Having a vehicle is more of a necessity instead of trifle nowadays, but looking after it is no easy job. No matter if you purchase an old vehicle or a brand new one, some investments need to be made in order to ensure your safety and comfort.
Apart from gas and friction pads, you also need to look after your engine’s good function, and this can only be made using the proper products. Coolants and antifreeze gels are mandatory, but picking the right one could prove a challenge, especially if you’re a newbie in the field. Here is everything you need to know about them.
Coolant vs. antifreeze gel
Although these two may seem alike, there are plenty of differences you need to learn about. A coolant is a liquid running through an engine to help it maintain its optimum temperature and prevent it from overheating. Most vehicles, no matter if we talk about motorbikes, four-wheelers or cars, use these coolants to keep their engines working properly.
An antifreeze gel has the exact same properties and serves the same role, so what’s the actual difference between these two? A coolant represents a pre-mixed solution that is ready to use outside the box, while an anti-freeze is a more concentrated solution that should be diluted with water before pouring it into the cooling system of your vehicle. Plus, an anti-freeze serves the purpose its name suggests, to prevent the coolant (water) from freezing when temperatures are below 32 degrees F.
What is a coolant made of?
Although each product comes with its own concentration and ingredient list, there are certain substances that you’ll most likely find in all coolers and antifreeze gels on the market. A coolant is mainly made of water and Ethylene glycol, a colorless, odorless, and sweet-tasting viscous liquid.
This chemical compound is not only used as a vehicle coolant but also represents the number one ingredient for chilled-water air-conditioning systems.
Pure ethylene glycol freezes at a temperature of 10.4 degrees Fahrenheit but, when combined with water, will change its properties and freeze at lower temperatures, depending on the mixture’s concentration. For instance, adding just 40% water, it will determine the ethylene glycol to freeze at a temperature of -49 degrees Fahrenheit.
What is the lifespan of a coolant?
There is no general rule for this, and we strongly suggest you read the car manufacturer’s guide to address this matter properly. Each vehicle is different and, with new technologies being constantly developed, you may not need to replace the coolant too often.
However, it is estimated that you should change your coolant every 20,000 miles or approximately two years.
Be extra careful when handling a vehicle coolant as it is highly poisonous and dangerous for your health. They can cause damage to your brain, kidneys or heart, and this is why it would be best to stay away from it.
Keep in mind that the smell of antifreeze gels and coolants might be appealing to animals and children.