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Thread: Mixing different brands of coolant

  1. #1
    Tegger
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    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    cameo <cameo@unreal.invalid> wrote in news:jk3u4t$4hu$1@dont-email.me:

    > I just stumbled onto a warning in my Honda service manual that says:
    >
    > CAUTION:
    > Do not mix different brands of antifreeze/coolant.
    >
    > I have a feeling that this warning is not observed by most independent
    > shops and Honda owners over the life of a car. So I wonder what kind of
    > consequences might one expect from mixing different brands. Don't they
    > all use essentially the same ethylene glycol?
    >


    Yes, but the rest of it is different from brand to brand, not all of which
    are compatible with each other.

    And since you have no idea of the compatibility of one brand to another,
    it's unwise to chance mixing two that don't like each other.

    And even if they are compatible, mixing them deletes the long-life
    corrosion protection, dumbing protection down to the default 2-years.

    --
    Tegger

  2. #2
    Tegger
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    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    Tegger <invalid@example.com> wrote in
    news:XnsA01A622828D3Dtegger@208.90.168.18:

    > cameo <cameo@unreal.invalid> wrote in news:jk3u4t$4hu$1@dont-email.me:
    >
    >> I just stumbled onto a warning in my Honda service manual that says:
    >>
    >> CAUTION:
    >> Do not mix different brands of antifreeze/coolant.
    >>
    >> I have a feeling that this warning is not observed by most
    >> independent shops and Honda owners over the life of a car. So I
    >> wonder what kind of consequences might one expect from mixing
    >> different brands. Don't they all use essentially the same ethylene
    >> glycol?
    >>

    >
    >
    >
    > Yes, but the rest of it is different from brand to brand, not all of
    > which are compatible with each other.
    >
    > And since you have no idea of the compatibility of one brand to
    > another, it's unwise to chance mixing two that don't like each other.
    >
    > And even if they are compatible, mixing them deletes the long-life
    > corrosion protection, dumbing protection down to the default 2-years.
    >


    Further: Coolant is not like brake fluid or motor oil, where all of them
    within a given grade are compatible with each other.

    --
    Tegger

  3. #3
    jim beam
    Guest jim beam's Avatar

    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    On 03/18/2012 06:41 AM, Tegger wrote:
    > Tegger<invalid@example.com> wrote in
    > news:XnsA01A622828D3Dtegger@208.90.168.18:
    >
    >> cameo<cameo@unreal.invalid> wrote in news:jk3u4t$4hu$1@dont-email.me:
    >>
    >>> I just stumbled onto a warning in my Honda service manual that says:
    >>>
    >>> CAUTION:
    >>> Do not mix different brands of antifreeze/coolant.
    >>>
    >>> I have a feeling that this warning is not observed by most
    >>> independent shops and Honda owners over the life of a car. So I
    >>> wonder what kind of consequences might one expect from mixing
    >>> different brands. Don't they all use essentially the same ethylene
    >>> glycol?
    >>>

    >>
    >>
    >>
    >> Yes, but the rest of it is different from brand to brand, not all of
    >> which are compatible with each other.
    >>
    >> And since you have no idea of the compatibility of one brand to
    >> another, it's unwise to chance mixing two that don't like each other.
    >>
    >> And even if they are compatible, mixing them deletes the long-life
    >> corrosion protection, dumbing protection down to the default 2-years.
    >>

    >
    >
    >
    > Further: Coolant is not like brake fluid or motor oil, where all of them
    > within a given grade are compatible with each other.


    oh, puh-leeze.

    <http://www.eetcorp.com/antifreeze/antifreeze-faq.htm>

    --
    nomina rutrum rutrum

  4. #4
    Tegger
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    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    cameo <cameo@unreal.invalid> wrote in news:jk56t5$4bi$1@dont-email.me:

    > On 3/18/2012 6:41 AM, Tegger wrote:
    >>
    >> Further: Coolant is not like brake fluid or motor oil, where all of them
    >> within a given grade are compatible with each other.

    >
    > OK, but in most cases when I want to top off the coolant to replenish
    > the loss over time, I have no idea what coolant the shop was using when
    > they filled the system last time. So mixing different brands here is
    > likely.


    Possible. And not a great practice.

    What's also possible is that the shop went by color and topped up with the
    same color that was already in there. That's what my guy does.


    > Heck, last time, as I found out, my well regarded independent
    > mechanic specializing in Japanese cars, used tap water to mix the
    > concentrated coolant. When I asked him about that, he dismissed my
    > concern by saying that the tapwater here was pretty soft and he never
    > heard that using tapwater for mixing could be a problem.


    Then he's not using Honda coolant, which is a premix...


    > (Funny, even
    > I've known about that!) But then, maybe that tapwater is the reason why
    > I've just noticed the early signs of coolant vapor condensing inside my
    > windshield after only a few years of heater core replacement.


    If /correct/ coolant is used, and is changed at the /correct/ intervals,
    the heater core will outlast the vehicle.

    --
    Tegger

  5. #5
    Tegger
    Guest Tegger's Avatar

    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    cameo <cameo@unreal.invalid> wrote in news:jk7qmi$gm7$1@dont-email.me:

    > On 3/19/2012 4:56 AM, Tegger wrote:


    >
    >> What's also possible is that the shop went by color and topped up
    >> with the same color that was already in there. That's what my guy
    >> does.

    >
    > Except -- according that antifreeze FAQ:
    > "In the past, most antifreezes were green. Now, manufacturers use a
    > variety of colors in their antifreeze product lines. Green generally,
    > but not necessarily, indicates an automotive or light duty
    > formulation. Orange antifreeze generally means extended-life type of
    > antifreeze. It is ethylene glycol-based like most green antifreezes
    > but contains different corrosion inhibitors.
    > The various manufacturers use colors to identify their products in a
    > bit of marketing gamesmanship; however, there are no hard rules
    > governing the use of these colors. "


    Then maybe there's more to it than color. I just watched him, I never asked
    him about it.

    --
    Tegger

  6. #6
    Dave Dodson
    Guest Dave Dodson's Avatar

    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    Tegger <invalid@example.com> wrote in
    news:XnsA01BAC24998D5tegger@208.90.168.18:

    Just to change the subject slightly, you mentioned the Honda Coolant is a
    pre-mix...Do you know to what temp that protects your cooling system from
    freezing?
    DaveD

  7. #7
    Tegger
    Guest Tegger's Avatar

    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    Dave Dodson <dave6985@...........m> wrote in
    news:XnsA01BEF87A9196DaveD@209.112.128.246:

    > Tegger <invalid@example.com> wrote in
    > news:XnsA01BAC24998D5tegger@208.90.168.18:
    >
    > Just to change the subject slightly, you mentioned the Honda Coolant
    > is a pre-mix...Do you know to what temp that protects your cooling
    > system from freezing?
    > DaveD
    >


    Let me have a look at the bottle...

    It says it's a 50/50 mix.
    Freezing point: -35F
    Boiling point: 268F

    There's a little asterisk that tells you that the boiling point is
    calculated at sea-level, and with a 16-lb cap.
    I'm about 800ft above sea level, and my car takes a 13-lb cap. I don't know
    what that does to the boiling point.

    Also the label says not to drink it. I guess that's important.

    --
    Tegger

  8. #8
    jim beam
    Guest jim beam's Avatar

    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    On 03/20/2012 08:09 AM, Tegger wrote:
    > Dave Dodson<dave6985@...........m> wrote in
    > news:XnsA01BEF87A9196DaveD@209.112.128.246:
    >
    >> Tegger<invalid@example.com> wrote in
    >> news:XnsA01BAC24998D5tegger@208.90.168.18:
    >>
    >> Just to change the subject slightly, you mentioned the Honda Coolant
    >> is a pre-mix...Do you know to what temp that protects your cooling
    >> system from freezing?
    >> DaveD
    >>

    >
    >
    > Let me have a look at the bottle...
    >
    > It says it's a 50/50 mix.
    > Freezing point: -35F
    > Boiling point: 268F
    >
    > There's a little asterisk that tells you that the boiling point is
    > calculated at sea-level, and with a 16-lb cap.
    > I'm about 800ft above sea level, and my car takes a 13-lb cap. I don't know
    > what that does to the boiling point.


    it reduces it.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boiling_point


    >
    > Also the label says not to drink it. I guess that's important.
    >


    --
    nomina rutrum rutrum

  9. #9
    Dave Dodson
    Guest Dave Dodson's Avatar

    Default Mixing different brands of coolant

    Tegger <invalid@example.com> wrote in
    news:XnsA01E60DE8B50Ftegger@208.90.168.18:

    > Wow. I've never experienced cold like that, and I hope I never do.
    >
    > I guess nobody up there has a backyard swimming pool, huh?


    Believe it or not there are some backyard pools here...They are all the
    above ground type so they can be drained in the fall... Our average
    summer temp is about 74F but we have days, not uncommon, with temps up
    in the 80s and 90s...Low 90s albeit....To my way of thinking it is a
    waste of time and money for only several days use a year....But the kids
    seem to enjoy them....
    >
    > Your local dealer has /got/ to sell a Honda-branded mix that's meant
    > for your climate; Type-2 clearly will not do.


    I have been using my own mix in my 86 Civic and it has done OK...Don't
    drive it much in the winter for the past several years...I guess maybe
    I'm babying it too much...Should use it more I reckon... DaveD

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