Engine coolant is a year-round concern

(NC) — Most people only think about their vehicle's antifreeze/coolant during extreme weather conditions... or when it's too late and their overheated vehicle is stranded on the side of the road. The truth is, antifreeze/coolant is a year 'round concern.

“As the name implies, antifreeze/coolant performs two functions,” explains Jay Buckley, ASE certified master mechanic and training manager for Prestone. “It helps keep the engine's cooling system from freezing up in cold weather and from boiling over in hot weather.”

In order to help lower exhaust emissions, modern engines run at very high operating temperatures. Cooling system temperatures of 110º C are not uncommon. What's more, many engines are constructed of dissimilar metals, which can lead to corrosion. All of this puts more stress on the antifreeze/coolant.

A high-quality antifreeze/coolant, like Prestone LongLife, which is designed for use with any antifreeze/coolant in any vehicle make or model, can have a long service life. However, it's still important to monitor the coolant level and condition regularly. Virtually all modern vehicles have a pressurized cooling system with a plastic coolant expansion tank clearly visible under the hood. There are usually “high” and “low” marks on the tank to make things easier. For added convenience when topping up, and to ensure the correct water/coolant ratio is maintained, Prestone comes in a premixed formulation of 50% coolant and 50% demineralized water.

But it's not enough simply to check the level. A professional technician should also test the condition of the coolant and the coolant concentration to ensure that it doesn't need to be changed. Because antifreeze/coolant service intervals can be two years or longer, it's easy to forget about it. For year-round protection, get your cooling system checked today.


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