LAST UPDATED: March 16, 2018

The Best Antifreeze (Review) in 2021

Best Choice Genuine Honda Long Life Genuine Honda Long Life Coolant
Premium Pick Evans High Performance Waterless Engine Coolant Evans High Performance Waterless Engine Coolant
Best Value Valvoline Multi-Vehicle Antifreeze (1) Valvoline Multi-Vehicle Antifreeze

Summer is slowly approaching, but you are still 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 changes, new 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/antifreeze that are up for grabs, and you can choose the right one from this list of top antifreezes and coolants.

The Best Antifreeze

A five-star rated long life coolant designed for use in Honda engines, it is ready to use straight out of the bottle – there is no need to mix it with any water. A 50/50 prediluted product, many customers prefer this type of product designed specifically for their brand of car. 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

MaxLife provides great quality at an even greater value. Its universal antifreeze 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.

Key Features
  • Antifreeze/coolant
  • 50/50 prediluted formula
  • Five-year or 150,000-mile protection
Specification
  • Brand MaxLife
  • Model 719005
  • Weight 9 lbs

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 engine, but this product helps in ways such as 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

An antifreeze that has been specially created for BMW cars, this is a highly rated product that many car owners are happy to use in their automobile. You can use it in your vehicle all year round to offer protection against common issues such as heat damage, boilovers, and corrosion.

If you are wary about using the 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 that you are paying. For us, it is the number one antifreeze 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 5 pounds

This antifreeze and coolant combo is a genuine OEM product that’s recommended for all Chrysler vehicles. It’s an ethylene glycol-based formula that’s designed to provide long-lasting protection to your engine by preventing freeze-up or boil-over for 10 years or 150,000 miles. Thereafter, you need to replace the coolant with the same solution or an equivalent to avoid future maintenance problems.

The solution comes in a 1-gallon bottle, and is a 50-50 pre-diluted mixture so you don’t need to add water. It’s also non-toxic as it’s engineered with organic acid technology (OAT), which also means that it can extend the life of almost all the metal components of the engine, including magnesium and aluminum parts.

Key Features
  • Engine antifreeze and coolant
  • 10-year or 150,000-mile protection
  • Organic acid technology (OAT)
Specification
  • Brand Mopar
  • Model FBA_68163849AB
  • Weight 9.24 pounds

So far, we have discussed a lot of products that are specifically designed for different brands of car. 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 antifreeze as it already comes pre-mixed. And since this is a product with a very long life, you won’t have to keep adding 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

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.

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

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

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

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

Zerex maintains quality throughout its products, and the Original Green Antifreeze/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.

Key Features
  • Ready-to-use formula
  • Five-year or 150,000-mile protection
  • Protects down to -34 degrees Fahrenheit
Specification
  • Brand Zerex
  • Model ZXRU1
  • Weight 9 pounds

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.

Key Features
  • Antifreeze/coolant concentrate
  • For gas and diesel engines
  • Phosphate-free formula
Specification
  • Brand Zerex
  • Model ZXGO51
  • Weight 9.58 pounds

If you own a Lexus, Toyota, or a Scion, 2004 to present models, then may we recommend this pink antifreeze that’s specifically formulated for your vehicle? It’s an ethylene glycol-based antifreeze that utilizes Hybrid Organic Acid Technology (HOAT) to provide up to 150,000 miles or five years of protection.

It comes as a concentrated solution, and when diluted in the right proportions, it can protect your coolant system from rust, corrosion, and cavitation-induced pitting. Just note that it shouldn’t be mixed with high pH, borate, or silicate-based coolants.

Key Features
  • Hybrid Organic Acid Technology
  • Ethylene glycol-based formula
  • 150,000-mile/five-year protection
Specification
  • Brand Recochem
  • Model 86-174POEM
  • Weight 9.88 pounds

Camco’s offering is a concentrated formula that can be used to winterize your RV’s water systems. Use 36 ounces of this pink concentrate to make up to a gallon of antifreeze. You need to dilute the concentrate with water, and it comes in an ergonomic bottle that makes it easy to mix the solution.

The formula is non-toxic and 100 percent biodegradable, so it’s safe even for freshwater systems. It works by lowering the freezing point of water down to -50 degrees so the pipes don’t burst during the colder months. Besides your RV, you can also use it in your pool, boat, and even your home’s plumbing system. The two-pack offering ensures you have enough left over for the other applications.

Key Features
  • 100 percent biodegradable
  • Concentrated solution
  • Pack of two
Specification
  • Brand Camco
  • Model 30611
  • Weight 6.39 pounds

Antifreeze & 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 antifreeze 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 Antifreeze Do?

To put it simply, antifreeze 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 antifreeze on hand at all times. Antifreeze 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.

Antifreeze 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 antifreezes available in an array of colors due to improved technology in a rainbow of colors, which makes choosing the right antifreeze a bit more difficult without the proper knowledge. Most antifreezes 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 antifreezes:

  • 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 antifreeze technologies to make custom coolants for varying cars. Depending on dilution and antifreeze 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 antifreezes.

What is the Difference Between Antifreeze & Coolant?

While the terms antifreeze 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 antifreeze 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 antifreeze 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 antifreeze 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 completely 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 for 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