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Old 01-28-2004, 06:34 AM   #1
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1978 31' Sovereign
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Radiator Coolant Change Out

Just wondering:

How often do you 345 owners with a few years of experience change out the coolant, and how aggresive do you get with the purge?

I know several recent purchases had radiator issues right away (as did I on the E-350 Ford Diesel).

The fluid in mine is less than a year old, but as in all things mechanical, I know that the interior of the radiator is slowly being eaten away. I wonder if I can afford to chance putting any type of chemical cleaner through it to remove deposits, but also may damage what metal is left in the walls....
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Old 01-28-2004, 07:50 AM   #2
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Every other year

The lubricating and rust/corrosion protection are only good for 2 years. I often wondered with engines that have relatively low useage like these if it could be extended or they break down because of time, but have replaced too many radiators and heater cores over the years to experiment. Unless I see a ton of crud in the old antifreeze I just refill with the new mix; if there is a lot of crud I pull the thermostat and both radiator hoses and flush with clean water. I don't think there is enough residual to worry about.

John
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Old 01-28-2004, 08:12 AM   #3
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Radiator Life

Thanks, John

Your opinion, and others on the Forum, means a lot.

I hate to pull the radiator for a scheduled (precautionary) rebuild, when the engine (with 77,000 miles) will probably reach the end of it's useful life in a few years, and the radiator will certainly have to be pulled at that time. It (the engine) runs strong, and shows no signs of mechanical trouble (no oil useage, no gasses leaking to the radiator system), but money is being stashed for the inevitable.
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Old 01-28-2004, 01:44 PM   #4
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Flush

Antifreeze should be changed out every 2 years or 24,000 miles. It loses it's protection abilities. Your best bet is to have the entire system flushed. Most garages will do it for a reasonable price. I have a power flush machine at my garage. For most vehicles up to 4 gallons of antifreeze, we charge $50. (just to give you an idea of price) Power flushing the system completely replaces the antifreeze (engine block, rad, heater core and hoses) and you don't have to worry about damage from the flush. If you do take it somewhere to get flushed, make sure their machine connects to the rad hoses, not the flush machine that they cut heater lines and add a 'tee'. These type don't do as good a job and the 'tee' is left in which undoubtly leaks after awhile. Hope this helps.

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Old 01-28-2004, 04:31 PM   #5
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As a new guy to MH I normally would not speak up but: Water is a 50% ingrediant of our cooling systems. Like many of you I have lived a lot of places where the tap water is not suitible for use in automotive cooling systems, even where water may have tasted good. The human body is a lot more tolerent of some of the H2O in our city systems than is our radiator. Heat as we learned in chemistry can speed up the potential adverse reaction that your water may have on metal so we better make sure the water we leave in the system is inert. Unless you are absolutely sure of the chemistry of your water then the only safe water is distilled water with absoulutely no PH or corrosive chemicals and minerals. Further, There is no way antifreeze manufacturers can come up with universal anti-corrosive chemicals to fight every impurity in all tap waters. That is why they now offer a premixed solution. I suspect my MH was filled up with tap water in Florida early in its life and that is one of the reasons I am replacing the heater core. A properly maintained system would last a long time if the system had been mildly flushed and regularly filled with pure water and antifreeze with corrosion inhibiters. 24 months or so is the recommendation with good water. Walmart sells distilled water for less than a dollar a gallon and when mixed with a good antifreeze after flushing should reduce future corrosion to the minimum possible. Too bad this advice was not observed by the previous owner of my MH. Ron
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Old 01-28-2004, 06:51 PM   #6
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I bought the Prestone flush valve set at Autozone..less than 5 bucks. Put in some flush chem, let it sit while it runs awhile, then put the hose on the valve.. back flushed the radiator and all till clear. Filled with distilled water, antifreeze and crc coolant additive. Ran way cool all summer. Even towing at 90 degrees air temps.
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