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FOR LIFE COOLANT


sulzerman
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One of ours at East Berks recently bought a Vitesse, flushed the rad and block and then realised he'd just lost £50 worth of waterless coolant. While I'm a fan of silicone brake fluid, I don't think our cars are stable enough, for long enough, to justify waterless coolant.

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Hmm

Well ive used 4life for a few years now without problems. Yes its expensive to start but so is 10 years of antifreeze.

After spending a lot of time cleaning out the cooling system from many years of PO use of hard water and not being in a soft water area..... well it seemed sensible

Ive not had any problems with it. In fact i only just found out that it changes colour when your head gasket is on its way out!

It was fine this year in France in 40 degree heat and i dont have an electric fan to assist cooling

£50 is an over estimate Doug, the club shop sells it at around £16 for 5 litres if i remember correctly

Aidan

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Folks.

This is one of those subjects that falls in to the "horses for courses" based on personal choice.

There is without doubt pros and cons for both and owners will go for what they feel either confident with or a complete change to see if other options are better; to which Aidan has documented clearly.

I believe Doug is pitching his price theory (correctly) along the Evans waterless coolant option which is very expensive and that does not include the initial outlay to thoroughly clean out the coolant system prior to the conversion. Some will say you do not need to thoroughly clean the system before converting from standard AF to Evans. That is incorrect and if that was the case why would Evans make the cleaner in the first place, and no it's not just financial based.

Personally I am and always will be with the standard AF mob, this is purely personal and has stood me well for nearly forty years of classic car motoring. Additionally it is far easier to top up with water if a leak occurs rather than relying on having to do so with a container of Evans and the like in the boot of the car.

This is a topic that has been debated many times and at length on the Forum, however that said I believe it is still a useful topic to review on a regular basis when owners are confronted with the waterless option.

Regards.

Richard.

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I would not use waterless, based on the inconvenience. A mate turns up to the Retro show (Triumphfest was part of it) in his cossie, and the rad had been holed by a stone off the road. He had just spent over £100 on the waterless stuff, (the cleanser/dryer stuff, which luckily he could reuse, and 2x5L of coolant) He managed to rescue 2L of the escaping coolant, and managed to get a new rad for the journey home filled with plain water) But aside the rad, it still cost him a new 5l of the coolant, plus the faff of running the cleanser etc through again. And to top it all the cars do run hotter with it (It can't carry as much heat as water or indeed std anitfreeze)

Another chap I know just uses neat blue antifreeze, and changes it every few years. His cooling system is spotless....

I use approx 50% blue with tapwater, and have no issues at all. The amount of scale from the 5L or so is negligible, but if worried just buy distilled water, or cheaper boil a kettle then use the boiled water. 

I will be honest, I believe some of these "ideas" that appear are more to invent something to flog people, and often offer few benefits. I realise some progress has been made (the OAT antifreeze is clever, just not suitable for our cars, and some synthetic oils are brilliant, but care/thought is needed) But worth thinking through what the benefits really are.

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Aiden,

OK £16 doesn't sound too bad, (actually, £18 with club discount for 5 litres of 4life), But as Haynes says my capacity is 6.2 litres, I'd have to buy the 10 litre bottle at £34. Without discount £40. Evans comes in at a scary £129 on Ebay!

Richard's point about topping up is the major downside point for me and back to my original comment about stability.

Also ordinary coolant tells you when you've got a head gasket leak , it turns to green shaving foam, well, it did foe me.  :lol:

 

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As Clive says, the worry for me would be coolant leaks - it happens, no matter how well our cars are maintained, and if you have to keep buying replacement fluid rather than topping up from a tap it's bothersome. I can see me starting off with the best of intentions then slipping back to water and antifreeze again after a while. 

Just as long as anti-freeze is still available - too many other things are becoming very hard to source these days.

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Just to add - i wouldn't use Evans! Far too expensive!  and its like thin oil whereas 4life is like water in its consistency!. You can add water to 4life if you have a leak although this does impact on its benefits. 

As Richard says, its one of those Marmite things, either you like it or you don't!, pro's and cons in all things I guess, Scary about the Halfords comment Doug, you may cause a stampede :lol: 

Aidan

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For me I stick with distilled water and the original, none OAT,  antifreeze. This is because the original coolant has a finite life therefore it makes me regularly flush and check out the cooling system. In theory the waterless coolant shouldn't require flushing as there is no corrosion, but for me it's good to clear out the cooling system anyway which is a must for any TR7 owner. Cost and leaks are my other considerations. 

As been said its all about choice and what works for you.

Thanks,

Dave

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The old  blue stuff was always good at making seapage leaks from hoses etc. 

Theres many alternatives about these days but 1970 to 1993 every truck had a Barrs  leak pellet popped in the bottom hose on production

It certainly solved the running in leaks from  so many more connections than we have .

Pete

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 12/5/2017 at 9:00 AM, clive said:

******************************

Another chap I know just uses neat blue antifreeze, and changes it every few years. His cooling system is spotless....

I use approx 50% blue with tapwater, and have no issues at all. The amount of scale from the 5L or so is negligible, but if worried just buy distilled water, or cheaper boil a kettle then use the boiled water. 

*******************

 

Hi,

 a couple of points:

Running with 100% antifreeze will probably cause your engine to run hot as EG has around half the specific heat of water. It also has a much higher freezing point than 50% mix. I don't think it expands like water when frozen, but your fan belt would not be happy if the coolant was solid.

 

Boiling tap water does not make it soft. 

 

Cheers,

Iain.

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Iain, there are 2 types of water hardness. Boiling will remove temporary hardness, which is the copious amounts of scale that builds up in my kettle. That saves it from happening in the engine.

I don't see permanent hardness as an issue as water doesn't evaporate (or shouldn't!) from the cooling system. 

The chap who uses neat antifreeze always has. He also runs his Heraldand Spit on straight 30weight oil. The spit has done nearly 100k since he built the engine, the herald lasted about 120K since he fitted new bearings and rings. He has just repeated that, though the engine is starting to burn a little oil now. The cooling systems on his cars are super clean. The biggest issue is the recored rads only last about 10 years, the cooling fins just disintegrate, probably too thin to save copper.

Should add he does not thrash his cars, but the herald is a daily commuter, and the spit does a fair mileage every year too.  

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I have to descale our kettle every couple of weeks. I use Brick Acid (HCl, cheap and fast!) Even the kettle filter needs rinsing daily or you can't get the water out!

Yes, I live in Brighton. Just next the amazing South Downs that hold a bazillion gallons of hard water......

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10 minutes ago, dougbgt6 said:

Yes, I suffer from Berkshire hard water, no good for beer making. You can Burtonize hard water with a spoonful of plaster of Paris per 5 galleons, but I don't fancy it. So I buy spring water from Waitrose.

Doug

I cut out all the faff and just buy the beer! At a party last night, apparently Lidl have some very good beers at £1.25 a bottle. Old (and in my case) Peculiar was mentioned.

And just checked, their own beers (actually they are good) are only 89p......  bargain! 

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Distilled water is cheap as chips and you can buy 5L containers form all supermarkets; this type of water is advantageous for resisting corrosion within the cooling system.

I have used it long term and since doing so the coolant looks far less contaminated compared to using tap water or even rain water for that matter.  

Regards.

Richard.

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Hi,

 distilled, demineralised or deionised water are not the same. To say  that distilled water is; "is advantageous for resisting corrosion within the cooling system" is clearly wrong. It will promote corrosion. Mixed with a concentrated antifreeze is much better that the average tap water though, if this is what was meant?

50/50 or 20ish/80ish + inhibitor for summer is a good choice IMHO. I don't know if the water pump life is effected.

zero antifreeze and corrosion inhibitor is good in non freezing conditions. Also, I don't know if the water pump life is effected.

I have heard of people running 100% concentrated anti-freeze, but I not.

Cheers,

Iain

 

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Not sure about water pump life. Usually it is the seal that wear that causes issues, though I have had them with rough bearings but leak free (guess only temporarily though,  bearing wear will soon kill the seal) but the original water pumps seem to be VERY good and last many many years. And that includes all the time the cars were totally uncared for. 

The extra strain caused by viscosity won't worry a pump unless very high revving, likewise I doubt the changes to SHC will make any real life difference. If the system is that marginal, more comprehensive changes are needed. But a good condition engine and rad (good being the operative words, and that means no blockages etc and all clean, a mere flush won't do the business) should be fine in all conditions, though very high power output cars may have requirements after a thorough thrashing or track or whatever. Evidence that the std cooling fan seems to work better than an electrical type is also about. Andy Cook wrote an article about changing back to std fan on his car, resulting in  more stable temperatures. And a local friend in a superb GT6 who had cooling issue despite a VERY well build std engine, new radiator etc when the car was fully restored. But dumping the electric fan solved those issues too. I know it sounds wrong, but the real world results speak for themselves.

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