An appropriate antifreeze is so important for a vehicle engine, just the same as a high quality engine oil. The role of coolants in the engine longevity is vital. The fluid is composed of monoethylene glycol and additives to prevent corrosion and rust and improve the quality of antifreeze. In fact, the main task of the antifreeze in the engine is to prevent engine corrosion and to prevent the engine from freezing. These products are available in different colors such as red, orange and green. The most important thing is that antifreeze should not be used only in the cold season, but should be used throughout the year because of the importance of maintaining the engine from corrosion.
The antidotes are qualitatively divided into two main categories:
1. Antifreeze with mineral base: It is the main type of anti-freeze available on the market and its most expensive, and their engine lifetime is one year.
2. Organic base antifreeze: They have longer life spans than minerals due to the type of additives they use. These antidotes have a lifetime of three years.
With the advancement of science, different technologies have been developed to protect the engine from corrosion. In Europe, problems such as high level of water hardness made manufacturers to produce phosphorus-free coolants. It is because calcium and magnesium in hard water react with phosphate inhibitors and produce magnesium or calcium phosphate, which usually settle down on the hot body of the engine, causing heat loss or corrosion.
Today, in Europe, by removing phosphate compounds, coolants containing inorganic oxides such as silicates and carboxylates are made. Carboxylates, through internal chemical reactions, prevent corrosion by settling on surfaces. This technology that is used to mix carboxylates and silicates, is known as hybrid technology, because it combines inorganic technology with organic technology (carboxylates).
In Asia, the problem of compatibility with water pump washers and poor heat transfer properties led to the ban of using silicate-containing refrigerants. Instead, carboxylate and phosphate mixtures are being used. This type of coolant is also made by hybrid technology that is different from its European type (carboxylate and silicate mixtures).
Carboxylate-based coolants have a higher life span. It makes these products the best known technology in Europe and Asia. These products are internationally popular and protect the engine against corrosion in between the long periods of oil change. In fact, motor protection against corrosion is achieved by neutralizing carboxylic acids and converting them into carboxylates since all coolants operate in neutral environment or in a pH and alkaline setting in the range of about 7 or higher. In fact, most coolants are originally made from a strong acid. For example, conventional phosphate-based coolers start their compounds with phosphoric acid.
The use of carboxylates in cooling compounds has significant advantages:
- Better protection of aluminum at high temperatures
- Better heat transfer and optimal efficiency on hot surfaces of the engine and radiator tubes
- Increasing the life of the coolant fluid
Using the "Strips" test, you can control the amount of inhibitory materials, such as nitrites and molybdates, in the coolant fluid. Nitrites are freed from other chemical constituents rather than other inhibitors, and only their surface area is determined by this test. The release of nitrites due to the cavitation phenomenon leads to corrosion by removing the silicon layers. Instead, carboxylate inhibitors play a more protective role over a longer period due to slower reaction times.
Currently, OEM manufacturers recommend the use of hybrid and carboxylate ELC coolers. In heavy diesel engines, some manufacturers recommend the use of silicate coolants, and some others consider non-silicone coolers appropriate.
In short, it can be said that a suitable cooling type is determined according to the type of requirements of the manufacturers of the original equipment OEMs. The role of coolants in the engine is vital, and it has a great impact on the balance of heat and corrosion protection in all motor vehicles. A study in this area has shown that 60% of engine damage in diesel engines is related to inadequate coolants. Therefore, the use of desirable quality coolers from reputable manufacturers creates favorable conditions for engine operation and eliminates corrosion problems.
Vehicle antifreeze functions:
1- One of the most important tasks of the anti-freeze is to prevent frost in the cold seasons. Due to the metallic nature of the vehicle parts, freezing of water can cause irreparable damage, which antifreeze prevents it by lowering the freezing point of water. This happens when water in the cooling system freezes which causes an expansion of the fluid and, consequently, increasing its volume, cause the cylinder block to crack, resulting in bursting the radiator.
2. Almost all drivers are aware of the importance of using antifreeze in the winter, but few of these drivers are aware of the antifreeze performance in the warm seasons. The use of antifreeze in the summer will increase the boiling point of the water and prevent car radiator from overheating. For example, Tehran's temperature in the summer is about 30 to 35 ° C, so there is a need for a fluid that can reduce engine heat in these conditions.
3. One of the things that can increase the engine heat and overheat the car is that the coolant does not reach to some parts and openings. This will lead to an increase in temperature and thus boil up the car radiator. Antifreeze reduces this problem to a certain extent by lowering the residue deposit inside the radiator.
4- Corrosion and oxidation of metal parts in the engine is one of the problems that can cost a lot to car owners. Avoiding corrosion is one of the most important antifreeze tasks.
All light cars require at least 50/50 combinations of antifreeze and water to protect them from freezing, boiling and corrosion. A combination of 50/50 with ethylene glycol provide protecting against freezing down to minus 37 degrees centigrade; and to minus 34 degrees centigrade with antifreeze propylene glycol. If you use a hydrometer to check the density of antifreeze in a coolant, keep in mind that the typical EG antifreeze (ethylene glycol) is different with PG
(propylene glycol), which has a consistency close to water, so if someone uses propylene glycol antifreeze, which has less toxic properties to the cooling system, it requires a hydrometer to check the density of the coolant
The difference between Anti-Freeze and coolant fluid
Important notes about anti-freeze:
- Anti-ice color does not have any relation to its quality. The manufacturers may use different colors in making them. Although blue and bright light colors are the common ones in the market.
-Even if the anti-freezes’ colors are the same, It is not a reason for their quality being uniform and should not be added together
For dilution, you should follow the manufacturer's instructions.
Anti-ice does not usually produce foam. The foam may be due to air entering the system and perforating the water pump suction section. In this case, the radiator must be completely drained and all the pipe connections, washers, fasteners and thermostats need to be examined and then repair the damaged parts.
The fluid level needs to be checked and controlled.
The water used to dilute the coolant should have a slight hardness (Deionized water) to not precipitate. Every 1000 km or once a week, the coolant surface should be checked. Cooling fluids are normally changed in the normal state every year, or every 30,000 kilometers, but the fluid change intervals should be carried out when there are severe driving conditions and depending on tough situations.
The tough conditions include towing, tugging, using long distance ramps, moving on splash roads, dirt and dusty roads, frequent short distances (less than 8 kilometers per driving time), long distances with Uniform and low speeds and long periods of non-usage of vehicle.
Antifreeze is a toxic substance and its accidental ingestion causes severe intoxication and death.
Long-term contact with it can cause skin irritation, itching and skin swelling.
Engine coolant spoils the car's exterior color. If the coated surfaces are spilled by a coolant, it should be washed immediately with water.
Do not leave the antifreeze fluid in an open container.
The mixing of two different types of antifreeze (even if their colors are the same) is not recommended. In this case, the additives may be incompatible with each other and neutralize the anti-corrosion effect or even percipitate.