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Re: Anti-Freeze

To: Tim Mullen <>, Shop Talk <>
Subject: Re: Anti-Freeze
From: Bill Rabel <>
Date: Tue, 24 Oct 2000 10:13:05 -0700
> I've always used Prestone in my cars, but now I have a '96 Ford Ranger that I 
>need to 
> change the anti-freeze.  Problem is that it uses the "five-year" stuff, and I 
>know it's 
> different that "regular" anti-freeze.  What is the new kind to use.  Or do I 
>just drain it 
> out and replace it with Prestone/generic anti-freeze?  Does it matter?

I just went through this with a '96 Blazer. The product is made by
Texaco, and is called Dex-Cool. The five-year interval is due to the
types of additives it uses. The conventional stuff tends to break down
and start attacking things when you leave it in too long. I did a web
search on Dex-Cool and learned a lot. 

My Blazer needed an extensive flush, because the coolant had begun to
"jell," which the dealer said was caused by running a low coolant level
in the system. Others say that the jelling is due to mixing of Dex-Cool
with conventional antifreeze, while others say that the two types are
compatible. Very confusing.

The one point made clear in my searching is that any trace of
conventional antifreeze mixed with Dex-Cool nixes the five year
duration. I ended up refilling with Dex-Cool, because the dealer was
"prohibited by GM" from doing otherwise. I'm OK with that, but I'm going
to make sure I have a supply of the stuff around for topping up the
system. The stuff *is* available from third parties.

- Bill Rabel
  Wet Spot Garage

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