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Comparing Extended Life and Standard Coolants



Engine coolants and antifreeze agents have been around for many years. Until recently, the most popular antifreeze was a simple ethylene glycol based product. This product, referred to today as "conventional" coolant, did a satisfactory job as a heat exchange agent but had one big drawback. Conventional coolant required a continuous check for metals protection and a supplement coolant additive package installed several times a year to keep up with the chemical depletion.

Because diesel engines do varied jobs from powering trucks to driving large industrial equipment, maintaining the cooling system on a regular basis was demanding. Extended Life Coolants were developed to address the needs of diesel engines that were in isolated environments where regular maintenance was limited. This new coolant offered a reduced level of maintenance while providing a superior level of metals corrosion protection.

Conventional Coolants

Conventional antifreeze uses inorganic materials such as nitrites, silicates, phosphates and borates to control corrosion, but as these materials coat to provide the protection they offer, two things happen. First, they deplete or are "used up" and need to be replenished. This adds more material to the liquid circulation and adds to the second problem of "plating" or sticking to the hot metal surfaces. As the plating occurs over time, a layer of insulating material develops and reduces the amount of heat the coolant can take away from the metal components. Because the coolant can't remove this heat, the heat stays in the metal and produces "hot spots" or high heat areas.

These high heat areas will prevent proper cooling of the component and lead to cracks that increase in size and depth until major failure occurs. As a third problem, these high heat areas attract more of the insulation materials to plate, perpetuating the insulation problem.

Extended Life Coolants

Extended Life Coolants are often referred to as organic acid technology coolants. ELC uses carboxylate type organic acids, (alkyl monoacid and alkyl diacid) proven to provide metal corrosion protection without the problems associated with inorganic material "plating" or sticking to the hot metal surfaces. Because this plating and insulation does not occur, heat transfer is improved by as much as 7% to 8% over conventional coolants.

Provided the coolant is not contaminated with other coolants or fluids and not overly diluted with water, the chemical balance remains very stable over a long life cycle. This stability offers superior corrosion protection without the periodic replenishment required by conventional coolants.

Coolant Conversion

Conversion from standard coolant to Extended Life Coolant provides a clear advantage by preventing liner pitting, corrosion and scale that can damage your cooling system. With most engine repair costs being related to the cooling system, Extended Life Coolant is an ideal solution to help improve fleet maintenance and reduce total maintenance expenditure.

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