Question about radiator deposits

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Jul 22, 2004
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I just got around to changing out the fluid in my cooling system. I am sure the mechanic that did the headgasket about a year ago did not use distilled water. The fluid came out realitively clean which is good for being about a year old. A little darker than the new stuff but no signs of rust, chuncks, or sludge.

However, when looking into the radiator, I did notice some deposits along the visible vent areas caused by the hard water. Since I now am replacing the water with Reverse Osmosis/Diosonated (spelling this is lab quality water that I use for my reef aquarium and measures 0 total disolved solids (TDS) so it is very good water) water and the anti-freeze coolant, will these deposit break loose and cause problems? The radiator was replaced when I purchased the truck. The dealer replaced it so it is about 2 years old.

Thanks for the help.

Andrew
 
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Also, what is "DexCool? I purchased good old green Prestone. It does not mention DexCool on it so I hope it is ok.

Thanks

Andrew
 

C6H12O6

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I had similar deposits in mine before my flush/fill work, but it all seemed to come out when I did the cooling system flush.

I installed a Prestone T and a couple feet of 5/8" heater hose in a loop so I wouldn't have to cut any of my factory hoses. The reverse flush seemed to get all the gunk out of the radiator.

FWIW, I also flushed the heater cores pretty well at the same time. I don't know if I got all the crud out of the system, but I had clear water coming out and there are no more visible deposits. No need for any corrosive chemical cleaners. Unfortunately, I couldn't seem to drain all the tap water out, so there is still a little in there. Next time, I'll fill the system with distilled water, drive around the block, and drain it again to ensure I have most of the tap water out of there. I was only able to get two gallons of new Toyota red coolant and about 1.125 gallons of distilled. Oh well.
 
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Dexcool is a coolant for GM cars/trucks, it is orange to pink in color, it is a IMO failed attempt to make a coolant that lasts longer. Prestone sells a Dexcool like coolant http://www.prestone.com/products/14.htm but it is not green.

Indirectly I have heard that both Toyota and Honda do not want dexcool in their vehicles, Honda is supposedly very unhappy about one of their engines used in a GM vehicle that is being factory filled with Dexcool.


With that in mind carefully read this paragraph, it is accurate but very misleading

Prestone® Extended Life has been proven in the laboratory to be compatible with all new extended life formulas at concentrations typically used in all newer vehicles coming off the production line today. These automobile manufacturers include:

Audi General Motors Suzuki
BMW Honda Toyota
Daewoo Mercedes Volvo
DaimlerChrysler Mitsubishi VW
Ford

Good read on coolants


http://www.motor.com/MAGAZINE/Articles/082004_04.html
 

CreeperSleeper

Cascade Cruisers
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C6H12O6 said:
I installed a Prestone T and a couple feet of 5/8" heater hose in a loop so I wouldn't have to cut any of my factory hoses. The reverse flush seemed to get all the gunk out of the radiator.
You wouldn't want to let me borrow that would you?
 

Darwood

 
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I have similar hard mineral deposits in my radiator. I was wondering the same thing. I really don't think reverse flushing is going to get these deposits out. Not with plain water anyhow.
 
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The reason I was concerned about the demineralized water causing a problem is kind of similar to putting a water softner on an old house that has really hard water. The now soft water (lower PH and Alkalinity) can cause the deposits to break loose (disolve and go back into solution) in old water heaters and old pipes and cause leaks and blockage.

With the deposits I see in the radiator, I was concerned the lower PH water would attemt to disolve these and any others in the cooling system. Since my radiator is realitively new, I doubt it would cause it to leak but what about the heater passages and other areas in the cooling system that may have more deposits and/or corrosion.

I guess the thing to do is test the PH of the 50/50 mix. The Preston anitfreeze may change the PH so this is not an issue at all.

I guess I will find out if I get a leak in the near future.

Thanks

Andrew
 

C6H12O6

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LR_RESQ said:
You wouldn't want to let me borrow that would you?

Chad,
Give me a call. You can pick it all up when you come get the floormats. You done your PHH yet? This would be a pretty good time.



As far as the downside to breaking deposits loose, I would think that if you adequately flushed the system, anything that came loose during the flush would come out while you were flushing. If adding distilled water and fresh coolant dissolved anything further, it should stay in solution until there was a change in the chemistry of the coolant mix causing it to precipitate out of solution. As long as you are Johnny on the Spot with your coolant change intervals, this shouldn't happen.
 
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