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Care for Your Coolant With Vehicle Antifreeze

In countries like Britain where freezing temperatures are to be expected every year, vehicle antifreeze is a must-have. A healthy vehicle cooling system containing the right amount of antifreeze prevents both freezing and overheating of your engine. You can find a sizeable selection of vehicle antifreeze and coolant products on eBay, at a wide range of prices.

Are vehicle antifreeze and engine coolant products different?

Yes, although you’ll sometimes hear the terms used interchangeably. Coolant contains a mixture of water and antifreeze, the substance that lowers the freezing point of water. If you buy pure antifreeze, you simply follow the manufacturer’s instructions and dilute it to the required ratio before adding it to your vehicle’s cooling system. Coolant products that already contain the correct ratio can be added directly.

What does the colour code mean?

Coloured dyes are added to vehicle antifreeze to enable you to instantly tell if any leaks are coming from your cooling system or from elsewhere. The chosen colours, which are also displayed on the bottle, indicate certain properties and chemicals. Unfortunately, many manufacturers have invented their own systems, and imported vehicle antifreeze may follow a different colour coding system entirely. Traditionally, the colours are:

  • Green: This is the colour of vehicle antifreeze composed of ethylene glycol. It contains additives that protect metals, such as copper, iron, aluminium, and other metals in the cooling system. It’s the type of antifreeze used as standard in older cars.
  • Orange: Orange (sometimes yellow) is the colour of antifreeze composed of propylene glycol. It has similar properties to ethylene glycol but is designed to last up to five years before it needs replacing. Newer cars use this type of antifreeze.
  • Yellow: Yellow indicates a hybrid antifreeze. It also has a long life and protects metal and rubber tubes. Newer vehicles also use this type of antifreeze.
Vehicle antifreeze and engine coolant brands

Vehicle antifreeze and coolant products are often formulated differently by manufacturers, and vehicle manufacturers often formulate their own antifreeze. Ideally, you should use the coolant or antifreeze that your vehicle manual specifies, but there are also many excellent generic brands that are suitable for most vehicles.

Choosing a suitable vehicle antifreeze

To ensure you’re buying a suitable vehicle antifreeze or coolant, always read the description clearly printed on the bottle. On eBay, you can simply enlarge the photo and read all about the vehicle types it’s suited to. You can also see how much water to antifreeze you should use for optimal results, and check for other beneficial additives.