Summer is slowly approaching, but you are stilled worried about the winter season’s freezing temperatures completely backing up your car’s system. Maybe it’s time for you to give your car the proper servicing it deserves, and focus on key areas to work on like oil changing tires, windshield wipers etc. Most people tend to overlook their cars’ cooling systems, which are vital for keeping your car going through winter or summer. If you want optimum functionality in your cooling system, it’s time to upgrade to the top engine coolants/anti-freezes that are up for grabs, and you can choose the right one from this list of top 6 anti-freezes and coolants.
Best Rated Anti Freeze in 2018:
1. Zerex G-05 Antifreeze
This coolant comprises of a precise formula made from European technology that gives the liquid greater longevity and makes it perfect for passenger cars, light trucks, and even heavier transport machines.
Furthermore, the formula is suitable for both diesel and gasoline engines. It contains nitrite to prevent cavitation in cylinder liners in diesel engines, and has reduced silicate, a lower pH, and is efficiently phosphate-free, making it suitable for all metal car cooling systems such as those of aluminum by protecting them from corrosion.
In addition to that, it embraces special additives that prevent and control scaling as well as hard water deposits in the cooling systems. Its exceptional high-quality defoamer system is also safe for hoses, car finishes, and other car-related plastics. A 50% water dilution helps the Zerex G-05 secure most modern engines from the weathering effects of both summer boil-overs and freezing winter temperatures. This coolant is compatible with a variety of premium anti-freeze brands that are easily accessible and is perfectly compatible with popular diesel engine brands such as Detroit Diesel, Mercedes, Cummins Deere, Navistar, Isuzu, and Yanmar.
Moreover, this coolant is approved for modern car models presented by Ford, NA. Overall, this high-performance anti-freeze/coolant gives you the best corrosion-inhibition that is affordable and well-received by many customers.
- Weight9.85 lbs
2. Pentosin Coolant Antifreeze SF
Pentosin has introduced this reasonably priced Pink & Clear SF Coolant/Anti-freeze, so valued because of its minimalist ethylene glycol formula that contains 30-50 ppm of denatonium benzoate. While hazardous for most infants and adults alike, this coolant is the go-to for several car enthusiasts who wish to keep their old car models running even on outdated cooling systems.
Additionally, the coolant guarantees the highest quality that makes it compatible with the top German car brands such as Volkswagen, for both old and new models. Most clients swear by the antifreeze’s car compatibility as is seen by the product’s overwhelmingly positive customer response, and with its affordability and quality, one can hardly argue that the Pentosin Pink & Clear SF Anti-freeze/Coolant is one of the best engine coolant choices out on the market.
- Weight3.9 lbs
3. Prestone AF2100-6pk Extended Life 50-50 Antifreeze
The Prestone Extended Life Antifreeze’s ready-to-use ethylene glycol formula is essentially universal, being compatible with all engine coolants, no matter the color or the type and model of vehicle. Rusting, scaling, corrosion and dirt deposits will no longer clog, overheat or damage your radiators and engines, since this Prestone antifreeze circulates in your car cooling systems with added inhibitors for extended lifetime and increased protection.
Furthermore, the patented formula is devoid of any silicates, phosphates, and nitrites, making it the cleanest and purest coolant on the list, and gives you improved performance, quality, durability and a higher degree of protection against weathering elements for all seasons round the clock.
In addition to that, the coolant requires no dilution due to its premixing with 50% demineralized water which makes it perfect for top-off use, and its universal formula makes it compatible for all engines including aluminum ones, as well as car types like passenger models and heavy trucks and vehicles.
The only downside that puts most clients off is its limited availability locally, which makes it the priciest product on this list because it is only being available in bulk, but this is easily overlooked by the long-term benefits of the coolant’s quality effects on all car cooling systems.
- Weight56.9 lbs
4. Valvoline Maxlife Universal Antifreeze
MaxLife made the cut as one of the best coolants available due to extremely positive reviews for great quality at an even greater value. The universal anti-freeze was developed by Valvoline to work well with all models and makes of light trucks and passenger cars. MaxLife Antifreeze is the only coolant with Alugard Plus, a unique additive that forms the perfect formula for protection against corrosion and rust.
In addition to that, the formula lubricates seals, gaskets and cooling systems for greater efficiency, and promotes longevity and improved lifetime that helps keep your car protected against boil-overs and freezing temperatures all year round, without going heavy on your wallet.
- Weight9 lbs
5. Star brite Star-Cool Premium Synthetic PG Engine Coolant
The Star Brite Star-Cool Premium Synthetic PG Engine Coolant gives you the solution to your engine overheating problems by providing the appropriate protection that is more efficient than the other available coolants. In addition, without any added side effects on other parts of your car, it incorporates an effective formula that is non-toxic and biodegradable, making it environmentally safe while giving your car and engine maximum performance, horsepower and quality.
Furthermore, it is devoid of any silicate, borate, nitrate, phosphate, or amine, which makes it a clog-preventive and a cost-effective product you can rely on for your car’s continuous stability. The PCT Additives of the Star Bright Engine Coolant ensure that your engines maintain the perfect optimum temperature to keep your car running by reducing temperatures at a faster rate than other commonly available coolants.
It is perfectly safe for all metal engines like aluminum, iron, and copper, as well as other car parts like gaskets, seals, and welds. Another great feature is the Star Brite Engine Coolant is made for top-off use being premixed so all you really need to do is to pour the coolant without any dilution and you’re good to go.
- BrandStar Brite
- Weight9.18 lbs
6. Zerex Original Green Antifreeze
Zerex always maintains quality throughout its brand products, and the Original Green Anti-freeze/Coolant is no exception. This is Zerex’s most affordable coolant product, which does not compare well in terms of quality with its predecessors, but the ready-to-use original formula makes it the most time-efficient coolant at a reasonable price that provides the basic protection needed for any cooling system.
Moreover, the patented formula utilizes an inhibitor package that provides impeccable temperature and corrosion protection with pre-mixed demineralized water to prevent unneeded dirty deposits within car cooling systems while maintaining engine efficiency on a regular basis even at temperatures as low as minus 34 degrees Fahrenheit. With that said, if you are looking for the most affordable coolant at best value, the Zerex Original Green Antifreeze/Coolant Is The Way To Go.
- Weight9 lbs
Anti-Freeze & Coolant Buying Guide & FAQ
While the above-mentioned list should help you pick the right coolant that works for your car, however, it is still not an easy decision for beginners to make who have no clear concept of what a coolant or an anti-freeze really is. When is it needed, where is it applied, and which one works best according to what criteria? This simple guide should help answer your most frequently asked questions regarding engine coolants so that you can give your car the proper tune-up it needs.
What does anti-freeze do?
To put it simply, anti-freeze is the liquid that prevents water in your car's cooling system from breaking down, and it does so by reducing the freezing temperature of the water in your cooling systems and raising its boiling point. While water is essentially the main coolant that your engine will need, it is damaging to metal cooling systems due to its rusting and corrosive properties that affect the car components.
Moreover, your car's engine faces extreme temperature changes, whether it is through overworking or due to severe seasonal conditions like winter colds and summer blazes. All these affect the water in engine cooling systems, which can result in different problems depending on the temperature. Freezing water causes costly damage to engines and radiators while boiling leads to overheating of engines that are not only detrimental to your car's function but also can be hazardous and can lead to car backfires or breakdowns.
To prevent these dangerous and expensive damage conditions, as well as to improve other vital functions of your car's systems, you must keep anti-freeze on hand at all times. Anti-freeze is now a common automotive care product available at almost every local car shop and store, with different brands and varieties having popped up over many years for every type of car, engine, model and make that is out there.
Initially, antifreeze was only available as green, with a glycol formula having silicates as corrosion inhibitors that were diluted with 50% water and poured into radiators. Now, there is a variety of anti-freezes available in an array of colors due to improved technology in a rainbow of colors, which makes choosing the right anti-freeze a bit more difficult without the proper knowledge. Most anti-freezes are still based on an ethylene glycol formula, which is readily available and easily procured, and some are even made with less toxic and more environmentally safer alcohol variants like propylene glycol, so regardless of which product you choose, you can feel safe in knowing they're all eco-friendly. With that being said, here are the different types of anti-freezes:
- Inorganic Acid Technology (IAT) gives you the classic green antifreeze. The products contain either EG or PG and usually have silicate or phosphate for compatibility with most metal cooling system components.
- OAT or organic acid technology is a long-life coolant originating in Europe and now having widespread popularity in North America. It mainly has EG.
- Hybrid-OAT combines OAT and IAT to include nitrites, making it universal for all makes and models.
- Hybrid coolants involve mixing anti-freeze technologies to make custom coolants for varying cars. Depending on dilution and anti-freeze knowledge, these hybrids can work both negatively and positively.
- Water is considered the original universal coolant and is the base for the production of many anti-freezes.
What is the difference between Anti-freeze & Coolant?
While the terms anti-freeze and coolant have been interchangeable for many years now, it should be known that the two are not actually the same thing, even though it is common to think so. Antifreeze is actually a common component of a coolant mixture since coolants generally have a 50-50 ratio of anti-freeze and water. Antifreeze lowers the freezing temperatures of engine cooling system liquids and raises the boiling point of said liquid to prevent overheating and evaporation. Coolants have the added use of lubricating other important parts of a car engine for greater efficiency. Therefore, the addition of water is the differentiating factor between these two products.
How do I find out what coolant my car needs?
Here are some key points to figuring out which anti-freeze is meant for your car:
- American mobiles use antifreeze with silicates and phosphate corrosion inhibitors.
- European mobiles use antifreeze containing no phosphate.
- Japanese mobiles use antifreeze with no silicates.
- Copper/Brass radiators use IAT formulas.
- Aluminum engines use OAT formulas.
- Modern vehicles use OAT products.
- Relying on anti-freeze colors is not a fixed science, so you must confirm which products work for which manufacturer and whether your required coolants are wrongly replaced at mechanics and workshops.
- Do no use OAT-IAT formula mixes/hybrids. Mixes should be avoided as much as possible since they give sludgy reactions that can harm car engines.
- Call reliable manufacturers and service providers for proper information and product collection
How to flush coolant
To prevent sludge accumulation, car-cooling systems must be flushed every two to five years for efficient car function. Your engine should be completed cooled and resting for a minimum of 2 hours, after which you must Lift the front of your car using a jack and expose the car radiator by lifting the hood. Analyze your radiator before flushing to see any signs of rusting, scaling, corrosion or dirt to make sure it is working effectively. Place a drainage pan under the car's drainage valve, and then drain by removing the valve, allowing any sludge to flow out to leave as little as possible behind.
Moreover, the remaining sludge must be flushed out using water by starting the car for about 10 minutes before letting it cool off and then adding the water with a garden hose about 2-3 times. Fill the appropriate coolant in the radiator after flushing, and then remove any insisting air pockets by tapping the radiator cap and then leaving the car on or 15 minutes. Make sure to wear gloves throughout the process and recycle the removed sludge at the appropriate cleaning facility.