Does your vehicle have adequate coolant for warm weather?
Follow these tips for keeping your engine cool for all your summer travels!
What does coolant or antifreeze do?
Coolant, also 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 summer to prevent the water in your radiator from boiling over, 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.
How can I check my coolant level?
To check your coolant level, find the coolant reservoir under the hood of your vehicle. The reservoir or the cap may be labelled as “Engine Coolant” or have a warning label such as “Never Open Hot”. In most cases, you should be able to see if the liquid reaches the full line on the side of the reservoir without opening the cap.
If the coolant level is lower than the full line, it might just need a top up. 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.
Where can I get a coolant service or flush if needed?
Great Canadian Oil Change in Regina, Kindersley, Medicine Hat, Brandon and Portage la Prairie offer 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!
What services are included a “Coolant Flush” or “Radiator Flush”?
In a coolant (or radiator) flush, we completely change the fluid in your radiator and coolant system. We remove all of the old coolant in the radiator, the engine, the hoses and the heater core and replace it with warranty approved fluid. We also check for leaks in the system and test the radiator cap. Replacing the fluid helps protect against rust and corrosion, engine freeze up and helps your vehicle operate at its most efficient temperature.
Helping you to “keep cool and drive on” this summer!
Happy travels from the Great Canadian Oil Change team.