AntiFreeze: Maintaining your Coolant in Winter
Antifreeze in your Coolant is critical in the Winter
Whether we like it or not, cold winters are part of life in Saskatchewan. When preparing for the brutality of winter, think about the coolant in your vehicle. Yes coolant. It may sound odd that coolant would be important in the coolest part of the year, but it is critical to your vehicle’s winter performance.
What does antifreeze or coolant do?
Coolant, often called antifreeze, is the fluid found in your radiator. Your coolant contains a chemical (ethylene glycol) that stops water from freezing or boiling in regular and extreme temperatures. Coolant also contains rust, corrosion and foaming inhibitors. Not only is coolant important in the winter to prevent the water in your radiator from freezing, coolant also provides lubrication for the moving parts it comes into contact with inside your vehicle. It keeps the seals and gaskets supple so they are less likely to harden and leak. There are also anti-corrosive properties in the coolant that protect metal pieces in the engine from corroding.
When should I top up or change my antifreeze?
If the coolant level is lower than the full line, it might just need a top up. If you decide to add antifreeze be sure the mix is the right one for your vehicle and the climate you are in. Check your vehicle’s owners manual or the details on the antifreeze container.
However if the existing fluid looks colourless or rusty or has debris floating in it, it is time to flush the old coolant out and add new. Although it is possible to simply drain the old coolant and replace it, this only refreshes the fluid in the radiator, not in the other parts of the vehicle that the coolant comes into contact with (like the engine block and hoses). In contrast, a complete coolant flush (also known as a radiator flush) will clean the entire coolant system and help protect the system for the long haul.
Regardless of the level or the colour of the fluid, there is also a point in time that the protective properties of the existing coolant break down and do not provide the benefits needed. Over time the rust, corrosion and foaming inhibitors become less effective, leaving you with breakdowns and costly damages. The recommended service point is reached at a different time for each make and model of vehicle. At that time a coolant flush is an important part of maintenance so that your engine continues to be protected properly.
What happens during a “Coolant Flush” or “Radiator Flush”?
In a coolant (or radiator) flush, the fluid in your radiator and coolant system is completely changed. All of the old coolant in the radiator, the engine, the hoses and the heater core is removed and replaced with warranty approved fluid. The entire system is checked for leaks and the radiator cap is tested. Replacing the fluid helps protect against rust and corrosion, engine freeze up and helps your vehicle operate at its most efficient temperature.
Where in Regina can I get a coolant service or flush if needed?
Great Canadian Oil Change in Regina offers full coolant services. As part of our everyday service, our technicians check your radiator fluid and top it up if needed. If your vehicle has reached the recommended service interval at which the manufacturer recommends a coolant flush, we will inform you of this. For your convenience, we offer a complete coolant system flush service which you may choose to do at that time or anytime!
Qualified technicians like those at the Great Canadian Oil Change can help you to check your fluid levels, fluid quality, caps, belts and hoses. We aim for high customer satisfaction, so let us show you how hard we will work to earn your trust and keep your business.
For a list of all our services including standard and synthetic oil changes and transmission, differential, coolant and other maintenance, click here.
Helping you to “maintain your cool” this winter!