IMHO. But I am a tight arse. The problem with your old systems is only to protect them from old style corrosion on cast iron and copper based alloys. Not so difficult and any of the long term new coolants will do that easily. If there is a sludge problem then you might need to flush with a cleaner before starting the next batch.

    The ethylene glycol will also raise the boiling point even if it is not pressurised so having a good percentage will give you another 5-7 deg above 100. That seems like a good plan to me for any long term old engine. Use distilled water if you mix it your self and for topping up also as the glycol will not evaporate.
    Jaahn
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    Fellow Frogger! geodon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by driven View Post
    Waterless Coolant Easy
    Time to get an old air-cooled VW Beetle or even better Porsche 356 or 911
    Yes, well, let's not forget these cars had a rather detailed OIL cooling system as well, sometimes even with thermostats & baffles!
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    Distilled water and Nulon concentrate is my favourite, as it's glycol free.
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    Yes, Glycol free. I used to buy Cleanteam but they don't make it anymore in Glycol free. Big W has started to sell Valvoline Glycol free. Glycol only there for antifreeze.

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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    I forgot that Nulon concentrate - I ran a similar Castrol corrosion inhibitor for many years with total success. I agree you don't need glycol unless freezing is a serious issue! However, the benefit to me of using one of the glycol-based products seems to me to be reducing the risk of localised boiling in the head.

    For the record, the Peugeot pre-mixed coolant, whatever it is, boils at 107 degrees or a bit higher at atmospheric pressure.
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    Hi
    If you want to race you need to run without gylcol but for road use it is normal stuff and has its own advantages. That's why it is used in almost all cars on the road. It has anti freeze and anti boil properties and also inhibits bacteria growing, some anti corrosion properties and other things. And it is easy to buy everwhere in convienient packages complete with anti corrosion agents, suitable to put in your radiator. Why f*ck with something else ???
    https://www.carid.com/articles/antif...explained.html
    jaahn

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    Highly corrosive in the wrong concentration.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    Highly corrosive in the wrong concentration.
    Hi Graham
    would you like to elaborate on that statement please.
    Any coolant needs to have an effective corrosion treatment included in the mix, as all quality brands do sold commonly.
    Like JohnW I have been impressed in times past how clean inside the heads and blocks were on the R8 and later models when you opened them up. The earlier Renault motors used to eat the water pumps and heads from lack of proper coolant.
    Jaahn

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    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    I've seen a Jay Leno episode where he states he runs the evans waterless coolant in everything. Keep in mind, the cost of this coolant given his collection would be negligible. He showed the corroded out part on one of his cars that he had replaced many years ago .... at which point he converted it to waterless coolant. Fast forward many years and the same part was removed to be found in exactly the same condition as it was when assembled many years before.

    If I had tens of millions of $$$ of vehicles that are all drivers, but rarely driven to upkeep. It is a no brainer. Use a fluid that stops corrosion and rust dead in its tracks. Especially given you can run the cooling systems with no pressure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnW View Post
    For the record, the Peugeot pre-mixed coolant, whatever it is, boils at 107 degrees or a bit higher at atmospheric pressure.
    Do you mean the red stuff, which I think is BASF Glysantin G33?


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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuey View Post
    Do you mean the red stuff, which I think is BASF Glysantin G33?
    No, the current pale blue stuff. I've no idea what it is...
    JohnW

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