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Tech 101- The Colors of Antifreeze

Posted August 06, 2014 8:30 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: antifreeze fluids Tech 101

Although ethylene glycol has been around since the 1850s, it was not considered for use as an automotive coolant until World War I when it was used in military vehicles to prevent radiators from icing up overnight. Initially it was used as a substitute for glycerol, a component in explosives. American production cars did not begin using any antifreeze until 1923, when an ethylene oxide based coolant was first used. Ethylene Glycol, the green antifreeze we have all been using as long as we can remember, did not replace ethylene oxide as the industry standard until 1937. Life was simple then, just mix one part of the green stuff to one part water and you were good to go for up to three years. Occasionally you would check the potency of your mixture with a bulb-type antifreeze tester and maybe add a little to give you a little more protection, but that was about it.

Get the specs here.

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Re: Tech 101- The Colors of Antifreeze

08/13/2014 5:56 AM

Good article. I did not know this! Why I take my newer cars to the dealer for service.

That does not mean they do it right, but at least I'll know who is responsible if they screw it up!

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