How Often Should Radiator Fluid be Changed?

Until recently, radiator fluid or coolant manufacturers recommended changing coolant every two or three years, or every 30,000 miles, but not everyone in the auto industry will agree with that; it depends on who you listen to. Check the information below for information from various sources.

Coolant Effect on Aluminum Engine Parts

Change your coolant every year or every 15,000 miles if your engine block or heads are aluminum, according to auto mechanics and coolant manufacturers.

Newly Developed Coolant

Antifreeze suppliers recently announced new coolant products that these suppliers say can be changed every 50,000 miles.

Long Life Coolant

One major automobile manufacture in 1996 introduced an anti-freeze they claim will last 100,000 miles. This coolant has an orange color that will allow you to differentiate it from the more common green color of the conventional anti-freeze.

Corrosion Inhibitors

Silicates, phosphates and borates in coolant help maintain an alkaline solution that inhibits corrosion until these chemicals are used up. Then, corrosion begins to dissolve engine and radiator metal. For this reason you should change coolants when recommended by individual antifreeze manufacturers.

Checking Antifreeze Viability

To check the pH of a coolant and its ability to inhibit corrosion, use test strips and change anti-freeze when tests strips show it is time to change your coolant.