Nov 27, 2006, 7:24 PM
Post #4 of 24
If you still have the owner’s manual for the car, read it. Most modern cars produced in the last 25 or 30 years have engines that are designed to run at a temperature above the boiling point, usually about 220° F. If you run them with the radiator filled with pure water, they will often boil over.
You may have noticed that most of the bottles of liquid radiator fluid are no longer labeled as anti-freeze. But they are now usually labeled as engine coolant, or antifreeze- coolant. They do act as an anti-freeze, but they also raise the boiling point of the coolant in the radiator.
A mix of 50/50 water to coolant is best in my opinion. Use tap water. It will give you the lowest freezing point possible. Pure coolant, oddly enough, has a much higher freezing point than any mix percentage with water does. Adding water to it lowers the freezing point. Pure coolant will freeze solid at 40° F below zero. I know that from education and experience.
My ex-wife bought a gallon bottle of antifreeze-coolant one cold winter day in Fairbanks, Alaska. She left it in the trunk of the car all day. When she got home, she found it was frozen solid as a wedge. She took it back to the store where she bought it and exchanged it. She thought it was defective, and so did the store manager.
When she told me about it, I explained the qualities of it to her, and explained that there was nothing wrong with it; it simply freezes at 40 below. Incidentally, 40 below zero is the point at which the temperatures on the fahreneit and Centigrade temperature scales meet and are are identical. Any pipefitter with experience in the petro-chemical industry will know about the qualities of that stuff. People that live in warmer climates will often use pure antifreeze-coolant in their cars in the winter; they think they have the lowest freezing protection that way. They are wrong.
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