Automotive coolant types and coolant colors? (The answer is found)

The Colors of Coolant

IAT (Inorganic Additive Technology) Silicates GREEN
OAT (Organic Acid Technology) Organic Acids ORANGE
HOAT (Hybrid OAT) Silicates Organic Acids YELLOW
HOAT (Hybrid OAT, Phosphate-free) NAP Free TURQUOISE


What do the different colors of coolant mean?

“In days gone by, the colour of coolant was determined by the type of chemicals used to prevent corrosion — meaning you could tell a lot about the type of coolant used by its colour. “Older coolants that used Inorganic Additive Technology (IAT) were usually blue or green in colour.

Does it matter what color the coolant is?

But what about different colored coolants? The truth is, color is not a reliable predictor for what type of coolant you have. For example, OAT coolants are usually orange, yellow, red or purple.

What coolant color is best?

The color of healthy engine coolant is green (for ethylene glycol) or orange (for Dexcool). A rusty color indicates that the rust inhibitor in the coolant has broken down and it can no longer control rust and scale buildup.

How do I know which coolant to use?

To make sure you’re choosing the right HOAT coolant, look at the brand name, rather than the liquid’s color. The HOAT formulation is a combination of the OAT formulation and the IAT formulation. HOAT uses both silicates and organic acid to protect your engine and combat corrosion.

What happens if you put the wrong color coolant in your car?

Mixing different engine coolants or using the wrong coolant can impair the performance of the special additive packages; this can result in increased corrosion to the radiator. Using the wrong engine coolant can gradually lead to corrosion and damage to the water pump, radiator, radiator hoses and cylinder gasket.

Is green coolant bad for aluminum?

While the manufacturers of these coolants recommend only using them in an aluminum radiator, as opposed to the copper/brass radiators, we still don’t recommend them in our all-aluminum radiators. We recommend the traditional yellow/green coolant because it has always worked for us.

Can I use blue coolant instead of green?

You can, but if it was me, I’d rather fill the system with distilled water until I got the proper coolant for the car. Whatever you do, don’t mix green/blue with orange. It will gel up and cause major problems.

What color is Peak antifreeze?

PEAK® Antifreeze + Coolant is a conventional (green), ethylene glycol based antifreeze for use in older automotive and light duty diesel applications.

Can I mix different coolant brands?

If you mix two different coolants together, it will create a think substance that resembles that of a jelly. If this happens, the coolant will not be able to do its intended job. Instead, it will cause the engine to overheat. The damage can reach gasket, water pump, and radiator.

Is all green coolant the same?

Although ‘coolant’ and ‘antifreeze’ are often used interchangeably, they’re not quite the same thing. Typically, Valvoline says, coolant comes in green. But there are other colors available: orange, blue, purple, even yellow and pink. However, they’re not different colors for appearance’s sake.

What is green antifreeze used for?

Green antifreeze is made with special tweaks to the formula specifically to help prevent the corrosion of metals in a vehicle’s cooling system. That older formula is typically meant for vehicles made before the year 2000, which were built with more steel and copper components than modern vehicles.

Can I use different coolant in my car?

It’s entirely possible for two vehicles from the same manufacturer to use two completely different coolant types. 3. Just because a vehicle had one type of coolant when it left the factory doesn’t mean a different type of coolant wasn’t installed at some point in the life of the vehicle.

What’s the difference between red and green coolant?

Green coolant is your conventional coolant (Ethylene Glycol base) and is the most common type of coolant found. Red coolant is typically has a base of Organic Acid Technology which has a different chemical makeup of green coolant and is designed to be suitable for aluminium radiators.

What is blue coolant?

Antifreeze Blue is a full concentrate which meets BS6580 and contains the same pure ethylene glycol and anti-corrosive additives as the Red. Its application is for protection for up to a maximum of 2 years.

The Different Colors of Coolant

Conclusion In order for the wheel to roll smoothly and with high load resistance, it must have a good wheel bearing. In both the front and back wheels, wheel bearings are employed. Water, moisture, wear and tear, and other factors can all contribute to a faulty wheel bearing. You may easily spot problems with your wheel bearing by listening for strange noises and observing the behavior of the vehicle. If the replacement is straightforward, you may be able to do the task yourself; but, if the task becomes more complex, you may need to see a technician.

If you have opted to replace your wheel bearings, you should shop around for the best prices and service from a variety of technicians and shops.

The Different Colors of Coolant

When an engine is operated without the use of coolant (antifreeze), it is susceptible to extensive damage, particularly during the winter. In the summer, plain water can be used to cool down in an emergency scenario, but it is not suggested to use it for much longer than that because it is much more likely to boil over. Water hardens (freezes) and grows in volume throughout the winter months, which can cause cracks in your engine block, radiator, and heater cores, among other things. The reason coolant and distilled water are combined at a minimum 50/50 ratio is to prevent this from happening.

Coolant, especially in the summer, acts as an anti-boil and protects the system components from corrosion, which is particularly important when dealing with aluminum components and components.

What are the benefits of using coolant?

In the summer, it has the responsibility of assisting the engine in cooling down (it keeps the engine from boiling over). During the winter, it also serves to keep the engine from freezing. However, in addition to these well-known advantages, there are a number of additional that are worth mentioning:

  • Anti-corrosive. In addition, the fluid will not harm or degrade the metals with which it comes into touch over a long period of time. Prevents the formation of deposits. (Prevents the formation of limestone deposits and other similar deposits that might affect the effectiveness of the cooling system.) Anti-foam. It has specific ingredients that prevent foam from developing in the cooling fluid.) A build-up of foam may result in a reduction in the effectiveness of the cooling system)

How often should the coolant liquid be changed?

Theoretically, it should be effective for an endless amount of time. However, in practice, regardless of the quality of the coolant (antifreeze), it should be replaced once every 2-5 years (the typical time after which it loses much of its benefits, unless clearly stated on the container that it is ‘lifetime’ coolant or antifreeze). It is important not to forget to change the coolant in your vehicle since the engine might suffer irreversible harm during the cold months. It is necessary to test coolant (antifreeze) liquid with a device known as an Antifreeze/Coolant Tester.

Another approach is to simply request that your mechanic do a coolant efficiency test prior to the arrival of the winter season.

How many types of coolant liquids are available?

Coolant (also known as antifreeze) is available in a variety of colors. This might be perplexing for folks who aren’t familiar with the meanings of the different colors. We will break it down for you so that you can better understand why this liquid is available in so many different hues. Blue, yellow, green, red, pink, turquoise, orange, and purple are some of the colors available. Given that a vehicle can operate with virtually any type of coolant that is safe for aluminum, you should consider the type based on the level of protection you require (prevention of corrosion and preservation of the metals and aluminum parts), as well as how frequently you intend to flush your coolant system.

Inorganic Acid Technology (IAT)

Between 1920 and 1990, it was widely utilized in automobiles manufactured in the United States. This includes corrosion inhibitors such as silicates and phosphates to protect metal parts such as the radiator and engine against corrosion. It is often seen in a vivid green tint and should be flushed out of the cooling system every 30,000 miles or every 2 years, whichever comes first. It’s commonly seen in older automobiles built before the mid-1990s (domestic vehicles from the 1920s to the 1990s, GM, Ford, Chrysler, and other manufacturers).

Organic Acid Technology (OAT)

Between 1920 and 1990, this type of engine was widely employed in automobiles manufactured in the United States of America. To preserve metal components such as the radiator and engine, this product contains silicates and phosphate corrosion inhibitors. Every 30,000 miles or every two years, it is advised that the cooling system be flushed out. It is usually found in a brilliant green tint. Older automobiles built before the mid-1990s (domestic vehicles from the 1920s to 1990s, General Motors, Ford and Chrysler) are most commonly seen with this transmission.

Hybrid Organic Acid Technology (HOAT)

It is a blend of IAT and OAT coolants that is intended for use in new autos. This product comprises silicates that have been added to boost aluminum protection and prevent corrosion. Rust-prevention additives are also included in the formulation. HOAT coolants are available in a variety of hues, including yellow, turquoise, pink, blue, and purple, to make differentiation simpler. It is advised that the system be flushed out every 150,000 miles or every 5 years, whichever comes first. (Typically found in the cars of major European, German, and Asian automobile manufacturers, as well as some Chrysler automobiles.) To summarize, if your automobile was manufactured with a specified coolant color, you should avoid changing it.

  1. Because it attacks and eats (destroys) the radiator from the inside out, it is unable to effectively prevent rust from occurring in the first place.
  2. It’s important to know that conventional and OAT coolant types are incompatible with one another.
  3. Also, pay close attention to the capacity of the cooling system as specified in your owner’s handbook.
  4. The presence of less in the system than the intended capacity reduces efficiency and increases the risk of overheating the system.
  5. A common example is the addition of oil, water, and heat to an IAT coolant.

Additionally, some believe that mixing coolants in a radiator might result in coolant gelling if the appropriate unlucky circumstances are present at the time.

How to prepare your coolant?

Coolant comes in a concentrated composition that must be combined with water in a 50-50 ratio in order to be effective, unless the product is specifically labeled as having been pre-mixed for your convenience. Even though current coolants are capable of working with the degree of chlorides and hardness prevalent in today’s tap water, it is recommended that users construct the mix using distilled water in order to prevent corrosion levels. Tap water includes magnesium, calcium, and hardness ions, which lead to the formation of scale and deposits in your radiator, which limit the performance of your cooling system.

Ensure that you carefully follow the percentages on the container when combining coolant and distilled water together based on your unique needs.

Best practices

Coolant comes in a concentrated formula that must be combined with water in a 50-50 ratio in order to be effective, unless the product is specifically labeled as having been pre-mixed. It is recommended that users build the coolant mix using distilled water in order to decrease corrosion levels, even if current coolants can operate with today’s levels of chlorides and hardness present in tap water. Amounts of hardness ions found in tap water lead to the formation of scale and deposits in your radiator, which reduces the performance of your cooling system.

Ensure that you carefully follow the percentages on the container when combining coolant and distilled water together according to your specifications.

4 Different Types of Coolant and Their Colors (Don’t Use the Wrong Type!)

The most recent update was made on December 29, 2021. The gasoline or diesel engine in your car or truck generates the required power to propel you forward down the highway or highways. The engine also generates a significant quantity of waste energy in the form of heat, which must be disposed of properly. And that heat must be removed from the internal systems of the engine and efficiently discharged to the atmosphere outside the engine. Are you looking for a reliable online repair manual? The top five choices may be found by clicking here.

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With the exception of an ancient VW Bug, a Chevy Corvair, or a Porsche, the engine of your automobile will be “water” cooled.

What is the mechanism through which all of this operates?

The hoses are responsible for transporting this fluid. The water in the radiator absorbs heat from the engine and dissipates it into the air going through the radiator with each drive. Your engine will not overheat as a result of this.

What is Engine Coolant?

On December 29, 2021, the most recent update was performed. It is the gasoline or diesel engine in your car or truck that generates the required power to propel you forward along the highway. The engine also generates a significant quantity of waste energy in the form of heat, which must be disposed of appropriately. Also required is the effective removal of heat from the internal systems of the engine and its discharge into the surrounding atmosphere. Trying to locate an excellent internet repair manual?

  1. What is the cause of this?.
  2. Aside from that, your automobile will have an engine with internal water passageways, a water pump, a heat exchanger known as a radiator, and a slew of flexible hoses connecting all of these components.
  3. In normal operation, the water pump pumps cooling water through the engine and discharges it via a pipe into the radiator.
  4. Every time you drive, the water in the radiator absorbs heat from the engine and dissipates it into the air passing through the radiator.
  • It has a very high specific heat value, making it extremely efficient. That is, water can contain more heat per unit volume than practically any other fluid
  • It has a relatively high boiling point
  • It is readily available virtually everywhere at a surprisingly cheap cost
  • And it is available virtually everywhere at a wonderfully low cost.

There is little doubt that these three characteristics contributed to the popularity of water as a coolant in the early 1900s, when engine-driven vehicles first appeared on the market. However, there are a number of issues with utilizing water alone that made it less than the ideal engine coolant at the time and continue to be so now.

  • Water has a freezing point of 32 degrees Fahrenheit, making it unsuitable for use in engines in most high-latitude regions around the globe. What’s more, when it freezes, it expands, making it unsuitable for use in engines in most high-latitude climates around the world. This type of behavior can cause any engine that is only cooled with water in the winter to fail. Furthermore, it can cause a radiator to freeze within, causing that expensive component to be easily destroyed. In the case of the materials usually used in engines and radiators, water accelerates corrosion (which results in the formation of metal oxides or rust).

How Do You Add Water to Your Radiator in an Emergency? Related:Can You Add Water to Your Radiator in an Emergency? Chemists began modifying water with the addition of chemicals very early in the creation of engines in order to make it a more acceptable coolant for the engines. These additions were designed to address both the problems of water outlined above as well as the benefits that water brings to the table in terms of maintaining a cool environment. Also see: How Does a Radiator Coolant Overflow Tank Function?

Making Water the Ideal Coolant

It was coolant freezing that was the most difficult challenge to solve early in the history of engine cooling. And it wasn’t long before chemists discovered that methyl alcohol (methanol) could be added with water to reduce the freezing temperature. Methanol was the first antifreeze addition to be discovered in a coolant additive. Unfortunately, this antifreeze also decreased the boiling point of water, putting a new and serious problem into the equation. The boiling point of fresh water is 212 degrees Fahrenheit.

  1. As an antifreeze, the lower boiling point achieved by utilizing methanol could not be accepted.
  2. It reduced the freezing point of water, however it was only effective down to a temperature of -36°F.
  3. It was necessary to create an even better product.
  4. A petroleum-based derivative called ethylene glycol was discovered in 1926 by scientists, and it has shown to be a long-lasting solution.
  5. Ethylene glycol has replaced ethylene glycol as the preferred antifreeze for internal combustion engines.
  6. As a result, when added to water, the amount of heat that can be retained by a given volume of this coolant mix is lowered.
  7. Furthermore, pure ethylene glycol has a pleasant flavor to it in addition to being poisonous.

It’s possible that your next-door neighbor’s dog may be drawn to the flavor and will eat it, resulting in tragic results.

It is also effective as an automobile coolant when used in conjunction with propylene glycol, which is a second and more modern antifreeze alternative.

When employed in coolant mixes, however, it is more susceptible to the development of bacterial and fungal growth over time.

As part of an effort to reduce the toxicity concern, antifreeze producers in the United States decided to include a bitter-tasting ingredient in their antifreeze products in 2012.

As a result, the range of applications for propylene glycol has expanded.

Antifreeze producers utilize patented chemicals to extend the life of their antifreeze, reduce corrosion, improve the efficiency of their water pumps, and reduce foaming.

A secondary advantage of using this chemical is that antifreeze leaks are generally quickly identifiable with a sensitive nose, which is particularly useful in winter. Related:Losing Coolant Despite the Absence of Visible Leaks

Does It Matter What Coolant I Use?

Yes, it very certainly does. Your automobile’s or truck’s owner’s handbook will provide you with particular instructions in this respect. Disregarding this warning might potentially result in a costly repair bill only a few kilometers down the road.

Different Types of Coolant

The antifreeze sold by one well-known auto parts retailer is available in 17 distinct varieties for vehicles and trucks. In this section, we will make an attempt to condense this bewildering assortment into the most fundamental sorts of antifreeze and antifreeze colors that you can expect to find on store shelves. Apart from that, you will have to pick between full strength antifreeze and a 50-50 blend of antifreeze and water. It is necessary to mix full strength antifreeze with distilled water before using it in your vehicle’s cooling system.

  • In extremely cold weather, a 60-40 mixture of antifreeze and water can be utilized to give lower temperature freeze protection while still maintaining high performance.
  • Drinking water contaminated with dissolved chemicals and/or chlorine can cause major cooling system difficulties if not treated properly.
  • In addition, never replenish an empty cooling system with 100 percent antifreeze, i.e., antifreeze that has not been mixed with any additional water.
  • Let’s go through the different colors and kinds of antifreeze.
  • This can assist us in avoiding the addition of the incorrect coolant.

1 – IAT (Inorganic Acid Technology)

Bright green is the most common color. This is the oldest coolant mix available, and it was used by all domestic automobile manufacturers until around 1994, with some manufacturers, such as Ford, continuing to use it until 2002. This mix was no longer used by Asian and European automobile manufacturers after 1990. It includes phosphates and silicates, and it performs admirably with cast iron engine blocks and copper or aluminum radiators, among other things. IAT coolants must be cleansed and replaced every 2 years or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Years ago, if this coolant was not updated on a regular basis, it was not uncommon for heater cores to become clogged.

2 – OAT (Organic Acid Technology)

Colors that are commonly used include orange, red, blue, and dark green.

This type of coolant does not include any phosphates or silicates and may be found in the majority of American automobiles manufactured after 1994. These coolants have a longer service life of up to 5 years or 150,000 miles, which is a significant advantage.

3 – HOAT (Hybrid Organic Acid Technology)

Colors that are commonly used include yellow, turquoise, pink, blue, and purple. These coolant mixes are classified as Hybrid Organic Acid Technology (HOAT) products because they fall in between the IAT and OAT categories. HOATs are often found in recent Chrysler models, as well as in European and Asian automobiles, among other places.

4 – Dex-Cool

Orange is the most common color. Dex-Cool, a form of OAT, was invented in 1995 for General Motors automobiles. Blockages were commonly experienced by owners who made the mistake of adding green coolant to systems that incorporated the Dex-Cool technology. While Dex-Cool is a suitable coolant in all other aspects of its use, it must never be blended with any other forms of antifreeze.

Carmaker Branded Antifreeze

Going to the dealer parts counter for antifreeze for a late-model car, whether domestic or foreign, may be your best choice for antifreeze. You will avoid having to read the antifreeze specifications and/or usage restrictions on those gallon jug labels at the parts shop if you do it this way. While you may have to spend a little extra, you’ll have the peace of mind knowing that you’re using a coolant mix that was particularly designed for your vehicle.

What Type of Coolant Does MY Car Need?

Your vehicle was sent from the manufacturer with the specific type of coolant it required to function properly. Throughout its service life, the same type of coolant should be utilized. Your owner’s manual will tell you what sort of vehicle you have. Alternatively, if you need to acquire antifreeze, you may get this information from a qualified auto parts professional.

Can I Mix Different Coolants?

No. This is a danger that you should never take. Coolant mixtures are vastly diverse from one another. It’s true that there are at least three manufacturers who produce what they refer to as a “universal” 150,000 mile extended life coolant (yellow in color). Adding this to your car’s cooling system, on the other hand, is dangerous. To be on the safe side, all you have to do anytime some antifreeze is necessary is get the type that is specifically designed for your car. Consider the scenario in which you are stranded in the middle of nowhere and your cooling system develops a gradual leak.

If you are in a severe situation, you may even use clean water from a nearby creek.


Consequently, you should have the system leak evaluated and the coolant mix either rectified to restore protection or the system cleansed and refilled as soon as possible after discovering the leak.

Can I Add New Coolant to Old Coolant?

Yes, it is possible. However, here is the rule:

  • The new coolant you are adding to your car’s cooling system must be the same type and color as the antifreeze already present in the system. Non-compliance with this guideline may result in costly engine damage.

Additionally, while adding coolant, you should always use a pre-mixed 50-50 combination of antifreeze and antifreeze concentrate.

The majority of automobiles currently have a 50-50 mix installed. As a result, the addition of this fresh coolant blend will have little effect on the freeze and boil-over temperatures.

What Can Happen if I Use the Wrong Type of Coolant?

When adding coolant, always use a pre-mixed 50-50 combination of antifreeze and ethylene glycol. The majority of automobiles will already have a 50-50 mix in the engine and transmission. Because of this, the addition of this fresh coolant blend will have little effect on the freezing and boiling temperatures.

An Important Caution with Pre-Owned Vehicles

Consider the following scenario: you have recently purchased a pre-owned vehicle that is five years old or older and/or has more than 150,000 kilometers on the odometer. The first servicing work you should perform on this vehicle should be a full cooling system drain and cleanse, followed by the installation of the proper fresh coolant. It’s possible that you have no clue whether or not such a service has ever been performed on your ‘new’ automobile. You would be making an exceedingly sensible decision by taking this step.

The Ultimate Coolant Color Guide

Here’s an interesting fact: antifreeze is colorless when it is first made. All of the colored coolants you find on the shelf, including the green, orange, red, pink, amber, and blue, have been dyed. Coolant makers, on the other hand, do not tint their antifreeze just to make it more visually appealing. They do it for a variety of compelling reasons. The color of the coolant you pick should be taken into consideration as a consumer since the improper hue may result in a reduction in the engine’s lifespan.

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Why Brands Add Dye To Antifreeze

  • In order to assist consumers in distinguishing one brand from another
  • To identify the coolant formula of one brand from that of the others
  • Making it easy to determine the amount of coolant beneath the hood is important.

Because there is no uniform color standard for coolants, we’re here to assist you in determining which coolant color is best for you and your vehicle. The quick answer is that it is dependent on the year, make, and model of your automobile, among other factors. Continue reading for the lengthy response.

Three Types Of Coolants

There are three types of coolants that are commonly available on the market:

  1. For some older vehicles, Inorganic Acid Technology (IAT) is required. This is an old-fashioned green coolant that has been around for decades and is still in use. This product contains chemicals that prevent the deterioration of cooling system components made of copper, brass, cast iron, and aluminum. This sort of coolant is not advised for vehicles that are newer than five years. Organic Acid Technology (OAT) is a term that refers to the application of organic acids to solve problems. This sort of coolant, which is often orange or yellow in color, lasts longer and is utilized in some contemporary engines when metal protection is not necessary. This product is based on propylene glycol and does not include any silicates or phosphates. As a result, OAT coolants react slowly and do not provide as much protection against exposed metal as IAT coolants. OAT coolants such as GM’s DexCool, which is available in orange, are a popular brand. Hybrid Organic Acid Technology (HOAT): While many auto manufacturers are dissatisfied with the fact that OAT coolants do not provide as much protection against exposed metal as IAT coolants do, they appreciate the fact that OAT coolants last longer, are safer to use, and are more environmentally friendly. After much deliberation, they came up with a solution: HOAT. It’s a cross between IAT and OAT that’s essentially OAT coolant with a minor amount of silicates added in. Essentially, it combines the best of both worlds. Coolant with this sort of composition is sold under a variety of brand names, the most prevalent of which are as follows:
  • G-05 (most European auto manufacturers)
  • G-11 or G-12 (Volkswagen and Audi)
  • Global (the majority of coolant manufacturers)
  • G-05 (most European auto manufacturers).

How To Know Which Type Of Coolant To Use In Your Car

With so many different types of coolants available, consumers may be perplexed as to which color or composition they should use in their automobile. The fact that Asian, European, and American vehicle manufacturers each have their own recommended chemical makeup for optimizing the dependability and performance of their engines just adds to the complexity. Photograph courtesy of EvelynGiggles There is a reason why the manufacturer of your vehicle demands a specific type of coolant. This company’s suggested coolant has the optimal blend of chemicals that will help to extend the life of the engine and is customized for your vehicle.

It is better to go the safe option and get that particular brand, even if it is somewhat more expensive than the others in the list.

Green IAT Pre-1994 GMsPre-2001 ChryslersFords (except some ’99 models)
Orange OAT or HOAT Post-1995 GMsPost-2012 ChryslersFords
Amber OAT or HOAT Post-2002 ChryslersFords
Blue OAT or HOAT Select 1999 FordsPre-2014 VolvosPost-2008 Teslas
Pink HOAT Post-2005 Audis, Volkswagens,PorschesPost-2014 JaguarsLand Rovers
Red HOAT Toyotas, Lexuses,Scions
Purple HOAT 1997-2013 JaguarsLand Rovers2002-2011 Saabs

*Please keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list. Please refer to your vehicle’s owner’s handbook for information on the proper type of coolant to use.

Why You Should Never Mix The Coolants

Each type of coolant has its unique formula that is tailored to the needs of a given vehicle. Adding the incorrect type of coolant or filling off the reservoir with a different type of coolant will have a range of consequences for the engine’s performance.

Addition of an OAT coolant to an older engine that requires the normal IAT green coolant will dilute the phosphates and silicates that the engine need to function properly. As a result, the metal in your engine will not receive the adequate protection it requires to operate.

Finally, Remember To Flush Your Coolant

Don’t forget to flush the toilet. This is a critical stage in the maintenance of your vehicle. In this blog article, we discuss when it is appropriate to do so.

Universal Coolants

Vehicle manufacturers have been creating and utilizing a range of long-life coolants for about a decade now. They all appear to be different in terms of formulation and color, and it appears to be the only thing they all have in common. There are orange coolants, green coolants, blue coolants, red coolants, yellow coolants, and even pink coolants available for purchase. Automobile owners and technicians are experiencing a significant deal of “chemical confusion” as a result of the proliferation of many coolant kinds available.

  • More information is available by clicking here.
  • A decal or label on the coolant reservoir, as well as the vehicle’s owner’s handbook, will often outline these criteria.
  • Ford and Chrysler, for example, mandate hybrid OAT-only coolants for their vehicles.
  • Furthermore, if the system is topped off with a different coolant, the colors of the lights may change.
  • There are three fundamental forms of coolants: antifreeze, glycol, and water.
  • Green antifreeze, the original “universal” formula that was used by everyone until the advent of today’s extended-life coolants, is a traditional North American product. Once applied, the fast-acting silicate and phosphate corrosion inhibitors provide immediate protection for bare iron or aluminum surfaces. These corrosion inhibitors have a proven track record of providing trouble-free service in virtually any vehicle application (domestic, Asian, or European), provided the chemistry is correct. For example, OAT coolants should not be utilized in a vehicle when the usage of a hybrid OAT coolant is specified. Always refer to the owner’s handbook when in doubt. However, due to the limited life span of the corrosion inhibitors, this type of coolant should be replaced every two to three years or 30,000 miles (although some brands now offer a service interval of up to 50,000 miles with enhanced chemistry), depending on driving conditions.

Coolants based on OAT that have a long shelf life. Organic Acid Technology (OAT) is an acronym that refers to a group of ingredients that includes sebacate, 2-ethylhexanoic acid (2-EHA), and other organic acids, but no silicates or phosphates (with the exception of Toyota’s pink extended-life coolant, which contains a small amount of phosphate in addition to its extended-life OAT-based antifreeze). In order to distinguish them from standard North American green antifreeze, OAT-based coolants are frequently, but not always, dyed a distinct hue, such as blue.

  1. Volkswagen/Audi utilizes a comparable product that has been coloured pink to match their branding.
  2. The corrosion inhibitors in OAT coolants are slower to function, but they last far longer than those in standard North American green coolants, according to the manufacturer.
  3. OAT corrosion inhibitors provide good long-term protection for aluminum and cast iron, but they may not be the ideal solution for older cooling systems that feature copper/brass radiators and heater cores, as these materials are more susceptible to corrosion.
  4. G-05 hybrid OAT coolants are also known as “Hybrid OAT coolants.” This formulation likewise makes use of organic acids, but not 2-EHA, as previously stated (different organic acids are used).
  5. Silicate also aids in the restoration of surface erosion produced by cavitation in the water pump, which is a common problem.
  6. Still a little perplexed?
  7. In order to properly top off or replenish a customer’s car, you must first determine the sort of coolant to recommend.
  8. However, in practice, retailers do not have the shelf space to sell a variety of coolants for each single make and model of vehicle.
  9. Since then, a slew of antifreeze manufacturers have created so-called “universal” or “global” coolants that are claimed to be compatible with any modern car cooling system, as well as older vehicles.
  10. What could be more straightforward?

While there are some disadvantages to offering a universal product that is suitable for “all makes and all models,” the advantages are clear: only a few stock keeping units are required to provide full coverage (full-strength antifreeze or a 50/50 mix), less shelf space is required to stock the product, and most importantly: there is no confusion as to which product should be used in which application.

  • Global universal coolant manufacturers claim that the formulation of their products is such that they are suitable for use with all cooling systems (foreign or domestic) and all coolant kinds (traditional green, OAT and OAT-hybrid with silicate).
  • Using a universal coolant to top off a cooling system that contains an extended-life OAT or hybrid coolant has no effect on the overall service life of the system, according to the manufacturer.
  • It is also the same service period if a universal coolant is put to an older car with conventional green antifreeze in its cooling system: two to three years or 30,000 to 50,000 kilometers.
  • This is required to remove impurities from the coolant and to extend the service life of the new coolant as much as possible.
  • Assuming that the old coolant was conventional green coolant, the new universal coolant will be diluted and will not be able to provide protection that is significantly greater than that provided by the original coolant.

The corrosion inhibitors in all types of coolant ultimately deplete and must be replaced by changing the coolant on a consistent basis. If you leave the old coolant in the system for an extended period of time, the cooling system will suffer from corrosion.

Can you Mix Different Types of Coolant?

Adding coolant to the cooling system’s reservoir is necessary.

What is coolant?

It is common practice to dilute antifreeze with coolant (ethylene glycol or propylene glycol), which is commonly 50/50 with distilled water. It serves a variety of functions in your car. Exactly like the name implies, antifreeze prevents water from freezing throughout the winter months. The ability to remove heat from your engine during the warmer months helps to save you from overheating your vehicle. With rust inhibitors in the coolant, it also helps to keep your vehicle’s cooling system clean.

What colors does coolant come in?

Coolant/antifreeze can be found in a variety of colors, including pink, red, orange, blue, green, and yellow. When attempting to determine the type of coolant you require for your car, this might be complicated. The varying hues of the liquid might indicate distinct characteristics of the liquid. Yellow and red are the colors of the coolant.

3 main types of coolant

  • Inorganic Acid Technology (IAG)- This technology, which was often employed in older automobiles in the United States up until the mid-1990s, comprises phosphates (corrosion inhibitors) and silicates. It has a lifespan of around 2 years. Usually a vibrant shade of green
  • Most contemporary automobiles are equipped with Organic Acid Technology (OAG), which does not include silicates or phosphates, but does contain azoles and neutralized organic acids (corrosion inhibitors). Aluminum is protected from high temperatures by this coating. It has a lifespan of around 5 years. Colors that are typically orange or red
  • Hybrid Organic Acid Technology (HOAT) is a combination of the two types of coolants mentioned above. This product contains silicates and has a prolonged shelf life of up to 5 years. Usually orange or yellow in color

Which color coolant to use?

Generally speaking, if you’re topping off the coolant levels, use the same color coolant that’s currently in the car. However, just because something is the same hue as something else does not always imply that it is the same kind. Check your vehicle’s owner’s handbook to find out exactly what sort of coolant to use in your vehicle’s engine. You may also inquire with the parts department at your local (manufacturer) dealership. There are a variety of colors used by different aftermarket firms and car manufacturers.

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Never mix different types of coolant

Unless you’re an expert on the specific chemical makeup and interactions of the various sorts, keep it simple and stick with what the manufacturer advises instead of experimenting with your own. It’s possible that mixing the wrong types could result in radiator and cooling system damage (which might lead to engine/waterpump problems), as well as a repair cost that will make you fall out on the floor laughing. This might result in a hefty doctor’s bill in the future. Consult the owner’s handbook for further information.

How much dilution?

First, be sure that the solution of coolant/antifreeze you purchase has not been pre-diluted before purchasing it. Most of the time, a 50 percent coolant and 50 percent distilled or de-ionized waterdilution is advised while working with concentrate. This will keep the system from freezing down to roughly -34 degrees Fahrenheit. For temperatures below that, coolant concentrate concentrations of up to 70% are permitted. Because of the minerals in the water, using tap water or well water is not suggested.

How often should you change it?

Once again, this is dependent on the manufacturer’s guideline for your unique car. Consult your vehicle’s owner’s handbook or the service department for further information. Some vehicles require it every two years, while others might be equipped with a coolant that is designed to last a lifetime. It is important to note, however, that even while the liquid seems to be ‘full’ in your tank, the active qualities of the chemical composition may no longer be functioning (ie.

it might not be working as intended). The specific gravity of the coolant may be determined with the help of an equipment known as a ‘coolant hydrometer.’ However, it will not inform you whether or not the coolant is still protective against corrosion.

Engine Coolant 101 The Right Coolant for Your Vehicle

IAT is an abbreviation for Inorganic Additive Technology. This characteristic green-colored coolant has been protecting cooling systems for decades, but it is no longer used as a factory fill in current automobiles. One cause is the high rate of depletion of its additives, which necessitates more regular replacements, which are normally every two years or 24,000 miles, depending on usage. Organic Acid Technology (OAT) is an abbreviation for Organic Acid Technology. OAT coolants, which are commonly required for cars built by General Motors and a few other automakers, are incompatible with other types of coolants.

  1. HOAT (Hybrid Organic Acid Technology) is an abbreviation for Hybrid Organic Acid Technology.
  2. When it comes to oil and antifreeze, most automakers recommend changing the fluid every five years or 50,000 miles, however other manufacturers recommend changing it every ten years or 150,000 miles.
  3. Only coolants that fulfill the criteria of the automobile manufacturers should be utilized in these systems.
  4. The color of the coolant cannot be used to reliably identify the kind of coolant.
  5. 2.
  6. When two cars from the same manufacturer are driven, it is quite conceivable for them to utilize two completely different types of coolant.
  7. Just because a vehicle had one type of coolant when it left the factory does not rule out the possibility that a different type of coolant was installed at some time throughout the vehicle’s life span.

How To Identify The Correct Coolant

It wasn’t that long ago that no matter whatever brand of antifreeze you used, it was all environmentally friendly. With so many various types of antifreeze technology available in a rainbow of colors today, there is a lot of misconception among automotive professionals and customers about which color antifreeze is the best. The simple reality is that most antifreeze producers continue to utilize ethylene glycol (EG) in their products, although some have switched to less-toxic propylene glycol (PG).

  1. It doesn’t even specify which manufacturer’s coolant was used as original equipment.
  2. Coolants must also contain anti-corrosion and anti-scale additives to prevent corrosion and scaling in the engine and radiator.
  3. Many of them have been specially chosen for their ability to limit the growth of certain types of metal surfaces seen in engines and other mechanical systems.
  4. Each of these metal surfaces, as well as their respective coolant design systems, presents a unique set of corrosion inhibition challenges that must be handled by a unique set of inhibitor chemicals.
  5. Inorganic corrosion inhibitor chemicals that are often used (traditional coolants).
  6. Organic acid inhibitors with a long half-life are being developed (OAT coolants).
  7. It is inorganic acid technology (IAT) that the classic green antifreeze gets its chemical foundation.

Since the beginning of the previous century, conventional inorganic (traditional) inhibitors have been available on the market for more than 60 years, and they were the first to be discovered to have corrosion-preventive properties.

As a result, these compounds are extremely efficient in forming a protective barrier against corrosion.

Silicates, nitrites, nitrates, molybdates, phosphates, and borates are examples of these sorts of compounds, which can contain a range of elements.

Traditionally used inhibitors are susceptible to breaking away from the metal surface over time, exposing new metal beneath to additional corrosion.

As a result, such coolants have a limited service life, which is typically in the range of 50,000 kilometers.

Before it was introduced in North America, Organic Acid Technology (OAT) was widely utilized in Europe as a long-life coolant (LLC) / extended-life coolant (ELC).

The manufacturer’s recommended replacement period is five years or 225,000 kilometers (whichever comes first).

Since the late 1980s, much research has been conducted on the creation of real long-life coolants that establish a molecular layer or barrier between the cooling system and the surrounding environment.

These molecular layers have the same function as the previous ones, which is to prevent the metal surfaces from coming into touch with the corrosive base fluid in question.

Thus, the layer is constantly reforming and repairing itself, and the fluid’s life is significantly prolonged as a result of this process.

The usage of OAT molecules has expanded to include a large variety of different types – some utilized more commonly than others, and some with more distinct preferences than others.

The hybrid organic acid technology (HOAT) combines IAT and OAT with nitrites to provide a more efficient process.

A hybrid organic acid technology (HOAT) chemistry, such as Valvoline’s Zerex G-05 antifreeze, is one that combines the best of traditional and organic acid-based chemistry to give protection against rust and corrosion.

A great deal of work has been put into the development of improved OAT coolants during the 1990s, owing to the fast growth of diverse engine componentry and metallurgy during that time period.

This is particularly true in some heavy-duty on- and off-road engine types, which may specify the use of OAT type coolants fortified with nitrites and/or nitrites and molybdates, as well as some passenger-car engine types, which may specify the use of OAT inhibitors fortified with silicates and other additives, or phosphates, as well as some diesel engine types.

  • The manufacturer’s recommended replacement period is five years or 225,000 kilometers (whichever comes first).
  • Is It Safe to Combine Antifreeze Technologies?
  • Water need a little assistance in order to work optimally.
  • Early studies with carboxyl coolants contributed to a great deal of the ambiguity around coolant mixing.
  • Upon further investigation, it was discovered that the corrosive environment had formed as a result of the coolant being too dilute.

It is advisable to recommend to your clients that they use the same type of coolant that was originally installed on their car by referring to the manufacturer’s specifications.

What Is The Difference Between Green & Orange Coolant? [Guide]

However, regardless of their varying colors, the color of the M M that you pop into your mouth has no influence on the flavor. However, when it comes to the antifreeze you use in your automobile, the hue defines the chemical composition of the antifreeze you’re using. When it comes to coolant, what’s the difference between green and orange? It is possible to use both orange and green antifreeze as engine coolants to prevent the engine from freezing or overheating. They also serve to protect the cooling system from corrosive elements.

The former is represented by green, whereas the latter is represented by orange.

Fortunately, in this short tutorial, we will go through the differences between each hue and how they differ from one another.

Let’s get this party started.

What’s The Purpose Of Coolant?

The function of coolant and antifreeze is encapsulated effectively in either term since it performs the same function. It not only guarantees that your engine operates within a safe operating range (by using coolant), but it also prevents it from becoming ice cold (antifreeze). Water and coolant are frequently mixed together in a 50/50 combination to get the final product. Is it possible to utilize water as a cooling on its own? Yes, it would freeze in cold areas and evaporate in warm climates, but it would also freeze in cold places.

When it comes to color, it is primarily due to dyes that have been applied to assist in identifying its composition.

What Is The Deal With Antifreeze Color?

Environmentally friendly engine coolants are intended for use in older automobiles (pre-2000), particularly those with a high concentration of steel and copper components in the cooling system. Inorganic Additive Technology (IAT) is used to preserve these metallic parts against rust and corrosion. It is incorporated into the manufacturing process. A combination of different substances such as phosphates and silicones, as well as either propylene glycol or ethylene glycol, is used to make IAT.

Because they are formed from phosphoric acid, phosphotes are used to soften water as well as remove oil and grease.

Propylene glycol and ethylene glycol are the chemicals that protect your engine from overheating and breaking down.

Orange Antifreeze

In addition to blue antifreeze, we have orange antifreeze, which also protects against corrosion but is designed for modern automobiles with more aluminum and nylon parts in the cooling system, rather than older cars with a lot of metal. Carboxylates are one of these acids, and they work by preventing corrosion from accumulating. The wonderful thing about them is that they only have an effect on metal surfaces. As a result, they will safeguard metallic parts while causing no interference with non-metallic parts.

As a result of this adjustment, General Motors created DexCool.

When the orange coolant is running low, the negative aspects of the product become apparent.

Fortunately, orange antifreeze should last for up to five years in most cases. In other words, as long as you remember to replace it, your engine should not have any problems.

Can I Mix Different Engine Coolant Types?

The quick answer is, of course, no. When orange and green antifreeze are combined, it is likely that a chemical reaction will occur, causing the mixture to thicken and become gel-like in consistency. Your engine is unable to adequately cycle the gel through the system since it requires fluid rather than gel to operate. A lack of sufficient cooling can cause numerous components to overheat, resulting in their eventual failure. Take, for example, your water pump, which is responsible for pushing the coolant throughout the whole vehicle’s system.

The expense of flushing your cooling system with a different antifreeze will be around $100 if you plan to utilize a different antifreeze.

What Should I Know About Maintaining Engine Coolant?

A brief response would be, “no.” An unlikely chemical reaction will occur when orange and green antifreeze are mixed, resulting in a gel-like material thickening as a result. In order to successfully cycle the gel through your system, your engine need liquid rather than gel. Various components may overheat and fail if they are not properly cooled down. Take, for example, your water pump, which is responsible for circulating the coolant throughout the whole vehicle’s interior. A failure might result in a replacement cost of up to $750 in some cases.

What’s The Difference Between Green And Orange Antifreeze?

The quick answer is, unfortunately, no. When orange and green antifreeze are mixed, it is likely that a chemical reaction will occur, causing the mixture to thicken and become gel-like in consistency. Your engine is unable to adequately cycle the gel through the system because it requires fluid rather than gel. Various components may overheat and fail if they are not properly cooled. Take, for example, your water pump, which is responsible for pushing the coolant throughout the system. In the event that it fails, you may be looking at a replacement cost of up to $700.

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