LAST UPDATED: March 16, 2018

The Best Anti Freeze (Review) in 2020

Best Choice BMW Antifreeze BMW Antifreeze
Premium Pick Evans High Performance Waterless Engine Coolant Evans High Performance Waterless Engine Coolant
Best Value K-Seal Engine Coolant K-Seal Engine Coolant

It’s important to give your car the proper servicing it deserves and focus on key areas like oil changes, new tires, windshield wipers, etc. Most people tend to overlook their cars’ cooling systems, which are vital for keeping your car going throughout the year. 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. Choose the right one from our list below of the top anti-freezes and coolants.

The Best Anti Freeze

An anti-freeze that has been specially created for BMW cars, this is a popular product that many car owners are happy to use in their automobiles. You can use it all-year round to provide protection against common issues, such as heat damage, boilovers, and corrosion.

If you are wary about using more generic coolant products in your pride and joy, many BMW owners swear by this product. And it is also relatively affordable for the price. For us, it is one of the best antifreeze options out there for BMWs.

Key Features
  • Specially designed for BMW engines
  • Offers year-round protection
  • Affordable price point
  • High-quality product for premium cars
Specification
  • Brand BMW
  • Model 82141467704
  • Weight 4.01 pounds

A product that is easy to use, this coolant leak repair fluid can be mixed with all antifreezes. No draining or flushing is required – all you have to do is shake it up and pour it in. It is specially designed to permanently seal any cracks or holes in the engine.

Once you pour it in, this product gets to work on a range of different parts of your car, including the radiator, freeze plugs, and cylinder heads. As well as being scientifically tested, it has a professional seal of approval.

Key Features
  • Detects cracks and holes and meshes to fill the gaps
  • Precisely designed to seal up small holes
  • Creates strong and permanent seal
  • Shake and pour application
Specification
  • Brand K-Seal
  • Model ST5501
  • Weight 9.6 ounces

Suitable for use all-year round, this product gets to work protecting the cooling system in your engine against negative occurrences, such as boiling over and corroding. Not only will it cool your engine down in the summer, it will also defend against freezing during the colder months of the year.

An aluminum compatible product, it works with all foreign and domestic gasoline as well as diesel-powered engines. Since it is an Audi product, you can expect a high level of testing and expertise in its creation.

Key Features
  • Protects against overheating, freezing, calcium build-up and corrosion
  • Suitable for all engine types
  • Created with high Audi standards
  • Aluminum compatible
Specification
  • Brand Audi
  • Model G013A8J1G
  • Weight 9.95 pounds

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 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 and horsepower.

Furthermore, it is devoid of 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 engine maintains the optimum temperature to keep your car running by reducing temperatures at a faster rate than other commonly available coolants.

Key Features
  • Specially designed to maximise horsepower
  • Lowers operating temperature quicker than some rival products
  • Offers a highly extended service life
  • Seals up pinhole leaks or fissures
Specification
  • Brand Star Brite
  • Model 033200
  • Weight 9.18 lbs

Here’s a universal product for a wide range of engine types. The high boiling point of this product prevents it from boiling over, so it can effectively do the job of stopping coolant loss and reducing strain on the different components of your car.

Also, there is no water in this product, which helps to prevent corrosion. Overheating can cause all sorts of issues to your car’s engine, but this product helps by improving fuel economy and enhancing the power of your vehicle.

Key Features
  • Designed for modern, classic, and vintage engines
  • Eliminates water in your cooling system
  • Fights against corrosion
  • Lowers pressure
Specification
  • Brand EVANS
  • Model EC53001
  • Weight 5 pounds

A popular long life coolant designed for use in Honda engines, it is ready to use straight out of the bottle as there is no need to mix it with any water. A 50/50 prediluted coolant, many customers prefer this type of product designed specifically for their cars. Ultimately, it is the type of product that does what you would expect of a good-quality coolant, which is a good endorsement.

Key Features
  • Formulated for Honda engines
  • Pre-mixed – no need to add water
  • Contains a bittering agent
Specification
  • Brand Genuine
  • Model OL999-9011
  • Weight 9.15 pounds

Recommended by the Ford Motor Company for their vehicles, it works in both gasoline and diesel engines. You can use it all-year round for protection, including anti-freeze, anti-boil, and corrosion resistance. The product comes pre-mixed in a 50/50 split of coolant and distilled water. A bittering agent is also included.

Key Features
  • Ethylene glycol-based antifreeze/coolant
  • Usable in diesel and gasoline engines
  • 50/50 mix of distilled water and coolant
  • Contains bittering agent
Specification
  • Brand Ford
  • Model VC-7-B
  • Weight 9.85 pounds

So far, we have discussed a lot of products that are specifically designed for different brands of cars. This one is made for vehicles in the Toyota, Scion, and Lexus families. Bear in mind that there is no need to add water to this anti-freeze as it already comes pre-mixed. And since this is a product with a very long life, you won’t have to add it to your car’s engine all the time.

Key Features
  • Made for Toyota, Lexus, and Scion vehicles
  • Super long-life product
  • Comes pre-mixed
Specification
  • Brand Aisin
  • Model ACT002
  • Weight 9.4 pounds

Then there’s this antifreeze/cooling pre-mixed product from Havoline. Compared to products containing silicate, it improves heat transfer. You can use it in a wide range of cars and light-duty trucks, which makes it great in a professional capacity. Users have reported that this is a product that is both effective and easy to use.

Key Features
  • Provides a service life of 150,000 miles/5 years
  • GM approved product
  • Improved heat transfer
Specification
  • Brand Havoline
  • Model 236543499
  • Weight 9.2 pounds

This reasonably priced Pink & Clear SF Coolant/Anti-freeze is valued because of its minimalist ethylene glycol formula that contains 30-50 ppm of denatonium benzoate. While hazardous for most infants and adults, this coolant is the go-to for car enthusiasts who wish to keep their old car models running even on outdated cooling systems.

Additionally, the coolant is compatible with the top German car brands, such as Volkswagen, for both old and new models. Most users swear by the antifreeze’s affordability and quality. One can hardly argue that the Pentosin Pink & Clear SF Anti-freeze/Coolant is one of the top engine coolant choices on the market.

Specification
  • Brand Pentosin
  • Model 8114107
  • Weight 3.9 lbs

The Prestone Extended Life Antifreeze’s ready-to-use ethylene glycol formula is essentially universal, and it’s compatible with all engine coolants no matter the type and model of vehicle. Rusting, scaling, corrosion and dirt deposits will no longer clog, overheat or damage your radiators and engines. This Prestone antifreeze circulates in your car’s cooling systems with added inhibitors for an extended lifespan and increased protection.

Furthermore, the patented formula is devoid of any silicates, phosphates, and nitrites, making it one of the cleanest and purest coolant on the list.  It also gives you improved performance, quality, durability and a higher degree of protection against weathering elements for all four seasons.

In addition to that, the coolant requires no dilution due to its premixing with 50 percent demineralized water, which makes it perfect for top-off use. Its universal formula makes it compatible with all engines, including aluminum ones, as well as passenger cars 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. It is only available in bulk, but this is easily overlooked by the long-term benefits of the coolant’s effects on all car cooling systems.

Specification
  • Brand Prestone
  • Model AF2100-6PK
  • Weight 56.9 lbs

Zerex maintains quality throughout its products, and the Original Green Anti-freeze/Coolant is no exception. This is Zerex’s most affordable coolant, and 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. It also maintains engine efficiency on a regular basis even at temperatures as low as minus 34-degrees Fahrenheit. With that said, if you are looking for an affordable coolant, the Zerex Original Green Antifreeze/Coolant is the way to go.

Specification
  • Brand Zerex
  • Model ZXRU1
  • Weight 9 lbs

This coolant has a precise formula made from European technology that gives the liquid greater longevity and makes it perfect for passenger cars, light trucks, and heavier transport machines.

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 and a lower pH. It is efficiently phosphate-free, making it suitable for all metal car cooling systems, protecting them from corrosion.

In addition, 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-percent 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. Overall, this high-performance anti-freeze/coolant gives you great corrosion-inhibition that is affordable and well received by many users.

Specification
  • Brand Valvoline
  • Model ZXGO51
  • Weight 9.85 lbs

MaxLife provides great quality at an even greater value. Its universal anti-freeze was developed by Valvoline to work 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, the formula lubricates seals, gaskets and cooling systems for greater efficiency and promotes longevity that helps keep your car protected against boil-overs and freezing temperatures all-year round.

Specification
  • Brand MaxLife
  • Model 719005
  • Weight 9 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.

anti freeze

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.

Anti-freeze Types

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

anti freeze 2

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 drain 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.

Sources:

  1. Antifreeze Explained: What It Does And Why It’s NeededCarid
  2. How To Check A Vehicle’s Coolant/AntifreezeDummies
  3. AntifreezeWikipedia