Prestone coolant tester
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Thread: Prestone coolant tester

  1. #1
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    Prestone coolant tester

    I purchased a Prestone coolant bulb tester because I was curious how my coolant would be after 5 years and 40K miles on my 2003 EX-L.
    It showed the coolant has excellent protection, The needle was actually pinned past the highest temp mark. My question is has anyone used this tester and is it an accurate guage of how good your coolant is?

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  3. #2
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    Re: Prestone coolant tester

    Originally posted by sizzlemp
    I purchased a Prestone coolant bulb tester because I was curious how my coolant would be after 5 years and 40K miles on my 2003 EX-L.
    It showed the coolant has excellent protection, The needle was actually pinned past the highest temp mark. My question is has anyone used this tester and is it an accurate guage of how good your coolant is?
    Don't forget with the 01' Ody's on, the coolant is good for 120K or 10yrs. and yours is not there quite yet? Hence the favorable test results!!


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    Re: Re: Prestone coolant tester

    Originally posted by chiody
    Don't forget with the 01' Ody's on, the coolant is good for 120K or 10yrs. and yours is not there quite yet? Hence the favorable test results!!

    Yes, I'm aware the coolant is good for 10 years, but I just wanted to make sure.

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    Re: Re: Re: Prestone coolant tester

    Originally posted by sizzlemp
    Yes, I'm aware the coolant is good for 10 years, but I just wanted to make sure.
    Just keep checking it now that you have the tester. And do report if yours DOESN'T last the full 10 yrs or 120K?

    Thanks for the report!


  6. #5
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    sizzlemp,

    Your Prestone antifreeze coolant bulb tester is a very basic form of a hydrometer. It reads the specific gravity of the coolant. So while it will tell you if the density of the coolant has changed or not, it does little to tell you the condition of the rust inhibitors and corrosion agents in the antifreeze (these agents are at very low levels within the antifreeze). If the agents I have mentioned above were in higher concentrations, then there would be different testers for long life coolant VS regular coolant, so far I have not seen different testers marketed for the different coolants. Why bring this to your attention? Well if you should ever see any signs of corrosion or rust with in the coolant (antifreeze) I would change out the antifreeze right away. I would not care if the solution were 10 year or 120K mile solution or not. Just trying to give some helpful information. Russ
    2000 LX, tranny cooler, original transmission, self maintained, 140K miles.

  7. #6
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    Thanks. The coolant still looks green and I don't see much rust, but I'll keep an eye on it.

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    At your current rate of use, you will get to time before miles.

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  10. #9
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    There are test strips available which help to determine the Ph of the coolant, which is one of the most critical indicators of condition.

    Jerry O.
    UFCW Retired
    UNION, YES!!!
    (The labor movement, the folks who brought you the weekend)

    2014 Celestial Blue EX-L + 19" Advanti B1 wheels w/ 245/50-19 Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 tires, a WeatherTech cargo mat w/ added "bumper bib", a ScanGauge II and a nice large basket in place of the difficult to use front console. AirLift kit #60815 and DashMat dash cover (black to beat windshield reflection) added.

    2006 Ocean Mist Metallic EX gone to live with daughter and family in Illinois

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    Jerry O,

    While you bring up a good point I'd have to say I have never seen a pH range specified for an engine coolant (although I have never seriously looked for one either). With Aluminum engines (heads, block, water pump), I'd be worried going too far alkaline as the hydroxyl group associated with an alkaline mixture is likely going to attack the aluminum. On the other hand, going too far acidic would also be a problem for the engine and vehicle with a copper radiator. Staying at a perfect neutral 7 is just plan hard. Either way an extreme pH in either direction would be detrimental. I don't think I'd try pool test strips as the color agent in the antifreeze would throw the color of the strip off and I have never seen pH test strips for antifreeze (again I have not looked for them, although someone may market such an item).
    Last edited by rberman999; 08-25-2008 at 10:40 PM.
    2000 LX, tranny cooler, original transmission, self maintained, 140K miles.

  12. #11
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    When in doubt about the coolant...just change the dang thing... No testing, bulbs, ph strips, etc. I'd imagine changing Honda ccolant at half the interval or 60K would be fine. This wouldn't be like 3K mile oil changes as most would be doing it in 4-5 years unlike the 3-4 months for the oil comparison.

    Just drain and dispose of used coolant properly as it is fatal to many animals, it actually has a sweet taste!


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    http://www.cooltrak.com/faqs.asp

    This seems like a good idea. As you all know, I think replacing really expensive, specially formulated, low toxicity, long life collant in a dual heater core vehicle that can be difficult to burp early just because "you always have" is silly and environmentally wasteful. Modern vehicles are low maintenance. Enjoy. Spend the time with your kids. It's just a car, not a fine painting that needs to last a thousand years. Twenty years, 300k, maybe four coolant changes. Who needs more?

  14. #13
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    egads,

    Sorry if I have offended you in some way, but if you read either of my posts on this subject never did I say to wastefully change out antifreeze. I did say "if one saw signs of corrosion then I don't care what is in the vehicle I'd change out the antifreeze"(I also mentioned rust, but lets face it you had better not see rust in a modern engine / radiator). I stick by this recommendation, again sorry if it bothers you. If you check out this web site you will see that the antifreeze colorant can have an effect on the pH reading,
    http://www.gwrauto.com/RadStrip1.htm
    which I pointed out in my second post, again I hope this does not get you too bent out of shape.
    2000 LX, tranny cooler, original transmission, self maintained, 140K miles.

  15. #14
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    Originally posted by rberman999
    egads,

    Sorry if I have offended you in some way, but if you read either of my posts on this subject never did I say to wastefully change out antifreeze. I did say "if one saw signs of corrosion then I don't care what is in the vehicle I'd change out the antifreeze"(I also mentioned rust, but lets face it you had better not see rust in a modern engine / radiator). I stick by this recommendation, again sorry if it bothers you. If you check out this web site you will see that the antifreeze colorant can have an effect on the pH reading,
    http://www.gwrauto.com/RadStrip1.htm
    which I pointed out in my second post, again I hope this does not get you too bent out of shape.
    Just don't use this ever:



    He'll surely bend over rather quickly



  16. #15
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    You take my comments too personally. They were not directed to you. In fact, your 2000 van did not come with long life coolant. The normal change interval for you is 60k. (which you probably know) Those of us who do have the new coolant formulas may find such a test helpful to confirm the coolants quality as it approaches the limit.

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